Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick acknowledges mistakes with COVID-19 vaccine rollout

Texas Lt. Gov Dan Patrick defended the state’s rollout of COVID-19 vaccines after newly sworn-in President Joe Biden called the federal rollout “a dismal failure” under the Trump administration.

In Houston on Thursday, Jan. 21, Patrick said at a news conference that while mistakes on the vaccine rollout have been made at the state and local level, “Everyone is trying to do the best they can.”

When asked about what is being done to get vaccines into underserved neighborhoods and communities in Texas, Patrick said that is up to cities and counties.

“We can’t control every dose in every neighborhood, every street from the state level,” he said. “That’s where you get your mayors and your county judges and they have to be communicating to the public. If they’re only getting 50,000 doses, then allocate those in a straightforward way that takes care of folks and don’t fill them with false hope.”

That would appear to contradict the state’s demand that Dallas County commissioners rescind a plan to grant residents in underserved ZIP code areas priority for vaccinations.

The plan, which commissioners approved Tuesday, Jan. 19, was rescinded at an emergency commissioners meeting.

The Texas Department of State Health Services reported 441 new COVID-19 deaths on Thursday, pushing the week’s death toll past 1,200.

The 21,422 newly reported COVID-19 cases on Thursday, raised the pandemic count to close to 2.2 million.

Of those, 13,564 COVID-19 patients are hospitalized, but 376,769 cases are active.