State, local officials discuss vaccine distribution

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Vaccine distribution was the primary COVID-19 topic of discussion on Monday for state and local officials.

In a Monday briefing, Gov Andrew Cuomo noted that due to recent winter storms across the United States, there had been delays in vaccine shipments, but they were starting to catch up.

Information from the governor’s office added that the week 10 allocation from the federal government was delayed due to the storms, but the remaining week 10 deliveries would arrive starting Monday and continue over the next few days. 

Further, the states week 11 allocation will also begin arriving mid-week.

Hitting this closer to home, Oneida County released Monday the county was “... still awaiting its vaccine shipment that was delayed by New York State last week. No new first dose appointments will be made at county-operated vaccination sites until the doses arrive,” reads a statement.

Statewide, approximately 10 million New York residents are currently eligible to receive the vaccine. But eligibility still far exceeds vaccine availability. Currently the state is still getting about 300,000 doses from the federal government each week.

Oneida County numbers

On Monday, the statewide positivity rate was 4.33%, and there were 89 deaths reported across the state on Sunday, Feb. 21.

In Oneida County on Sunday, there were 43 new positive cases and one new death. There were 44 patients hospitalized in Oneida County with 37 at Mohawk Valley Health System and seven at Rome Health.

To see an updated Oneida County COVID-19 dashboard: https://bit.ly/37Bhahe

Looking ahead

Cuomo said in the coming weeks, weddings and movie theaters are among social institutions that will see relaxed restrictions. However, even as they will be relaxed, there will still be forthcoming health and safety precaution guidelines from the state that must be adhered to.

For example, movie theaters will be allowed to open, but at 25% capacity, Cuomo said.

In terms of schools fully reopening, Cuomo said that part of the plan of action will begin Wednesday. The governor is calling on all school districts to begin reporting how many teachers and other essential school staff have been vaccinated.

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