Remaining Weekend Clinics Move to Newburyport’s Nock Middle School This Week
Planning for Clinics for Ages 12-16 Underway
AMESBURY – The Lower Merrimack Valley Regional Collaborative health clinic administered more than 800 first and second dose Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccinations to members of the general public 16 years old and older this past Saturday.
A total of 827 people received a vaccine on May 1. To date, the Collaborative has distributed 22,328 total vaccines.
This weekend, due to athletics at Amesbury High School, the clinic is relocating its operations to the Nock Middle School in Newburyport.
The Collaborative’s weekend clinic sessions will sunset a few weeks earlier than expected due to decreasing demand and wider availability of vaccine doses. May 22 will be the last regular weekend vaccine clinic.
“The vast and overwhelming majority of our seniors, homebound and chronically ill residents — in all nine communities — have now received their COVID-19 vaccines, and thousands of others have been vaccinated close to home,” said Paul Sevigny, the West Newbury Health Agent and one of the clinic’s leaders. “We could not be prouder of what we have accomplished as the state’s first regional vaccine collaborative.”
With approval for the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for children ages 12-16 expected any day, the Collaborative will re-assess and will likely run a number of smaller clinics to meet the needs of that age group.
The Collaborative is not going away anytime soon! The group will continue to assess the needs for possible future booster shots, and the Collaborative’s nine communities intend to maintain the close working relationships developed during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We have learned that we can accomplish great things when we all work together,” said Amesbury Fire Chief and Public Health Director Ken Berkenbush, who serves as incident commander for the COVID-19 vaccine clinic initiative. “The Lower Merrimack Valley Regional Collaborative has shown that local control is a powerful and effective way to help communities during an emergency, and we want to collectively thank Governor Charlie Baker and the Department of Public Health for putting their faith in our efforts. A lot of people were helped in the Merrimack Valley, many of whom would still be waiting for their vaccines today.”
Residents are also encouraged to search the state’s website for locations for vaccine appointments: https://vaxfinder.mass.gov/
The Lower Merrimack Valley Regional Collaborative comprises Amesbury, Georgetown, Groveland, Merrimac, Newbury, Newburyport, Rowley, Salisbury, and West Newbury.
JGPR is providing communications services to this effort on a pro bono basis.