Another incremental increase in vaccine supply, governor says

Another incremental increase in vaccine supply, governor says
A health care worker administers a COVID-19 vaccine at a recent clinic at Jefferson Community College. (Source: wwny)

ALBANY, N.Y. (WWNY) - It might not sound like much, but the federal government is giving states another 5 percent increase in their COVID-19 vaccine allocations.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said by phone Tuesday that this 5 percent is on top of the 16 percent increase announced two weeks ago and the 5 percent announced last week.

“Over the past three weeks, it has been relatively significant,” he said, “again, not proportionate to the need, but that has been helpful.”

Cuomo made that announcement following a meeting Tuesday morning between the White House and governors.

He said the state’s allocation is guaranteed for three weeks.

Separately, he said, the federal government is directly allocating 1 million doses nationwide to some federally qualified health centers, on top of direct allocations to pharmacies announced last week.

Cuomo said there are as many as tens of thousands of unused doses from another federal program that directly allocated vaccines to pharmacies to dispense at nursing homes.

Those, he said, will be reallocated to the state’s general supply.

He said Pfizer and Moderna are ramping up production of their vaccines, but the increase is “nowhere near what we would need to make progress against the 10 million” who will be eligible for vaccination.

A vaccine from Johnson & Johnson, he said, will help the supply problem significantly. That vaccine is expected to be approved within the coming weeks.

In the meantime, he said, 10 percent of New Yorkers have had their first vaccine doses. He said 2.5 million total doses have been shot in arms so far.

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