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NEWS | May 24, 2021

NY National Guard continues staffing COVID vaccination sites

By Eric Durr, New York National Guard

NEW YORK, N.Y.– New York National Guard Soldiers and Airmen now oversee three vaccination sites formerly run by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and active Navy and Air Force personnel.

Two sites are in New York City and the other site is in Yonkers in Westchester County.

This brings the number of vaccination sites being manned by 1,957 members of the New York Army and Air National Guard, the New York Naval Militia, and the New York Guard - the state’s defense force- to 27 locations across the state.

At Medgar Evers College in Brooklyn and York College in Queens, the two New York City locations went live on Feb. 24. Seventy Air Force personnel helped staff the location at Medgar Evers College and 89 Navy personnel worked at the York College site.

A combination of the New York National Guard and the New York State Department of Health personnel took over the operation of those two sites on May 19. According to Capt, the New York National Guard assigned 40 personnel to each location to serve as the incident command team on site. Richard Reilly, the operations officer for the New York National Guard’s Joint Task Force COVID South.

Between Feb. 24 and May 19 the Medgar Evers College site administered 215,570 vaccine does, while the York College location administered 223,927 shots, according to the New York National Guard’s Dual Status Command.

The FEMA site Yonkers is located at the New York State Armory and began operating on March 3. The New York National Guard assumed incident command at the site on May 19.

Fifteen New York National Guard personnel were already assigned to support federal workers at the site. Additional Guard troops assigned to the area bring the total number of New York National Guard personnel working there to 51, according to Lt. Col. Aaron Lefton, the officer in charge of the New York National Guard’s Joint Task Force COVID North.

The Yonkers site has administered 70,071 vaccinations.

Since the vaccination mission began in January, New York National Guard personnel have supported 3,480,533 vaccinations. New York National Guard medical personnel have administered 94,486 of those shots.

According to the New York State Department of Health, a total of 18,025 115 vaccinations have been given in New York and over 8.5 million state residents are vaccinated as of May 20.

Along with running vaccination sites, the 3,080 New York Army and Air Guard, Naval Militia and New York Guard personnel on COVID-19 mission duty continue to staff 15 COVID-19 testing sites, assemble and ship COVID-19 test kits around New York, and conduct logistics support missions.

Since March 8, 2020, a total of 6,391 members of the New York National Guard and the state’s military forces have served on the COVID-19 mission.

On May 13, the New York National Guard reported that service members had spent 1,000,000 man days supporting the state COVID-19 response.

In a Tweet posted on May 14, New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo thanked the National Guard members for their” dedication and service.”

As of May 21, the New York National Guard has:

  • Assisted in collecting 1,649,035 COVID-19 tests at 15 locations
  • Assembled 11,384,913 test kits assembled for the New York State Department of Health’s Wadsworth Laboratories
  • Received 57,389 pallets of goods and distributed 27,055 pallets from six warehouse locations
  • Conducted 11,841 mobile lab COVID-19 tests
  • Providing access control at seven locations.

Completed missions include:

  • Screening 3,074,048 passengers for health care information at 12 airports
  • Distributing 112,707 gallons of hand sanitizer
  • Processing 278,162 phone calls for the Department of Health and NYC Veterans Services
  • Preparing 444,987 meals for needy resident
  • Distributing 54,899,025 meals (Most in NYC)
  • Cleaning 907,000 Square Feet of facility space at 22 Locations
  • Collecting 14,269 COVID antibody test
  • Conducting the dignified recovery of 2,882 New Yorkers who died during the crisis
  • Assisted in providing medical treatment for 1,095 patients at the Javits Convention Center



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