The coronavirus vaccine rollout in Texas is leaving some with more questions than answers
When Janell Simmons heard that some vulnerable Texans were now eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccination, she eagerly called around to schedule an appointment. But after hours on the phone with more than a dozen health care providers in Houston, she said she was unsuccessful.
Simmons’ two primary care physicians told her they didn’t receive a shipment of the vaccine. A call to an H-E-B pharmacy got her a prerecorded message informing callers that the store had only enough doses to vaccinate front-line health care workers. And Memorial Hermann, the largest not-for-profit health system in southeast Texas, told Simmons that its allotment was reserved for current patients.
“I’m so disappointed and disillusioned right now that I will not get the vaccine,” said Simmons, who is 61 and has a qualifying medical condition. “The state of Texas is allowing the providers to make their own rules about how they’re going to administer their vaccine.”
While all eligible Texans under the first phase of the rollout can now receive the vaccine, doses remain in short supply and vague messaging from state health officials has left Texans who are desperate to get vaccinated without clear answers.