UTICA, N.Y. – Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente appealed to Gov. Andrew Cuomo during his coronavirus briefing on Tuesday, saying local public health departments should be managing vaccine distribution, not hospitals.
According to Cuomo, hospitals and medical facilities are responsible for planning distribution and administering vaccines.
Picente disagrees with this course of action, saying county health departments are better equipped to manage the distribution process, especially considering how overwhelmed hospitals are dealing with rising coronavirus cases.
“These are massive documents in these documents outline a very detailed and precise manner in which vaccinations in the case of a pandemic are to be distributed. Distributed by a public health system, not by the hospital system,” said Picente. “To hand over the distribution of a community vaccine to a hospital system there's already overburdened is in my opinion and many other county leaders not only irresponsible but not proper.”
Picente says public health departments have dealt with health crises in the past, like Ebola and SARS, and should be in charge of managing the pandemic at a local level, including vaccinations.