Vaccine distribution concerns: Can the process be regulated?

Long lines of people waiting Tuesday in Gloucester County for the COVID-19 vaccine and over the last week at sites across Pennsylvania counties. Watching this from home you might be wondering why you haven’t been about to get it yet.

"There is a problem with manufacturing production. Where are the vaccines and secondly how do we distribute them?" Dr. Mike Cirigliano says getting them distributed fairly is an issue too. We've heard of people getting the vaccine ahead of let’s say seniors who signed up weeks ago and are still waiting. 

"Human nature being what it is, people will find a way if their anxiety is high enough, to get the vaccine even if they don't fit exactly into the criteria of who should be getting the shot," said Cirigliano. He calls it "jumping the line" and says it comes down to a moral decision. 

"I think you have to ask yourself one, do I feel that I would be able to make it through a COVID-19 infection knowing that there are very elderly frail people, people of color, people who are obese, people who have diabetes, people who would not fare well if they got COVID-19. Those are things you want to ask yourself whether or not you want to jump the line," he said. It's a major kink in a system designed to immunize the most vulnerable people first. 

"These are our elderly folks, folks who have underlying conditions like cancer, organ transplants, diabetes, and obesity," said Cirigliano. He says there's really no way to regulate or vet people with appointments or those who can walk-up at megasites for a chance at getting vaccine left over at the end of the day. 

"How can you do that if you have websites where you can say yes I am a smoker, yes I have this medical problem? Who is going to check?" said Cirigliano. 

Health officials say though that if they have extra vaccine left at the end of each day they will give it to anyone who shows up as not to waste them.  


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