“This effort is focused on equality,” he said.
dr. Jha said in an interview that there has been a major increase in Paxlovid use across the country in the past three months and 240,000 new prescriptions for the treatment were reported last week, the highest weekly total to date. But he said people who tested positive in poorer communities had not used antiviral treatments as often as people in wealthier communities.
“I like this idea,” he said of New York’s mobile program. “You can go to the people where they are. I expect this to go very well, and it will be a great model for the rest of the country to follow.”
A recent study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that people living in the most socially and economically deprived areas in the United States were half as likely to receive the new antiviral treatments as those in wealthier communities, although many of the distribution locations are located in those areas.
dr. Jha and Dr. Ashwin Vasan, the New York City health commissioner, said there was plenty of Paxlovid available for New Yorkers who need it.
“Now we’re a bit swamped in Paxlovid,” said Dr. vasan.