Governor Andrew Cuomo had asked directly Pfizer, the Manhattan-based drugmaker, for a shots order while complaining the Feds left the state clinging over a shortage.
However, Pfizer rbounced back Cuomo’s demands by saying the US Department of Health and Human Services would have to approve the purchase first, based on the emergency use authorization granted by the FDA.
“Pfizer is open to collaborating with HHS on a distribution model that gives as many Americans as possible access to our vaccine as quickly as possible,” the company said.
According to NBC New York, Governor Andrew Cuomo has grown frustrated by the slow pace of the coronavirus vaccine shot across the state, as the threat of a more transmissible virus looms over.
Governor Cuomo expressedly told Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla he was making the request because “Pfizer was not bound by the same commitments Moderna made as part of the president’s Operation Warp Speed,” according to the outlet.
“The distribution of any doses obtained directly from Pfizer will follow the rigorous guidance the State has established, while enabling us to fill the dosage gap created this week by the outgoing federal administration,” Cuomo wrote in a letter to Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla.
A coronavirus adviser to President-elect Joe Biden also threw cold water on Cuomo’s pitch, saying it could do more harm than good.
“I think Governor Cuomo, himself, had said back in the spring that the situation around ventilators was essentially ‘one big eBay’ with all of the states bidding against one another for ventilators, and I think this kind of an approach to vaccine allocation is going to result, frankly, in the same kind of situation that he, himself, was criticizing last spring,” Dr. Celine Gounder, a member of Biden’s COVID-19 advisory board, told CNBC on Monday.