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The city has introduced its plan for distributing a Covid-19 vaccine once one becomes available, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced in October. After scientists and the state have properly vetted a vaccine, the city will execute a two-phase distribution plan, the mayor said.
During the first phase, the city will have a limited supply of the vaccine, and will prioritize distribution to frontline and essential workers, health care personnel and at-risk groups. To prepare for the initial vaccine rollout, the city is enrolling providers in the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s Citywide Immunization Registry.
The second phase will focus on vaccinating the general public. The vaccine will be distributed through private and public hospitals, health care clinics, community centers, schools, testing sites, pharmacies and urgent-care centers. To increase availability, the city will ensure adequate storage, de Blasio said.
“We have to make the vaccine available regardless of people’s ability to pay,” de Blasio said. “It has to be free for those who need it.”
The city plans to conduct its own vaccine-effectiveness studies and follow up with a sample of New Yorkers who receive the vaccine.
It should be noted that the release date for a vaccine is unknown. The public should not expect a vaccine until “at least a few months into 2021,” according to the mayor. Although he predicted many Americans will resist taking the first available vaccine, he thinks New Yorkers will be more willing to take it.
“Trust is an essential ingredient for turning a vaccine into a vaccination,” said Dr. Dave Chokshi, the city’s new health commissioner.
Source: Crain’s New York Business