“What Seniors Can Expect When COVID Vaccines Begin to Roll Out” / “People Are Dying. Whom Do We Save First With the Vaccine?”

Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine Trial Underway in DeLand, Florida

“A 69-year-old retiree receives his first injection as a participant in a phase 3 COVID-19 vaccine clinical trial by Moderna at Accel Research Sites on Aug. 4 in DeLand, Florida.” (Paul Hennessy/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

by Judith Graham

“Vaccines that protect against COVID-19 are on the way. What should older adults expect?

“The first candidates, from Pfizer and Moderna, could arrive before Christmas, according to Alex Azar, who heads the Department of Health and Human Services.

“Both vaccines are notably effective in preventing illness due to the coronavirus, according to information released by the companies, although much of the data from clinical trials is still to come. Both have been tested in adults age 65 and older, who mounted a strong immune response.

“Seniors in nursing homes and assisted living centers will be among the first Americans vaccinated, following recommendations last week by a federal advisory panel. Older adults living at home will need to wait a while longer.”

Continue reading this article at Kaiser Health News, click here.


who gets vaccine firstPhoto illustration by Tyler Comrie

“In mid-December, before a key vote by an advisory panel for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a public debate flared up over what might well be the most momentous policy decision of 2021: how to distribute the Covid-19 vaccine. This particular fight centered on how to balance the vaccination of seniors (who die from the coronavirus at much higher rates than younger people) against that of essential workers (who, because they come into contact with many people over the course of any given day, risk getting sick themselves and becoming superspreaders).

“That debate was just the first of what will be many contentious ones in the months to come, when supplies of Covid vaccine will surely be among the world’s most precious, scarce resources. The calculation of how to prioritize various groups inevitably touches on all the fault lines that divide American society — race, class, age, geography, occupation and more — and ultimately bleeds into the question of our ethical obligations to the poorer nations of the world, which risk being forced to wait for lifesaving vaccine supplies while the wealthy save themselves first.”

Read this article in its entirety at The New York Times, click here.

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