COVID-19 Reports on Cases and Vaccine Rollout: January 19-22

January 22, 2021

January 18, 2021 – Albany, NY – Governor Andrew M. Cuomo provides a coronavirus update from the Red Room at the State Capitol. (Mike Groll/Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo)

THIRTEEN and PBS offer regular, in-depth reporting on the coronavirus pandemic’s COVID-19 cases and the vaccine rollout and distribution, as well as repercussions on employment, social services, the economy and politics. Here is the most recent information from infectious disease doctors and medical professionals, government officials, and journalists who cover news about COVID-19 and its impacts. This page will be updated as reporting continues.

Recent COVID News and Numbers

Click for National, State, and City Hotlines and Resources

As of Monday, New York State has administered over one million total doses of the COVID-19 vaccine: 903,131 first doses and 103,747 second doses. Health care distribution sites have administered 79 percent of first doses received from the federal government, and 77 percent of first and second doses.

Appointments at NYC Health Department vaccination centers through January 24 must be rescheduled due to a shortage of vaccines. New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio had said on WNYC public radio on January 15 that the city will likely run out of vaccine supply the week of January 18 and, like Governor Andrew Cuomo has done, he called on the federal government to send additional doses.

Now eligible for COVID-19 vaccine is the group Phase 1B: people 65 and older (updated on January 12 from age 75 and older), first responders, corrections officers, teachers and school staff; in-person college instructors, childcare workers, public-facing grocery store workers, transit workers and people who live and work in homeless shelters.

We’re offering updates via email or mobile on the coronavirus now through the duration of the pandemic. Sign up for email alerts here, or text UPDATES to 30644 for mobile notifications.

PBS NewsHour Reports

PBS NewsHour is broadcast weeknights at 7 p.m. and weekends at 6 p.m. and streams live. Listen to half-hour broadcasts on 88.3 WLIW-FM weeknights at 6 p.m.

January 21: Companies Try to Avoid Bottleneck in Vaccine Distribution

The pace of vaccinations in the U.S. is failing to meet expectations, in part due to inadequate production and supply. But President Biden is planning to invoke the federal Defense Production Act in an effort to ensure companies, manufacturers and states get what they need. Miles O’Brien reports on what some companies are already doing to avoid a bottleneck in production and delivery.

January 21: Biden Calls for a Wartime Approach to the Pandemic

President Biden is calling for a full-scale wartime approach to the pandemic and its impact. Michael Osterholm, an epidemiologist and director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, joins William Brangham to discuss what needs to be done moving forward.

January 20: News Wrap: U.S. Death Toll from COVID-19 Reaches 403,000

In our news wrap Wednesday, as President Biden took office the U.S. death toll from COVID-19 climbed past 403,000, world governments largely welcomed Biden’s inauguration, China voiced hope for new cooperation with the U.S. under the Biden administration, and Israel’s government raced to approve more housing in East Jerusalem and West Bank settlements before Trump left office.

January 19: How the Pandemic Impacts College Students’ Mental Health

College students have long been prone to stress, anxiety and depression. And three out of four Americans between the ages of 18 and 24 report poor mental health tied to the pandemic, according to the CDC. Hari Sreenivasan reports as part of our ongoing series, “Rethinking College.”

January 18: Colorado’s Governor on Absence of a Vaccine Stockpile

Each day the U.S. is averaging more than 130,000 hospitalizations and more than 3,000 deaths. States reported more than 23,000 deaths over last week alone. That’s about 25 percent higher than at any point in the pandemic. Vaccinations remain a key hope, but distribution is slow and disorganized in many places. Colorado Gov. Jared Polis, a critic of the rollout, joins William Brangham to discuss.

January 10: Israel Takes the Lead as Top COVID-19 Vaccinator Per Capita

As many countries began their COVID-19 vaccination rollouts last month, one country quickly charged ahead of the pack: Israel. The Middle Eastern nation is now the world’s top vaccinator per capita, already inoculating more than 1.5 million people, or nearly 20 percent of its total population. But as it faces a growing number of COVID-19 cases, can the country keep up its lead?

Amanpour and Company

Amanpour and Company

Left to right: Walter Isaacson, Michel Martin, Christiane Amanpour, Hari Sreenivasan

Amanpour and Company airs Monday – Friday at 11 p.m.; repeats at 4 p.m. Watch broadcast or livestream.

January 22: Biden COVID Response Team Hopes for “Complete Transparency”

President Biden has unveiled a new national strategy to replace the ad-hoc patchwork of policies from 50 states under the previous administration. The plan is to pick up the pace of distribution to meet the goal of 100 million vaccinations in Biden’s first 100 days in office. Andy Slavitt is a senior advisor to the new response team. He joins Hari Sreenivasan to explain the team’s upcoming goals.

