New York pledged in October that it would make an "eternal public-facing dashboard to keep New Yorkers informed of vaccination progress and relevant updates."
New York Health Commissioner Howard Zucker, M.D., said Tuesday that "it's important" for New Yorkers and health care centers and hospitals to be "'aware of what data they need to submit."
According to Zucker the plan for New York "is to have a public dashboard as soon as we can begin to make sure the information we're putting out there, everyone can rely on."
Andrew Cuomo, governor of New York, pauses while speaking during a news conference in New York, U.S., on Monday, Oct. 5, 2020. Photographer: Jeenah Moon/Bloomberg via Getty Images
New York has to vaccinate 20 million people twice, meaning the state needs 40 million vaccine doses, Cuomo announced during a Tuesday press briefing. The state has been getting about 300,000 vaccines per week or 1.2 million vaccines per month.
Government leaders in the Empire State and political pundits have criticized Cuomo for the slow rollout of the COVID-19 vaccine and his plan to fine hospitals as much as $100,000 if they do not use all of their vaccine supply within a week.
Cuomo previously blamed the state’s sluggish inoculation effort – which has seen large quantities of the vaccine supply unused – on local leaders, including New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. The governor doubled down on his accusations Tuesday.
"It's nothing about the nurses and the doctors. It's about the leadership," he said. "It's about the management. Always is. And that's taking responsibility and accountability. We'll continue to release the high and the low performers, but I don't know that the data is ready to a place where we could distribute it widely."
A sad and tired healthcare worker is seen by the Brooklyn Hospital Center in New York, United States on April 1, 2020. (Photo by Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
New York is prioritizing COVID-19 vaccines for health care workers first, and Cuomo has also come under scrutiny for potentially wasting vaccines until the state has allocated them to the entire population of health care workers in the state.
"If a hospital has done all their healthcare workers and says, 'We’re maxed out, we’ve done everyone.' Fine, then contact us, and…we’ll go to essential workers," Cuomo said. "But as a group, we’ve only distributed half the vaccine necessary to do the health care workers. After we finish 1A, healthcare workers, then we go to 1B, which is essential workers and people who are 75-plus [years old]."
Health care centers that do not follow the state's vaccine priority orders could be fined up to $1 million, The Wall Street Journal reported on Dec. 28.
New York State spokesperson Jack Sterne on Tuesday responded to allegations that Cuomo's office "scrubbed" vaccine information from its website saying, 'Nothing was 'scrubbed'," and the website is being updated with new numbers.
"The site was last updated on [Dec. 22] & had data from that day. The info was outdated by weeks & that site was never meant to be a tracker. DOH updated the site w/ tons of info on prioritization & to check eligibility. As we said today, tracker in the works."
New York's website previously listed vaccine data that was nearly three weeks old after the state first received the Moderna vaccine; that information was no longer available on the site on Tuesday, when Cuomo's office announced the new vaccine tracker.
The public-facing dashboard is expected to "keep New Yorkers informed of vaccination progress and relevant updates," according to the state vaccine program book. "To the extent feasible, the dashboard will be designed to track and report: Doses administered by day, doses administered by county and ZIP code, doses administered by age group, doses administered by priority group [and] doses administered by facility type."
The state website currently includes information regarding who is eligible to get a vaccine at this time and general COVID-19 updates in New York.
Fox News' Tyler Olson contributed to this report.