Bergen County Sheriff Anthony Cureton's staff on Friday administered the first in a series of COVID-19 vaccines to those in custody at the county jail.
“I took the vaccine to show family, friends, and those incarcerated that if I could take it, they should, as well," said a 46-year-old inmate who's awaiting trial on kidnapping charges.
"It’s about them being healthy and staying around,” said the inmate, identified only as G.H.
The Johnson & Johnson vaccine was given to 32 inmates and federal detainees with no immediate adverse effects, the sheriff said.
Others asked to be vaccinated as the shots were being administrated, he said.
Since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, those in custody at the lockup in Hackensack are tested upon intake, as well as randomly, Cureton said.
The Bergen County Jail has had only 53 positive cases overall, with mild symptoms and no hospital stays, he said.
Throughout the pandemic, Cureton said, he's been concerned about "the potential impact of COVID-19 on vulnerable populations, such as those in high-risk, congregate settings," the sheriff said.
The jail received 100 doses, which were administered by the jail's medical staff, he said.
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