Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont: Certainty is key for vaccine supply

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Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont said Sunday the best way to improve the vaccine-distribution plan is to give states a clearer idea of what’s available so they can plan ahead and avoid over-promising.

Connecticut received a one-time boost of 50,000 doses at the end of the Trump administration, which said it wanted to reward the state for vaccinating its residents quickly. President Biden’s team was leery of that approach and said it would focus on allocating supply based on population.

Mr. Lamont, a Democrat, said that debate misses the point: Just tell governors what’s coming.

“Give us some transparency. Let us know what we can expect next week. Let us know what to expect next month,” Mr. Lamont told CBS’s “Face the Nation.”

The White House recently announced a 16% increase in weekly allocations as manufacturing improves, and said it will give states a three-week preview of their allocations instead of one week.

The Biden administration applauded Connecticut and six other states on Friday for vaccinating roughly 10% of their populations or more. Many of the other states were rural.

Immunization managers have told The Washington Times that rural states tend to be close-knit. That gives them an advantage because their providers know each other and can coordinate how they use supply, instead of jockeying as competitors.

West Virginia is vaccinating at a fast clip after it enlisted local pharmacies on its own instead of relying on a federal partnership with high-profile chains.

Connecticut is focusing on residents 75 and older, given the high share of COVID-19 fatalities in that group, and will expand to 65 and older next, the governor said.

The governor is facing pressure in local media to vaccinate more minorities, especially frontline workers.

Mr. Lamont said minorities who are older than 75 are at the greatest risk and he’s trying to reach them at churches and housing complexes, before moving onto frontline workers.

The governor said he will try to strike a balance once they move into the essential worker space. Police officers and day care workers must be vaccinated, but school teachers are “right near the top of that list,” he said.

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