America’s rollout of the Covid-19 vaccine is off to a messy start, with signs the country is repeating the same mistakes it made with coronavirus tests and protective equipment for health care workers.

The vaccine shortfall is in many ways a repeat of the mistakes the US — and Trump — made before in its response to the coronavirus. Earlier in 2020, the country struggled to get enough personal protective equipment for health care workers and Covid-19 tests. Experts blamed those failures largely on the lack of a federal plan and national action to prepare for and address all kinds of issues along the supply chain. The same is true for vaccines today.

“As a supply chain person, you kind of see this sort of train wreck that you know is coming,” Nada Sanders, a supply chain management expert at Northeastern University, told me. “And now it’s just going to get worse and worse.”


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