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Cuomo: Uphill battle to convince skeptics to take COVID-19 vaccine

Thomas O'Neil-White

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said the a COVID-19 vaccine could be ready and available in the state as soon as this weekend.

During a Wednesday COVID-19 briefing, the governor explained that it will be an uphill battle to dispel existing skepticism of the vaccine.

“First, we’re going to have to have a real public education campaign to battle the skepticism,” he said. “Just think of the math on this; you have to get 75%-85% of the overall population for the vaccination to be effective, 75%-85%. 50% of the population says right now they don’t want to take the vaccine. They don’t trust the approval process, they’re worried about vaccines in general. But now 50% are now saying they don’t want to take the vaccine. You can’t get to 75% if 50% don’t take it.”

Cuomo said the roll out plan involves federal distribution of the vaccine to 90 state-appointed cold-storage facilities. These facilities would then act as distribution centers for their region.

Cuomo made it clear where the prioritization of the vaccines would be.

“Our priorities are basically tracked the federal government’s suggestion on prioritization,” he said. “The first shipment is allocated on the basis of number of healthcare workers and nursing home residents in the state.”

Cuomo said high-risk hospital workers will also be included in the first wave of vaccinations.

Born in Louisville, Kentucky, Thomas moved to Western New York at the age of 14. A graduate of Buffalo State College, he majored in Communications Studies and was part of the sports staff for WBNY. When not following his beloved University of Kentucky Wildcats and Boston Red Sox, Thomas enjoys coaching youth basketball, reading Tolkien novels and seeing live music.
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