4 vaccination locations opened in Cook County, but none are in the Northwest suburbs (yet)

  • Occupational therapist Lauren Green of Hometown winces as she receives the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine from Oak Street Health nurse Tiffany Pipkins at a one-day mass vaccination event Monday in Chicago Heights. Now four mass-vaccination facilities will open six days a week in South and Western Cook County suburbs.

    Occupational therapist Lauren Green of Hometown winces as she receives the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine from Oak Street Health nurse Tiffany Pipkins at a one-day mass vaccination event Monday in Chicago Heights. Now four mass-vaccination facilities will open six days a week in South and Western Cook County suburbs. Jake Griffin | Staff Photographer

 
 
Updated 1/20/2021 9:43 AM

Four Cook County sites will open Monday to vaccinate people 65 and older and essential workers against COVID-19, but none are in the Northwest suburbs.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced that the new sites, two in the Western suburbs and two in the South suburbs, opened Tuesday for unvaccinated health care workers who are part of the Phase 1a eligibility group.

 

Details will be announced by Thursday for how the county will register people for vaccination in Phase 1b, which includes people age 65 and older and essential workers whose jobs won't allow them to stay at home during the pandemic. Those workers include firefighters, police, teachers, child-care staff members, bus drivers and grocery store employees, among others.

The vaccination sites were chosen by county officials because they are near minority populations that have been disproportionately affected by the virus, state and county officials said. The sites will serve people who live or work in Cook County.

The locations, in Cicero, Ford Heights, North Riverside and Robbins, are the only announced sites for receiving vaccinations in suburban Cook County.

"Their goal was to put sites in areas where access to health care is challenging and would have the biggest equity impact in the county," said Jordan Abudayyeh, Pritzker's press secretary.

"I'm fully confident Governor Pritzker will take the necessary steps to continue escalating vaccine distribution in Cook County, and I'm hopeful there will be state-supported vaccination sites in the Northwest suburbs soon," said Cook County Board Commissioner Kevin Morrison, a Mount Prospect Democrat. "I also know the incoming Biden administration has pledged to distribute 100 million vaccines in its first 100 days, and I'm optimistic the administration's efforts will bring more vaccines to the Northwest suburbs and Cook County."

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Elmwood Park Republican Commissioner Peter Silvestri said the first four locations were chosen because the lease agreements were easiest to obtain, but more sites will be announced soon.

"They'll wind up being equitable as more agreements come online," Silvestri said. "There will be equal resources throughout the county, I wouldn't have it any other way."

The sites are being staffed by the Illinois National Guard but operated under guidance of the Cook County Department of Public Health. Officials said each site's vaccination capacity will vary until supplies are more readily available.

The sites will operate 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday, officials said. They are located at:

• Cook County Health's Morton East Adolescent Health Center at 2423 S. Austin Boulevard, Cicero.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

• Cook County Health's Cottage Grove Health Center, 1645 Cottage Grove Ave., Ford Heights.

• Cook County Health's North Riverside Health Center at 1800 S. Harlem Ave., North Riverside.

• Cook County Health's Robbins Health Center at 13450 S. Kedzie Ave., Robbins.

To find out more, go to cookcountypublichealth.org.

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