New York's Yankee Stadium to vaccinate Bronx residents only

New York's Yankee Stadium will be turned into coronavirus vaccination hub
New York's Yankee Stadium will be turned into coronavirus vaccination hub Mike Stobe GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA/AFP
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New York (AFP)

New York's Yankee Stadium will open as a coronavirus vaccination center later this week, but only for nearby residents to ensure the underprivileged receive doses, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Wednesday.

The baseball ground -- located in the Bronx -- will only vaccinate people who live in that borough, one of poorest in the city and which has some of the highest rates of Covid-19 infections.

"It's a home run for justice and equity," de Blasio wrote on Twitter, using a baseball term.

The vaccinations will be by appointment, with 15,000 available in the first week.

Figures released by the city on Sunday suggest that Black and Latino populations have been under-represented among the more than 500,000 New Yorkers already vaccinated.

Only 15 percent of the doses went into the arms of people of Hispanic origin, who make up nearly 30 percent New York's population of eight million.

Black people made up only 11 percent of shots, despite representing 25 percent of the population, the data showed.

Whites received 48 percent of vaccines, according to the partial data. The city did not have ethnicity data for 40 percent of the recipients.

New York's minority groups have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic, with Black and Latino people dying at higher rates than whites.

New York had announced in January that major vaccination centers would be set up at Yankee Stadium as well as the home of their baseball rivals the Mets, but a shortage of supplies delayed those plans.