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Mass COVID vaccination sites to open this week in Natick, Dartmouth

Pat Greenhouse/Globe Staff
Vaccine coordinator Michelle Ferguson loaded boxes with prepared doses of the COVID-19 vaccine at Fenway Park.

Two mass COVID-19 vaccination sites will open this week inside vacant storefronts that once housed retail giants: one opening Monday at a former Sears in the Natick Mall, the other at a former Circuit City in Dartmouth on Wednesday.

The Natick location, which will only be open Monday through Friday, will distribute about 500 doses of the vaccine daily, though state officials hope to increase that number to 3,000 doses a day as supply ramps up, according to a release from the state’s Department of Public Health. The Dartmouth site, open seven days a week, will begin with 500 doses per day, then increase to 2,000 over several weeks.

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Appointments are required for both locations, which will vaccinate only eligible people. Two groups became eligible earlier late last week: those over the age of 65, and people with two or more medical conditions the state deems high risk, including asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, obesity, and cancer. Front-line health care workers and residents and staff of congregate care facilities became eligible in December.

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