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Waiting in line

I have less science here to present and more just a healthcare perspective: I have spent years in front of patients. I have- through numerous episodes- been the hospital staff who is waiting in line for mandatory flu vaccines, Tb titers, and blood donations during large scale disasters. I've waited in line for organized meal distribution and emergency sleeping gear in those long episodes of Mass Casualty Incidents. I've waited in line for meals when the task at hand prevented any providers from leaving-to sleep, to eat, to shower, to have any semblance of self-care. I have waited (with head down) in-line when we were whisked out of the surgery areas because there was a gunman seeking some degree of retribution, from someone not really known to me, whose demands were not clearly understood by him. The lines were sometimes silent and morose, other times giddy and fast moving. Several lines were interrupted by more work: a code blue, a hospital diversion, a continuing disaster scenario, or just an overwhelmed staff who needed replacement that instant. I recall hours of sleep -sacrificed for a momentary sorjourn to the toilet-and the line barely waited for me to return. But this line, the line for the Moderna, Pfizer, and now, Janseen vaccine- seems circuitous. I am 1C, at best. Without co-morbidities, and falling comfortably into my 4th decade, it would be a stretch for me to get in line yet. However, I have a medical license. I have a great deal of collegues in healthcare, I have insider information. I could get vaccinated if I stood up to get in line. But my elderly mother- nearly disabled, and cut-off from her environment, has not yet been allowed to queue up. I cant imagine getting vaccinated before her, only to retreat to my home office and continue to have groceries delivered. I'm beginning to hear the whispers, too. "Did you hear, Bill (the software engineer) got really ill from his second shot" or "Melissa's neighbor got her first today-she knows the clinic manager"........of course we knew this would happen. Consider the fact that in a recent poll- those whose incomes were in the top 5 percentile said they would pay more than 20k US Dollars for a single dose. I can imagine some would even pay considerably more than that. Dolly wouldn't do it , but obviously Dolly's a quite bit higher quality than Soulcycle. Its a reality that those with the connections- or means - can and will jump the queue. A harsh reality, in fact, that will only be less painful when those who really need the vaccine-get it.

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