Better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick were the two pokes in the arm with a sharp needle—delivering the two welcome doses of COVID-19 Moderna vaccinations to The Wife and me, the second shots barely in the CDC recommended time after the first doses.
Those two shots came with a lot of anxiety. The needles? Hardly. As a Type 2 Diabetic, I’m used to my share of needles. Adverse reactions to the shots? Virtually none. Stuck in long lines waiting to get . . . stuck? Not at all. In and out each time in about 30 minutes. Unfriendly professionals administering our doses? Nope. Not at all. Those folks couldn’t have been friendlier.
So, what’s my beef, then? It’s what we had to go through here in Los Angeles to reliably book and confirm our appointments. It wasn’t for lack of trying, but we didn’t know until 24 hours before our second shots that they were going to happen within the specified time frame.
A shortage of supplies was no fault of Los Angeles. That’s on our federal representatives. And the Midwest weather that delayed the supplies that were available.
What was the fault of Los Angeles County and City officials was the mass confusion and uncertainty that a sophisticated community should never have visited on its residents, especially while much smaller and supposedly less sophisticated communities around the country, including adjacent Long Beach and Pasadena, did a far superior job in communicating about and administering the vaccinations.
The Wife and I are computer literate. We own computers. We own telephones. We own cars and can get across and around our megatropolis. But we were subjected to inconsistent information, crashing Los Angeles websites and email and telephone inquiries that went unanswered and telephone queues that were countless and endless. We were forced to endure uncertainty as to when and whether we would be able to get appointments for our shots when it was our time. (To be clear, we have no objections to those remarkable heroes who deservedly were prioritized to be vaccinated first.)
We got through it because we had the resources and the time and the communications skills to hang in there until it came together for us, barely on time. Admittedly, we endured our share of frustration, but our sympathy goes out to those less fortunate, who don’t have computers, telephones, transportation, and communication skills that The Wife and I take for granted. We can only imagine the fear, anxiety, frustration, loneliness, and uncertainty many Americans have had to endure and are still enduring.
It is getting better, but it should never have been as bad as it has been here in Los Angeles. Why be a backseat driver and raise all of this? Because our California leaders, including our California governor, our Los Angeles mayor and our other local officials would have its constituents believe what a great job they have been doing. They may have had the best of intentions, but they really haven’t done a very good job at all, especially when it comes to the woefully poor job of communicating about all that they have done. They need to do better, a lot better because we’re not yet out of the woods. And we all need to remind our local leaders of this when they regularly tell us what a great job they are doing. They could—and should—have done much better.
Have you had your vaccination yet? If so, I would love to know how your experience went! Feel free to comment below on this post, or find me on social media. I’m on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and would enjoy seeing you there for more conversation!
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