Want a COVID-19 vaccine, but don’t have a way to get to a vaccination site?
Cook County residents, including Chicagoans, can now get a free ride to a nearby vaccination site, thanks to the new “Destination: Vaccination” program.
“Transportation is a critical barrier for those in traditionally underserved communities,” said Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle in a statement. “We want to eliminate this barrier for residents who otherwise want to receive vaccinations.”
The free program is open to residents who want to use a Cook County Health location in suburban Cook County or within the city, or any other suburban vaccination site, including pharmacies. Residents can request a ride or schedule one by calling 833-308-1988. Rides may be available within 30-60 minutes of a call, depending on the time of day and fleet availability, though scheduling a ride in advance is preferred.
The program is a partnership between several community-based organizations and health care logistics company Kaizen Health, which can provide vehicles to accommodate most residents, including those in wheelchairs or those who require child seats.
“We continue to see low vaccine uptake in several communities and are aggressively employing tactics to educate people, to answer questions, to combat disinformation and to remove barriers to care throughout Cook County,” said Dr. Kiran Joshi, senior medical officer and co-lead of the Cook County Department of Public Health. “‘Destination: Vaccination’ is a great model of public health in the community.”