Scarsdale, NY Assemblymember Amy Paulin (D-Scarsdale) announced passage of her legislation (A.10508A) to authorize licensed pharmacists to administer an approved vaccine for COVID-19.
In the last several weeks, we have lost more than 23,000 New Yorkers to COVID-19 and that number continues to grow. Now, so many of us understand firsthand the inexpressible anxiety, fear, and hopelessness that develops in the midst of a pandemic where there is no available vaccine to guard against transmission of the virus, Paulin said. We must ensure that once there is a vaccine, everyone is able to receive it. Pharmacists are already safely administering several other immunizations in pharmacies, and with more than 5,000 pharmacies in New York State this will greatly increase access to the COVID-19 vaccine.
I thank Speaker Carl Heastie, my Assembly colleagues, and Senator Brad Hoylman for their leadership and support of this crucial legislation.
As COVID-19 continues to claim innocent lives, the drastic but necessary social distancing measures slow our economy, placing immense financial strains on businesses, and putting over a million New Yorkers out of work. The destruction this virus has had on our economy and our communities is undeniable. As scientists across the globe work tirelessly to develop a safe and effective vaccine to combat the transmission of COVID-19, it is crucial we do all we can to ensure New York has the manpower to administer the number of vaccines needed.
Senator Brad Hoylman, who sponsored the legislation in the Senate said: A whole generation of New Yorkers now knows what its like to live through a pandemic without a vaccine for protection: more than 23,000 of our neighbors have lost their lives, and millions are facing economic devastation. We need to do everything possible to end the carnage and find a cure. Thats why its crucial we make a COVID-19 vaccine widely available at pharmacies, where many low-income New Yorkers get their health care. Standing up for public health and science isnt easy but its always the right thing to do. I thank Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, my Senate colleagues and Assembly Member Amy Paulin for standing strong in support of this crucial public health legislation.
This legislation will expand the number of healthcare professionals authorized to administer a potential COVID-19 vaccine, helping to ensure all New Yorkers are vaccinated.