Access to COVID-19 vaccines is increasing all the time for New York State residents. When the vaccine first became available, eligibility was very limited and appointments at vaccine clinics filled within minutes since demand for the vaccine far outweighed it availability. That situation sure has turned and now, vaccines are readily available to those eligible (16 and older).  In fact, this week Walmart and Sam's Club, along with CVS announced that all of their pharmacies in New York State would now be taking walk-ins and appointments for COVID-19 vaccinations. In a rural area like ours, having the vaccine offered in many locations will help area residents to access it.

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Add to that the latest news from The Otsego County Department of Health who is partnering with select schools in the county to host COVID-19 Pfizer vaccine clinics for students 16 and older, parents, staff and community members. Appointments are required and walk-ins will not be accepted. Coming up, there will be a clinic on May 11 at Cherry Valley Springfield Central School, on May 13 at Richfield Springs Central School, May 17 at Schenevus Central School, and May 18 at Morris Central School. For each clinic, the hours are from 3:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. Go to otsegocounty.com to register. Health officials say that anyone under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian to get the vaccine.

To stay up to date on Otsego County COVID-19 vaccination clinics, click here. For updates on county COVID-19 confirmed cases visit the Otsego County COVID-19 Dashboard.

Remember that walk-ins and appointments are accepted for anyone 16 and older at New York State run vaccine site SUNY Oneonta, seven days a week. To find out more visit am-i-eligible.covid19vaccine.health.ny.gov.

LOOK: Answers to 30 common COVID-19 vaccine questions

While much is still unknown about the coronavirus and the future, what is known is that the currently available vaccines have gone through all three trial phases and are safe and effective. It will be necessary for as many Americans as possible to be vaccinated in order to finally return to some level of pre-pandemic normalcy, and hopefully these 30 answers provided here will help readers get vaccinated as soon they are able.

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