Additional COVID-19 vaccine doses on the way as local need increases

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- In Tuesday's announcement, President Joe Biden indicated that COVID-19 vaccine supplies are being increased immediately by 15 to 16% as the United States is purchasing an additional 200 million doses.

So, how will that impact the Delaware Valley?

In Philadelphia, it will mean about 3,000 more doses than usual.

"Instead of us getting 20,000 doses per week, we'll be getting 23,000 doses per week which is not a big increase but it is welcome," said Philadelphia Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas Farley. "The longer-term purchase is a great thing, but it's probably months out as far as its impact on Philadelphia."

RELATED: Track COVID-19 vaccine availability and progress across Pennsylvania

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy said any increase is welcome. The state expects to receive 130,000 doses of vaccine for the next three weeks.

"It's not as much as we need but it better than before," said Murphy.

New Jersey is now working towards scheduling second doses within a 2 to the 6-week time frame after new guidance from the CDC.

"They prefer 21 and 28 days but if it has to be stretched out, they didn't want anyone to think it wouldn't be effective," said Dr. Judy Persichilli, health commissioner of New Jersey.

RELATED: Track COVID-19 vaccine availability and progress across New Jersey

In Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, Dr. Valarie Arkoosh, chair of the Board of Commissioners, says it's struggling to meet the demand for vaccines. The county received 500 fewer doses in this week's shipment.

According to Arkoosh, 230,000-250,000 people now qualify as 1A.

Next Wednesday, the Montgomery County Health Department will open a second vaccine clinic at Norristown High School.

After cutting ties with Philly Fighting COVID, the Philadelphia Health Department will be staffing its own vaccine clinic at the Convention Center. Farley said more details are to come.
Copyright © 2021 WPVI-TV. All Rights Reserved.