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US healthcare workers protest chaotic vaccine rollout

(    10:55, December 25, 2020

Frontline healthcare workers saw their hopes dashed last week when a botched algorithm, crashing scheduling platforms and other logistical mishaps thwarted their efforts to be among the first in the US to receive a long-awaited coronavirus vaccine, the Guardian newspaper reported Monday.

Amid a surge in infections overwhelming hospitals around the US, doctors were incensed by administrative failures that denied access to the shots, even as they volunteered to work in intensive care units or look after the critically ill.

More than 100 Stanford doctors protested on Friday, standing up for respiratory therapists, environmental service workers, nursing staff, residents and fellows who interact with patients. They were unable to lay claim to initial doses of the vaccine, even as they learned employees doing telehealth from home had nabbed slots.

Residents – doctors completing their training after medical school – were especially frustrated because they were being asked to volunteer for the Covid ICU, but Stanford's algorithm was not prioritizing them for vaccination.

Stanford Medicine said it took "complete responsibility for the errors in the execution of our vaccine distribution plan", which it was "immediately revising".

On the east coast, doctors in Boston's Mass General Brigham system were also distraught. After the online scheduling platform crashed, employees filed into long lines on Thursday morning to sign up for shots in-person. Once appointments came back online, availability vanished in minutes.

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Liang Jun, Bianji)

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