4/19/21 - J&J Pause & Effects Monitoring | Vaccinating Rural Communities | Your Vote, Your Voice: Part 4
With the Johnson & Johnson vaccine still on pause, health officials examine vaccination rates and the hesitancy factor.
Then, from the Gulf States Newsroom, how partnerships with community health centers are reaching rural residents in the region.
Plus, in part four of You Vote, Your Voice, we explore how those with felony convictions lose access to the ballot.
The vaccination in Mississippi continues despite an unexpected bump in the road. Last week the state put a pause on the Johnson & Johnson vaccine in accordance to CDC guidelines after a small number of rare blot clots were attributed to the shot. State Health Officer Dr. Thomas Dobbs, in a roundtable with leaders of the Mississippi Medical Association, called the decision wise.
The pause raised two immediate questions - how will distribution be affected and will hesitancy in ALL vaccines grow. Dr. Dobbs says some logistical adjustments are being made to compensate for the temporary sidelining of the J&J, but doesn't think long-term goals will be affected.
About two in five Americans live in rural areas across Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. Many of these residents are people of color, low-income and uninsured – communities hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Biden Administration has given billions in funding to community health centers in its mission to get vaccines to those populations. But for much of the rollout, these providers were underutilized. From the Gulf States Newsroom, Shalina Chatlani reports.
In thirty-seven states, those who lose their right to vote due to felony convictions, have those rights restored immediately upon release. That, however, is not the case in the Magnolia State where it is estimated that ten percent of potential voters have lost access to the ballot. In Mississippi, a conviction of any of twenty-three felonies results in permanent disenfranchisement. We talk to Nshombi Lambright, Executive Director of One Voice Mississippi and Pauline Rogers of RECH Foundation about the challenges of disenfranchisement.