Cuomo to discuss COVID-19 vaccine distribution with Biden advisors
Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Wednesday that he plans on speaking with President-elect Joe Biden’s advisors later in the day regarding the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine in New York — and the difficulty of the states’ role in it.
“I’m going to be talking to them about just this — how hard it is for the state’s to administer the vaccine program and what states actually need to do, but I can tell you it’s going to be much harder than anticipated,” Cuomo said during a press briefing in Rochester, adding, “The current vaccine plan that’s on the table is going to have to be improved.”
The Post previously reported that Cuomo — who has trashed the Trump administration’s COVID-19 vaccine plan — skipped out on 17 consecutive governor calls with the White House coronavirus task force and cast doubt on whether he’d approve a Trump distributed vaccine for New Yorkers.
He even snubbed a one-on-one with Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar.
On Wednesday, Cuomo also questioned how many people might refuse to take the coronavirus vaccine once it becomes available and said there must be efforts made to ensure the vaccine reaches minority and low-income communities.
“There have been no provisions to fund the distribution to black, brown and poor communities,” Cuomo said, explaining that there’s “no supplemental distribution effort.”
“It’s not gonna’ be as easy as saying ‘go to your local national drug chain and you can get the vaccine,’” he said.
Cuomo added, “If you’re gonna’ prioritize the vaccine shouldn’t you be prioritizing it for the communities that have the higher death rate?”
“So this vaccine is not tomorrow, and is not as easy as we think and it has to be done fairly and equitably and has to correct for the mistake that we have made so far,” he said.
Cuomo predicted that “it will be months and month before we distribute enough vaccine to actually solve the COVID problem.”
Last week, Cuomo was among several governors to virtually meet with Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris about the ongoing coronavirus pandemic response.
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