By Elliott Nguyen
Mercer County moved all vaccination centers to two sites, the Cure Insurance Arena in Trenton and Mercer County Community College’s West Windsor campus, according to the Mercer County website.
As of Feb. 13, other county clinics will no longer hold vaccinations due to the low supply of vaccines available. Instead, anyone on the waiting list will be scheduled for vaccination there when a spot becomes available.
However, anyone who already received their first dose and is awaiting their second will receive it wherever they were given their first.
The Cure Insurance Arena site opened in Trenton, New Jersey on Jan. 21. In partnership with Capital Health, Mercer County is currently running the site on a trial basis and offers 100 doses each day, according to whyy.org.
Vaccines are offered on an appointment-only basis, and registration is available online at the Arena website. However, users must first register with the state. NJ residents without online access can register by calling 855-568-0545 toll free, where they can speak with a live assistant. The call center is open all days of the week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. The city of Trenton has its own line, 609-989-3242.
Registration is currently still limited to Phase 1 eligibility. This includes “healthcare personnel,” “long-term care residents and staff” and “individuals at high risk,” according to the state’s website. More in-depth clarifications are also posted there.
“The consolidation does not affect the number of doses reserved for each municipality, as the doses are allocated based on population size,” said Julie Willmot, director of communications for Mercer County, in an email. “We've been told by the state government that when the vaccine supply is more plentiful, the municipalities can again stand up their own clinics if they have the resources (parking, medical staff, etc.) to do so.”
In regards to when residents can expect more vaccines, Willmot said, “Mercer County regularly receives vaccine doses from the NJ Department of Health and we know the number that we can anticipate. There may be disruptions due to supply chain issues or inclement weather, but other than issues beyond our control, the county has been regularly receiving its allotment in addition to doses supplied to agencies… that are not counted in those received by Mercer County Health.”
She stressed that the county is making an effort to acquire more vaccines. “County Executive Hughes will continue to press for a greater vaccine allocation for Mercer County. Ideally, when the vaccine supply is plentiful, vaccinations will be available at multiple sites — public and private.”