WXXI AM News

coronavirus vaccine

A new vaccination site in Rochester has limited openings for residents of underserved zip codes. State leaders join us to discuss the urgency of getting more people vaccinated in Rochester. They also discuss the Daniel Prude case and state issues.

Our guests:

University of Rochester

Rochester researchers will study how a booster dose of the Pfizer vaccine could play a role in protecting recipients from COVID-19 and its variants in the long term.

We're joined by the co-leaders of the Finger Lakes Vaccine Task Force. They discuss the state of vaccine supply and distribution, and what you need to know when it's your turn to schedule an appointment. They also discuss how they are working to ensure access to the vaccine is equitable.

Our guests:

"Vaccinated People Are Going to Hug Each Other." That's the title of the latest op-ed from Julia Marcus, epidemiologist and professor at Harvard Medical School. Writing for the Atlantic Monthly, Marcus emphasizes hope when it comes to vaccines bringing an end to the pandemic. She argues that the prevailing message in the U.S. -- that because the vaccines aren't perfect, vaccinated people shouldn't let their guards down, even among other vaccinated people -- creates the misimpression that vaccines offer little benefit. "Trying to eliminate even the lowest-risk changes in behavior both underestimates people’s need to be close to one another and discourages the very thing that will get everyone out of this mess: vaccine uptake," she writes.

Marcus joins us for the hour. Our guest:

  • Julia Marcus, epidemiologist and professor at Harvard Medical School

University of Rochester

The University of Rochester Medical Center has apologized for offering more than two dozen people well-connected to the university, including URMC board members and donors, preferential treatment for a COVID-19 vaccine.

The apology was sent Sunday to university and medical center leaders in a joint message from the university’s president and the medical center’s chief operating officer.

Common Ground Health

The co-chair of the Finger Lakes COVID-19 Vaccine Task Force is responding to an email that the University of Rochester Medical Center’s chief fundraiser sent to staff indicating special consideration could be given to “major donors” seeking vaccines.

University of Rochester

The University of Rochester Medical Center’s chief fundraiser told staff in an email that “major donors” to the hospital system who asked for vaccines could be given special consideration and leapfrog the inoculation queue by being shunted into what she called a “special patient services vaccine clinic.”

A URMC spokesperson said the email was sent in error.

We talk to a leading local allergist about COVID-19 vaccine allergies. He answers questions about what is and what is not an allergic reaction to the vaccine. We also discuss how common or uncommon different reactions are.

Our guest:

  • Shahzad Mustafa, M.D., lead physician and chief of allergy, immunology, and rheumatology at Rochester Regional Health

Max Schulte / WXXI News

Shuttle buses full of people stopped Monday at Mount Olivet Baptist Church on Adams Street as part of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s plan for “fairness and equity” in vaccine distribution. The church’s congregation is predominantly black.

The church’s reverend, Rickey Harvey, said the appointment-only pop-up event came together with just three days notice.

Thousands of people in the Finger Lakes region have received a COVID-19 vaccine, and hundreds of thousands more are still waiting for their turn. Many who are eligible have tried to schedule appointments, only to find that there isn't enough vaccine supply. Others are asking when the state will open up their phases.

Our guests are the co-leaders of the Monroe County Vaccination Task Force. We spend the hour discussing what distribution looks like in Monroe County, how to access an appointment when you become eligible for the vaccine, and everything else you need to know at this stage in the process. Our guests:

  • Nancy Bennett, M.D., co-leader of the Monroe County Vaccination Task Force, director of the Center for Community Health and Prevention, and co-director of the Clinical and Translational Science Institute at the University of Rochester Medical Center 
  • Wade Norwood, co-leader of the Monroe County Vaccination Task Force, and CEO of Common Ground Health

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