Regional — The municipal managers and public health agents of ten Essex County communities jointly announce the formation of the Greater Cape Ann Community Collaborative (GCACC). The coordinated public health effort has been approved by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health to serve as a regional COVID-19 vaccination coalition.
The communities Boxford, Essex, Gloucester, Hamilton, Ipswich, Manchester-by-the-Sea, Middleton, Rockport, Topsfield and Wenham and its dedicated public health agents, Medical Reserve Corps members and the Metropolitan Area Planning Council will provide vaccination opportunities to the public and to under-represented and hard-to-reach residents.
The Commonwealth has agreed to provide the GCACC with doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine. GCACC clinics will be open to all Massachusetts residents ages 12 and older.
The organizers acknowledge the efforts of State Senator Bruce Tarr, who has been instrumental in the creation of the clinic, acting as a key supporter and resource as the group worked to come together and seek state approval for their operation.
“Vaccination is one of the most powerful tools we have to combat COVID-19, and it’s important that vaccines be delivered as efficiently and effectively as possible,” said Sen. Tarr. “The powerful collaboration of these communities will put local knowledge, access, dedication, and convenience to work so that everyone in our region can become part of the fight against this evil virus. I have been pleased to play a role in facilitating this remarkable regional initiative.”
“We thank Governor Charlie Baker and the Department of Public Health for approving the Coalition, and Sen. Tarr for his leadership and assistance,” said Ipswich Town Manager Anthony Marino. “We will be able to marshal the power of Cape Ann’s community health-care professionals, who are known to be trustworthy and reliable sources of the most up-to-date vaccination information.”
Appointments for the clinic are encouraged, but not required.
To schedule an appointment, visit: www.maimmunizations.org
Clinics will be held weekly for the foreseeable future at the following locations, on the following days:
Coolidge Hall at the Topsfield Fairgrounds (207 Boston St. Topsfield, aka rte 1) on Thursdays from 2-3:30 p.m. each week.
Rockport Elementary School at 34 Jerdens Lane, Rockport. Drive-thru clinics will be held on Saturdays beginning in June. The start date and times will be announced when available.
Our Lady of Hope Parish at 1 Pineswamp Road, Ipswich on Mondays beginning June 7. Times will be announced when available.
The GCACC is also authorized by the MDPH to administer vaccines in other public spaces, and in targeted spaces such as businesses, schools, and houses of worship. Local organizations looking to partner with the GCACC can contact Hamilton Public Health Nurse Rachel Lee at 978-290-9618. The GCACC will publicize dates and times of open clinics when they are finalized.
“With the MDPH’s approval of the Greater Cape Ann Community Collaborative, ten local boards of health now have the ability to bring outreach, education and the vaccine to visitors and residents in the Cape Ann area,” said Hamilton Public Health Nurse Lee. “Every person who gets vaccinated makes a difference as we work to protect ourselves and our communities from COVID-19. Let’s stop this virus, and make Massachusetts and the Cape Ann region a safe place for all of us to spend the summer.”