AP Photo/Matt Rourke
With the global pandemic officially meeting its one-year mark, the world has finally been able to procure a vaccine. We have faced countless challenges as a result of the deadly virus throughout this past year, from transitioning to online school to the many restrictions that Covid-19 has placed on society. As a result of this pandemic, millions all over the world have suffered––either from the virus itself or its implications. Many small businesses have closed down and many people have lost their jobs. Both the economy and the health of people have been at risk, but with the newly-created vaccine, people are gaining hope.
The vaccine has caused people to become more optimistic that the Coronavirus will eventually come to an end. In order to receive the vaccine, one must first make sure that they are qualified. Eligibility for the vaccine is limited based on supply, so the state of California has decided to distribute the vaccine according to the following criteria.
“Phase 1A* (healthcare workers and LTC residents): 3,142,166 Californians
Food/Agriculture***, Education/Childcare**, and Emergency Services***: 5,960,528 Californians
65+: 6,254,300 Californians”
It is expected that as more people receive the vaccine new phases will be implemented such as a tier allowing all people over the age of 16 to receive the vaccine.
More about eligibility:https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DCDC/Pages/COVID-19/VaccineAllocationGuidelines.aspx
However, California’s eligibility system is based mostly on trust and honor, and many people have been attempting to receive the vaccine regardless of whether or not they qualify for it. In early January of 2021, thousands of people arrived at the Los Angeles Fire Department to try and get a dose of the vaccine. About half of the people came without the proper ID and many others tried going to other locations that did not require any healthcare credentials.
Many other instances like the one at the LA Fire Department are happening all over the country where people have bribed, stolen, or forged papers in order to receive the vaccine. In Philadelphia, a student got a contract from the government to distribute vaccines to the people who need it, but ended up taking several doses home to give to his friends. People have also bribed doctors to administer a vaccine for them. Others are using their positions of power to get vaccinated early. This negatively affects the people at high risk of side effects of the virus, and limits the amount of vaccines available for those who are essential workers. While everyone is desperate to finally see the end of the pandemic, getting the vaccine illegally or immorally is not the answer. It is important to realize that in a time such as now with the pandemic we must not fall into selfishness, but work together to help those who are truly suffering.
People skip COVID vaccine line for LA healthcare workers
COVID-19: Essential Workers in the States (ncsl.org).
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