Building on a robust infrastructure to provide the COVID-19 vaccine to all eligible Illinois residents in an equitable manner, Governor JB Pritzker today announced the launch of three additional state-supported mass vaccination sites in southern and central Illinois. Two vaccination sites will operate in Carbondale and one site will provide vaccines in Springfield. The state will also deploy additional Illinois National Guard mobile vaccination teams to stand up mobile sites in Sangamon and Jackson Counties.
At full capacity, the mass vaccination sites can administer a combined 2,700 doses daily with the new mobile teams providing an additional 1,600 in daily dose capacity. The Springfield site and the combined Carbondale sites will each launch with an allocation of 4,000 doses per week with plans to ramp up to full capacity, pending increases in federal vaccine shipments. Governor Pritzker has activated additional members of the Illinois National Guard to assist the Jackson County Health Department and the Sangamon County Department of Public Health in standing up the vaccination sites and to support the mobile vaccination sites.
These sites build upon the state-supported mass vaccination infrastructure at Tinley Park Convention Center in Cook County and the Belle-Clair Fairgrounds and Expo Center in St. Clair County, as well as existing mobile vaccination teams already operating around the state.
“My administration remains committed to administering the COVID-19 vaccine in an efficient and equitable manner which is why I’m pleased to announce these three new mass vaccination sites as well as multiple mobile vaccination sites in central and southern Illinois communities. These resources will be available to assist local health departments in administering the vaccine, a critical tool in combating this deadly virus,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “While supply remains limited across the nation, here in Illinois we are building out a robust vaccine infrastructure to ensure we can reach all of our residents as quickly as possible. As Illinois and other states across the nation await additional vaccine supply from the federal government, every Illinoisan can continue do their part to fight this virus by following public health guidance and getting vaccinated when it is their turn to do so.”
“Vaccination is critical in ending this pandemic and we must ensure equitable access to vaccine,” said IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike. “We will continue to work to bring vaccine to communities across the state. And as we work to increase access to the vaccine, so shall we continue our educational and outreach efforts to increase acceptance of the vaccine.”
The new mass and mobile vaccinations sites are managed through an interagency effort led by Governor Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Public Health, coordinated by the Illinois Emergency Management Agency and supported by the Illinois National Guard. The administration is working in partnership with local health departments and county officials.
Mass vaccination sites will serve those in Phase 1a and 1b by appointment. Sites coming online this week include the following:
February 19---Banterra Center, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale IL, Up to 540 doses per day
February 19---Carbondale Civic Center, Carbondale IL, Up to 540 doses per day
The other site was in Sangamon County and opened yesterday.
Mobile vaccination teams will work in coordination with local health departments and county officials to support additional sites. Teams include National Guard service members as well as nurses contracted by the state. Mobile teams currently support the Cook County Department of Public Health and the Eastside Health District in St. Clair County. Additional mobile teams will deploy to both Sangamon County and Jackson County over the next few weeks with deployments to additional counties to follow. These teams will move from site to site within the counties offering direct assistance to underserved communities with a focus on those unable to visit mass vaccination sites or other clinics, including rural, undocumented, and/or Black and Brown communities. The county health departments will determine priority sites where mobile teams will deploy.
“Jackson County Health Department is proud to partner with the State of Illinois and the Illinois National Guard to vaccinate residents of Jackson County and across southern Illinois,” said Bart Hagston, Administrator, Jackson County Health Department. “This support will prove to be a game-changer in our ability to get eligible individuals vaccinated and protect them from COVID-19. We are excited to have these partners as we undertake this critical mission.”
“We are very grateful to the Governor for locating this large vaccination center in our community and we are delighted to be partnering with the National Guard who have brought military precision and discipline to this operation,” said Andy Van Meter, Sangamon County Board Chairman.
As of February 15, there were more than 800 Illinois National Guard service members assisting with COVID-19 response throughout Illinois with the number of Guard members activated expected to increase as the state-supported sites grow.
“The Illinois National Guard has played a vital role in the whole-of-government effort to control the spread of this deadly virus and we are proud to help communities save lives with these vaccines,” said Maj. Gen. Rich Neely, the Adjutant General of Illinois and Commander of the Illinois National Guard. “I’m proud of our Guard women and men as they step up to the plate again to help our fellow citizens.”
There are now more than 850 vaccination locations in Illinois open to the public. While the state is working to increase the number of vaccines administered daily, it is limited by the amount of vaccine available and allocated by the federal government.
There is no charge to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. Vaccinations are available only by appointment at this time and residents are encouraged to check back frequently for open appointments. Individuals should sign up for an appointment to receive their second dose while they are getting their first vaccination.
For more information on how to make an appointment to receive the vaccine, updates on the state’s plan and eligibility, and answers to frequently asked questions about the COVID-19 vaccine, go to coronavirus.illinois.gov.