New York Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker said Saturday that Parcare “may have fraudulently obtained COVID-19 vaccine, transferred it to facilities in other parts of the state in violation of state guidelines and diverted it to members of the public – contrary to the state’s plan to administer it first to frontline health care workers, as well as nursing home residents and staffers.”
On Monday, Gary Schlesinger, the CEO and president of ParCare, told BoroPark24 that its clinics are vetting people who sign up for the vaccine to make sure they are “either a health care worker, are over 60, or have underlying conditions.”
“Hundreds of patients were already vaccinated today, and people are still coming in,” Schlesinger told the local news outlet. “We will not give the vaccine to people who are not eligible for this first batch of the shots.”
Zucker said there is currently a criminal investigation into the matter.
“Anyone found to have knowingly participated in this scheme will be held accountable to the fullest extent of the law,” Dr. Zucker said Saturday.
At least 89,000 New Yorkers received their first COVID-19 vaccine dose this week.
“The first New Yorkers to receive the vaccine will be high-risk hospital workers (emergency room workers, ICU staff and Pulmonary Department staff), nursing home residents, nursing home staff, followed by all long-term and congregate care residents and staff, EMS workers, other health care workers, coroners and medical examiners. Staff at every hospital will have access to the first vaccine allocation,” New York state explains in guidance on the vaccine.