January 21: Devi Sridhar on the Biden Administration’s COVID-19 Response

President Biden is unveiling a national strategy to tackle COVID-19, inviting Congressional leaders to the White House as early as Friday to discuss his plan. Devi Sridhar is the chair of Global Public Health at the University of Edinburgh. She spoke to Christiane about how Biden can best implement a federal pandemic plan.

January 12: What’s Going Wrong with Vaccine Distribution?

January is expected to be the deadliest month of the pandemic in the U.S., a fact that underlines the importance of fast and effective vaccine distribution. But is the rollout proceeding in the right way? To discuss the state of the pandemic and what the near future holds, Christiane speaks with medical correspondent Elizabeth Cohen.

MetroFocus Interviews

MetroFocus hosts Rafael Pi Roman, Jenna Flanagan and Jack Ford.

MetroFocus hosts Rafael Pi Roman, Jenna Flanagan and Jack Ford.

MetroFocus airs weeknights at 6 p.m. (see schedule for late-night and weekends) and livestreams; listen weeknights on 88.3 WLIW-FM at 11 p.m..

NJ Spotlight News with Briana Vannozzi

NJ Spotlight News provides daily reporting on the coronavirus in New Jersey, as well as newsletters.

January 22: Should the Government Pay People to Get COVID Vaccines? 

Economists predict more companies will continue offering vaccine incentives, but should the government?

January 22: What Does Biden’s COVID-19 Plan Mean for New Jersey?

New presidents often set arbitrary 100-day goals, counting on their political honeymoon momentum to help hit the mark. But Joe Biden’s confronting a truly immediate pandemic crisis, and a $20 billion vaccinations program tops his 200-page COVID-19 relief plan.

January 21: Slow COVID-19 Vaccine Rollout Frustrating LTC Families

The lagging COVID-19 vaccination program at New Jersey’s long-term care facilities is drawing tearful criticism from family members anxious to visit loved ones. Experts say the federal partnership with CVS and Walgreens to immunize NJ’s most vulnerable population is critical to reestablishing the close contacts many nursing home residents need to avoid loneliness and depression.

January 20: Essex County Opens Up Five COVID-19 Vaccination Sites

In 14 days, Essex County was able to distribute more than 18,000 vaccines at five different sites. The county’s comprehensive vaccination plan — Pre-registration, registration, inoculation, charting and medical monitoring — has enabled health officials to inoculate thousands.

January 15: More Contagious UK Variant of COVID-19 Assumed to be in NJ

A new, highly-contagious mutation of the COVID-19 virus from the UK has been found in West Chester, NY and is probably already in NJ, according to state health officials.

Firing Line

Firing Line with host Margaret Hoover delivers a civil and engaging contest of ideas among the brightest minds and voices from across the ideological spectrum. It airs Fridays at 8:30 p.m. and Saturdays at 10 a.m. on THIRTEEN.

The Open Mind

Hosted by Alexander Heffner, The Open Mind is a thoughtful excursion into the world of ideas and airs at noon on Saturdays (see schedule).

Hotlines and Information

Stay-in-the-know about what’s on-air and online at THIRTEEN. Sign-up for free weekly eNewsletters, including on coronavirus reports.

Government Sites and Resources

National: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

The CDC’s Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) page includes links to national case reporting, symptom information, advisories by health condition and occupation, and more.

New York City

Vaccine Distribution

Eligible New Yorkers can make their vaccine appointments using the City’s Vaccine Finder, which aggregates all vaccination locations open to the eligible public into a single, accessible five-borough network, including city-run sites and private providers.  Those eligible can also call for an appointment at 877-VAX-4NYC 8 a.m. – 9 p.m. See the NYC vaccine information page for city guidelines.

Healthcare workers in Phase 1A group and city workers and those 65 years and older in Phase 1B group can make appointments now. See what groups fall into Phase 1A and 1B groups.

NYC Health Department vaccination centers are contacting those who had a first-dose appointment there between January 21 through January 24 to reschedule for one week later, due to a shortage of vaccines. Learn more on the steps being taken for these appointments.

Of the community vaccination kits being deployed to locations in New York City, five are at NYCHA locations and are being used to vaccinate eligible residents at NYCHA buildings.

New York City has five mega vaccination centers, which operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. However, at least one location in Brooklyn ran out of the vaccine at one point last week.

The five 24/7 “mega sites” for vaccinations require advance registration/appointments through the city Vaccine Finder:

The Bathgate Contract Postal Station in the Claremont section of the Bronx
The Brooklyn Army Terminal in Sunset Park
25 Worth Street in Manhattan
Vanderbilt Gotham Health Center in Staten Island
The DOHMH clinic in Corona, Queens

To make an appointment for Fort Washington Armory in Upper Manhattan, operated with by the state and NewYork-Presbyterian, use the online system Connect Online Patient Portal.

