What there is to know
- New York is rolling out a new round of incentives to encourage vaccinations among the least motivated, with the state reporting a 41% drop in vaccination rates in the last month alone.
- The city is offering free tickets to popular attractions such as Lincoln Center, New York Aquarium, and the Bronx Zoo, while the state is using free 7-day MetroCards, among other bonuses, to sweeten the pot.
- More people are expected to be eligible for vaccination as early as this week after the FDA approved Pfizer’s request to use its emergency injection schedule for children ages 12 to 15. .
New York is trying to sweeten the vaccine deal even further, launching a list of new incentives on Monday that include free tickets to some of the city’s most iconic attractions and free weekly MetroCards, while Mayor Bill de Blasio says he hasn’t ruled out cash. as a last resort as immunization rates across the state plummet.
The latest launches to encourage the less motivated to get vaccinated are coming as a group of young people – aged 12 to 15 – will become eligible for vaccines. The FDA has approved Pfizer and BioNTech’s request to authorize their COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use for this age group, paving the way for states to have college students vaccinated before fall, as well as their older populations.
The two-dose vaccine is already approved for people 16 years of age and older. The CDC’s vaccine advisory committee has scheduled a meeting for Wednesday to review Pfizer’s injections for children. If approved by the CDC as planned, this vaccine could be distributed to adolescents as early as this week.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo has previously urged high schools to start transporting children of eligible age to vaccination sites as he seeks to bolster a vaccine rollout that has seen rates drop 41% since April 12. Rates have also fallen nationwide.
Cuomo and de Blasio appeal to the less motivated in the best way they know: with free stuff.
The city offers free tickets and deals to the New York Aquarium, Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Bronx Zoo, Lincoln Center, Brooklyn Cyclones, New York Ferry, and the Public Theater, among other attractions popular, for those who get vaccinated on its sites.
De Blasio has promised “plenty of great opportunities to get great prizes when you get vaccinated” yet to come as he seeks to meet his goal of fully inoculating 5 million New Yorkers by the end of June. It’s about 61% of the way so far.
Shortly after the mayor’s presentation, Cuomo added transit incentives to the pool. Getting a vaccine on a subway, Long Island Rail Road, or Metro-North hub Wednesday through Sunday will come with a free ride – a few of them, in fact.
Anyone who gets vaccinated at a designated metro station during this four-day window receives a free seven-day MetroCard and anyone who gets vaccinated at an LIRR or Metro-North center wins two free one-way trips anywhere in the zone. on duty.
This program will use the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which means people can go to work, for example, get vaccinated at their usual place of work, and be fully vaccinated by the time they go to the office.
The state and city of New York, as well as New Jersey, have all made their locally managed vaccination sites available to walk-in people of any eligible age, which tackles the ‘eliminate the excuses’ components. And “access” which Cuomo says give some people a break.
The latest vaccine surge comes as the city prepares to resume 24-hour metro service in less than a week – on May 17 – for the first time since the pandemic struck.
Two days later, New York, New Jersey and Connecticut will lift nearly all remaining capacity restrictions, a coordinated reopening effort similar to the coordinated shutdown that governors first implemented in March 2020.
Don’t know how the process works? Check out our handy Tri-State Vaccine Site Finder and FAQs here
Vaccine suppliers in New York and New Jersey
Click on each provider to find more information on scheduling an appointment for the COVID-19 vaccine.