Virus Outbreak New England

Medical personnel tested first responders for the coronavirus at a drive-through testing site in a parking lot at Gillette Stadium in April. The governor has announced that Gillette will now become the state's first mass vaccination site.

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FOXBORO — Gillette Stadium will be the first mass COVID-19 vaccination site in the state, Gov. Charlie Baker announced Tuesday.

The first doses will begin Thursday for staff administering vaccinations to first responders; then the facility will open up to first responders on Monday, Baker said at a news conference.

Initially, 300 vaccines will be administered a day but eventually that will ramp up to about 5,000 and possibly more, according to the governor.

Vaccinating first responders not only protects them, their families and the people they deal with daily, but also “will ensure that they can do their jobs and continue to keep our communities safe,” Baker said.

He thanked the Kraft family for agreeing to allow the stadium to be used as the “first mass vaccination site right out of the gate.”

“This is a huge step forward in our fight, and we are progressing through our vaccine plan as we had hoped we would,” Baker said. “In fact, we’ll be ready to move on to the next phase of our distribution plan in the coming days, which is our congregate care community.”

Eventually, the vaccine will be expanded to others at Gillette, Baker said.

CIC Health will operate the site with Brigham & Women’s Hospital as the medical director and Fallon Ambulance supporting the clinical staff.

David Linton may be reached at 508-236-0338.

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