Coronavirus

COVID vaccines are coming: Here’s when and where the shots will start in Mass.

Boston Medical Center received 1,950 doses Monday, while several other local hospitals expect to see initial vaccine deliveries on Tuesday.

Victor Mendoza, a certified pharmacy technician at Boston Medical Center, left, signs off on the package containing the first shipment of Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine delivered to BMC. Jessica Rinaldi / The Boston Globe

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Massachusetts hospitals began receiving the COVID-19 vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech on Monday after the long-awaited doses received federal approval for emergency use late last week.

Boston Medical Center received 1,950 doses Monday morning, and the hospital plans to dole out the first batch of shots to employees starting on Wednesday, the center said in an emailed statement.

“We will begin the first wave of vaccinations to front line healthcare workers, a group including doctors and nurses from our ICU and Emergency Department and patient floors that treat COVID-19 patients, but just as importantly, employees from environmental and support services, and other crucial positions that work in COVID-positive patient areas,” the statement reads.

A BMC spokesperson told Boston.com the two-day gap between the arrival of the doses and when the first ones will be administered accounts for the logistics of managing the rollout. One thousand employees will ultimately receive vaccine shots in scheduled appointments between Wednesday and Saturday.

Representatives of several other local health care facilities said they anticipated the initial shipments to arrive on Tuesday, including at Tufts Medical Center, Boston Children’s Hospital, and UMass Memorial Medical Center in Worcester.

“The vaccine delivery remains a very fluid situation, but as of right now, we anticipate receiving our first doses of the Pfizer vaccine sometime tomorrow morning,” Jeremy Lechan, a spokesperson for Tufts, wrote in an email. “We would then likely start administering the vaccine on Wednesday.”

Tufts expects to receive at least 975 doses in the first delivery, Lechan said. How many are ultimately delivered will determine the number of employees who can receive the vaccine over the next week, he said.

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Employees “who have direct contact with COVID-19 patients,” such as nurses, doctors, and transportation and hospitality staffers will be offered the first doses, according to Lechan.

At Boston Children’s Hospital, hospital staff expect to receive “limited amounts” of the vaccine from the state Department of Public Health, the hospital said in a statement.

“Careful planning is ongoing to ensure staff receiving the vaccine are prioritized in accordance with state guidelines,” the statement reads.

Vaccinations are anticipated to begin at Massachusetts General Hospital on Wednesday, and officials at UMass Memorial expect the first shots will be given to employees starting on Thursday, according to spokespeople at each facility. The Worcester medical center plans to administer the vaccine five hours a day with about 100 providers on hand per hour.

Gov. Charlie Baker detailed a three-phase vaccine rollout for Massachusetts last week, under which residents with the highest risk of exposure and those most vulnerable to the virus are prioritized.

In Phase 1, health care workers “doing direct and COVID-facing care” will receive the initial batches, followed by nursing home and other long-term care facility residents and employees; first responders; those at congregate care settings such as prisons and homeless shelters; and other health care workers who are not treating coronavirus patients.

The first vaccine shipment to Massachusetts this week will be distributed to 75 out of 77 hospitals in the commonwealth and accounts for nearly 60,000 doses of the two-shot vaccine out of a total of 300,000 that state officials expect to receive by the end of the month.

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