Updated: January 30, 2021 06:14 PM
Created: January 30, 2021 05:23 PM
ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — About 275 senior residents of Seneca Towers received the first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine Saturday.
Seneca Towers is a low-income senior living community located on the Genesee River in downtown Rochester.
Saturday's pop-up clinic was reserved for Seneca Tower residents only and was part of Governor Cuomo's effort to make the vaccine accessible to underserved communities and communities of color.
Resident Mary C. Gaston described the opportunity as a "dream come true" and said she was "elated" to hear she could get the vaccine.
The pop-up was a collaborative effort between Rochester Management (which oversees Seneca Towers and several other low-income housing sites), Rochester Rapid Response Team, Common Ground Health, Finger Lakes COVID-19 Vaccine Hub and Task Force, the City of Rochester, Monroe County, New York State, and Trillium Health which brought the vaccine to Seneca Towers on its mobile unit.
Before distributing the vaccine, Trillium's mobile unit was used as a COVID-19 testing facility.
"It feels pretty good to actually start the next phase of starting to protect people in the community from the COVID virus," says Sean Owen, a nurse practitioner with Trillium Health.
The vaccines were distributed inside of Seneca Towers in a space provided by Rochester Management.
"This location works out perfectly because there's 492 units, and we have a very large community room space that can just flow in very easy and keep the social distancing, and be able to reach a lot of people at once," says Scott Procious, CFO of Rochester Management.
It's unclear when the next NYS pop-up vaccination clinic will be. Trillium didn't receive word that it would be getting doses to distribute until the last minute, and staff worked around the clock to organize today's clinic.
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