People with disabilities at back of the vaccine line — 3/17/21

Credit: Claire DeRosa / Wisconsin Watch

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Appleton Post-Crescent reporter Madeline Heim found that some Wisconsin residents with disabilities were being denied access to vaccines, even though the state has prioritized them for inoculation. Starting March 1, people enrolled in Medicaid long-term care programs, such as Family Care and IRIS, were eligible for COVID-19 shots “but many vaccine providers didn’t get that message,” Heim found. Beyond that, Heim, a former Wisconsin Watch intern, identified additional barriers including “transportation, overreliance on phone apps and computers for making appointments and not allowing family members to accompany loved ones during vaccinations.”

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“There’s a resurgence going on here. There’s clearly been a change here in the last couple of weeks.” 

Disease tracker David Rubin, director of PolicyLab at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, commenting to the Washington Post on a resurgence in COVID-19 cases in the Upper Midwest and New York.

Data to note

Click on the image above to see Wisconsin DHS COVID-19 vaccine data, which is updated daily.

Here’s a look at the Department of Health Services’ vaccine dashboard, which showed Wednesday that  69.7% of Wisconsinites ages 65 and older have gotten at least one dose — as have 22.4% of the state’s overall population. Racial disparities persist in distributing vaccines. The shares of Black, Hispanic and Native American residents to receive a dose remain below that of white residents.  

Public health officials continue to urge Wisconsinites to wear masks and practice physical distancing until vaccinations are more widely distributed. On Wednesday, DHS reported 318 additional cases and 15 new deaths, raising the statewide death toll to 6,554. 

WisContext offers this visualization. 

Find a vaccine site near you

DHS has this interactive map of vaccine providers across Wisconsin. Vaccinations are generally by appointment only and it may take time to schedule appointments with providers due to limited supplies of vaccines. 

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People with disabilities at back of the vaccine line — 3/17/21 is a post from, a non-profit investigative news site covering Wisconsin since 2009. Please consider making a contribution to support our journalism.

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