Last week, I noted that Texas bucked the guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The new instructions said that “essential workers” should have priority over the elderly after the inclusion of racial justice factors in the “expert” assessment when determining who receives the coronavirus vaccine during the next phase of distribution.

The Lone Star state is moving ahead with vaccinations for older citizens next, in alignment with epidemiological practices designed to slow deaths and spread the pathogen.

Florida is now following the science as well.

Last week, Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida issued an executive order allocating vaccines to nursing-home residents and staff members, people 65 and older, medical workers, and anyone deemed “extremely vulnerable to COVID-19.” Texas did the same a few days prior, giving the green light for people 65 and older, along with those who have certain preexisting conditions, to start getting vaccinated.

…These decisions go against guidelines set by an advisory group at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC recommended that healthcare workers and nursing-home residents and staff members should be first in line, followed by other frontline workers and all people over 75. These recommendations, the group wrote, are meant to “preserve functioning of society” and “decrease death and serious disease as much as possible.”

But in Florida and Texas, younger frontline workers have been bumped out of the next phase of vaccinations.

“The problem is people that are 73, 74 would be in the back of the line for a young 21-year-old worker who’s considered ‘essential.’ That doesn’t, I think, make sense,” DeSantis said at a press conference on Wednesday.

I also predicted that blue states would be making a very different set of calculations. Indeed, this is the case.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said that recovering addicts in residential rehab facilities would be among those next to be vaccinated against the coronavirus.

During a virtual news conference in Albany, Cuomo said the state was expecting to receive a combined 259,000 doses of Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna vaccines.

In addition to urgent care center employees and “individuals who are administering the COVID-19 vaccines, for obvious reasons,” Cuomo said that shots would be given to residents of “OASAS” — the state Office of Addiction Services and Supports.

The agency runs 12 treatment centers across the state, with five located in or around New York City, and also certifies and monitors “hundreds” of private facilities, according to its website.

“These are congregate facilities. Congregate facilities are problematic. That’s where you have a lot of people in concentration,” Cuomo said.

In my first post about race-based vaccine guidance, I explained that if the states were “laboratories of democracy,” we should soon see some solid data as to which approach is the most effective. Early results indicate that is the New York approach is full of fail.

The coronavirus pandemic appears to have been the icing on the case in terms of New York’s declining population, and it could impact the state’s political influence in future elections.

According to preliminary US Census Bureau data released on Tuesday, more than 126,000 people moved out of New York state between July 2019 and July 2020 — the biggest population drop of any state this year.

New York has been losing residents since 2016, according to the data, but this year was the most significant drop by far. The second biggest year-to-year population drop for the state this decade was between 2018 and 2019, when more than 80,000 people left the state.

On the other hand, Texas is slated to pick up 3 seats, and Florida 2 in Congress. At least the ability for Americans to vote with their feet has not been crippled.

 

 
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