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Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration has vowed to create a plan to vaccinate homebound seniors after a push from two southern Brooklyn lawmakers, in accordance to a consultant for Councilman Mark Treyger.
“Here we are, facing a global pandemic, with thousands of New Yorkers who have lost their lives,” stated Treyger, who represents Coney Island, Bensonhurst, and Gravesend, in late January. “We still don’t have a comprehensive and cohesive plan to vaccinate homebound seniors or even an adequate plan to vaccinate seniors in general.”
Though the town already gives free transportation for seniors to vaccine websites, the lawmakers argued that an at-home vaccination effort would pace up herd immunization in Brooklyn, which homes the largest population of seniors within the state.
New York residents over the age of 65 have been eligible to obtain the COVID-19 vaccine since Jan. 12, however solely 214,000 seniors have been inoculated up to now, in accordance to metropolis knowledge. The gradual rollout has principally been brought on by the town’s vaccine scarcity, though locals have additionally blamed the disparity on the Health Department’s complicated scheduling system.
One Bensonhurst resident says many seniors have struggled to make appointments on-line, and that the inadequate translation providers have made it troublesome for Chinese locals to get the data they want.
“A lot of seniors in our neighborhood can’t speak English at all and they don’t know how to use a computer,” stated Dr. Tim Law, a member of Bensonhurst’s Community Board 11. “They want to take the vaccine — they want to do it, but they cannot do it.”
To make issues worse, vaccine shortages have pressured vaccination hubs to shut and open seemingly at random, complicated residents and even the Health Department.
Last weekend, a brand new vaccination web site at Lincoln High School in Coney Island sat empty as a result of appointments weren’t made obtainable on-line, despite the fact that loads of doses have been on the positioning.
Lincoln HS in Coney Island this morning. Mostly workers and virtually nobody getting vaccinated. Irony is the town’s web site says no appointments can be found for my constituents as we speak, however nobody is there & they’re sitting on vaccine provide. This is unacceptable @nycHealthy ! pic.twitter.com/6jXOnyndSs
— Mark Treyger (@MarkTreyger718) January 30, 2021
New Yorkers who heard concerning the snafu traveled to Lincoln High School and received vaccinated with out an appointment. The incident wasn’t the primary time seniors relied on social media to get the vaccine — final month, New Yorkers traveled to the Brooklyn Army Terminal from so far as Long Island after listening to that employees have been giving out surplus doses to walk-in sufferers.
Other southern Brooklyn seniors have stated they’ve been unable to make appointments close to their neighborhoods, and have been routed to websites within the south Bronx as a substitute.
“We continue to hear reports of residents being unable to make appointments in our local communities, in addition to being unable to make appointments because of lack of vaccine supply,” stated Bay Ridge state Sen. Andrew Gounardes. “Neither issue has been resolved — we need more vaccine sites in southern Brooklyn as well as greater supply from the federal government.”
To ease the vaccine’s rollout, Treyger and southern Brooklyn state Sen. Diane Savino are asking the town to companion with extra senior suppliers who may present transportation to vaccination websites and create senior-only hours on the city-run facilities.
“We know the most vulnerable among us is our senior citizen population and as community leaders we must do our part to ensure that we develop a comprehensive plan to get them vaccinated, including those that are homebound,” stated Savino.
Since the lawmakers’ calls, the de Blasio administration has fashioned a process pressure to look into the difficulty, however has not but finalized a plan, in accordance to Maria Henderson, a spokeswoman for Councilmember Treyger.
A rep with the Department of Health had not heard concerning the plan or the duty pressure as of Wednesday morning, however stated that the town’s largest impediment is presently the dwindling variety of vaccines.
“The single greatest challenge to vaccinating eligible New Yorkers is a lack of supply,” stated Patrick Donahue. “Our capacity to distribute is much greater than our supply of vaccine. The limited doses we have will be exhausted by the end of the weekend.”