Gov. Mills and Dr. Nirav Shah have done an admirable job of leadership during this pandemic. Their push for face masks and social distancing, all while balancing needs, has been a hard task and their work is truly commendable.

However, they seem to have succumbed to “COVID fatigue.” How else to explain their recent abrupt change to an age-based system for vaccine administration, with no regard for compromised individuals? It’s surely the easiest route for administration: Just prove your age and get your shot.

But in this case, is easiest best? Gov. Mills continually repeats how they are taking care of “our most vulnerable.” Telling me that a healthy 40- or 50-year-old is more vulnerable than a severely medically compromised younger person flies in the face of reason. People fighting cancer and many other life-threatening diseases already have enough on their plates. Now, if they have the misfortune of not only being severely sick, but also being less advanced in age, they have even more to deal with. They get to sit and watch a little longer after previously being told otherwise.

Getting medically challenged patients their shots first would not be as easy as this newly announced age-based plan. “Medically challenged” would have different interpretations. But I’m confident that the fine physicians of this state would each be able to compile a list of their most vulnerable patients and pass it along as proof of need. It’s not the easy way, but it’s the right way.

Guy Kelley

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