The State University of New York school system will be making the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine available to students before they head home for Summer Break with the intention of fully reopening campuses in the fall.
With eligibility for the COVID-19 vaccine expanding to all New Yorkers 16 and older on Tuesday, April 6, SUNY Chancellor Jim Malatras announced that thousands of the Johnson & Johnson vaccines were being distributed to the 34 SUNY campuses.
The latest measure comes on the hells of Malatras announcing SUNY’s intention to fully reopen for in-person learning across the entire education system.
- Earlier story - COVID-19: SUNY Chancellor Says Colleges Could Reopen With Vaccine Eligibility Opening To 16+
Officials said that Johnson & Johnson vaccines are ideal for students because it requires only one shot to complete the vaccination, while the other FDA-approved vaccines from Moderna and Pfizer include two shots, making it more difficult to schedule before students head home for the holiday.
Malatras said that COVID-19 vaccinations won’t be required for SUNY students before they return to school in the fall, but it’s strongly encouraged as the state secured enough doses for students on each campus.
Each of the more than 350,000 SUNY students enrolled across the state received a notification on Tuesday reminding them that eligibility has been expanded to include all adults in New York.
“Giving residential students the one-shot option helps clear a crucial logistical hurdle in the race to get people fully vaccinated before they leave campus and return to their hometown communities," Malatras said.
"We strongly encourage all students to schedule their appointments as soon as they can; to do their part in protecting themselves, their families, and their communities; and to help spread the word about the many benefits of the COVID-19 vaccines."
Currently, 36 SUNY campuses are serving as vaccination sites, and will act as a “built-in infrastructure” to get students and staff safely vaccinated upon their return to campus.
As of Tuesday, April 6, more than 700,000 COVID-19 vaccines have been administered at SUNY vaccination sites.
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