The city unveiled a three-point plan that officials said will double its weekly capacity, ultimately increasing the pace and scale of its vaccination effort. However, the mayor said they cannot meet their goal without support and coordination from every level of government.
“We are doing everything we can to vaccinate as many New Yorkers as possible, but to really pick up the pace, we need our federal and state partners on board, and fast,” de Blasio said in a statement. “It will be tough, but I believe that we can do it.”
This month, the city will launch COVID-19 Vaccine Hubs across the five boroughs, where New Yorkers will have access to a vaccine. NYC Health+Hospitals testing sites will also serve as vaccination centers.
City officials are calling on local organizations to scale up their capacity to administer the vaccines quicker. The city’s Vaccine Command Center will help manage, triage and coordinate the vaccination effort, which includes hospitals, community health care centers and urgent care clinics.
“We’re not rosy-eyed, we know hitting the mark here hinges on several moving pieces working together and lots going right,” said Melanie Hartzog, deputy mayor for Health and Human Services. “That’s why we’re focused on doing everything we can to create a viable pathway to achieving it, bringing as many partners to the table as possible in the process in hopes of reaching as many New Yorkers as we can as quickly as possible.”
While building out its capacity to increase the rate of vaccinations, the city wants to receive more concrete and comprehensive guidance in advance so it can expand the number of New Yorkers eligible for the vaccine.
City officials also want to ensure that the supply of the vaccine remains consistent, which would allow the city to expand its reach.
As for private partners, the city is asking them to pick up the pace of administering the vaccine, as well as increase their ability to offer more vaccines to more New Yorkers everyday.
“These are ambitious goals, but we must be bold about turning vaccines into vaccinations swiftly because it will save lives,” said Health Commissioner Dave Chokshi. “One key is doubling points of access for vaccination across our entire city, including not just hospitals but also community health centers, urgent care clinics, pharmacies and dedicated vaccine hubs.”