Experts hope more vaccine supply comes in to ramp up vaccination effort

Raven Brown
Updated: February 21, 2021 06:29 PM
Created: February 21, 2021 04:05 PM

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — As the slow rollout of getting people in our community vaccinated continues, supply is still an issue. 

“We could always do better,” infectious disease specialist with Rochester Regional Health Dr. Emil Lesho says. “I am satisfied with all of the hard work that everyone is putting into it.”

Dr. Lesho says he's happy with the hard work, but the effort needs to be ramped up. 

“That said I think we're still suffering from the effects of the previous administration that did not prioritize the public health effort at all for the public so we're still in a catch-up phase,” Dr. Lesho says.

University of Rochester Medical Center and head of the Finger Lakes Vaccine Hub Task Force Dr. Nancy Bennett says we are currently in a slow-moving situation. 

“You know it's been really a little bit dribs and drabs so far and if we continue at this pace it would take us an incredibly long time to vaccinate our region so we are hopeful that rate will pick up,” Bennett says.

She says that as of now we could use more of the Pfizer vaccine, which has to be stored in an ultra-cold freezer. 

At the moment the only vaccinator in the region getting the Pfizer vaccine is the Dome Arena, with all others using Moderna. 

“In general not having to maintain that cold storage could be very helpful,” Dr. Bennett says. 

With winter weather slowing down the efforts across the country, both say it's important to continue to educate people about the importance of the vaccine and it's time to play catch-up. 

“This vaccine effort is very complicated and requires so many people's efforts and you know I can't tell you how frustrating it is to have no vaccine this week we just are so dependent on a regular supply of vaccine and always hoping for it to be more than we received so far,” Dr. Bennett says.

Dr. Bennett says they hope they will receive double vaccines with week 10 and week 11 shipments this week to make up for lost time during winter storms.

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