Thousands of eligible Hudson Valley residents will soon be able to get their COVID-19 vaccine at Marist College.

During a virtual town hall on Wednesday, Dutchess County Executive, Marc Molinaro announced that Marist College has been designated as a state-run vaccine pop-up location. The Poughkeepsie campus has agreed to host the mass-vaccination program for seven days, inoculating thousands of Hudson Valley residents against coronavirus.

Molinaro says the week-long pop-up will be run by the state as part of their effort to reach all corners of New York. As of now, the closest state-run vaccination site is at the County Center in White Plains. The site is over an hour and a half from many areas of Dutchess, creating obstacles for many residents to get their vaccine, especially those with serious health conditions who are currently unable to make appointments at local pharmacies which are only open to seniors.

Those with comorbidities can sign up to be vaccinated at one of two permanent county sites, but the chance of getting an appointment anytime soon seems to be slim. With over 40,000 people on the list and only a few thousand vaccines available each week, the county is currently putting a priority on teachers, first responders and other essential workers. The state does mandate that a portion of the vaccines are allotted to those with comorbidities, but Molinaro admits that the county doesn't "follow it firmly." The County Executive says that at his request those with developmental disabilities have been added to the allotment, citing statistics that show people with down syndrome are ten times more likely to succumb to the virus.

So, younger residents with serious health conditions who are not able to visit pharmacies for their vaccine have found themselves mostly left out of the process, resorting to making appointments down to New York City, Westchester, Albany or even Binghamton.

Those younger people with comorbidities will be happy to learn that the Marist College pop-up will be available to anyone in the county that is eligible for a vaccine, including comorbidities. The seven-day event is planning to vaccinate 500 people a day. Molinaro says that the site will most likely be giving out the new Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which only requires one injection.

Appointments for the Marist College pop-up vaccination site will go live later this week on the state website through a special link. Molinaro encourages everyone to get on the Dutchess County list so that they will receive a notification when appointments are available. More pop-up locations will be announced in the coming weeks for Rhinebeck, East Fishkill/Beacon and the Millerton area.

LOOK: Answers to 30 common COVID-19 vaccine questions

While much is still unknown about the coronavirus and the future, what is known is that the currently available vaccines have gone through all three trial phases and are safe and effective. It will be necessary for as many Americans as possible to be vaccinated in order to finally return to some level of pre-pandemic normalcy, and hopefully these 30 answers provided here will help readers get vaccinated as soon they are able.

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