At the office: Illinois starts new campaign for vaccinating employees at their convenience


SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Illinois now has more supply than demand for COVID-19 vaccines. However, the state is starting a new effort to bring shots directly to workers.

Gov. JB Pritzker says many people could have the opportunity to receive vaccines at their workplace. Commercial offices in Chicago and other business districts around the state will have vaccine clinics as more people return to working in person.

The governor also says this can help many people who continued to work on-site throughout the pandemic. That includes janitors, security, engineers, and desk staff among others. Pritzker says having vaccines available in a workplace makes the process very convenient. In fact, buildings in Chicago, Schaumburg, and Rockford are starting the effort this week.

“If more building owners and managers across Illinois want to host similar events, the state of Illinois is here to help,” Pritzker said. “With a critical mass of people who need to be vaccinated, we will get you the staff, the supplies, and the vaccine to make it happen.”

The Illinois Department of Public Health partnered with Walgreens for this initiative. Pritzker says vaccine clinics will take place during shift changes to help even more employees take advantage of the opportunity.

“We’ve been planning for this for some time now. You can see that it takes a good deal of partnership, right,” Pritzker said. “Walgreens and SEIU and BOMA [Building Owners and Managers Association] and the city and the state all working together to make it very convenient for people who may not have otherwise been able to get vaccinated.”

Getting facts about the vaccine

Public Health Director Ngozi Ezike says people concerned about safety or concerns with vaccines should talk with their doctors.

“We understand it’s a personal decision,” Ezike said. “But, we want to make sure that people have the right facts with which to make the decision for themselves, their families, and their communities. The quickest way for life to return to normal is for more people to get vaccinated.”

IDPH can also help community groups, churches, and nonprofits with mobile vaccination clinics. Ezike explained organizations can sign up to host free vaccine events with staff and supplies provided by the department.

IDPH has completed 130 community vaccination clinics with over 120 scheduled for the coming weeks. Local leaders can fill out an interest form for the vaccine opportunities by clicking here.

Meanwhile, Pritzker explained Illinois will ramp down the amount of vaccines coming into the state due to the drop in demand. He says extra doses could still be available from the federal stockpile if the state requests a larger amount.

The post At the office: Illinois starts new campaign for vaccinating employees at their convenience appeared first on WEEK.


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