‘We need more damn vaccines’ he says.
Annapolis, Md (KM) There’s not enough COVID-19 vaccines coming into the state of Maryland to vaccinate citizens. That problem was discussed by Governor Larry Hogan during a news conference on Thursday. “The basic problem is pretty simple: we need more damn vaccine,” he said.
Hogan provided some statistics to back that up. “Federal guidelines and our state’s policies currently make two-million Marylanders eligible for vaccines,” he said. “The State of Maryland only receives approximately 11,000 doses per day.”
The Governor says he’s strongly encouraging the Biden Administration to consider implementing the Defense Production Act which would get more pharmaceutical companies to produce the needed vaccines. Hogan will visit the White House on Friday to Meet with President Biden.
He noted that citizens can get registered to receive the vaccine, but may need to wait a while. . “Only the federal government can buy the vaccines. And only the federal government can send us the vaccines,” Hogan says.
Meanwhile, the Governor says the state is setting up the infrastructure to provide the vaccines once larger supplies come from the federal government.
Because local governments have been complaining to about limited vaccine coming from the state, Hogan said Maryland will provide four-week projections about vaccine allocations which will help them better organize appointments.
On another topic, Governor Hogan announced that one-million coronavirus test kits will be made available to schools between now and the end of June.. He says it will assist local districts as they prepare to reopen for hybrid learning. :”This testing program, which will include both rapid antigen tests and full diagnostic testing, will be available to any public or non-public schools that want to launch a program, or want to supplement an existing testing program,” the Governor says.
Frederick County Public Schools will begin hybrid instruction on Tuesday, February 16th.
The Governor also announced limited visitations will be permitted at hospitals. Each hospital must set its own visitation policies which must comply with the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “In addition, state health officials will also issue guidance which will provide for indoor limited visitation at Maryland nursing home beginning March 1st with proper testing protocols in place,:” says Hogan.
These nursing homes must not have an active COVID-19 cases, the Governor’s Office says.
By Kevin McManus