New Orleans, LA – In a vital step to help battle the spread of COVID-19, LCMC Health is announcing plans for the first large community site to provide COVID-19 vaccines to residents of the Greater New Orleans area. The site will be housed at LCMC Health’s partner on this project, the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. The site will be launched with a $4.1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Other partners include the State of Louisiana and the City of New Orleans Health Department.
“LCMC Health is here to create a healthier community and with the availability of community vaccines we are doing that across our six hospitals,” said Gregory C. Feirn, Chief Executive Officer of LCMC Health. “We appreciate the support of FEMA, the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, our city and state leaders, and our residents as we continue to rollout COVID-19 vaccinations throughout the New Orleans area. We want to assure the community that when more vaccines are available, we are ready to offer them in mass quantity.”
This site at the convention center will have the capacity to vaccinate hundreds of residents each day when vaccines are readily available, eventually ramping up to thousands of recipients daily, increasing the efficiency and speed of vaccine distribution throughout the region.
Vaccine distribution will be managed through the current phased, tiered approach established by the Louisiana Department of Health (LDH). Currently, vaccinations are available to Louisiana residents who meet the criteria for what is referred to as “Phase 1A and Phase 1B.” These groups include frontline healthcare workers, nursing home and long-term care communities’ residents and staff, teachers school personnel, day care personnel, home health providers, pregnant persons, law enforcement personnel, persons ages 65 and above, and persons ages 55 – 65 years of age with one of the underlying medical conditions as listed by the CDC.
As more vaccines become available from the CDC and LDH opens the criteria further, more individuals and groups will be offered a vaccination.
“It is vital that we ramp up our vaccination efforts to ensure that all of our people can be protected from COVID-19, and we need the space to do it,” said Mayor LaToya Cantrell, City of New Orleans. “I thank LCMC Health for stepping up in the shared effort in partnership with the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center team to put the plans in place to vaccinate our residents so that we can be a stronger and healthier city on the road to recovery."
“The New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center is at the heart of the community and an important economic engine for the City and State. We are gratified to see that this great facility will be used to help promote good health to the resilient people of this region and pleased to partner with LCMC Health to move this initiative forward for our fellow citizens,” said Michael J. Sawaya, Convention Center President.
“We are fortunate that all of the Convention Center employees have remained on the job throughout the last year, working hard to have the building prepared when events return. We look forward to getting back to business, and welcoming visitors in the coming months, and can see the days ahead when our guests will enjoy all the great things our city and hospitality industry has to offer.”
For more information about COVID-19, the vaccination phases and how to further protect yourself from the virus, please visit lcmchealth.org/coronavirus. Please refer to the LDH website at www.ldh.la.gov/covidvaccine for a complete list of eligible groups.