Some Long Island seniors driving more than 6 hours to get vaccinated upstate

MELVILLE. N.Y. (WCBS 880) — Some seniors on Long Island are resorting to spending hours in the car just to get their COVID-19 vaccine.

In the middle of March, Bridget Berbrick, of Melville, will drive more than six hours to a state-run COVID-19 vaccination site at the Plattsburgh International Airport to get her shot.

"I want to be safe," said Berbrick, who hasn't been able to see her grandkids, who live in Florida, in over a year. "I want to be able to go places and see people and do stuff. Stick my arm out, I'll go anywhere to get it done."

The 65-year-old said she tried, but failed to get an appointment on Long Island. It was much easier getting an appointment in Plattsburgh.

"I couldn't get past a specific spot on the website so I called. I really was only on hold for maybe five minutes. The woman was really helpful and set the appointment up for me and there's still appointments available there," Berbrick said.

Her sister lives in Plattsburgh, so Berbrick said at least she'll have a place to stay when she goes to get her shot on March 20.

"It's sort of silly and ridiculous that I have to drive six and a half hours, but I at least have a place to stay, and I'm not staying at a hotel or something," Berbrick said.

Other seniors have already traveled there or plan to travel to Plattsburgh from Long Island to get vaccinated.

"I don't blame them at all because you want to get it," she said.

There are 13 state-run vaccinations sites in New York, including two on Long Island.

As of Friday, the only sites that had appointments available through April 16 were Plattsburgh and Potsdam.

The drive-thru vaccination hub at Jones Beach is rescheduling appointments originally set for Friday and Saturday after operations there were suspended due to the weather.

To check your vaccine eligibility and schedule your appointment click here.

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