Covid vaccine

State Health Officials: Vaccine Appointment Bottlenecking Temporary

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It’s a vaccine rush Stop & Shop pharmacy manager Mark Cooney knows well, even just days into the vaccine provider mix.

“We started Wednesday night posting the appointments on our scheduling app. I will tell you by Thursday morning the word got out that we had vaccine and within an hour the appointments were pretty much booked up,”

Today, more than 400,000 people, those 45 and older, are now eligible for the vaccine in Connecticut.

With a weekly supply of 130,000 vaccines, Conn. Dept. of Public Health Acting Commissioner Deidre Gifford said bottlenecking for appointments is expected, but temporary.

“It gets better week over week next week we were able to fulfill most of the asks that we got from our vaccine providers,” Gifford said.

Gifford said some people may have trouble signing up for the vaccine based on the state’s current focus to allocate vaccinations to high risk communities, childcare and education staff. She anticipates an acceleration and says by May vaccine supply will actually be more than the demand.

“You might remember the first week that J&J was released we got sort of a big allocation that week and then it’s been sort of flat the last couple of weeks that will start to ramp up in April,” Gifford said.

“The hope is that every Wednesday will receive our allocation we’ll open up for that following week,” Cooney said.

As of today, nearly 20 Stop & Shop pharmacies are now offering the vaccine,  Cooney says the stores are ready to take on the demand.

“Next week we’re going to have at least 10 to 12 in-store clinics in some of our stores so will be posting obviously more appointments on those days,” Cooney said.

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