NYU has been approved as a vaccination center and will open vaccination sites at the Student Health Center and on the first floor of Bobst Library, according to a Feb. 17 email from Dr. Carlo Ciotoli, Executive Lead of NYU’s COVID-19 Prevention & Response Team (CPRT).
The MetroTech Center in Brooklyn will serve as an additional vaccination site, according to university spokesperson John Beckman. There will be systems in place for members of the NYU community to make appointments and record their vaccination status.
Around 7,000 community members who fall into the Phase 1A and Phase 1B categories of New York’s vaccine distribution plan have been offered appointments through NYU Langone Health. These categories include individuals 65 and older, a select group of essential workers and people with underlying health conditions.
In New York, around 10 million people are currently eligible to get the vaccine. Until the vaccination site opens, members of the university committee are encouraged to obtain vaccinations through healthcare or other providers if given the opportunity.
NYU has not yet decided if proof of a COVID-19 vaccination will be a requirement for on-campus activities at a later point, Beckman wrote in a statement to WSN.
“At this point, NYU is strongly encouraging everybody who is eligible to get the COVID-19 vaccine,” Beckman wrote. “It is a message we have conveyed repeatedly in our many communications about COVID-19.”
Shamon Lawrence, a Steinhardt sophomore and SGA Senator at-Large, thinks there would be backlash from students if the vaccine were required.
“It should be strongly encouraged, but not enforced for students specifically,” Lawrence said. “Mandatory would be in the best interest of the community, but making it an option would work for those who have reservations towards it.”
On Monday, March 8, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that vaccinated individuals can now safely gather indoors with each other without masks or physical distancing, but have to continue to take precautions under some circumstances.
Vaccinated students must still wear masks, socially distance, participate in coronavirus testing and follow other prevention precautions during the spring semester in keeping with CDC’s guidelines, according to Beckman.
Ciotoli stated that the CPRT will monitor the health of the community and continue to follow guidance from public health officials. Plans are to be solidified later on for the upcoming summer and fall semesters. Anyone exposed to COVID-19 — regardless of vaccination status — is required to self-report to the CPRT and will have to show proof of vaccination to be exempt from quarantine, Ciotoli wrote in the Feb. 17 email.
“I would definitely feel safer if everyone had the vaccine,” Lawrence said. “It’ll help to have herd immunity on campus.”
Email Rachel Cohen at [email protected]