For the first time since the COVID-19 vaccine was rolled out, it is nearly impossible not to be able to find one in Central New York. Whether you live in Madison, Herkimer or Oneida Counties, odds are a vaccine is readily available to you.

Just announced at the beginning of this week, eligibility for the COVID-19 shot has expanded to anyone 30-years-old or older. It was also announced by New York State officials that beginning on April 6th, 2021 individuals 16-years-old and older may get their vaccine. This is certainly a huge step in moving forward with helping eliminate the spread of the Coronavirus.

Many health experts point to college aged kids and a little younger for the stagnation when it comes to the positivity rates in the country, so the logical thing at this time, now that vaccine supply isn't as in demand as it once was, to get those young people inoculated. In most cases younger individuals are more likely to be asymptomatic. Following the further expansion of eligibility, it will be interesting to see what that does for the positivity rate, especially in the Utica-Rome and surrounding areas.

Madison County is continuing their efforts to vaccinate as many people as possible and they have announced a number of upcoming vaccine clinics for the month of April. Madison County Health Director Eric Faisst says,

Getting vaccinated is the best way to protect yourself and those you love from COVID-19.  The vaccines are safe.  Vaccines are by appointment. Please sign up today for your vaccine.

The Health Department in Madison County announced the following dates and locations for people to get their shot.

Clinics at SUNY Morrisville

-        Thursday, April 1, 2021
-        Friday, April 2, 2021
-        Thursday, April 8, 2021
-        Wednesday, April 14, 2021
-        Friday, April 23, 2021
-        Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Clinics at the Northside Shopping Center in City of Oneida

-        Thursday, April 1, 2021
-        Thursday, April 15, 2021
-        Wednesday, April 28, 2021

The Madison County Health Department is also urging to residents to consider a very convenient method of getting the shot and that is with one of their drive-thru clinics. Those are scheduled as follows,

Drive-thru Clinics

-        Saturday, April 3, 2021 – Madison County Complex Parking Lot, Wampsville, NY
-        Saturday, April 10, 2021 – Madison County Fairgrounds, Brookfield, NY
-        Saturday, April 17, 2021 – Point Place Casino, Bridgeport, NY
-        Saturday, April 24, 2021 - TBD

Madison County isn't the only one offering vaccines easily. Mohawk Valley Health System has regular appointments available and Primary Urgent Care in Utica announced walk-in vaccine clinics that happened today and will again tomorrow (Thursday) from 8AM to 6PM.

Getting your COVID-19 shot may be one of the best weapons we have to combat this Pandemic and hopefully return to what we all knew once as a sense of normalcy.

LOOK: Answers to 30 common COVID-19 vaccine questions

While much is still unknown about the coronavirus and the future, what is known is that the currently available vaccines have gone through all three trial phases and are safe and effective. It will be necessary for as many Americans as possible to be vaccinated in order to finally return to some level of pre-pandemic normalcy, and hopefully these 30 answers provided here will help readers get vaccinated as soon they are able.

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