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by | Feb 8, 2021 | News Media

COVID IN NEW JERSEY: LACK OF AVAILABLE VACCINE DOSES LEAVING DOCTORS, RESIDENTS EXASPERATED

EAST ORANGE, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — New Jersey just reached a major milestone in the number of COVID-19 vaccine administered.

But many say they have tried everything and are still struggling to get an appointment, CBS2’s Jessica Layton reported Monday.

High school history teacher Yvette Jordan feels fortunate she has been able to go to her primary care doctor whenever she’s needed a COVID-19 test.

“He has really provided a service for the community,” Jordan said.

She wishes it was half that simple to make an appointment for the vaccine, especially in communities of color where there’s more skepticism about the shot.

“When you know your provider and realize it’s somebody you do trust, that makes it so much easier,” Jordan said.

COVID VACCINE

“They feel better knowing that they have someone who knows their medical history to give the vaccine,” said Dr. Alexander Salerno of Salerno Medical Associates.

Salerno said his offices in Newark and East Orange were approved to get 600 doses of the Moderna vaccine back in December, but they never came and nobody from the state will explain the delay.

“I’m just beyond frustrated at this point. It’s easier to find a winning lotto ticket than it is to get the vaccine,” Salerno said.

Frustration has been felt throughout the state by patients who say they’re willing to go anywhere to get that added protection.

“I’ve called the hospitals, the state hotlines and it just keeps saying please wait until we have appointments. I can’t just be sitting on my phone or the internet all day, refreshing,” said Jerry Zenos of Newark.

CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC

On Monday, Gov. Phil Murphy said the state has surpassed 1 million doses given out and supply is expected to increase in the next three weeks.

“It means we will have more appointment slots we can open up and it means as well that we can look to the day when we can make more residents eligible,” Murphy said.

And once they have the supply, the six mega vaccination sites will be able to handle 10,000 to 15,000 patients a day. Still, there will be those who feel most comfortable with the doctor who knows them best. People like Jordan. Her message to the powers that be?

“Move it. We need it now,” Jordan said.

The governor said the goal is still to get the vaccine into 4.7 million people by Memorial Day Weekend.

CBSNews Article: February 8, 2021 as posted on CBS New York

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