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Gov. Cuomo on possible COVID-19 vaccine: 'Good news, bad news'

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said Monday that he

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said Monday that he has little confidence that the Trump Administration can successfully implement a plan for a coronavirus vaccine. Credit: Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo/Mike Groll

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said Monday a possible vaccine for COVID-19 is good news, but he worried the Trump administration will fail to distribute it quickly and equitably.

Pfizer said Monday morning that the two-shot vaccine it is developing is more than 90% effective in clinical trials, and could be available by the end of the year.

"It's good news, bad news," Cuomo said on ABC's "Good Morning America."

"The good news is that the Pfizer tests look good and we'll have a vaccine shortly," the governor said. "The bad news is that it's about two months before Joe Biden takes over and that means this administration is going to be implementing a vaccine plan."

The Trump administration "is rolling out the vaccination plan and I believe it's flawed," Cuomo said.

President Donald Trump is relying mainly on the private sector, including pharmacies and hospitals, to administer the vaccine, Cuomo said, "and that's going to leave out all sorts of communities that were left out the first time when COVID ravaged them."

He also said the process will be slow without more federal involvement.

Asked about Cuomo’s remarks, White House deputy spokeswoman Sarah A. Matthews pointed to the governor's previous public praise of the federal response. Cuomo had offered thanks to the federal government when it mobilized resources to New York during the height of the pandemic, but the governor has also been critical of Trump's overall handling of the public health crisis.

"Thanks to President Trump’s leadership, the Trump administration has been laying the groundwork for months to distribute and administer a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine in record time as soon as it meets the FDA’s gold standard," Matthews said in an email to Newsday.

With Laura Figueroa Hernandez

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