Vaccine shortage prevents new appointments from being scheduled at this time Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle and Cook County Health System CEO Israel Rocha announced today that Cook County will open its third large-scale vaccine administration site at South Suburban College to continue vaccinations for individuals eligible under 1b.
Phase 1b includes individuals age 65 and older and essential workers such as first responders, manufacturing employees and grocery store personnel. While an estimated 600,000 suburban individuals are eligible for vaccine under Phase 1b, officials continue to remind the public that there is currently not adequate vaccine supply to vaccinate everyone.
“While current vaccine supply does not meet the demand and in fact has been exhausted – we are standing up large scale sites now to ensure that we are ready as vaccine supply is expected to increase in the weeks and months ahead,” said Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle.
South Suburban College, located in South Holland, is the third large-scale site Cook County has operationalized following the Tinley Park Convention Center on January 26, 2021 and Triton College on February 2, 2021. When fully operationalized and when ample vaccine supply becomes available, Cook County Health estimates it will be able to provide more than 4,000 vaccines weekly at South Suburban College. To date, Cook County Health has provided nearly 70,000 vaccine doses, which is only a fraction of what is needed to get us to the next phase.
Vaccinations at all Cook County Health sites are provided by appointment only. Cook County Health will continue to only offer appointment slots based on the amount of vaccine expected and will add appointments as new vaccine shipments arrive. At this time, Cook County Health has exhausted its vaccine supply and cannot open new appointments.
“We are equally as frustrated as the community with the lack of vaccine that has been distributed,” said Israel Rocha, CEO, Cook County Health. “We are asking Cook County residents for their continued patience as we work to ramp up one of the largest County-operated vaccine programs in the country.”
When vaccine becomes available, Cook County Health will announce the availability of new appointments which can be made at vaccine.cookcountyil.gov. Individuals without internet access or who need assistance scheduling can call (833) 308-1988 (from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday – Friday).
In addition to Cook County Health sites, the Cook County Department of Public Health has distributed vaccines to more than 90 partner locations including Jewel-Osco, Mariano’s, Walgreens, Federally Qualified Health Centers and hospitals who are also offering vaccines by appointment. Additional sites can be found at coronavirus.illinois.gov/s/vaccination-location.
In the weeks ahead and pending vaccine availability, Cook County plans to open several additional large sites across the suburbs. County officials expect Phase 1b to take some time and caution residents to remember that moving through the various phases is contingent on the availability of vaccine.
Residents not yet eligible for vaccine can also sign up at vaccine.cookcountyil.gov to receive updates on their phase and for information on dozens of additional vaccination sites across Cook County.
Kate Hedlin, Communications Manager