Forum Deputy Chief
It's not easy to do, but it's also not impossible: and this is what public health departments are for. And as was mentioned above, there are costs to this "free" vaccine, esp when the private industry gets involved. storage costs, manpower costs, training costs (even though it should be minimal), and while a government entity can use existing staff, doing so in the private world would take people away from their day jobs.
I think you missed my point regarding this section. The costs I mentioned exist whether you are public or private. Without listing point by point the Federal requirements, their are many requirements which must be adhered to, policies and procedures which must be followed, and all have a cost regardless of public or private.
I emphatically restate, a private initiative would have been better as that entity and its labor would have been focused on ONE single agenda. Get the vaccine out and administer it. No distractions. The public options are burdened with their existing full time duties.
Lets discuss my service with regards to labor costs. There are rules on who I can use, how many I can use, and when I can use. For example, they can NOT be on duty staff. They must be off duty and in no way be part of the daily operational staff. I also have to have certain emergency back ups which do NOT involve planning with the thought that I will just use one of the on duty trucks should things go sideways. The vaccine clinics must have proper stand alone resources which do not negatively impact routine 911.
So while the clinics are paying time and half, people are growing tired of the OT. That happens even when it is just normal station coverage OT. We were already understaffed and there is an area shortage of providers. So there are not people just waiting in the wings to be utilized in an administrator of vaccine role. This applies to ALL the pharmacies as well.
The pharmacies have recruitment agencies applying heavy EVERYWHERE right now. Why? Cause there are not enough people. CVS, WG, etc. they do not have surplus staff. So now they are depleting both local and out of town work forces. Example...As a RN, I can fly to S. FL right now and work 12 hours a day 7 days a week (yes that is the schedule) giving vaccines and earn $77/hour plus Overtime. While this sounds great, why do you think they offer this much? This same stupid money exists in parts of CA as well.
Anyways, not to sidebar too much, but I think we are on opposite sides of the fence. I am very much pro-government, however in this particular situation, it should have been contracted out.
My own personal opinion not based on any fact is I suspect prior to the release of the full national stock (which I label as "mostly true"), I do think once it hit each hand in the chain, there was hoarding. Maine CDC got their stock and sat on it, they are still sitting on it and dolling out bits at a time. Which then got Maine EMS concerned who slowed the clinics cause maybe there is not enough. And then when the vaccines hit the pre-approved providers, they are now holding back cause of what they have seen in regards to the delays (hypothetically speaking)...because they want to ensure there is enough on hand to at least complete the second dose as opposed to having tons of people with only first dose cover and no knowledge of when a second will show up if ever.