The most urgent vaccination effort since polio shots in the 1950s has begun

First Covid-19 vaccine available to the US public

Sandra Lindsay, an ICU nurse at Long Island Jewish Medical Center in Queens, NY, was one of the first to receive the shot Monday morning.

The first U.S. Covid-19 vaccinations outside of clinical trials began on Monday, kicking off the most urgent mass immunization campaign since polio vaccinations were introduced in the 1950s.

A total of 55 locations across the country had received vaccine shipments around noon on Monday, said General Gustave Perna, chief operation officer for Operation Warp Speed, the U.S. government’s coronavirus response program. Speaking at a press conference, he said plans for a total of 636 sites to receive vaccines by Wednesday and an additional 581 remain on track between Thursday and Sunday to complete the distribution of the first 2.9 million doses. The vaccines are given in two doses several weeks apart.

The government has a reserve of 500,000 cans in case any problems arise, he added.

Vaccinations in California

Bloomberg reports vaccine hits new cases in California.

California Governor Gavin Newsom watched a Kaiser Permanente hospital in Los Angeles begin vaccinating health workers on Monday when the first 33,150 doses hit the state. The first round of Pfizer vaccine doses went to four California hospitals – in Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco and Eureka – and 29 other facilities are expected to be shipped over the next two days, Newsom said.

The pandemic continues to rage across the state, and Newsom noted that the number of doses received on Monday was roughly the same as the number of new cases registered in the state on Sunday.

California will vaccinate its roughly 2 million health care workers first and has not made public its plan to give doses to others except nursing home residents.

Worst Covid week ever

Worst week ever

On December 10th, the Covid Tracking Project recorded our worst week so far

It has been a terrible week, a terrible month (nine days), and a terrible year by almost all standards. The United States set pandemic records in all three metrics that measure the severity of the pandemic this week, with a total of 1.4 million new cases and 15,966 deaths. Yesterday, states and territories reported 3,088 deaths from COVID-19 – a record nobody wanted to see – and the average number of deaths per day that week topped 2,000, beating the highest average we had seen in the spring’s first fatal surge . There are currently more than 106,000 people in hospital with COVID-19.

If the patterns we’ve followed here since spring are true, the worst is yet to come. With new cases growing rapidly, we expect hospital admissions and death metrics to continue to rise in the coming weeks – especially if face-to-face meetings over Thanksgiving spurred the spread of the novel coronavirus, public health experts warned.

Vaccination survey

Vaccine priorities

A new ABC News / Ipsos poll found that many Americans believe that elected officials and athletes should be at the bottom of the line.

Survey details

  • The vast majority of Americans say health care workers (91%), first responders (87%), the elderly (83%), and people with pre-existing medical conditions (84%) should be high priority.
  • Only 16% say elected officials and 9% athletes should be high priority.
  • Two in five (40%) say they will receive the vaccine as soon as it becomes available, especially those over 65 years of age (57%).
  • Almost half (44%) say they are waiting, especially those from minorities (52%).
  • Fewer than one in five (15%) say they will never get the vaccine, especially Republicans (26%).
  • Only about a third (39%) of Americans believe that states should make the vaccine mandatory for residents.

Other topics in past polls These include George Floyd, slave repairs, and education.

Be careful when scrolling. The previous poll was July 24th, so some of the topics are very out of date.

I have high hopes for these vaccination efforts, although new variant mutations keep appearing.