RICHMOND, Va. -- Virginia Governor Ralph Northam donated his plasma Friday. As a COVID survivor, the governor's plasma contains COVID-19 antibodies that could help treat others with the virus.
The governor took the opportunity to address ongoing vaccination efforts in Virginia.
"We've been preparing for this vaccination for several months," Northam told Cameron Thompson in response to a question about the effort. "So we've started giving the vaccination to our frontline medical staff will then go to our long term care facilities, both the staff and residents. And then after that, we're going to go through several phases. And hopefully, by early to mid-summer, we'll have all the Virginians vaccinated and finally be able to put this pandemic behind us."
Northam was asked about reports that states were being told they would not be receiving as many doses as first promised. He said he was aware of the issue but was not yet certain what the impact would be for Virginia.
"I'm confident that in time, we'll be able to vaccinate all Virginians," he said. "The message to Virginians is to be patient, number one, and also to continue to be vigilant to continue wearing the mask, social distancing, keep our hands washed, because we're going to have several months that this pandemic is going to still be with us. So people need to be aware of that."
A few hours after Northam donated his plasma, the Virginia Department of Health announced it was anticipating to receive over 100,000 fewer doses by the end of the year.
After healthcare workers and people living and working in long term care facilities, the governor said essential workers like first responders, teachers, and those in the food industry should be next on the list.