Vaccine Privilege: Public Health Experts Say Wealthier Ohioans Have It

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (Statehouse News Bureau) — If you look at Ohio’s vaccination dashboard right now, you’ll see many of Ohio’s highest income counties and those with the highest education levels have the higher vaccination rates. Public policy health leaders say that’s just what they’d expect right now.

Nurse administers shot at Columbus clinic
Nurse administers shot at Columbus clinic [Dan Konik | Statehouse News Bureau]
Dr. Ayez Hyder, assistant professor  at the College of Public Health at Ohio State University, is not surprised higher-income counties have higher vaccination rates.

He said it’s been a challenge for low-income people who might lack technology or mastery of it to schedule appointments. And they might lack transportation to get to clinics or might not have a flexible schedule or sick time to go to those clinics.

It all comes down to who has accessibility.

“Accessibility comes with privilege and certainly it’s the higher income counties that have that privilege,” Hyder said.

He thinks the numbers in lower income counties will increase as health officials make more walk-in clinics available, provide transportation to sites and do more in-home or community outreach visits.