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In these first lumbering weeks of the largest vaccination campaign in U.S. history, Dr. Julie Vaishampayan has had a battlefront view of a daunting logistical operation.
Vaishampayan is the health officer in Stanislaus County, an almond-growing mecca in California’s Central Valley that has recorded about 40,000 cases of covid-19 and lost 700 people to the illness. Her charge is to see that potentially lifesaving covid shots make it into the arms of 550,000 residents.
And like her dozens of counterparts across the state, she is improvising as she goes.
From week to week, Vaishampayan has no idea how many new doses of covid vaccines will be delivered until just days before they arrive, complicating advance planning for mass inoculation clinics. The inoculation clinics themselves can be a bureaucratic slog, as county staffers verify the identities and occupations of people coming in … Read more