A rapid Covid-19 vaccine rollout backfired in some US states

A rapid COVID-19 vaccine rollout backfired in some US states
FILE - In this March 9, 2021, file photo, Army health specialists fill syringes with the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine in Miami. Source: AP Photo
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Daily US Times: Despite the utmost urge to speed up the US vaccination drive against coronavirus and get the country back to normal, the first three months of the rapid vaccine rollout suggest faster is not necessarily better.

A surprising new analysis found that states such as Florida and South Carolina that raced ahead of others in terms of vaccinating to ever-larger groups of people have vaccinated smaller shares of their population than those that moved more methodically and slowly, such as Connecticut and Hawaii.

Experts say that the rapid expansion of eligibility of Covid-19 vaccines caused a surge in demand too big for some states to handle and led to serious disarray. Vaccine supplies proved unpredictable and insufficient, spreading confusion, websites crashed and phone lines became jammed, frustration and resignation among many people.

Infectious disease physician Dr. Rebecca Wurtz said: “The infrastructure just wasn’t ready. It kind of backfired.”

“In the rush to satisfy everyone, governors satisfied few and frustrated many,” the health data specialist at the University of Minnesota’s School of Public Health added.

The findings could contain an important go-slow lesson for the governors in many US states, many of whom have announced dramatic expansions in their vaccine rollout over the past few days after being challenged by President Biden to make all adults eligible for vaccination by May 1.

Numerous factors stymied state vaccination performance. Poor communication, conspiracy theories and undependable shipments slowed efforts after the first vials of precious vaccine arrived December 14.

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