Mississippi, Connecticut Ramp Up Vaccine Rollout as More States Eye May 1 Deadline

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Mississippi and Connecticut became the latest states to announce accelerated COVID-19 vaccination rollouts, following President Biden’s call for the nation to make vaccines available to all adults by May 1.

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The New York Times reported on March 16 that Mississippi will make vaccines available to all residents 16 and older who either live or work in the state. The Mississippi program takes effect immediately.

In a tweet, Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves urged residents to get their shots and “let’s get back to normal!”

A New York Times tracker found that Mississippi is outperforming most neighboring states in its vaccination program. As of Sunday, around 20% of Mississippi residents had gotten at least one shot, while 11% were fully vaccinated.

Connecticut is also ramping up efforts to get vaccines to adult residents, according to a Monday article on the Financial Times that cited statements from Gov. Ned Lamont. “We are accelerating Connecticut’s age-based rollout to proceed on a quicker schedule than originally planned,” Lamont said. He noted that the state will get “an increased supply” of Covid-19 vaccines in coming weeks.

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Connecticut residents between 45 and 54 years old can now schedule appointments for their first vaccine on March 19, Lamont said. April 5 has been established as the “tentative” date when eligibility will be offered to all residents 16 or older.

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Meanwhile, Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly said her state is also accelerating its vaccination schedule so that residents 16 and older can become eligible for their first shots by May 1, the Financial Times reported.

The pace of vaccinations nationwide has quickened amid higher production of vaccines. The New York Times database found that the average dose per day in the United States is now about 2.4 million, up from less than 1 million when Biden took office.

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About the Author

Vance Cariaga is a London-based writer, editor and journalist who previously held staff positions at Investor’s Business Daily, The Charlotte Business Journal and The Charlotte Observer. His work also appeared in Charlotte Magazine, Street & Smith’s Sports Business Journal and Business North Carolina magazine. He holds a B.A. in English from Appalachian State University and studied journalism at the University of South Carolina. His reporting earned awards from the North Carolina Press Association, the Green Eyeshade Awards and AlterNet. In addition to journalism, he has worked in banking, accounting and restaurant management. A native of North Carolina who also writes fiction, Vance’s short story, “Saint Christopher,” placed second in the 2019 Writer’s Digest Short Short Story Competition. Two of his short stories appear in With One Eye on the Cows, an anthology published by Ad Hoc Fiction in 2019. His debut novel, Voodoo Hideaway, was published in 2021 by Atmosphere Press.
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