CONNECTICUT, USA — Mayors from across the nation joined Friday evening by White House Chief Medical Adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci and Dr. Vivek Murthy, co-chair of the Biden-Harris Covid-19 advisory board. The group was briefed on the White House’s latest efforts to combat the covid-19 pandemic and officials provided insights on how to achieve a fair distribution of the covid-19 vaccine.
Many mayors are on the same page---- including Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin- and are asking the federal government when and how they could see an increase in the supply of the COVID-19 vaccine.
“We got to pull out the stops, so what does that mean? It means number one ensuring we are not holding back on doses of the vaccine, that we’re giving people what we have so they can get their first shot, it also means using the Defense Production Act to produce the components of the vaccine,” Dr. Murthy said.
Mayor Bronin said he --like many other mayors --appreciate the new administration's determination to launch a full-scale federal effort to get more people vaccinated and the effort to partner with local governments to do it.
“The tension between letting the government do it all or letting the local do it all, there has to be a synergy between the two,” Dr. Fauci said.
“There’s a lot that the federal government wants to do, like helping set up community vaccination centers and start-up distribution of the vaccine in pharmacies, doing that in collaboration with states and local communities is going to be absolutely essential,” Dr. Murthy said.
Since Thursday Connecticut has administered more than 258,000 vaccines but officials said it has the capacity to vaccinate more residents---it’s just a matter of supply. During the call, mayors expressed the desperate need for a more reliable, predictable, and faster supply of covid-19 vaccines.
“When it comes to vaccines, a lot of us, at the state and local level, we’re ready to do so much more once that supply of vaccines is reliable and flowing,” Bronin said.
Currently, Connecticut hospitals, public health departments and local clinics are administering the vaccine. and the list of vaccine sites continues to grow.
Announced Friday select Walgreen pharmacies in Connecticut will now offer COVID-19 vaccines to patients ages 75 and older. Walmart said its stores are preparing to offer the vaccine seven days a week at their pharmacies once more people become eligible to receive the vaccine. Hartford's Dunkin Donuts Park will soon serve as a vaccine site as well.
“DD Park will be one more piece of that network, one more part of that fabric that allows us to make testing more convenient and accessible. it's right on the bus lines,” Bronin said.
Watch More: Connecticut COVID-19 Vaccine Updates