Starting January 25, the city plans to use CitiField as a “mega” vaccination site.

Seniors 65 and Over
People age 65 or older are part of Phase IB group, and those who need transportation to and from vaccination appointments can sign up for free transport through the city, which will be provided by Access-a-Ride, ambulette services, cab service via Curb, and in a few weeks, transportation by select Senior Center programs.

Clinics for resident seniors at NYCHA housing locations will expand and now include: Van Dyke I & II Houses in Brooklyn, Cassidy Lafayette Houses in Staten Island, and Polo Grounds Towers in Manhattan.

COVID Testing

COVID Express sites offer free rapid COVID-19 virus PCR (polymerase chain reaction) tests, by scheduled appointment. Learn more on

NYC tracks positive COVID-19 cases by zip code; you can review a map reflecting cases in the past seven days.

NYC’s official COVID-19 site with information on testing, resources (including rent and housing and more), and announcements:

For text updates from New York City, text COVID to 692-692. You will receive regular SMS texts with helpful behavior tips and news related to the coronavirus. Text COVIDESP to 692-692 for updates in Spanish.

Work and Assistance

Employers and employees can visit or call 311 (212-NEW-YORK outside NYC) for labor law information and more.

The state has a web application to help struggling New Yorkers locate benefits they may qualify for. “Find Services” is an easy starting point for first-time users of social programs that relate to unemployment, food insecurity, and housing, among other services.

New York City Public Schools and Learning

Create a NYC Schools Account to sign up for Department of Education notifications and track your child’s education.

For free homework help from a teacher, K-12 students and their parents or caregivers can call 212-777-3380 or visit the Dial-A-Teacher website Mondays through Thursdays 4–7 p.m.

New York State

NY State Hotline: 888-364-3065
For all New York State updates, and announcements from Governor Andrew Cuomo, see the state COVID site.

Vaccine Distribution

To confirm eligibility and see list of vaccine providers closest to you, see this New York State site.

Those eligible can call the New York State COVID vaccine scheduling hotline; calls are accepted 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., though lines may be busy and hold time can exceed an hour: 833-697-4829.

State-run COVID-19 vaccination sites  (appointments required through include, among others:

  • Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in Manhattan, New York City
  • Westchester County Convention Center (Westchester County)
  • Jones Beach drive-thru vaccination site (Nassau County) on Long Island
  • SUNY Stony Brook  (Suffolk County) on Long Island
  • The Aqueduct Racetrack in Queens, New York City

See other community pop-up sites in New York City, Long Island and Westchester County, on the New York State site.

Micro-Cluster Hot Spots

Look up an address to see if it is in a New York COVID-19 color-coded Hot Spot Zone with restrictions. Maps of the cluster zones can be found here.

The places and activities regulated are non-essential gatherings, businesses, dining, and schools. See the New York State site for details on how cluster zones are identified and implemented.

Governor Cuomo’s weekday coronavirus updates focus on hospital and ICU bed availability in New York State’s regions, based on seven-day averages. See the status of regions on

COVID Alert NY is a voluntary, anonymous, exposure-notification smartphone app. You will get an alert if you were in close contact with someone who tests positive for COVID-19. Learn more about how it works and download it to your mobile phone.

The New York State Department of Health posts a daily COVID-19 tracker case tally by county.

New Jersey

NJ State Hotline: 1-800-962-1253
Text NJCOVID to 898-211 to receive text updates.

The State of New Jersey coronavirus hub is

Vaccine Distribution

People age 65 years and older and those 16-64 who have medical conditions recognized by the CDC to increase the risk of severe illness from the coronavirus are eligible for the COVID-19 vaccination starting Thursday, January 14.

Pre-register for a COVID-19 vaccine and learn more about the vaccine distribution in New Jersey on the official state vaccine hub. The telephone hotline to make an appointment is 855-568-0545.

The State offers answers to more FAQs as well as outlines policies for health care providers on this COVID-19 vaccine page from the health department.

Remote Learning Resources from WNET Education

To better serve families during the COVID-19 pandemic, The WNET Group offers At Home Learning educational programming.

Let’s Learn weekday lessons led by NYC DOE educators for grades 3K- 2 are broadcast at 11 a.m. on THIRTEEN and 9 a.m. on WLIW21, followed on WLIW21 by a NJTV Learning Live lesson for 3rd graders at 10 a.m., 4th graders at 11 a.m., and 5th graders at 12 p.m.

Broadcast schedules on WLIW21, WLIW World and PBS Kids were developed to help schools and districts bridge the digital divide and provide equitable access to learning for all students at home, regardless of access to the internet or computers.

Help keep students learning at home with tools for parents and educators on WNET’s Education site. All resources are free and standards-aligned.