Governor Andrew M. Cuomo Monday announced the start of the statewide "Roll Up Your Sleeve" ad campaign to encourage all New Yorkers, especially those from neighborhoods where COVID was most devastating, to get vaccinated.
The ads will be shown on television and online statewide beginning April 7. The ads were directed by Contagion screenplay writer Scott Burns, and shot at New York City's Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health. This effort comes as universal eligibility for the COVID-19 vaccine goes into effect and all New Yorkers 16-years-of-age and older are eligible to receive the vaccine starting April 6. This comes nearly a month earlier than President Biden's May 1 deadline for states to enact universal eligibility.
"The vaccine is the weapon that will win the war, but only if we all take it, and starting April 6, all New Yorkers age 16 and older will be able to get vaccinated," Governor Cuomo said. "Since the start of this critical phase of our fight against COVID, we have made it our top priority to bring the vaccine to the communities that were hit the hardest by the virus, and with the 'Roll Up Your Sleeve' campaign, we are helping ensure that no community gets left behind in the vaccine distribution process. As universal eligibility going into effect, we will continue to work with local leaders to make sure all New Yorkers have access to our vaccination sites. I also want to remind everyone that universal eligibility for the vaccine does not mean we are back to business as usual. The truth is millions of our neighbors still need to get their shot, and we are still in a footrace against the infection rate, so it is imperative that we do not let down our guard and we continue exercising safety protocols.
New York's vast distribution network and large population of eligible individuals still far exceed the supply coming from the federal government. Due to limited supply, New Yorkers are encouraged to remain patient and are advised not to show up at vaccination sites without an appointment. As of right now, people 16 and 17 years of age can only receive the Pfizer vaccine.
New Yorkers can schedule an appointment at a state-run mass vaccination site on the 'Am I Eligible' website. New Yorkers may also call their local health department, pharmacy, doctor, or hospital for additional information and to schedule appointments where vaccines are available.