Sainato demands answers from state in vaccine rollout hearing

HARRISBURG, Feb. 8 – State Rep. Chris Sainato, D-Lawrence, demanded answers at a House Policy Committee meeting on the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, urging state officials to bring greater consistency and accountability to the process.

Sainato cited missteps that have created logistical problems and questioned why the state does not have a centralized system in place.

“At today’s vaccine rollout policy hearing, I demanded answers regarding why the state decided to adopt the CDC’s recommendations several weeks ago to expand the list of people eligible to get the vaccine when we did not have the assurance that there were enough doses coming in to take care of those people,” Sainato said.

“We added about 4 million people to the eligible list, but with 160,000 or 175,000 people actually receiving vaccines, it will take months before we even get to the next round. Now, many first responders, frontline workers and eligible teachers in the classroom can’t even get the vaccine. We need accountability and transparency regarding how this poor decision was made – and how to prevent similar missteps in the future.

“I also demanded answers regarding why there is no centralized system for vaccine distribution in place. Right now, vaccine distribution is a mess. There are so many older adults who have no computer access and who are unable to get on a list. It has been a nightmare for them trying to book an appointment.

“I am calling for a centralized system where all providers can pull from the same list. At least if there is a list, residents can have the greater certainty of knowing they have a chance to get the vaccine, even if it means they have to wait for a time.”