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IPFS News Link • Vaccines and Vaccinations

Biden administration will send COVID vaccines directly to a short list of doctors in rural areas...


President Joe Biden is planning to announce Tuesday that coronavirus vaccines will be sent directly to rural areas in the hopes of getting more hospital employees and residents immunized.

According to NPR, the Biden administration has created a hand-picked list of physicians enrolled in state vaccine systems who are based in 'socially vulnerable' communities.

These are neighborhoods where many people live below the poverty line, are low-income earners, fall into racial or ethnic minorities and have no access to public transportation.

The Daily Yonder reports that about one in four rural residents is completely vaccinated against COVID-19, about 10 percent lower than the urban proportion. 

Additionally, at least 20 states - including Florida, Georgia and Louisiana - had rural vaccination rates at least 20 percent worse than vaccination rates in cities.

The administration hopes that pediatricians and family doctors, and other local leaders, can help reach vaccine-hesitant Americans and convince them to get the COVID-19 shot to protect themselves and their families.

Because of lagging rates, the administration is putting its trust in healthcare professionals to reach vaccine hesitant community members.

'Luckily we know that the overwhelming majority of health care providers are very supportive of [the] vaccine,' Bechara Choucair, White House vaccinations coordinator, told NPR.

Chouchair cited national data showing that 90 percent of doctors and nurses in master's programs have been vaccinated or are in the process of doing so.

'We need to do that across the board for health care professionals and non-health care professionals and will continue to do that,' he added.    

However, many rural hospitals are not just struggling to vaccinate residents but their own staff members as well.