Tri-State officials say COVID-19 vaccine supply can't meet demand

BLACKWOOD, New Jersey (WPVI) -- As part of President Joe Biden's $1.9 trillion plan, $20 billion will support a goal of 100 million COVID-19 vaccinations within his first 100 days in office.

Under that plan, people over the age of 65 would be eligible for the vaccine in almost all local municipalities.

For people who are uncomfortable with the online sign-up process, states have developed their own call centers. But when you call the Delaware hotline, you get a busy tone.

Dr. Karyl Rattay, the director of the Delaware Department of Public Health, said the supply can't meet the demand.

Group 1B vaccination category includes 200,000 Delawareans and the state only received about 15,000 vaccines per week.

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"We don't have anywhere near enough vaccine to serve this population right now," said Rattay.

On day one of the webpage launch, 56,000 Delawareans requested a vaccine appointment in Group 1B.

Rattay suggested friends, family and neighbors help seniors who aren't comfortable registering for the vaccine online.

In Pennsylvania, you're asked to book a vaccine appointment using a map of providers on the state webpage.

In Philadelphia, you can only express interest online, then the Department of Health will contact you.

"When people are eligible, we will contact them about how to scheudle an appointment,"said Dr. Thomas Farley, Philadelphia Health Commissioner.

In Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, interest is soaring in receiving the vaccine, but still, more doses are needed.

"As of this morning 80,000 people have pre-registered on our vaccine site," said Dr. Valarie Arkoosh, chair of the Montgomery County Board of Commissioners.

Chester County now includes people in the 1B category to be vaccinated right away. The county is updating vaccine interest forms to reflect those changes.

In New Jersey, you can't reach a state health department representative by phone until next week.

In Camden County, appointments are already booked out through August. Those appointments can be booked through the Cooper Hospital webpage, which can support 6,000 visitors per second.

If you'd prefer to call for an appointment, Camden County Health Department can be reached at (800) 999-9045.

"Pretty soon we're going to be vaccinating over 1,000 (people per day)," said Margarita Camacho, a Camden County public health nurse.

Ruth Brodnick's daughter signed her up through the Cooper Hospital's webpage. After receiving her first dose, she's already been scheduled for her second dose.

"Here I am, It's a wonderful day. It's a wonderful day for me and a wonderful day for our country," said Brodnick.
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