Ulster County holds mass vaccination site for eligible teenagers

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KINGSTON, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Ulster County officials and pharmacists are utilizing thousands of doses of the Pfizer vaccine from the federal government to focus on 16 and 17-year-olds, who just became eligible in New York State.

“I just think it’s very important for them to get here,” said Dr. Neal Smoller, a holistic pharmacist administering shots on Tuesday, “so that way we can wrap up this school year safely and get next school year started with a pep in our step, you know?”

Smoller said these mass vaccination sites for teens are an opportunity to get shots out to a large group of high schoolers at once. He says it’s an age group that has been prolific in spreading the virus.

16-year-old Gianna Cappucilli was nervous about getting her shot, but getting back to normal extra-curricular activities is what’s motivating her and her friends to roll up their sleeves.

“I do theatre, and a lot of us are worried about being close to one another,” said Cappucilli. “Everyone I know really wants to get it.”

Her mother, Dineen, admitted to previously holding some skepticism toward the vaccine, but she wants her daughter to be protected. She ultimately decided to get vaccinated Tuesday, right alongside Gianna.

“It kind of supports your child, also. I know she’s very afraid to get it, but I think me getting it with her made it less traumatizing,” she said.

Doses will be administered again at the old Best Buy in Kingston on Wednesday and Saturday.

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