In the USA, for example, each state and territory has adopted the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines differently.
As a result, the COVID-19 vaccine rollout is uneven and has perpetuated inequities in the pandemic response.
preventing the prioritisation of many people with disabilities in the vaccine rollout. The CDC has prioritised a small number of high-risk conditions on the basis of available evidence,
but COVID-19 data are not available for many disability groups and rare conditions. This paucity of COVID-19 data does not equate to an absence of risk. The variation in the vaccine prioritisation has resulted in inequities in the rollout for people with disabilities: differences of weeks or even months have been observed in the eligibility of people with disabilities to receive the vaccine based on which state or territory they reside in.
If people with disabilities are unable to identify whether they qualify for vaccination from their state or territory websites, this represents a failure of the public health system. The dashboard aims to address this issue by providing an accessible source of information.
but also reflecting deeper social injustice and exclusion. At this inflection point in the pandemic, commitment to advancing health equity for the remainder of the vaccine rollout and beyond is paramount. For people with disabilities, this goal can only be achieved through improved approaches to tracking disability disparities and prioritising partnerships with the disability community. As the so-called new normal is envisioned, the disability community must no longer be an afterthought.
We declare no competing interests. We thank the members of the COVID-19 Vaccine Prioritization Dashboard team, Jessica Campanile, Caroline Cerilli, Sarah Phillips, Leah Smith, Maureen van Stone, and Tracy Waller.
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Published: April 21, 2021
© 2021 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd.
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