New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has blasted Governor Andrew Cuomo for threatening to slap hospitals with $100,000 fines if they fail to administer their all their remaining COVID-19 vaccines by the end of the week.
The mayor criticized Cuomo’s tough call on Monday which came after the governor revealed only 46 per cent of the state’s allotted doses had been distributed in the last three weeks.
‘That’s just arrogance,’ de Blasio said of the controversial governor’s plan, in an interview with NY1 on Monday.
‘Does he think that our health care professionals are uninterested in vaccinating people? How about trusting the people that have been our heroes?’ he added.
It comes as healthcare systems across the country are struggling to meet the federal government’s targets to inoculate the majority of the population, nearly a month after the first doses of vaccines were distributed to the states.
Nationwide, just 4.56million of the country’s total distributed doses of 15.4million – or 33 percent – have been administered as of Monday.
The latest figures mean only 330,000 more people were vaccinated across the US in the 48 hours since Saturday, according to CDC data.
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Mayor Bill de Blasio said Cuomo should ‘support’ and ‘respect’ healthcare workers, rather than threaten them after the governor said he would fine hospitals $100,000 if they failed to administer all of the state’s vaccine doses by the end of the week
During the interview, De Blasio went on to deliver a message to Cuomo, urging him to ‘help’ and ‘support’ healthcare workers who are already overburdened with a surge in coronavirus patients.
‘I respect the governor, I’ve spoken to him a lot of times in the last few weeks, and this is what I’d say to him: Respect and trust our health care professionals,’ the mayor said.
‘They are the people that do the work. They are the people that know best. They want to get people vaccinated, no one’s more motivated than them.
‘Help them, support them. Don’t fine them, don’t threaten them,’ he added.
Just over 110,000 vaccine doses have been administered in NYC as of Monday, according to the city’s health department data
Cuomo highlighted the three worst performing hospitals in terms of vaccine distribution: Samaritan Hospital (15%), A.O. Fox Hospital (18%) and Nassau University Medical Center (19%)
Nationwide, just 4.66million – or 30 percent – of the 15.4million vaccine doses distributed to the states, have been administered so far
Cuomo said on Monday that his state has administered almost 300,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses – or about 46 percent of its allocation – in the last three weeks.
CDC data, which may lag due to delays in reporting, showed that New York state has administered 236,941 of its 774,075 distributed doses.
In New York City, 118,304 vaccine doses have been administered since vaccinations started three weeks ago, the city’s latest vaccine data shows.
The city currently has 480,550 vaccine doses available, according to data as of Tuesday morning.
Cuomo on Monday addressed the slow rate of vaccine distribution across the state, saying hospitals would be fined up to $100,000 if they fail to use up their dose allocations by the end of the week.
Those facilities now also must use up their vaccine allocations within seven days or risk being allowed to receive any future doses.
‘I want needles in arms and I want it done as quickly as possible,’ Cuomo said. ‘We need (hospitals) to administer the vaccines faster.
Healthcare systems across the country are struggling to meet the federal government’s targets to inoculate the majority of the population, nearly a month after the first doses of vaccines were distributed to the states
Only 4.66 million COVID-19 vaccines have been administered across the US almost a month into the agonizingly slow vaccination campaign, according to the CDC
‘I don’t want the vaccine in a fridge or a freezer, I want it in somebody’s arm.
‘If you’re not performing this function, it does raise questions about the operating efficiency of the hospital.’
The state is currently prioritizing healthcare workers, first responders and nursing home residents in the first phase of the vaccine roll out. As of Monday, all healthcare workers who come into contact with the public can be eligible for the vaccine.
Cuomo highlighted the three worst performing hospitals in terms of vaccine distribution: Samaritan Hospital (15%), A.O. Fox Hospital (18%) and Nassau University Medical Center (19%).
New York City Health + Hospitals has currently used up 31 percent of its allocated vaccine doses.
The best performing was the private New York-Presbyterian Healthcare System, which has already used 99 percent of its allocated doses.
‘The hospitals have been given the vaccines for expedited purposes. If you have been given the allocation but you’re not using them… you shouldn’t have the allocation,’ Cuomo said.
‘I’d rather have the faster hospitals administering it. If your hospital doesn’t have the capacity, just say that. You will be fined for accepting an allocation that you can’t or won’t administer.’
Cuomo said he would be holding the public officials in charge of the state’s public hospitals responsible for distributing the vaccine in those facilities.