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'Impatient' Gov. Cuomo Sounds Off On Slow Rollout Of COVID Vaccine To Health Care Workers In NYC, Westchester And Long Island

VALHALLA, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) -- Angry at a slow pace of vaccine distribution, Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday expanded the number of eligible people and slammed hospitals who have not used their allotment.

He was especially upset with New York City's Health + Hospitals corporation and hospitals in Nassau and Westchester counties, CBS2's Marcia Kramer reported.

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The city made plans to open vaccination hubs at high schools in Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx to increase the number of places people can get COVID-19 shots to 250 by the end of the month. This as the governor increased the number of people eligible for the vaccine, so the state can, "Put a harpoon in the beast and actually defeat COVID," Cuomo said.


The governor expanded the number of people who can get the vaccine to include all doctors, nurses and health care staff who come in contact with the public -- 2.1 million people in all.

Home care and hospice workers, staff and residents in congregate settings, and people administering COVID vaccines were added to the list, which already includes nursing home residents and staff, front line hospital care workers, corners and medical examiners.

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Mayor Bill de Blasio tried to get on the bandwagon by calling for hospitals to dramatically increase the number of vaccines they administer.

"This has got to be a seven-day-a-week, 24/7 reality going forward," de Blasio said.

But that didn't help him escape the wrath of his frenemy Cuomo, who was highly critical of the city's slow pace in getting the vaccine program up and running.

The governor put up the mayor's picture, naming him as one of a number of officials have been slow off the mark.

"This is a management issue of the hospitals. They have to move the vaccine. They have to move the vaccine faster," Cuomo said.

The governor tartly pointed out that the city Health + Hospitals corporation distributed just 31% of the vaccine doses it was given. He also singled out Nassau University Medical Center, which gave out just 19% of its doses, and Westchester Medical Center, which distributed just 32%.

"I am impatient. that it has been three weeks and the vaccines haven't been administered. I'm impatient," Cuomo said.

CORONAVIRUS: NY Health Dept. | NY Call 1-(888)-364-3065 | NYC Health Dept. | NYC Call 311, Text COVID to 692692 | NJ COVID-19 Info Hub | NJ Call 1-(800)-222-1222 or 211, Text NJCOVID to 898211 | CT Health Dept. | CT Call 211 | Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Nassau County Executive Laura Curran said the county no longer runs Nassau University Medical Center.

"I've demanded their vaccine distribution plan, because, as I said, right now, it's not meeting my requirements for a plan of action," Curran said.

The governor is so upset he's threatening to impose a $100,000 fine and revoke vaccination privileges for any hospital that doesn't use its allotment within seven days.

Spokesmen for the hospitals agree with a City Hall source, who he told Kramer, "Can't we all just be adults and try to vaccinate as many people as possible?"

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