PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Snow across the region is impacting COVID-19 vaccine distribution. New Jersey closed at least three of the state’s mass vaccination sites and there were similar cancellations in Pennsylvania and Delaware.
Vaccine disruptions are expected to continue. Bad weather around the country is forcing both Pfizer and Moderna to delay and re-route vaccine shipments. The trickle-down impact will mean even more limits on vaccines and rescheduling appointments.READ MORE: 14-Year-Old Boy Injured In North Philadelphia Shooting, Police Say
People were lined up on North Broad Street outside the Liacouras Center waiting in the snow to get the COVID vaccine. They’re desperate for protection from the virus and not deterred by the nasty weather.
“I was actually hoping they weren’t canceling it. I’m glad I got it,” Karen Keane of Mantua, New Jersey, said.
The Camden County College mass vaccination site was packed. Hundreds braved the snow, jamming into the parking lot.
“We didn’t get a whole lot of cancellations coming through so people are wanting their vaccinations,” Camden County Commissioner Jonathan Young said. “I think we had about 170 when we opened the door. We processed about 400 in the first hour-and-a-half.”
The site is administering about 2,000 vaccinations per day, even in bad weather.READ MORE: Frustrated Lawmakers Allege Pennsylvania Health Department Failing To Provide Enough Vaccines For Suburban Philadelphia Counties
“It was time to get the shot. We were waiting for it for a while,” John Howell of Runnemede, who got his second shot Thursday, said. “So, we figured we better get it when we can.”
Many other vaccine sites closed because of the weather, and low supplies are expected to get even worse because inclement weather around the country is slowing down vaccine shipments.
“This may result in many appointments needing to be rescheduled,” New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said.
Pennsylvania state officials say the weather is making its troubled vaccine rollout even worse.
“There will be a significant backlog of orders for distribution,” Lindsey Mauldin, a senior adviser on COVID response, said.
The Pennsylvania health department is still not explaining how 200,000 first and second doses of the Moderna vaccine were mixed up, causing even more shortages and confusion.
“We’ll continue to collaborate with partners closely to make sure they’re aware of what the delays might be,” Mauldin said.MORE NEWS: President Joe Biden's Dogs Sent Back To Delaware After 'Biting Incident' Involving White House Security Member
Because of all the supply delays and snow closings, officials say vaccine appointments are likely to be changing. People who are scheduled to get shots are being advised to get in touch with the provider to check on potential changes.