A transgender woman was refused a COVID vaccine because she has a “mismatched ID” according to the Oklahoma State Department of Health.
The Logan County Health Department turned the woman away, but she was able to be vaccinated the next day after the state health department stepped in after the LGBTQ advocacy group Freedom Arizona made them aware it had happened.
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The group tweeted the department after the anonymous woman was turned away, asking, “Hey @HealthyOklahoma why is Logan Co Health Department turning away a trans woman trying to get a vaccine and telling us to take it up with the state?”
The department responded on Twitter so folks knew they were working on it.
“We are aware of the situation and working closely with Logan County Health Dept and Freedom Oklahoma to rectify it immediately,” they tweeted. “It is a top priority to ensure equity in our state’s public health system, including ensuring every Oklahoman has access to the COVID-19 vaccine.”
The woman was turned away when her name didn’t match the male name on her ID card. She said she explained her situation and that she was waiting on the official paperwork, but officials wouldn’t budge.
“The equity of the COVID-19 vaccine distribution has always been paramount in the Oklahoma State Department of Health’s effort to vaccinate Oklahoma,” a spokesperson for the department said in a statement. “Unfortunately, a situation with a resident being denied a vaccine, due to a mismatched ID, at one of our county health departments was handled poorly.”
The woman was able to get a vaccine the next day at the Oklahoma City-County Health Department.
They have released the following statement regarding the incident.
Thank you again to everyone who lifted up this story. We look forward to working with the Dept to ensure all Oklahomans are given equitable access to the vaccine. https://t.co/t2RhsRqqfc pic.twitter.com/261tJ4klJ6
— Freedom Oklahoma (@FreedomOkla) April 16, 2021