COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Differs Internationally: A look at Missouri and Beijing


Junping Xia

Community medical staff are checking the information for those who are getting vaccinated. This sign reads, “vaccinator information registration area.” Those who are willing to be vaccinated need to fill out the necessary information in this area and sign the consent form.

By Junping Xia, University of Central Missouri

Pictured is a community-level COVID-19 vaccination center in Dongcheng District, Beijing. Residents in this community can make an appointment on an app called WeChat. (Photo by Junping Xia)

  The world has been affected to varying degrees because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but vaccines have become the most effective way to combat the pandemic. As the University of Central Missouri hosts vaccination clinics to aid in reaching America’s distribution goals, other countries follow similar, yet different, vaccination plans. 

  According to Missouri’s COVID-19 Dashboard, about 1,139,859 residents have been vaccinated as of April 7, and according to People’s Daily Online, the Beijing Municipal Health Commission issued a notice that as of 16:00 on April 6, Beijing had vaccinated a total of 10.8053 million people.

  China’s COVID-19 vaccine is researched, developed and produced by China National Pharmaceutical Group Co., Ltd., Kexing Holding Biotechnology Co., Ltd. and Cansino Biological Co., Ltd, and they have been distributing vaccines since July 2020.

  Wenxin Cui is a community staff member in Beijing. In China, the community staff work at the lowest level of government service agencies (街道办事处 in Chinese). They are mainly responsible for the administrative affairs of the local community, organizing residents to participate in activities and assisting community health agencies in arranging vaccinations for residents.

  Cui said China already has four COVID-19 vaccines. Among the three inactivated vaccines, one is an adenovirus vector vaccine. Adenovirus vector vaccines include a harmless virus that enters the body. This triggers a person’s immune system to start producing antibodies to protect the person from the COVID-19 virus.

  Cui finished her COVID-19 vaccination in January 2021. She was part of the first group to receive COVID-19 vaccines.

A community volunteer is assisting an elderly person to fill in the identity information for the COVID-19 vaccination on their smartphone. (Photo by Junping Xia)

Original: “北京已经完成第一批人群的疫苗接种工作,其他适合接种的年轻人和中老年人的接种任务正在进行,”崔说。

  Translated: “Beijing has completed vaccinating first group people, other young and elderly people who are suitable for vaccination are still being vaccinated,” Cui said.

  “The first group mainly include medical and health officers, customs officers, police, service industry practitioners and people going abroad for business and private purposes,” Cui said.

  China’s health department has been advocating citizens to be vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus.

  Original: “目前社区中接种疫苗的人的比例不到50%, ”崔说。“未接种疫苗的人依然有感染COVID-19的风险。”

 Translated: “Currently, the proportion of people vaccinated in the community is under 50%,” Cui said.   “People who have not been vaccinated are still at risk of contracting COVID-19.”

  People who have not been vaccinated might not be suitable for vaccination because of  other diseases. Some people are still worried about the poor effectiveness of the vaccine.

 Original: “即便是免费的医疗服务,他们也不愿意冒险。”崔说。

 Translated: “Even if it is free medical services, they don’t want to take risks,” Cui said.

  Liwen Li is another resident of Beijing who has been fully vaccinated. She learned that she was eligible  for the vaccine through a notice issued by her local community. After 1-2 weeks of health assessment, local community staff told her that she could be vaccinated. Health assessment is to prevent people with other diseases from having serious adverse reactions after the vaccination.

  Liwen said she was worried about adverse reactions after receiving the vaccination, but based on the feedback from other people who had been vaccinated, her concerns gradually disappeared.

  Original: “在接种完疫苗之后,我更加放心的去购物和旅行,”立文说。“这意味着我不是患者,并且我也不担心周围的人将病毒传染给我。”

  Translated: “After receiving the COVID-19 vaccine, I feel relieved to go shopping and travel,” Liwen said. “This means I am not a COVID-19 patient, and I am not worried about infection by people around me.”

  Lorenaa Luo is a graduate student from the University of Edinburgh. She belongs to the first group of vaccinated people in Beijing. She said she is not worried about the adverse effects of the COVID-19 vaccine.

  Original: “我认为中国会严格遵守生产疫苗的流程。比如中国生产的HPV疫苗和流感疫苗在接种之后并未出现严重的不良反应, ”罗说。

  Translated: “I think China will strictly follow the process to produce the COVID-19 vaccines,”  Luo said. “For example, the HPV vaccines and influenza vaccines made in China have not had serious adverse reactions after vaccination.”

This story was originally published on Muleskinner on April 20, 2021.