McKee to receive COVID-19 vaccine Tuesday, stresses importance of community clinics


WARWICK, R.I. (WPRI) — Incoming Governor Dan McKee said the Warwick vaccination site he visited Monday is a result of the larger inventory of doses coming into the state.

On Monday, there are 640 vaccine appointments scheduled at the Veterans Memorial Middle School.

This site will be open for the next four weeks on Mondays for residents ages 75 and older to get their first dose and then an additional four weeks for the second shot.

Mckee announced he will receive his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, along with his wife, at the Dunkin Donuts Center Tuesday.

The incoming governor said his focus is building capacity and sites in Rhode Island able to administer the vaccine when more doses arrive.

“If we did the reverse and only build capacity to the supply we have now, then we would be scrambling to build capacity,” he said.

McKee said there will be five state-run regional vaccination sites and five municipal sites.

“It makes sense the way we are doing right now, because we are dealing with a population that should be serviced in their local community, as we get into younger age groups they can travel,” he said.

Warwick Mayor Frank Picozzi said this site is a community effort, with everyone from first responders to school nurses helping out.

“You’ve just never seen people with such gratitude and relief on their face,” Picozzi said. “I mean they are happy. They are calm, a little bit nervous, but excited. They see an end. They’ve sat home for a year and some haven’t seen their grandchildren in a year.”

The U.S. Senate is expected to vote on Governor Gina Raimondo’s Commerce Secretary nomination Monday evening. If sworn in, McKee said he would have a private swearing-in ceremony Tuesday before meeting with his cabinet.

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