BOSTON (SHNS) – Lawmakers leading a probe of the state’s COVID-19 vaccine rollout are eyeing a second public hearing about one month after they pressed Gov. Charlie Baker on the system’s flaws.
Aides to both Rep. Bill Driscoll and Sen. Jo Comerford, the chairs of the Legislature’s Joint Committee on COVID-19 and Emergency Preparedness and Management, told the News Service the panel will likely hold its next hearing during the week of March 22.
The committee is still working to finalize the date and time. A hearing that week would fall about four weeks after the committee’s first oversight hearing on Feb. 25, where lawmakers spent six hours pushing the administration for more information on distribution plans and flagging concerns that the rollout has fallen short for many residents.
At that point, Massachusetts had administered more than 1.56 million vaccine doses and more than 454,000 residents had been fully vaccinated. That number has increased significantly in the ensuing weeks: as of Thursday afternoon, more than 2.2 million doses had been administered and 758,000 residents have been fully vaccinated.
Toward the end of Baker’s virtual appearance at the hearing, Driscoll asked him if he would return in two weeks for the next oversight hearing, and Baker replied that he would “certainly look forward to coming back.”
Similarly, Comerford requested that Sudders return for a second hearing in two weeks. “I just really want to stress that I think you’re missing how broken the system is right now and the approach is not working for the citizens of the commonwealth,” Driscoll, a Milton Democrat, told Baker as the governor prepared to log off. “It needs to be addressed.”