New COVID-19 Vaccine Mega-Site to Open Dec. 7 in Mount Laurel
Center will serve a range of people – from newly eligible children to those needing booster doses or first shots – in time for many holiday gatherings
Dec. 2, 2021 - A new version of the Burlington County COVID-19 Vaccine Mega-Site will open on December 7 in Mount Laurel. The new site, inside a former A.C. Moore store, will respond to widening vaccination eligibility – including children ages 5 to 11 and those who qualify for booster shots.
Located at East Gate Square shopping center on Nixon Drive, nearly adjacent to Moorestown Mall, the mega-site will provide COVID-19 vaccines to anyone eligible for the shot. That includes:
- People ages 12 and up who are not yet vaccinated,
- Adults who are eligible for a vaccine booster shot,
- Children ages 5 to 11 – a group authorized to receive the vaccine on Nov. 2, using a lower-dose version.
The vaccine is free to recipients, and health insurance is not required.
"In partnership with Burlington County, the New Jersey National Guard and Virtua Health, this new mega-site offers a centralized location to provide vaccines and booster doses for all who are eligible with the ability to scale up as needed," said New Jersey Department of Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli. "During this holiday season, as people travel and gather with family and friends, it is critical to remain vigilant against COVID-19 and its variants by getting vaccinated if you are not already or getting a booster shot to protect yourself and your loved ones."
“Nearly 400,000 doses of vaccine were administered at the first mega-site. It was a shining example of what all levels of government can accomplish with businesses and nonprofits when we work together, and we expect the same success with this new version,” added Burlington County Commissioner Director Felicia Hopson. “With all adults now eligible for boosters and young children for low-dose shots, we’re thrilled to partner with Virtua and the State of New Jersey again to provide an easy-access location for vaccinations.”
“The New Jersey National Guard’s Citizen Soldiers and Airmen are proud to support this mission, the Burlington County community, and our incredible partners on site,” said Army Brig. Gen. Lisa J. Hou, D.O., the adjutant general and commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. “This effort involved tireless collaboration between agencies and health care professionals at all levels throughout the state, from the New Jersey Office of Emergency Management to the health care professionals engaged with the patients directly. Our Soldiers and Airmen continue to answer the call. We are always ready, always there.”
The mega-site had a soft opening on November 30. Moving forward, it will be open Tuesdays through Saturdays; hours of operation vary by day. Guests are strongly encouraged to schedule an appointment online at virtua.org/vaccine. Limited walk-up vaccinations will be available.
First shots for kids, adults
The mega-site will provide first (and second) doses of the Pfizer vaccine to kids ages 12-plus and adults who are not yet protected against COVID-19. Receiving the initial vaccine series is critical, as those who are unvaccinated are most at risk from COVID-19, noted N.J. Assemblyman Dr. Herb Conaway.
For children ages 5 to 11 – who recently became eligible to receive the Pfizer vaccine – the mega-site will carry the recommended lower-dose shots and smaller needles.
“The ability to provide children with this vital immunization represents a major step toward bringing the pandemic to a close,” stated Dr. Conaway, who also serves as director of the Burlington County Health Department.
“Although children do not become critically ill from COVID-19 as frequently as adults do, they are still at significant risk – and can potentially pass the virus to their grandparents, teachers, or others who may be more vulnerable,” he said. “Vaccinating kids helps keep our schools and communities safe, and can help ensure families enjoy the upcoming holidays together as safely as possible.”
As of December 9, those 16 and older who received an initial series of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines qualify for a booster six months or more after their original doses. Those who received the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine two months ago or more are also eligible for a booster. (Note: 16- and 17-year-olds are eligible for the Pfizer booster only.)
The new mega-site will primarily provide Pfizer to those seeking a booster; the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention authorizes “mixing and matching” vaccine manufacturers for the booster dose.
Those receiving their second or third shot should bring their CDC COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card to their vaccine appointment so the card can be updated.
Safeguard yourself, loved ones
“While it’s important to provide vaccinated people with the extra protection of a booster, it is most essential for those who are unvaccinated to get this life-saving shot,” emphasized Dennis W. Pullin, FACHE, president and CEO of Virtua Health.
“People who are unvaccinated are completely vulnerable and at greatest risk for severe COVID symptoms, hospitalization, long-term health problems, and even death,” he explained. “Virtua has provided vaccines to hundreds of thousands of people since last December, and the vaccines’ safety record remains strong. In contrast, COVID-19 continues to devastate people and families here in our community. Please don’t wait any longer.”
Those who want to protect themselves and their loved ones from COVID-19 during the December holidays should get vaccinated as soon as possible, as the vaccines take about two weeks after the second dose (or the J&J/Janssen single dose) to become fully effective.
Ample parking is available at the new mega-site, which is located near Home Depot and Party City.
To learn more or schedule an appointment, please visit virtua.org/vaccine.