Beginning Wednesday, the City of Philadelphia will open walk-up access to eligible people from 22 under-vaccinated zip codes to the FEMA site at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Center City. The walk-up access will run for six days, through March 22, only if openings are still available.
According to Philadelphia Health Commissioner Thomas Farley, the change from an appointment-only site is intended to provide easier access to the COVID-19 vaccine for Philadelphians who live in zip codes that have the lowest rates of vaccinations.
The walk-up vaccinations will be open to those who meet phase 1a and 1b eligibility criteria and can prove that they live in the zip codes using an ID card, a piece of mail with an address, or a PHL City ID.
“I should note, that if you’re from Philadelphia and you’re not from the 22 designated zip codes and you come there without an appointment, you’ll be assisted with getting into the database for a future appointment. You will not be able to get into the database that day. And if you’re not a resident of Philadelphia and you don’t have an appointment, you’ll be politely turned away,” Farley said.
“There will be two days with assistance provided from West and Southwest Philadelphia, two days in North Philadelphia and two days in areas of the Northeast and Lower Northeast that are the most under-vaccinated. Two days in North Philadelphia and two days in areas of the Northeast and Lower Northeast that are the most under-vaccinated. There will be CCT service and free transit passes,” Farley said.
Farley also said he wanted to clear up misinformation about who can walk up. “In some cases, the message is getting out that all of our clinics are walk-up. That’s not true, and we don’t want people showing up at our clinics assuming they can get vaccinated if they don’t have an appointment. We will allow walk-ups only if appointments are still available,” Farley said.
African Americans make up 21% (1, 270,826 people) of the Philadelphia population.
The following zip codes are eligible for walk-up vaccinations at the FEMA site: