ALBANY, NY- As the wait for a widely distributed COVID-19 vaccine continues, Governor Cuomo says there will be several challenges to making sure the distribution rolls out smoothly.
NewsChannel 34’s Corina Cappabianca has more on what he says some of the biggest issues are.
((Andrew Cuomo, Governor)) The light at the end of the tunnel is the vaccination. And that will end this epidemic.
But, the Governor says there are three main challenges when it comes to vaccine distribution.
((Andrew Cuomo, Governor)) Distributing the vaccine is going to be the greatest governmental overtaking since COVID began.
The Governor says distribution will be expensive and that states need more funding to do so.
He says the country has done about 120 million COVID tests over the course of 9 months, but will need to do 330 million vaccinations.
Additionally, he says there will be challenges to administering the vaccine to Black, Brown and poor communities.
((Andrew Cuomo, Governor)) They’re underserved by healthcare facilities. And their rate of skepticism is higher. It’s going to be an expensive effort to outreach to Black, Brown and poor communities.
He says the third issue is a data share agreement from the federal government about who was vaccinated.
((Andrew Cuomo, Governor)) The data share agreement from the federal government specifically says the states should identify recipients using such identifiers as social security number, driver’s license ID or passport number. These are proxies for citizenship.
Meanwhile in a response to the Governor’s letter to HHS regarding the issue, White House Spokesman Michael Bars said.
“… such information would only be used to support the unprecedented private-public partnership continuing to harness the full power of the federal government, private sector, military, and scientific community to combat the coronavirus and save lives. A data agreement would request only minimal information and under no circumstances request, require, or otherwise gather or maintain social security numbers, passport numbers, or driver’s license numbers.”