Editorial submitted by Conrad Doyle
A recent featured segment by one of our big four network “news” channel’s sought to shine a light on barriers that prevent local seniors who are attempting to secure a COVID-19 vaccination appointment -- the most vulnerable segment of our communities.
Statistically speaking, Kentuckian’s that suffer the largest numbers of fatal cases of the disease are our senior citizens located in our state’s rural communities and suburbs. Adults that fall into the 70+ age bracket often lack both technological skills and mobility access at a much greater rate than those that reside within a more metropolitan vicinity.
Recent percentages indicate that as much as 40% of our state’s seniors have no access to available vaccine distribution lists and/or no family members to assist them in securing an appointment for the vaccine. Add the lack mobility or access to public transportation to the equation and you will find the numbers are even higher than reported.
“It’s a major, major problem,” Charlotte Whittaker, AARP Kentucky State President, said when asked about the frustration the seniors in our community are facing.
Resident’s that live in metropolitan areas find getting assistance in both technology and mobility less stressful because of greater availabilities in both sectors.
If you live in or around one of our larger cities like Louisville or Lexington, you do have hot-lines available should you decide to call to schedule an appointment.
But, be sure to call during regular business hours, Monday thru Friday, lest you find yourself “pressing 1, if you speak English, press 2 if you can see, press 3 if you read...finally press 9 if you are still breathing.” Unfortunately pressing 9 on your key pad will only send you back into this same endless loop from Hell.
I could not help but laugh out loud and yell at the TV screen because the segment being aired was suppose to offer listeners necessary information and assistance in reaching outlets with available appointment times.
Here is their recommendation if you find yourself included in the nearly 40% who have no internet or devices that can take you to the internet....
To reach “Kentucky’s COVID-19 Vaccine Website, go to www.vaccine.ky.gov, which will show Kentuckians which phase they are in. You can sign up for notifications so state officials can communicate with you when doses become available at new and existing sites. Kentucky’s vaccine map lists regional vaccination partners statewide, so you can search your county or region and see how to schedule an appointment. Below the vaccine map, you can find additional vaccination sites at Kroger, Walmart and Walgreens stores, as well as independent pharmacies.”
Finally the news anchor says “if you need more information on scheduling and locations for getting your COVID-19 vaccine just go to our website at www._ _ _.com and click on the link, it will take you to a list of providers in your area”
It was at this point that I took leave of my senses and yelled at the anchorman “seriously dude? Did you even bother to listen to your own 2+ minute advice segment?” Oh silly me, I forgot...you are only a talking head mindlessly reading what you are told to read, no brains required”.