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St. Mary’s stops adding names to vaccine list

AMSTERDAM — According to a news release, St. Mary’s Healthcare has not received additional supply of Covid vaccine this week, and officials said they do not know when, or if, it will receive more.

“We continue to work with our New York state Department of Health representatives regularly to request more supply,” the release stated. “St. Mary’s continues to advocate to receive additional vaccines for our community, but we are subject to the New York state distribution process.”

On Friday, St. Mary’s Healthcare launched an online COVID-19 vaccine waitlist form due to the overwhelming number of telephone calls it was receiving from the community requesting information on the COVID-19 vaccine. In less than 48 hours, almost 1,400 people had used that online link, the release said. This pushed its existing covid vaccine waitlist to over 2,800 patients. 

“Unfortunately, due to the overwhelming amount of responses we received, and the shortage of COVID-19 vaccines, St. Mary’s made the difficult decision to not accept any more names for the vaccine waitlist, and the online form has been placed on pause at this time,” the release states.

“We understand that this is inconvenient and appreciate the community’s patience. Vaccine doses locally, statewide and nationwide are still in limited supply. Based on an executive order from Gov. [Andrew] Cuomo issued Jan. 23, St Mary’s along with other hospitals across the state may be limited to vaccinating healthcare workers,” the release states. “This executive order indicates that local health departments and county governments must prioritize essential workers. Pharmacies and [state] approved mass vaccination sites are to prioritize the 65 and older population and essential workers.”

The release stated, “Even if you or someone you know was added to the St. Mary’s COVID-19 vaccine waitlist, we recommend that they continue looking for an appointment through other avenues (county offices, state clinics, local pharmacies) as they may receive more vaccines before we do.”

With the paused waitlist having more than 2,800 people, even if vaccines do become available, the list will take a “considerable amount of time for our team to work through. If we receive more vaccine doses that enable us to vaccinate past our current waitlist, we will open up the online form once again.”

St. Mary’s asked for community members to frequently monitor its website and social media channels as it will be posting “the most up-to-date information as soon as we receive it.” 

“If you have already received your first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at St. Mary’s Healthcare, we have been assured that there will be supply available for your second dose,” the release states. “Thank you for your patience and cooperation during this challenging pandemic.”

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