After Methuen Cut Off, DiZoglio Calls on State to Better Allocate COVID-19 Vaccines

State Sen. Diana DiZoglio (WHAV News file photograph.)

Methuen state Sen. Diana DiZoglio is calling on Gov. Charlie Baker’s administration to change vaccine allotments after Methuen was told it would receive no additional doses of a COVID-19 vaccine this week.

In a letter sent to Baker and Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders yesterday, DiZoglio criticized the state’s emphasis on allocating vaccines to pharmacies, while citing federal shortages in not distributing them to communities. DiZoglio argued federal supply is not the issue. Instead, she said, it is about “effective allocation between vaccine providers.”

“People, especially in the current vaccination group, should be able to conveniently turn to their local municipal provider,” said DiZoglio. “The mass vaccine sites that have been established can be physically difficult to get to and maneuver.”

The senator also noted communities have more space than pharmacies to accommodate social distancing and long lines.

She said the particular vaccine manufacturer is also a factor to be considered during distribution. DiZoglio noted communities are better able to store Moderna’s vaccine because Pfizer’s requires a different type of freezer refrigeration which hospitals and pharmacies are better equipped to store.

“Our most vulnerable residents have been incredibly patient. It is beyond past time the administration finally gets with the program, as so many other states have been able to do and provides our communities with the support they desperately need,” she added.

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