Google Turns Office Buildings Into COVID-19 Vaccination Sites-news

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Google today announced new investments in COVID-19 vaccine education and equitable distribution—including plans to turn its campuses into vaccination clinics.

In partnership with One Medical and public health authorities, venues will open first in Los Angeles and San Francisco, New York, and Kirkland, Wash., to anyone eligible for the vaccine (based on state and local guidelines). Google hopes to expand its program into offices across the US.

“We recognize that getting vaccines to people is a complex problem to solve, and we’re committed to doing our part,” Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai wrote in a blog post. “Starting in the United States, we’ll make select Google facilities—such as buildings, parking lots, and open spaces—available as needed.”

Looking for more immunization information? Search now shows state and regional distribution information. Plus, an upcoming “Get The Facts” initiative across Google and YouTube aims to “get authoritative information” out to the public.

Search and Maps will soon show vaccination sites with important details (Photo via Google)

“The pandemic has taken a devastating toll on communities worldwide. While there is much uncertainty still ahead, the development of multiple safe vaccines in such a short time gives us reason for hope,” Pichai wrote. “Now the work begins to ensure that everyone can benefit from this triumph of scientific achievement, and quickly.”

From contact tracing and map alerts to online resources and “travel trends,” Google has been lending a digital hand during the global pandemic. Now, it’s putting its money where its mouth is and offering $150 million to promote a better understanding of available vaccines.

That includes $100 million in ad grants for the CDC Foundation, World Health Organization, and other global nonprofits, as well as $50 million in partnership with public health agencies “to reach underserved communities with vaccine-related content and information,” according to Pichai.

“Our efforts will focus heavily on equitable access to vaccines,” he said, citing “early data” that indicates disproportionately affected US populations—particularly people of color and those in rural communities—are not getting access to the jab at the same rate as other groups. In response, Google.org has committed $5 million in grants to organizations addressing racial and geographic disparities in COVID-19 vaccinations.

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