ALABAMA – The state is ranked 29th for total vaccinations in the United States. But counting Washington, D.C. it ranks 51st in total vaccinations per capita in the U.S. More than 1.6 million doses have been administered in Alabama so far.
ADPH acknowledges the CDC’s ranking but offered no explanation as to why the state is in this position. However, the department did point out the fact that the state is rated 9th in the country at vaccinating vulnerable citizens.
Alabama State Health Officer Dr. Scott Harris has continued to place importance on vaccinating more Black Alabamians in recent weeks. But some argue the demographic-specific data collected by the state isn’t totally accurate.
The Alabama Department of Public Health reports 15 percent of all vaccinations given in Alabama have gone to Black Alabamians. But the state does not actually require vaccine providers to report race information, though some of those providers have clearly submitted those numbers.
Leaving a state advocacy organization questioning the accuracy of the data
“25 percent of the vaccines delivered so far have not had racial data attached,” said Alabama Arise Policy Director Jim Carnes. “There’s a pretty big unknown there about whether that lack of reporting, what exactly that covers up. What lies behind that 25 percent unreported number, we don’t know whether that’s fitting the same general pattern as the ones that we do have reporting on or whether there is something that might be skewed in that unknown segment.”