“We’ve made it so complicated”: Vaccine campaigns are failing to reach the most vulnerable

Link: https://www.vox.com/22275309/covid-19-vaccine-registration-sign-up-moderna-pfizer-johnson-jnj


From signing up for appointments to securing transportation to clinics, many of the people at the highest risk for severe outcomes and death from Covid-19 — older adults, essential workers, and minority communities — are having trouble getting vaccinated when it’s their turn. At the same time, some wealthier people or people at lower risk have gamed vaccine registration systems to get to the head of the line.

“A lot of my older patients are struggling to figure out how to do it in general,” said Margot Savoy, chair of the family and community medicine department at Temple University in Philadelphia. “We’ve made it so complicated.”

Right now, the priority for many states is scale. Some are setting up mass vaccination sites at public venues like stadiums to get as many shots into arms as possible, as fast as possible. However, some health experts argue that in addition to going big, communities should also go small, working through local clinics and community groups in order to reach the most vulnerable. It may come at the expense of speed, but it would help ensure equity in who’s getting vaccinated for Covid-19.

Author(s): Umair Irfan

Publication Date: 25 February 2021

Publication Site: Vox

Why scientists are more worried about the Covid-19 variant discovered in South Africa

Link: https://www.vox.com/2021/1/21/22240475/covid-new-variant-south-africa-uk-brazil-vaccine-coronavirus


On January 15, US public health officials warned that a more contagious variant of the coronavirus that causes Covid-19 could dominate infections in the United States by March. That grim warning referred to B.1.1.7, a variant that was first identified in the United Kingdom.

But now, one week later, scientists are increasingly concerned about another variant that emerged in South Africa.

There’s evidence from several small, and not-yet-peer-reviewed, studies that mutations in the South Africa variant — known as 501Y.V2 and already present in at least 23 countries — may have a higher risk of Covid-19 reinfection in people who’ve already been sick and still should have some immunity to the disease.

Authors: Julia Belluz and Umair Irfan

Publication Date: 22 January 2021

Publication Site: Vox