Businesses On The
What happens after the vaccination will
truly define our path to immunization
By Mehdi Maghsoodnia
Last year was all about testing. Organizations
everywhere scrambled to get Covid-19 testing
right to continuously test their populations in order
to reopen the economy safely. Now, we (thankfully)
have a new element to add to the mix: vaccinations.
While the vaccines are a huge relief, it’s only natural
for anyone in an organization tasked with testing to
feel nervous about integrating the new vaccination
process into an existing Covid-19 testing regimen. It
may feel as if juggling one more ball, or adding one
more Jenga piece, could tip the whole thing over.
After all, it is a delicate balance: we now need to
make sure we know who has been vaccinated, who
hasn’t received the vaccine, and who already has the
antibodies from prior infections—all while managing
populations across these three categories.
Luckily, we don’t have to reinvent the wheel. Given
my work with organizations across the country to
support testing efforts since before Covid-19, I’m
sharing the most frequently asked questions I hear
time and time again, along with answers to each
one. This may help businesses identify what we
need to bring into 2021 and beyond to tighten up our
Covid-19 testing and post-vaccination processes.
It’s what happens after the vaccination that will truly
define our path to immunization.
FAQ 1: When and where should I plan for
my organization to get vaccinated?
The biggest questions around vaccination are
around availability and timing. As you might expect,
there is no simple answer. Most vaccines are being
distributed by the federal government to local
state authorities, who then decide on distribution
to the local population. What we know now is
that specific populations are prioritized: frontline
workers, essential workers, the elderly, and the
immunocompromised. Beyond that, the answer is to
look to your state governments’ plan and timeline.
I generally advise organizations to begin working
on their vaccination plan as if 20-30% of their staff
or customers will get vaccinated by Q2 of 2021.
Unfortunately, the exact details as to when you or
your employees will receive the vaccine depend on
your states’ distribution planning and how well the
federal government provides the supply. It is safe to
say, however, that most people will see the vaccine in
Q2 to Q3 time frame. As has been widely publicized,
the mechanism of distribution will most likely be
through major pharmacies like Walgreens, CVS, or
hospitals and clinics in your community.
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