TRENTON, N.J. (CBS) — Starting on April 19, all residents in the Garden State 16 years and older will be eligible to sign up for a COVID vaccine. CBS3’s Alicia Roberts talked to one of the state’s top vaccine directors about what this means for those still waiting for a shot.
On Monday, New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy announced all residents 16 and older would be eligible for a COVID vaccine starting April 19.READ MORE: Philadelphia Police: 25-Year-Old Man Fatally Struck By Vehicle That Ran Red Light In East Falls
“That’s about 12 days ahead of our initial target that had been May 1,” Murphy said.
The governor says additional supplies from the federal government, including the one-and-done Johnson & Johnson shot, have made this progress possible. It comes as the state now leads the nation in new cases reported.
“The average age of those being infected right now in Camden County is 33,” Camden County Commissioner Lou Cappelli Jr. said. “So it’s important to get this vaccine out to younger folks as quickly as possible.”
Cappelli is the director for Camden County’s mass vaccination site in Blackwood.READ MORE: WATCH: Country Music Star Jimmie Allen Apologizes To Eagles Fans For Fishing With Cowboys' Dak Prescott
“It’s definitely a game-changer as long as there is enough vaccine. We find out every Thursday or Friday how many we are going to receive the following week,” he said.
So far, 38% of New Jerseyans are vaccinated with another 3 million to go by June 30 to meet the goal of herd immunity.
“I think what is realistic is the summer, by sometime this summer, anyone who wants to be vaccinated will be able to be vaccinated,” Cappelli said.
And that includes college students who may soon be required to get one to attend in-person classes this fall.
“I am certain that there are several colleges and universities considering that mandate,” Cappelli said.MORE NEWS: Family, Friends Celebrate World War II Veteran's Birthday In Burlington County
CBS3’s Alicia Roberts reports.