February 10, 2021: Update on COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution

Dear Colleagues,

Vaccinations are continuing today, February 10th.

If you are currently eligible (patient-facing clinical and support staff in Group 1a, all faculty and staff 65 or older), but have not yet received the vaccine, today is the last day this week that you will be eligible to receive a first dose on campus. After this week, you will be eligible on February 17-20 to get your first dose at the Armory as a walk-in. You are of course eligible to receive the vaccine at one of the public vaccination sites near you.

Please note that this change does not affect the distribution of second doses for employees and trainees who already received their first dose.

Governor Cuomo announced that beginning February 15, adult New Yorkers with certain underlying chronic medical conditions will qualify for the vaccine. Please click here for more information.

The Armory site is still vaccinating people 65 years and older and who live in New York City this week and next week, and they hope to expand this to adult NYC residents with chronic health conditions soon. We will share details as soon as they are available, including what documentation will be needed.

CUIMC Employees

If you have not yet received your first dose, or are due for your second dose this week, please do so as soon as possible, subject to the limitation noted above.

Please check the hours for The Armory, Myrna Daniels, and Workforce Health and Safety. They are posted here and are updated as changes occur:


First doses

An important reminder that 1st doses at The Armory are only for CUIMC employees and trainees in the following groups

  • Employees in patient-facing roles who directly interact with patients, and staff who provide in-person support to those delivering patient care
  • Employees conducting COVID-19 tests, handling COVID-19 specimens, and administering COVID-19 vaccinations
  • Trainees who are working in patient-facing settings

Second doses

Important reminder: Second doses of the Pfizer vaccine are being administered to CUIMC employees in the Myrna Daniels Auditorium on Friday 2/19 only, during the hours of 6 am to 7:30 pm. Individuals who are scheduled to return earlier in the week should instead come on Friday. If an individual is unable to get their second vaccination on 2/19 or prefers to return on a different day, they may go to the Armory for second dose Pfizer vaccinations during hours of operation, Tuesday – Saturday, 7 am to 9 pm.

As of today, over 44,000 faculty, staff, and students at NewYork-Presbyterian, Weill Cornell, and Columbia have received their first dose of the vaccine. There have also been over 37,000 second doses administered. This includes over 28,000 first and second doses administered on the CUIMC campus alone.

Patient and Community Vaccinations at the Armory

At this time, per NYS guidelines, we are vaccinating people in Group 1B who are 65 years and older and who live in New York City. In addition, a minimum of 60% of all appointments are reserved for eligible residents of the Washington Heights, Inwood, Harlem, and South Bronx communities. We will send updates as The Armory extends the eligibility criteria per NYS.

All existing appointments, including those for second vaccination doses, will be fully honored, even if the individual does not live in NYC.

For those who meet these eligibility criteria outlined above, appointments can be made through Connect and appointment availability can be checked on the VaccineTogetherNY.org site. Information is also available at 646.697.VACC.

Other vaccination sites in NYC and in NYS can be found here:

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

The FAQ documents on the CUIMC COVID Vaccine Information page continue to be updated, so please check the site for the latest versions. Below are Questions of the Day:

I have antibodies to COVID-19. Should I still get vaccinated?

People with antibodies to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, should still be vaccinated. This is because people can be reinfected with SARS-CoV-2 and because we don’t know how long people will be protected from existing antibodies after COVID-19 infection.

Staff with a history of having had COVID and antibodies say they are concerned because they are hearing that they are at higher risk for more serious symptoms after vaccination. Are there any statistics on that?

Based on data from the clinical trials, people with COVID-19 antibodies prior to vaccination did NOT have more serious symptoms following vaccination than people without antibodies. In the clinical trials, vaccine-related reactions such as fatigue, headache, body aches, chills, and fever were more common after the second dose as compared to the first dose. Nonetheless, the vast majority of individuals with vaccine-related reactions have felt well enough to work. However, if you develop fever after receiving the vaccine, please stay home and contact WH&S.

Thank you and stay safe!

Magda Sobieszczyk MD, MPH
Chief of Infectious Diseases and Co-Chair of the CUIMC COVID-19 Vaccine Committee

Melissa Stockwell MD, MPH
Chief of the Division of Child and Adolescent Health and Co-Chair of the CUIMC COVID-19 Vaccine Committee