ALBANY, N.Y. (UPDATED) -- Gov. Andrew Cuomo says the state will open up vaccine eligibility for adults with certain health problems by Feb. 15.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Friday the state will vaccinate these populations by reallocating remaining doses set aside for hospital workers. He is asking counties to prepare for the influx of these new groups of people.
"We're committed to vaccinating vulnerable populations that have suffered the most as we distribute a strictly limited supply of vaccines, and people with comorbidities are 94 percent of the state's COVID deaths," said Cuomo. "That's why we'll open eligibility to people with comorbidities starting Feb. 15 and give hospitals the ability to use extra doses they have to address that population. Local governments have a week to prepare for the new change — they need to get ready now."
The state worked with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to develop the list of diseases and conditions that would put people at higher risk of severe illness when coupled with COVID-19.
People with the following diseases or conditions will be eligible:
- Cancer (current or in remission, including 9/11-related cancers)
- Chronic kidney disease
- Pulmonary disease, including but not limited to, COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), asthma (moderate-to-severe), pulmonary fibrosis, cystic fibrosis, and 9/11 related pulmonary diseases
- Intellectual and developmental disabilities including Down syndrome
- Heart conditions, including but not limited to heart failure, coronary artery disease, cardiomyopathies, or hypertension (high blood pressure)
- Immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) including but not limited to solid organ transplant or from blood or bone marrow transplant, immune deficiencies, HIV, use of corticosteroids, use of other immune weakening medicines, or other causes
- Severe obesity (BMI 40 kg/m2), obesity (body mass index [BMI] of 30 kg/m2 or higher but < 40 kg/m2)
- Sickle cell disease or thalassemia
- Type 1 or 2 diabetes mellitus
- Cerebrovascular disease (affects blood vessels and blood supply to the brain)
- Neurologic conditions including but not limited to Alzheimer's Disease or dementia
- Liver disease
Cuomo says the list is subject to change as additional scientific evidence is published, and as the health department analyzes additional state-specific data.
Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente, released the following statement after the governor's announcement:
“I am pleased to see that Gov. Cuomo has now made those with comorbidities eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. This is a segment of the population which is in dire need of being vaccinated, and I have been long advocating for this group to be prioritized. However, we will need to secure much more supply from New York State in order to accommodate them. We are currently assessing how to distribute to this group at our county-operated PODs as we await further details from the state as to how it will assist us in accomplishing this task.”
Those with comorbidities are at greater risk of death from COVID.
New Yorkers who have one of these comorbidities or underlying conditions will be eligible for the vaccine beginning February 15.
Full list: pic.twitter.com/igoJalwkWK
— Andrew Cuomo (@NYGovCuomo) February 5, 2021