The City of Chicago and the Chicago Department of Aviation (CDA) have opened a COVID-19 vaccine distribution site at Chicago O’Hare International Airport to protect essential transportation workers who have kept the region moving throughout the pandemic.
The O’Hare point of dispensing (POD) at the Hilton Chicago O’Hare Airport Hotel will be available free of charge exclusively to public transit employees. The centre will operate from 10am to 6pm Tuesdays through Saturdays and appointments will be required for all vaccinations.
Vaccines at the O’Hare POD will be limited to airport employees and other public transit workers with agencies such as the CTA, Metra and PACE, as well as taxi and ride share drivers.
The airport has stated that approximately 500 individuals will be vaccinated each day. The site will initially prioritise vaccinating first responders and security personnel, followed by public transit personnel who have direct contact with passengers, including flight crews, bus drivers and taxi drivers. Once those groups have been immunised, appointments will open up for pilots and mechanics, followed by all other airport employees, in accordance with the City of Chicago’s vaccine rollout phases.
Midway employees will also be eligible to make appointments at the O’Hare facility, and mobile teams will conduct vaccination events at Midway in the future.
“These vaccines provide a source of optimism for a return to normal operations as we continue working to keep Chicago connected to the world throughout this pandemic,” CDA Commissioner Jamie L. Rhee said. “Chicago’s transportation employees are crucial to our region’s infrastructure, and I’m proud to host a site that will help protect them from COVID-19 as efficiently and equitably as possible.”