Many of you have asked about the process for COVID-19 vaccinations. The state launched a vaccine registration portal this week. I encourage everybody to visit covid19.nj.gov/pages/vaccine to complete a brief online form to provide information on your age, medical conditions and other coronavirus risk factors. The state will then email or text you when you become eligible for the vaccine and provide you with information on when and where to get vaccinated.
First responders throughout the state are currently receiving the vaccine, and individuals age 75 and older are expected to be eligible soon. The phase after that could include other essential workers, adults 65 and over, and persons ages 16 to 64 with medical conditions that increase the risk for severe COVID-19.
Even as people start to get vaccinated, COVID-19 continues to spread. Shore Medical Center reported this week that they are treating a manageable but increasing number of patients. Indoor gatherings of extended family and friends remain one of the biggest risk factors. The hospital maintains a good online resource center for coronavirus information that includes a video in which epidemiologist Dr. Christopher Lucasti explains what to expect with the vaccine.
Our Recreation Department launched a new online portal this week. The service will provide one-stop shopping for Aquatic and Fitness Center memberships, golf and tennis passes, reservations for pool and gym time slots, and registration for classes, programs, leagues and races. The staff has been helping Aquatic and Fitness Center members create accounts on the new portal. But if you haven’t yet, please visit RecDesk or look for links on our Aquatic and Fitness Center page.
The annual Martin Luther King Jr. celebration will be held virtually this year. The program — which includes music, prayer, reflections on Dr. King, the honoring of Ocean City residents with the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Community Services Award, and a recitation of Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech by the Rev. Gregory Johnson — will be made available starting at 1 p.m. Monday, Jan. 18 on www.ocnj.us and OCTV-97.
I hope you all have a great weekend.
Mayor Jay A. Gillian