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Vaccinations begin today at Erie County Correctional Facility

Vaccinations begin today at Erie County Correctional Facility

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Erie County Corrections Facility

Vaccinations will be offered at the Erie County Correctional Facility in Alden.

Thirty inmates at the Erie County Correctional Facility in Alden are slated to get the one-shot Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine Wednesday, Erie County Sheriff's officials said.

The shots are being offered to inmates but are not being required, spokesman Scott Zylka said.

Medical staff with the sheriff's Division of Correctional Health completed an initial test on 10 inmates before scheduling the vaccination efforts. Another 70 inmates at the Correctional Facility who signed up for the shots will get vaccinated during the course of the week.

Shots will be administered the following week at the Holding Center. As of Tuesday, 91 inmates at the Holding Center have requested to be vaccinated.

The J&J shots are being offered to inmates because they only require one dose, as opposed to other Covid-19 vaccines that require two doses, based on recommendations by the county Department of Health.

Nationwide, Covid-19 has sickened nearly 400,000 people in prisons and jails, according to the Marshall Project, which has been tracking the spread of the virus among incarcerated people. In late March, a judge ordered the state to offer vaccinations at all prisons and jails to help stop the spread of the virus.

Maki Becker

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Chief of the Breaking News/Criminal Justice Desk

I've worked at The Buffalo News since 2005. I previously worked as a reporter at the New York Daily News and the Charlotte Observer and was a special correspondent for the Los Angeles Times.

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