Biden Covid advisor challenges Cuomo’s letter to purchase vaccine instantly from Pfizer

President-elect Joe Biden’s Covid Advisory Board member Dr. Celine Gounder slammed the Trump administration’s piecemeal Covid response as some states throughout the U.S. scramble to get the vaccine doses they want. 

“I feel we have already had an excessive amount of of a patchwork response throughout the states,” Gounder stated in a Monday night interview on “The News with Shepard Smith.”

In a Friday coronavirus briefing, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo stated the federal authorities is sending his state 50,000 fewer doses of the vaccine than the week earlier than. The state was getting fewer doses because the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention expanded vaccine eligibility to anyone over the age of 65 on Jan. 12.

On Monday, Cuomo sent a letter to Pfizer asking if the state of New York may purchase vaccines instantly from the corporate. Final week, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer made the same request to Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar.

Gounder instructed host Shepard Smith that this strategy may trigger extra issues than it solves. 

“I feel Governor Cuomo, himself, had stated again within the spring that the scenario round ventilators was basically ‘one massive Ebay‘ with the entire states bidding towards each other for ventilators, and I feel this sort of an strategy to vaccine allocation goes to consequence, frankly, in the identical sort of scenario that he, himself, was criticizing final spring,” Gounder stated. 

Knowledge from the CDC exhibits that the U.S. is averaging about 900,000 vaccinations per day. Throughout an interview with Fox Information, Azar cited the CDC quantity and criticized the Biden administration’s objective of “100 million pictures in arms within the first 100 days.”

“We can have distributed 250 million doses of vaccine by the top of April,” stated Azar. “In the event that they’ve solely performed 100 million vaccinations by then, it is going to be a tragic squandering of the chance that we’ve got handed them.”

Gounder, an epidemiologist at NYU, certified Azar’s assertion, noting that distribution didn’t imply precise injections of the vaccine. 

“We have seen, although, that one, distribution could be very totally different from getting pictures in arms, that that final mile of supply is de facto the toughest half right here,” defined Gounder. “Secondly, we’ve got but to substantiate that these variety of doses, that 250 million quantity that he is quoting there, is de facto going to pan out.”

Cuomo in a separate letter to Azar blasted him for “complicated” the general public about vaccine stockpiles. Azar admitted on Friday that no stockpile at present exists.

Biden advisor Dr. Michael Osterholm warned that the worst of the Covid pandemic is but to return, and the information backs up his grim prediction. The U.S. is quickly approaching 400,000 deaths within the pandemic, in response to Johns Hopkins College information. That is equal to roughly one in 822 People. For 19 consecutive days, there have been a minimum of 23,000 individuals in ICUs as a result of Covid within the U.S., in response to the Covid Tracking Project. The HHS reported that almost 80% of ICU beds are occupied nationwide. 

Gounder stated that the U.S. is in “our fifth peak proper now” and that the subsequent few months can be all about “layering protections” with a purpose to keep away from one other. 

“We actually do need to double down on issues like masking and social distancing, open air as a substitute of indoors, well-ventilated areas,” Gounder warned. “If we do these issues, then, sure, this can be our final peak but it surely actually relies on every one among us doing what should be performed to get again to regular life.”

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