VAX: Viva mass vaccination sites…

Anybody notice that Biden put “equity” and “essentiality” on the back burner.
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Let’s connect a couple of dots …

Maryland — which had been lagging on ‘shots in arms’ —  has been in a full out sprint the past couple of weeks.

The magic sauce: state-run mass vaccination sites.

In the past couple of days , a couple of friends got shots at Maryland’s up & running mass vaccination sites … one at Six Flags and another at M&T Stadium (where the Ravens play).

Both raved about how organized and efficient the process was. No complaints.

That’s really encouraging news since max-vax has emerged as the primary vaccine distribution channel in Maryland.

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And, Maryland’s not alone.

Coincidentally, I spotted an article headlining that Texas and Georgia — which together account for 10% of the U.S. population — will be opening vaccine distribution “to all comers” in the next week or so.

That means anybody 18 or older (kids aren’t legit yet), no “employment “essentiality”, no jurisdictional boundaries.

Just “come & get it”.

How can they do it? What’s the downside?

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So, what’s going on?

A couple of things are going on:

> Fulfilling their Operation Warp Speed commitments, the initial vaccine manufacturers (Pfizer & Moderna) have ramped-up their production.

> The excess doses previously allocated to long term care facilities, have been largely clawed back and redeployed to more active distribution channels (mostly CVS & Walgreens retail pharmacies).

> The recently approved J&J vaccine has launched, providing incremental doses … with 1-shot “fully-vaccinated” leverage.

> Many (most?) states have gotten on the mass vaccination bandwagon … opening sites with high throughput … either state or Federal government run.

Bottom line: the pace of vaccinations has taken off … near-fully utilizing the increased flow of manufactured vaccines.

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OK, so what’s the problem?

As we’ve previously noted, vaccine distribution had been complicated  by conflicting objectives:

  1. Speed: maximizing shots-in-arms
  2. Equity: getting vaccine to underserved neighborhoods
  3. Essentiality: vaccinating a constantly expanding list of “essential” workers.

By and large, the so-called essential workers have been given access to vaccine.

That leaves the trade-off between speed and equity to be dealt with.

Cutting to the chase, mass vaccination sites excel at speed, but do so partially at the expense of equity.

Currently, the mass vaccination sites disproportionately draw a geographically dispersed,  mobile, upscale crowd. Think: suburban whites — many coming from distant jurisdictions — who have flexible work schedules (e.g. working from home during Covid).

Of course, that mix can be shifted by strategically locating new sites and adopting worker-friendly hours … but, that’s another story.

Bluntly stated, politicos (like Biden) may jawbone “equity”, but pragmatics have set in.

At least for now — equity is has taken a back seat to speed.

Herd immunity requires getting the most people vaccinated, as fast as possible, regardless of their specific demographics and employment.

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The irony

Trump’s OWS phased vaccination plan (<= yes, Joe, there was one!) anticipated a broad array of vaccination sites once vaccine supply ramped up.

Specifically, the plan explicitly called for establishing a broad administration network including commercial and private sector partners (pharmacies, doctors offices, clinics) … and public health sites (mobile clinics, FQHCs, targeted communities).

click to enlarge
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While the OWS plan acknowledged the need for “surge capacity”, it made no explicit reference to mass vaccination sites.

Credit Team Biden for pushing Federally-run mass distribution sites … and, in the process, legitimizing state-run mass distribution sites.

The irony: It’s Biden who put “equity” on the backburner.

Imagine if Trump had prioritized mass vaccination sites.

My bet: He would have been criticized for racial insensitivity (or worse) … and all hell would have broken out ..

But, President Biden gets a free pass.

Ironic, isn’t it?

One Response to “VAX: Viva mass vaccination sites…”

  1. Even the MSM is debunking Biden’s claim of “no vaccine plan”… | The Homa Files Says:

    […] VAX: Viva mass vaccination sites […]

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