Lt. Gov Hochul visits Jones Beach vaccination site as doses dwindle
There is a dire need for vaccines on Long Island as Gov. Andrew Cuomo warns that the state could be out of doses by the weekend.
The mass COVID-19 vaccination site at Jones Beach has been in operation for a week and has administered 6,400 doses so far. But the immediate future of New York's efforts is uncertain.
Cuomo says at the rate shots are currently being administered, doses could be gone in the matter of days. He says this is because the federal allocation is too low to keep up with demand.
Recently, New York has been receiving around 250,000 doses of the vaccine per week. Cuomo says at that pace, it would take about seven months to vaccinate all 7 million people who are currently eligible to get the shot.
On Thursday, Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul toured the Jones Beach facility. She says she is hopeful the Biden administration will ramp up production significantly, but that it could take time before the change is felt.
"The reality is they can't just go overnight like that and have new production. It will probably be months and months, summer, fall, winter, before it will have the effect we need it to have," says Hochul. "And that's the frustrating reality we're dealing with."
When asked if the Jones Beach facility could pause its operations due to a lack of doses, Hochul says that's not the plan at this point but that it's all dependent on the federal supply.
Judy Clark, 65, of West Hempstead, is among those who doesn't know what to do now that her vaccine appointment was suddenly canceled due to the lack of supply.
"Now it's just impossible to get anything. I got on the website, New York state, Northwell, Nassau County, and everything is booked," says Clark.
Hochul says New York has enough workers and facilities to give out more shots, but simply can't at this point.
"We have over 1,200 facilities open in the state of New York. We could double or triple that overnight," says Hochul. "We have the ability to do that, it's just whether or not there's enough supply to get out."