CORNING, N.Y. (WETM) – President and CEO of Guthrie, Joseph Scopelliti, MD., confirms that Guthrie has distributed all of their COVID-19 vaccines in New York and nearly all in Pennsylvania.
In an interview with NBC News, Dr. Ashish Jha, Dean of the Brown University School of Public Health, said that “hundreds, if not thousands” of COVID-19 vaccines have been thrown out in hospitals across the country.
“COVID-19 vaccines have a short shelf life once they are thawed out for use,” Jha said. “And because of federal and state mandates, hospitals and other health care providers would rather risk a dose going bad than give it to somebody who isn’t scheduled to get a shot.”
Dr. Scopelliti said that this is not the case at Guthrie.
“No, we have absolutely not thrown any out,” said Scopelliti. “We have been able to manage the vaccine process so that we have, in essence, an on-call list so at the end of the day we have enough recipients to use up all of the vaccines that we have.”
In a press conference with Gov. Andrew Cuomo, he stated that 54.9% of hospital workers were vaccinated at Guthrie Cortland Medical Center as of Jan. 17.
Corning Hospital reported that 75.2% of hospital workers were vaccinated as of Jan. 17.
Dr. Scopelliti said this discrepancy comes down to education and fear.
“We’ve had a daily, and sometimes multiple times a day, communication process to all of our employees for probably three to four weeks now,” said Scopelliti. “One thing that we’re seeing is there’s a subset of people that are just fearful right now. It’s a new vaccine and they want to wait a little while.”
Guthrie has vaccinated approximately 6000 people as of today.