New York expects to receive 170,000 doses of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine by Dec. 15, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Wednesday.
In a press conference, Cuomo said New York would follow recently released Center for Disease Control guidelines and first distribute the vaccine to nursing home residents and staff as well as healthcare workers. The state also expects to receive additional shipments from Pfizer, as well as Moderna, another leading vaccine manufacturer, this month.
Cuomo said he expects widespread immunization, wherein 75% to 85% of the state is vaccinated, by June at the earliest. He noted that it could take as long as September 2021, however, depending on the operational efforts behind the vaccine distribution, including funding from the federal government, and the public’s willingness to get the vaccine.
“We need the federal funding. We need a real aggressive outreach effort. We need social acceptance and confidence to take the vaccine,” Cuomo said.
Many Broadway leaders have been looking to the vaccine as a means to reopen theaters and restart the industry. Broadway shows are currently closed through May 30, 2021, but many producers have signaled a more likely return in the fall.
Cuomo’s timeline echos comments from Dr. Anthony Fauci Tuesday, in which the leading infectious diseases doctor told WNBC that he believes Broadway could return in the late summer or early fall. However, Fauci also warned that the timeline is dependent on the public’s willingness to get vaccinated, both within New York and across the country.
Both the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines require two doses received several weeks apart for immunization.