NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — There were lines outside Yankee Stadium on Thursday as New Yorkers registered to receive a COVID vaccine.

Starting Friday, the ballpark in the Bronx will begin serving as a vaccination center.

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New sites open as a battle over doses of vaccine reignite between the mayor and the governor.

Mayor Bill de Blasio again called on the state to let the stash of second doses of COVID vaccine be used as first doses.

“It’s just not right to withhold second doses we could be using right now,” he said.

But Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s team is pushing back, saying it’s a bad idea.

State Health Commissioner Howard Zucker wrote in his response that according to the Centers for Disease Control, dipping into second doses is not recommended, due to a “general lack of confidence” in vaccine supply and a fear of creating “undue anxiety.”


There is anxiety over canceled and denied appointments for eligible people who now have to wait.

Some are waiting because the snow storm shut down vaccination sites, and others who showed up were told to go home, including Plainview resident Ramona Schoen.

“’We can’t give you the shot.’ I said, are you kidding me?” she told CBS2’s Dave Carlin.

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Suzanne Carter is so scared of getting COVID, she barely leaves her Forest Hills house.

“I’m terrified of the virus,” she told CBS2’s Jessica Layton.

The breast cancer survivor became hopeful when the governor said immune-compromised people were eligible for the vaccine, but that was on Jan. 12 and she says she still can’t make an appointment.

“They do not have a field — are you immunocompromised, yes or no,” Carter said.

Now, taxi drivers and restaurant workers have been added to the eligibility list, making more competition for the 61-year-old, who is still getting chemo.

“Suzanne, what would you like Governor Cuomo to know?” Layton asked.

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“That he shouldn’t say something to give people with cancer hope and then take it away,” Carter said.

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When Layton questioned the governor’s team about this for the second time, they pointed her to what Cuomo said Tuesday — we need more supply.

“If you add 4 million people, immune compromised, you’re at 11 million of 15 million, and you’re still only getting 300,000 dosages per week,” Cuomo said.

The governor believes Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose vaccine will increase supply significantly. Thursday, the company announced it’s submitted for emergency use authorization.

But some New Yorkers are so desperate now, they’re driving to other states for the vaccine. Police in Connecticut were called to a CVS after 10 people from Long Island showed up to get the shot.

Watch Dave Carlin’s report —

Meanwhile, New York State is opening 35 community-based sites.

Friday, mass vaccinations begin at Yankee Stadium, which will be operating seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. The site is appointment only and for Bronx residents only.

“I just happened to walk by Yankee Stadium. I did not know it was happening,” Bronx resident Shomari Norman said. “There’s no fliers, there’s no representation from New York City trying to get people out, trying to be vaccinated.”

The mayor’s office says that’s not true; they sent canvassing teams to help get hundreds of people signed up.

Among the recently infected are high-profile New Yorkers like mayoral candidate Andrew Yang, NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea and most recently, New York City’s health commissioner, Dr. Dave Chokshi.


Chokshi said he put off getting the vaccine because of the shortage but vows to get his first dose after fully recovering from what he described as a mild case.

“For me, it was another reflection on the worry … that comes with COVID-19,” he said.

This top doctor says this first-hand experience has him all the more resolved to step up this arms race, racing to get more shots in arms.

CBS2’s Dave Carlin and Jessica Layton contributed to this report.

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CBSNewYork Team