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A message from Commissioner McCosh: Vaccines moving forward

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Disabilities Commission

A weekly message from Commissioner McCosh in support of the local disability community.

Dear Disability Community Members,

Although vaccine distribution for COVID-19 is ramping up, we realize that many barriers still remain for persons with disabilities in terms of getting the shot. We want to hear from you about these barriers! 

The Boston Public Health Commission is hosting a virtual focus group for the disability community to learn about their concerns around the COVID-19 vaccine. The focus group is being held on Wednesday, January 27th, at 2 pm. Pre-registration is required

We urge residents with disabilities to sign up to provide your valuable insight! Participants will receive a gift card after the session. Slots are filling up quickly - so please register soon!

Also related to the vaccine - there is a lot of information out there about the COVID-19 vaccine, and it can be overwhelming at times. Here is the latest info about getting the vaccine in Massachusetts.

All Those Eligible in Phase One can get Vaccinated Now

  • All residents in Phase One of the Massachusetts Vaccine Distribution Plan are eligible to receive a vaccine immediately
  • Eligible residents can now make appointments to get the vaccine at more than 150 locations across the state including first responder only sites, Fenway Park, regional vaccination sites and some CVS and Walgreens pharmacies
  • Additional mass vaccination sites, pharmacy sites, and community clinic sites will open in more locations on a rolling basis
  • A full vaccination site map can be found here - we urge you to check back often for updates on new locations

Phase One Residents Include:

  • COVID-facing healthcare workers
  • Long term care facilities (LTCF) residents and staff
  • First Responders (EMS, Fire, Police)
  • Congregate Care setting residents and staff (including corrections and shelters)
  • Home-based healthcare workers, including PCAs
  • Non-COVID-facing healthcare workers

All residents must demonstrate their eligibility to receive the vaccine. Eligibility can be established by self-attestation. The Commonwealth’s Self Attestation form can be filled out online. Residents should be prepared to present this form in a hard copy or electronically at their appointment.

COVID-19 Safety Updates

  • On February 1st Boston will move to Phase Three, Step One of the Reopening Massachusetts plan. The current state of Boston’s reopening plan can be found on Boston’s reopening website.
  • Limits on gatherings have been extended and include a limit of 10 persons for indoor gatherings, 25 persons for outdoor gatherings to both private homes and event venues and public spaces.
  • The nightly 9:30 pm to 5:00 am mandatory closing period has been repealed so that now:
    • Restaurants, health clubs, casinos, and similar venues no longer need to close at 9:30 pm
    • Retail sales of alcohol and adult use marijuana no longer must stop at 9:30 pm

As always, please feel free to reach out to us if you need any information or assistance. You can dial 311 to reach City Hall, or call us at 617-635-3682. Our email is disability@boston.gov and the latest updates are available at Boston.gov . 

Until next week, please stay informed, stay safe, and stay healthy. 

Sincerely,

Commissioner Kristen McCosh