N.J. opens 3rd COVID vaccination mega-site; Edison center aims to vax 2,000 people daily

Phil Murphy, New Jersey's governor, left, applauds after a person receives a dose of a Covid-19 vaccination at the New Jersey Convention and Exposition Center in Edison, New Jersey, U.S., on Friday, Jan. 15, 2021. New Jersey will expand Covid-19 vaccinations to people 65 years old and over and those ages 16 to 64 who have

Phil Murphy, New Jersey's governor, left, applauds after a person receives a dose of a Covid-19 vaccination at the New Jersey Convention and Exposition Center in Edison, New Jersey, U.S., on Friday, Jan. 15, 2021. New Jersey will expand Covid-19 vaccinations to people 65 years old and over and those ages 16 to 64 who have "health challenges," Murphy said. (Mark Kauzlarich/Bloomberg)

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New Jersey inaugurated the state’s third COVID-19 vaccination “mega-site” this time at the New Jersey Convention and Expo Center in Edison on Friday.

Officials said the target for the facility is 2,000 vaccinations per day. Eventually, the state expects to open six mega-sites along with pharmacies and other smaller locations currently administering doses.

NJ Gov. Phil Murphy posed for photos with 76-year-old North Brunswick resident Richard Satyavan, who received the first vaccine dose at the center.

Phil Murphy, New Jersey’s governor, right, greats a person receiving a Covid-19 vaccination at New Jersey Convention and Exposition Center Covid-19 vaccination site in Edison, New Jersey, U.S., on Friday, Jan. 15, 2021. New Jersey will expand Covid-19 vaccinations to people 65 years old and over and those ages 16 to 64 who have “health challenges,” Murphy said. (Mark Kauzlarich/Bloomberg)

“This is my privilege to get vaccinated. I’m a senior belonging to a vulnerable group,” he said. “By getting vaccinated myself, I’m helping my community so the younger people can go and work because they are not working because of us.”

The state has so far performed 310,595 total vaccinations, including about 23,000 since yesterday. But officials said supplies of the vaccine were still “extremely limited,” and Murphy blamed the slower-than-hoped pace on the federal government for a “big ongoing supply-demand imbalance.”

“[It’s] overwhelmingly due to not enough coming out of the feds,” the governor said, per pool reports.

The state recorded 5,490 new positive PCR tests overnight. COVID-19 hospitalizations declined to 3,543, including 626 in intensive care units and 438 with on ventilators.

While officials cheered the slight decrease, hospital occupancy remains at historic highs. While 452 patients left hospitalization, 427 new patients were admitted. The state also reported 67 new deaths, for 18,229 total during the pandemic.

Residents seeking more information about vaccination can click here.

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