Covid-19 vaccines: Why are at-risk people being neglected?

Hands in surgical gloves handle a syringe and vaccine vial

Are human rights really for everyone? The Covid-19 pandemic has raised questions about how we prioritise healthcare and why we accept gross inequalities. This podcast episode – the second in new series A Shot In The Dark – asks how we can address inequalities in our communities and around the world.


How can improving the social determinants of health aid the realisation of public health goals and ultimately lead to more equitable and just societies? In the second episode of this three-part podcast, A Shot In The Dark, host Belinda Rawson explores this theme in the context of Covid-19 vaccine prioritisation.  

Dr Ruth Watkinson from the University of Manchester discusses how layers of risk have not taken into account the context of people’s lives, such as existing health inequality due to systemic racism or vulnerabilities stemming from low socio-economic status. We also hear from Dr Ferdinand C Mukumbang from the University of Washington on the experiences of some of the most at-risk populations, such as asylum seekers, refugees and undocumented migrants, who have been largely excluded from Covid-19 discourse despite their increased level of vulnerability to the disease. In particular, we hear about the challenges that undocumented migrants face when navigating foreign health systems, as well as the inclusive Covid-19 vaccination approaches of some countries, as opposed to the exclusionary approaches of others. 

Find the full story here, and listen on Soundcloud.

Podcast by Lacuna Magazine

Interviewer: Belinda Rawson
Producer and musician: Ulli Mattsson


Main image by Hakan Nural.