Drive-thru COVID-19 vaccination site opens at Jones Beach

Another day and the demand for COVID-19 vaccines continues to grow.

"Somebody dropped the ball from the top down," said Anna Foley. "I’m 83 years old battling two types of cancers and other underlying medical problems."

Long lines are a common sight throughout Long Island - even at New York’s first drive-through site at Jones Beach State Park which opened on Thursday.

Seven-hundred people are expected to get vaccinated there today but officials tell us they’re capable of well more than 5 times that number if only they had the resources.

"As more vaccines come into the system, we’re going to open up more appointments in the timeframe," said Michael Kopy, Dir. Of Emergency Management.

Appointments must be made prior to getting the vaccine.

"The fact is there are more than 7 million New Yorkers eligible for the vaccine but we only get 300,000 doses a week from the federal government," said commissioner Erik Kulleseid with NYS Office of Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation.

Once additional vaccines are available, two more pods are expected to open in Selden and Riverhead in Suffolk County.

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As for Nassau, in an effort to help get even more people vaccinated, officials plan to open its first pop-up site in Hempstead on Monday. So far they’ve registered 150 vulnerable residents.

"We want to make sure we get that supply chain to open up so the federal government gives it to the state, they give it to us and we can give it to you," said Nassau county Executive Laura Curran.

State Senator Phil Boyle calls the rollout an utter disaster.

"All they had to do was set up a system so those vaccines when they arrived in New York State could be distributed effectively," he said.

Boyle along with other leaders believe supply needs to speed up. According to the governor’s office, at this pace, it will take close to six months to vaccinate everyone who is currently eligible.