In a press release from the Mayor’s Office on Friday, Breed announced that the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) will provide free round-trip transportation for people traveling to and from their COVID-19 vaccine appointments from next Tuesday.
It works – or, rather, mass vaccination against the novel coronavirus is proving to be effective (as history and science have predicted). Cases in Los Angeles, a hotspot of the pandemic, have seen sharp drops as a semblance of collective immunity is achieved. This is also true for other parts of the country where social distancing practices are enforced and vaccine deployments do not experience hiccups.
Vaccines must be readily available to all of our residents.
So from next Tuesday (2/23), all trips to or from a vaccination appointment on @SFMTA_Muni will be free.
Just have your vaccination card or appointment confirmation with you. Https://t.co/LujkG34Gv1
– London Race (@LondonBreed) February 19, 2021
But pinging a carpool or driving yourself to and from your vaccination site remains a privilege; the unemployment rate in San Francisco is still high, now around 7%. In an effort to make it accessible and affordable for people traveling to and from their vaccination sites, SFMTA is offering free transportation for those who receive their COVID-19 vaccines.
“Through SFMTA, we are making round-trip travel free for immunization appointments and further reducing barriers that could prevent someone from getting the vaccine,” Breed said in the release, previously mentioning that SF created a network of COVID-19 vaccination sites capable of vaccinating at least 10,000 people per day. “The more we make it easier for people to get vaccinated, the sooner we can end this pandemic and get on the road to recovery.”
This program is an example of the City’s efforts to make it as convenient as possible for people to receive the COVID-19 vaccine; all SF mass vaccination sites offer drive-through and walk-in appointments to get the vaccine; Zuckerberg San Francisco General does not currently require advance reservations to get a COVID-19 vaccine – you can just “show up” if you’re eligible to receive one.
From February 23, anyone traveling to receive their vaccine will be able to go to their appointment with Muni free of charge, regardless of where they go. (According to the statement, this includes “high-volume vaccination sites, neighborhood vaccine access sites, Department of Public Health clinics, pharmacies offering vaccinations.” And these trips are even covered by segregation. visiting vaccination sites outside of San Francisco proper.)
Exempting your Muni fees to and from your vaccination site couldn’t be easier. People going to their vaccination appointment simply need to present their appointment confirmation or vaccination card as “proof of payment”; appointment confirmations made electronically – i.e. showing an email or photo confirming your appointment – will also be accepted.
“Getting San Franciscans immunized is the city’s top priority right now, and we’re doing our part to save lives and jobs,” said Jeffrey Tumlin, SFMTA transportation director, in the statement. “By allowing Muni free access to all vaccination sites, we are removing barriers to transportation and costs to receive this life-changing vaccine. “
This also includes journeys by paratransit.
The SFMTA also adds $ 60 in service for essential travel card participants. This is a discount program to help the elderly and people with disabilities make essential taxi trips during the pandemic.
– London Race (@LondonBreed) February 19, 2021
The SFMTA is also expected to increase the amount of service available to essential travel card (ETC) participants by $ 60; those enrolled in the program will receive an email and / or phone call with instructions on how to load the additional credit onto their card.
For more information on the current COVID-19 vaccine list, as well as locations to receive one (if you’re eligible) in San Francisco, visit sf.gov/get-vaccinated-against-covid-19.
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Image: A passenger wears a protective mask while waiting for a San Francisco MUNI bus during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on April 06, 2020 in San Francisco, California. The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) has announced that it is cutting service to the majority of its 89 bus lines in the city of San Francisco as ridership plummets due to the shelter from traffic. coronavirus in place. (Photo by Justin Sullivan / Getty Images)