Texas and Florida are going against the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines on vaccine distribution, opting to focus more on vaccinating vulnerable populations.
Texas announced on Monday that it was breaking the CDC’s advice on who should get the vaccine in the first rounds of vaccination. The CDC had recommended that, after residents of nursing homes and health workers, states should prioritize the elderly and workers considered essential in sectors such as agriculture and education.
While Texas is still in the early stages of vaccinations for health professionals and long-term care facilities, it will prioritize those most vulnerable to COVID-19 when it moves to the next phase in a matter of weeks.
“The state of Texas will prioritize those most at risk of serious illness and death from COVID-19 for the next phase of vaccination,” the Texas Department of Health and Human Services said in a press release. “More than 70 percent of COVID-19 deaths in Texas occurred in people aged 65 and over, and scientific evidence shows that adults of any age with certain medical conditions have an increased risk of hospitalization and death if they fall ill with COVID- 19. “
“The state is currently in Phase 1A of vaccine distribution, which includes residents of long-term care facilities and frontline health professionals. With an estimated 1.9 million Texans in these groups, it will probably take at least a few weeks before the transition to Phase 1B occurs, ”the launch continues. “The timing will depend on the amount of vaccine supplied to Texas and the vaccine’s adoption among priority populations.”
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis announced that his state would follow a similar vaccination process, prioritizing those most vulnerable to the virus before moving on to other populations.
“Our vaccines will be targeted where the risk is greatest, and this is our elderly population,” said the Republican governor at a news conference on Tuesday, according to Fox 13. “We are not going to put young, healthy workers ahead of our elderly and vulnerable population. “
DeSantis had suggested on Monday, when the first batch of vaccines arrived in his state, that he would be breaking the CDC’s advice.
“It is very important and it means a lot to me to put our parents and grandparents first,” said DeSantis. “If you took a 25-year-old deputy anywhere in Florida and said, ‘I have a vaccine, do you want or should we give this 70-year-old man?’ I think 9/10 they would say, ‘Give it to grandparents. Give it to parents. ‘”
The CDC was involved in controversy earlier this week, after issuing guidelines saying that a person’s race should be taken into account when deciding when to get vaccinated. The federal government said that minority communities hard hit by the virus should take priority over white communities. As reported by The Daily Wire:
Minority communities – specifically black and Hispanic communities – have been hit hard by the new coronavirus that causes COVID-19 and are much more likely to be hospitalized with the virus and three times more likely to die from its effects, according to studies conducted in the summer. tracking how the virus spreads in selected areas of the United States.
There are a number of reasons for the disparity, including less access to quality health care in minority communities and urban centers, more pre-existing health conditions that directly affect how patients can recover from the virus and a higher percentage of members of the community. working in service-oriented industries considered “essential” during the pandemic.
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