MAYOR LIGHTFOOT AND CHICAGO DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH OPEN UNITED CENTER VACCINE REGISTRATION TO ADDITIONAL COMMUNITIES ON THE WEST AND SOUTH SIDES

March 13, 2021

Access expanded to residents from four additional ZIP codes, as targeted approach leads to progress in boosting registrations among Black and Latinx Chicagoans

COVID-19 Joint Information Center    media.coronavirus@cityofchicago.org

CHICAGO - The City of Chicago announced today that it has expanded eligibility for COVID-19 vaccination appointments at the United Center mass vaccination site to residents living in four additional ZIP codes on the city’s South and West Sides. On Tuesday, the City announced that residents from five communities that have a high COVID-19 burden according to the COVID-19 Community Vulnerability Index (CCVI), and currently have low vaccination rates, were receiving priority for vaccination appointments. Since then, 75 percent of appointments scheduled at the United Center have gone to Black, Latinx and Asian residents. 

Equity drives all vaccine distribution in Chicago, and we want to ensure that residents from the communities that have been most disproportionately impacted by the pandemic have access to this lifesaving vaccine,” said Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot. “The mass vaccination site at the United Center was chosen because it is easily accessible and is located on the West Side of Chicago. Our targeted approach to registration, along with initiatives like Protect Chicago Plus, are working in driving equitable vaccine uptake in our City. For the last week, 59 percent of those who received at least one vaccine dose are Black or Latinx, which matches the demographics of our city.

Currently, blocks of appointments at the United Center have been set aside for targeted outreach to residents living in high-need ZIP codes, which include neighborhoods such as Pilsen, Chatham, Auburn Gresham, West & East Garfield Park, Austin, South Shore and Humboldt Park. Below is the list of ZIP codes (bold ones were added today):

  • 60608
  • 60619
  • 60620
  • 60624
  • 60644
  • 60649
  • 60651
  • 60652
  • 60653

The City of Chicago has been working with community partners on hyper-local outreach to register residents from these predominantly Black and Latinx communities for vaccination appointments. In addition, the City is working with community partners to reach out and schedule appointments directly for residents from high-risk groups including people with disabilities.

People living in one of the target ZIP codes can register by calling the COVID-19 Help Line at 312-746-4835, and there is an online registration platform that is being shared with people in these communities that includes a voucher code. You must live in one of the ZIP codes above in order to register, otherwise your appointment will be cancelled.

These are the areas where we’ve seen some of the highest rates of severe illness and death throughout the pandemic, and where access to the vaccine has been most challenging. So we had to act,” said CDPH Commissioner Allison Arwady, M.D. “We’re also doing this because if we want to defeat this pandemic we need to control the spread of the virus where it is the worst, and that impacts all of us.

Chicago has made significant progress in the percentage of vaccine administered to Chicagoans of color and is outperforming big cities across the country. Early in the vaccine rollout in Phase 1a, when the focus was on healthcare workers and long-term care facility staff and residents, only 18% of COVID vaccines were going to Black or Latinx Chicagoans. Now, data from the most recent week show that 59% of first dose COVID vaccine went to Black or Latinx Chicagoans, mirroring Chicago’s population demographics.

The Protect Chicago Plus program, which initially targeted 15 hard hit communities with resources including more vaccine, continues to support the equitable distribution of COVID vaccine in Chicago. Data show that communities where the program initially launched are seeing the fastest increase in vaccination rates in the city. When comparing coverage from the beginning of February to the beginning of March, communities like Gage Park, South Lawndale, Belmont Cragin and Archer Heights are seeing a doubling, tripling or quadrupling of the rate of people vaccinated.

Although appointment availability is very limited, Chicago residents age 65+ can register for a vaccination appointment at the United Center by calling our multilingual call center at 312-746-4835, regardless of their home ZIP code. This hotline is open Monday – Saturday from 8:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. and Sunday from 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. High call volume is anticipated. If you are not a Chicagoan age 65+, your appointment will be cancelled. There is no on-site registration at the United Center, you must have an appointment.

At other vaccination sites in Chicago, only people in phases 1a and 1b are eligible for vaccination. Chicagoans can go to the Vaccine Finder on Chicago.gov/COVIDvax to find a provider or pharmacy offering the COVID-19 vaccine or visit Zocdoc.com/vaccine. And as always, people are encouraged to first seek the vaccine from their primary care provider if they have one.

For those who are not Chicago residents, you can learn about other options for vaccination here:

  • For residents who live in Cook County, go to vaccine.cookcountyil.gov or call 833-308-1988, Monday through Friday from 7am to 7pm.

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