Hamilton County Health Department Is Doing Well With What They've Been Given

Friday, January 8, 2021

Re: Roy Exum: The Best Response In The United States In Just Six Days!

With all due respect, Mr. Exum is a bit too enthusiastic about this.

Yes, I know, Hamilton County is actually doing a pretty good job distributing these vaccines, despite all the problems.  Considering the variables they have to work with due to lack of funding and lack of either statewide or federal coordination, I am indeed impressed with what they’ve been able to accomplish. But, BUT, just because we are #3 in the country doesn’t mean we are doing great!  We are the third least bad poop-show in the country. Good for us, right? No. Not nearly good enough. 

I will praise the efforts of the Hamilton County Health Department all day long. I say it again, what they’ve been able to accomplish so far is pretty darned good considering how little they have been given to work with. The scene Exum describes, with pentagon funded tents that are “big enough to hold a horse race” and have restrooms and parking for 2,000 people, with new reservation software so no one has to wait in line.... all of that should have been built before the first vaccines were shipped to our county. I don’t blame the Health Department for not building out the above described mega infrastructure necessary for administering vaccines to our residents. The Health Department doesn’t have the funding nor the jurisdiction to build out anything close to that.

No, that kind of infrastructure needs federal-level funding, and state-wide oversight, both of which have been sorely, sorely, lacking in the past 10 months. People are dying. People in our county are dying at a faster rate right now than at any other point in this pandemic. We needed a plan months ago.  And we needed funding for that plan. Months ago. 

No, this current fiasco is exactly what happens when we vote into office “small government” officials who decade after decade deny science and defund social services.  To everyone who voted for Coppinger, Lee, and Trump: we are all reaping what you have sown. 

And one final thing. I see so much enthusiasm for this vaccine. And that’s great!  Ninety-five percent effectiveness in reducing the most severe symptoms associated with COVID-19 is something to excited about! But you know what else has around 95 percent effectiveness in reducing COVID? Wearing a face mask. 

And it doesn’t take pentagon funding, fancy software, or hours of waiting in line for you to put that mask on your face when you go out.

Angela Sweet-Williams
Hamilton County resident and 1a2 healthcare worker


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