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Cuomo: Arrival of virus variant changes COVID ’footrace’

Gov. Andrew Cuomo
Gov. Andrew Cuomo(WCAX)
Published: Jan. 5, 2021 at 3:33 PM EST
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ALBANY, N.Y. (WCAX) - New York Governor Andrew Cuomo Tuesday laid out the state’s next phase for distributing the COVID vaccine, but said the federal government will have to increase the state’s supply.

Cuomo says the state has only been given half as much vaccine as New York would need to inoculate more than 2 million health care workers. This comes as a man in his 60s in Saratoga Springs tested positive for the new coronavirus variant.

“We are in a footrace right now between the vaccine implementation versus the infection rate and hospitalization capacity. This UK strain changes the whole footrace. Because the rate of transmission goes way up and it’s no longer the race that we were running,” Cuomo said.

Raw Video: Cuomo COVID-19 briefing - Pt. 2

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and Gov. Andrew Cuomo are offering competing strategies for ramping up New York’s COVID-19 vaccination efforts.

De Blasio says vaccine eligibility should be widened. Cuomo says hospitals need to do a better job of vaccinating the health care workers who are eligible now. Only health care workers and nursing home residents and staff members are currently being vaccinated in New York. De Blasio said Tuesday that it’s time to broaden eligibility to include people older than 75 and essential workers. But Cuomo says vaccinations are lagging because some hospitals are just better managed than others. 

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