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More than 25 million shots of a COVID vaccine have been given out, or about 8 doses for every 100 people. But the process can be difficult and overwhelming. Here's a sampling of what some Americans say they are facing as they attempt to get vaccinated.
It's a common refrain right now, anger, frustration, anxiety. More than 25 million shots of a COVID vaccine have been given out in the U.S., or about eight doses for every 100 people.
But the process of getting that shot can be difficult and overwhelming.
We wanted to capture a sampling of what Americans say they're facing.
My name is Nora Gallina. I live in Zephyrhills, Florida.
My name is Andrea Shiloh. And I'm in Houston, Texas.
My name is Helen Marshall. I live in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania.
My name is Kareem Deanes, and I live in Saint Louis, Missouri. I teach middle school here in Saint Louis right now.
My name is Susan Daniel, and I'm in Dallas, Texas.
My name is Jason Munn, and I'm a letter carrier from Brentwood, New York.
I try every day, multiple times a day, to see if an appointment has opened, every hour, basically, until I go to bed, even sometimes at midnight.
At this point, I have tried six different branches of one supermarket, and I have tried four pharmacies, and I have tried three hospital systems, and gotten nowhere.
I have been trying, unfortunately, unsuccessfully to get the vaccine for myself and my mother, as her primary caregiver, her only caregiver.
Information is scarce about this. I'm worried that I might not get the vaccine because of the fact that I may have missed some bits of information somewhere.
Even if my appointment were for next month, I don't care. Even if my appointment 6:00 in the morning, I don't care. I will get up, I will wait, and I will go to it. But I just want to know that there's something, that I can get something. That's my biggest frustration.
Having to drive 100 miles to get a simple vaccine was just one more thing piled up on what has been a very, very difficult year for everyone.
My mom is 97-and-a-half years old, and she was diagnosed with dementia two decades ago. Every day, I think about the vaccine. Every day, I think about COVID-19. Every day, I have a conversation with someone or some exchange about it. It is — it's the — it's like the albatross sitting on my shoulder.
We went out and we kept the economy running in New York state. And now it feels like we're completely forgotten.
And I am in no way expecting us to go to the front of the line, and I don't think we're heroes. But we did do a brave thing, and it was noble and we worked very hard.
Our family in Oklahoma City has a son with special needs. And he is especially susceptible or at risk with the virus. And that has been a very, very big concern for them. They have told us that it's been the hardest year of their life.
It's hard, because I know there are people that we're not going to see again, I'm already missing one friend who was in a nursing home and contracted COVID.
I want to hug my family. And I think having the vaccine brings me closer to that goal. It's a race to the luckiest or the swiftest on the computer. I think a lot of luck is involved in the process.
After what I read this morning, I'm hoping that I will get it before June, frankly. I just keep telling myself it'll happen eventually. So, hopefully, we will make it.
And there is at least some good news from Helen Marshall, who we just heard from. She was able to get the vaccine today.
As frustrating as it may be, public health officials say it's important to continue trying to get an appointment. You should not have to pay out of pocket, although you may be asked for your insurance information.
The Biden administration has laid out its plan to speed up vaccinations. That includes purchasing and distributing an additional 200 million doses of vaccine, deploying FEMA to operate up to 100 community vaccination centers, and expanding the number of people who can administer vaccines.
But the administration said it may take through the summer before most Americans can get a shot.
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