Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan Outlines Efforts to Equitably Distribute COVID-19 Vaccine

Ulster County is partnering with pharmacies, faith leaders, and community leaders to ensure vaccines are provided to eligible members of our disenfranchised communities 

Ulster County Office for the Aging will be assisting seniors without computer access to sign up for vaccination information 

UCAT will offer free transportation for residents going to a vaccination appointment 

KINGSTON, N.Y. – Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan today announced a series of steps that the County is taking to ensure that the COVID-19 vaccine will be distributed equitably. While the vaccine still is not widely available to the public at-large, Ulster County is prioritizing disenfranchised individuals and continuing to work to ensure that residents that do not have access to traditional healthcare institutions have the ability to acquire the vaccine. 

“While my priority remains acquiring the needed vaccines to ramp up our vaccination efforts, Ulster County will continue to do everything within our power to ensure that the distribution of available vaccines is done in an equitable way,” Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan said. “We will continue to partner with pharmacies, members of our religious community, and other organizations to ensure that we can bring the vaccine to those most in need in a quick and fair manner.” 

Today, County Executive Pat Ryan announced that in partnership with a local pharmacy, over 200 vaccines were administered to qualifying individuals at local churches, synagogues, and senior facilities in the Kingston and Saugerties areas. Through this new partnership, additional vaccines will be administered at houses of worship in the Ellenville region next week. 

In addition, County Executive Ryan has directed the Office for the Aging to assist seniors who are unable to sign up for vaccine information due to a lack of access to the internet. He also announced that by partnering with local pharmacies, the Office for the Aging Ulster County Senior Hub will soon be used as a vaccination location. 

For residents in need of transportation, UCAT will be offering free rides to those with vaccination appointments. Transportation appointments must be made 24-hours in advance, by calling (845) 334-8120 between 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. 

In December, County Executive Ryan established the Ulster County Vaccine Distribution Coalition. Led by Dr. Marc Tack, an infectious disease specialist with more than 20 years of medical experience, the coalition is made up of community leaders with the goal of educating the public in order to build trust and confidence in the COVID-19 vaccine and its distribution process. The committee looks to emphasize focus on underserved populations to ensure a seamless process once the vaccine is readily available to the general public.

Currently, the COVID-19 vaccine is being rolled out to specific groups included in Phase 1a and Phase 1b outlined by New York State’s Phased Distribution of the Vaccine(link is external). Individuals who fill out the form will be notified by the Ulster County Department of Health at their preferred contact information when it is your time to receive the vaccine and will be provided instructions on how to register. 

For more information and questions, please visit our Ulster County COVID-19 Vaccination Resource Center: http://vaccinateulster.com(link is external) or call the Recovery Service Center at 845-443-8888.