Connecticut changes COVID Vaccine plan, hopes to make effort more efficient

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Collin Bullock

After tying with other states in the fastest vaccination pace, Connecticut is updating its plans.

With an unexpected announcement on Monday, Governor Ned Lamont has said that state guidance will continue to focus on age-based priority. But some experts are skeptical as to how beneficial it will be. Yale-New Haven Health`s chief clinical officer Thomas Balcezak, when discussing the new plan, said: “I don’t think we can speed up any more than we already are. We’re going as fast as we need to, given how much vaccine we’re getting.”

 

The governor`s announcement included a long-awaited date as to when Teachers and Faculty in schools will being receiving vaccinations, March 1st. This is around the time President Biden announced that a goal is set to vaccinate all teachers by the end of March.

 

Regardless of plans and promises, experts still share their worry about the risk to real at-risk groups. Tekisha Everette, executive director of Health Equity Solutions and a member of the state’s vaccine allocation subgroup, spoke her mind on the topic. ¨It’s really hard to see how we are addressing the exponential exposure and risk that people of color are facing in our state.¨ Research has shown that people of color are at significantly higher risk of contracting COVID-19 compared to white people, and the same is said for mortality rates. But over 60% of the vaccines distributed nationwide have been administered to white people. 

 

Many believe Connecticut should stick to the first plan with the most at-risk populations at the front of the line. However, Governor Lamont answered these calls with a statement. “(We need too) get as many people vaccinated as we possibly can … and complement that with equity, knowing full that our Black and brown population here in this state and around the country are twice as likely to suffer complications from an infection and half as likely to get vaccinated.” 

 

Teachers and educators, who are getting their vaccinations in the next few weeks, seem to be happy with the current plan, but many still push for the old plan to be brought back. Nearly two weeks after the new plan was set in, Connecticut is still in 6th place for most vaccinations administered, around where they were last month. Rates nationwide are rising day by day, with around 2 million doses administered per day. Over 100 Million vaccines have been allocated across the nation and its territories. But before we can declare victory, please wait for CDC Guidance for after vaccinations.