People over 30 can start making appointments at 8 a.m. on Tuesday morning.
“Today we are taking a monumental step forward in the fight to beat COVID,” the Democratic governor said in a press release, adding that the new schedule was “well ahead of the May 1 deadline set. by the White House ”.
Nearly three in 10 New Yorkers have received at least a first dose of the vaccine, in line with the national average, according to data from the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Additionally, Cuomo said more than 2 million total doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered at mass vaccination sites run by New York State and assisted by FEMA. Statewide, more than 9 million total doses have been administered at all vaccination sites.
Acting attorney for Governor Beth Garvey also announced that the state will expand eligibility to include all those incarcerated in public and local facilities.
Yet, due to the limited supply, New Yorkers are encouraged to remain patient and are advised not to show up to walk-in vaccination sites.RELATED | Virus fight stalls in early New York hotspots, New Jersey
The announcement comes as New York and New Jersey once again have the highest coronavirus infection rates in the country, and on Monday, public lawyer Jumaane Williams helped launch a Mask Up initiative to provide PPE to NYCHA developments hardest hit by COVID-19. The Empire State has averaged 548 cases per 100,000 population over the past two weeks, surpassed only by New Jersey with 647 cases per 100,000 population.
The vaccination effort continues to escalate, with New York City vaccinating 478,000 people last week, a new record for a seven-day period.
Mayor Bill de Blasio said his goal was to vaccinate 500,000 people per week, so the city is pretty much there, with some vaccination centers operating 24/7.
So far, nearly 4 million people have been vaccinated in New York City, and the federal government has also said supplies will increase in the days and weeks to come.
Nevertheless, concern remains as the number of new daily infections remains high.
It’s unclear why New York and New Jersey are booming, if there is more testing in the area, if there is an influx of travelers who have visited places with fewer restrictions, or if the States open too early.
“We know it’s Holy Week, it’s a very special and powerful time,” said de Blasio. “Families are coming together, people are looking forward to Easter. It’s so important to understand. This is the last time we are going to deal with COVID like we did last year. Every day we are making progress, but we are not there yet. It will take a few more months to get as many people vaccinated as needed and to make a real difference. So during this holiday period everyone should focus on safety. . Wear a mask. ”
The mayor and the health commissioner call for caution.
“Smaller is better,” said Dr Dave Chokshi, Commissioner of Health. “Stay as much as possible in your home. Stay in single-digit groups versus people meeting together. And let’s not forget that the tests also helped us keep it safe. . ”
RELATED | State unveils “Excelsior” digital pass to help businesses and places reopen
Neither state is seeing anything like what they saw last spring, when hospitals – and morgues – were overflowing. And like the rest of the country, the two are in a much better place than in January, at the height of the pandemic’s winter peak.
But the lack of improvement or even the rollback in recent weeks has raised fears that states are opening up too quickly and people are letting their guard down too much, just as potentially more contagious variants of the virus are circulating more widely.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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