By Lucy Komisar
March 19, 2021
It is almost surreal that individuals have to negotiate on their own to get Covid shots, because this is a country where the government serves the medical industry instead of its citizens. That is why in the “we do what the drug and insurance companies tell us” America, we know that hundreds of thousands have died of the disease, because of a medical system skewed in favor of the rich.
When poor people didn’t feel well in the time of Covid, they didn’t go to a doctor, because they had no health insurance or feared being forced to quarantine in a system that had no sick pay. So if they got the disease, they didn’t isolate or get treated. And they infected others. Maybe even their rich employers.
So, in the patchwork vaccination system of the dysfunctional medical system, this Moderna vaccine is given at the Ford Foundation on West 42nd Street in New York City, which made space available to Associated Physicians. You get an appointment on line for 8am to 6pm seven days a week. Nyc.gov/vaccinefinder.
I arrive for 1:45 2nd shot at 1:10 (I made all the buses). There is no line. Through the revolving doors to an entrance where you show your ID. Then you are directed to the first desk to present ID, the card you got after the first shot for weeks before, and a form filled out with other medical history.
Then follow the blue arrows downstairs. I wondered if the organizer was a Brit, since the downside and the upside were on the left.
That takes you to a 2nd desk to present same info ID and other information from the consent form (you get it via a link to the internet) which I sign with the staffer as witness. And then more questions.
Finally through the door on the right, to a cubicle divided from others by black fabric. “Have you had any…” All the possible bad things, well no I haven’t had any. Glad you asked.
By the way, don’t take pain killers before the shot. Messes with what is happening with the immune system. The nurse said it’s okay to take acetaminophen (Tylenol) after.
I get the shot. After all that drama, it’s over in a minute.
And into the observation room for 20 minutes. You sit next to a number, and 4 or 5 seats on each side are blocked off. A nurse keeps track of the time and tells you when to go. There’s even wifi. I left a half hour after I’d arrived at the site.
If the U.S. had a government to benefit citizens instead of corporations and military profiteers, such an operation would be common. And the government would run it, not depend on private ventures. Don’t hold your breath.
Inside photos by Lucy Komisar.