'I'm not shocked': Gov. Newsom responds after COVID-19 vaccine numbers fall short of promise

ByMelanie Woodrow KGO logo
Thursday, December 31, 2020
California COVID-19 vaccine numbers fall short of promise
Federal and California health officials admit the number of COVID-19 vaccines are below what was initially promised.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- Federal and California health officials admit the number of COVID-19 vaccines are below what was initially promised.

Tens of millions of doses of coronavirus vaccines were promised to be delivered nationwide by the end of December.

But those numbers are falling short, including here in California.

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"We know the number of doses that have arrived into the state has produced less than what was originally professed," said Governor Gavin Newsom Wednesday.

Newsom addressed the vaccine shortfall in both his COVID-19 update and in a separate conversation with Dr. Anthony Fauci.

"No I'm not shocked, I'm not disappointed," he said.

Newsom said more than 300,000 vaccines have been administered in California so far.

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Dr. Fauci said he recently spoke with Chief Operations Officer for Operation Warp Speed, Army General Gustave Perna.

"As we get into January, the feeling is that we're going to gain momentum to be able to catch up," Dr. Fauci said.

Perna has said everyone is working through how to administer the vaccine the right way and ensure it stays in accordance with the cold chain.

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Dr. George Rutherford is a professor of epidemiology for UCSF.

"Would we be happier with more? Of course we'd be happier with more," Dr. Rutherford said.

Rutherford says right now, a state committee is meeting to make decisions about who will receive the vaccine over the next month and a half, once frontline healthcare workers have been vaccinated.

"I really look forward to getting the large amount of people who want to be vaccinated, vaccinated by the summer," Dr. Rutherford said.

In his conversation with Governor Newsom, Dr. Fauci suggested April could be open season for most to receive the vaccine and that by early fall we could see some sense of normality return.

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