New York City has just 19,000 first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine left – or less than one day’s supply — until it receives its next shipment of shots, Mayor Bill de Blasio said Monday.
De Blasio claimed the Big Apple could be vaccinating up to half-a-million people per week if it had the supply — though he also conceded that the city’s confusing and overly complicated sign-up system needs to be fixed.
“We urgently need more supply,” said de Blasio, at a City Hall press briefing. “If we had the full partnership of our colleagues in government and manufactures, we can move vaccinations at a staggering level.”
“We have New York City ready to vaccinate at a rate of half-a-million New Yorkers a week, but we don’t have the vaccine to go with it,” he added, claiming the figure is based on “the experience we’ve had so far and all of our projections.”
The city has been administering vaccines at a rate of between 30,000 and 45,000 shots per day.
Hizzoner said that the “frustrating part” is that city currently has on hand just 19,000 first doses and that a shipment of only 107,000 shots is expected “in the next few days.”
Last week, the city projected to vaccinate 300,000, but “we ended at just under 200,000 because there was no supply,” he added.
“We could have reached at least an additional 100,000 New Yorkers if the supply was there,” de Blasio said.
As of Sunday, a total of 628,831 doses of thbe vaccines made by Pfizer and rival company Moderna have been administered in the city.
De Blasio again called on the federal government to allow the city to dole out its reserve of second dose shots for those who need the first dose.
“We have a supply problem and we have a flexibility problem because we can’t access second doses that are being held in reserve,” de Blasio said. “I want to get that first shot to as many as our seniors as possible, but we need that flexibility to do it.”
The city has roughly 212,000 second dose shots on hand, data shows.
But even before the shortage hit, the city’s inoculation program was far from smooth.
Eligible New York City seniors desperate to get the coronavirus vaccine told The Post last week that they haven’t found any available slots and are fed up with the hard-to-navigate appointment signup system, which involves three separate city websites.
De Blasio conceded that it needs to be consolidated — though offered few specifics on how and when that might happen.
“We’ve got to make this simpler. There’s no doubt about it,” de Blasio said of the system. “There are always going to be some challenges, but we’ve got to make this situation simpler, make this process easier for everyone involved, and that’s what we’re working on.”