Carlos Suárez interviewed on Puerto Rico's vaccination success

Dr. Suárez offers insight in USA Today article on Puerto Rico's high vaccination rate.

Carlos Suárez interviewed on Puerto Rico's vaccination success

August 25, 2021

Core faculty Dr. Carlos Suárez Carrasquillo (Political Science) was recently interviewed by USA Today about Puerto Rico's vaccination success. The article details the COVID-19 situation in Puerto Rico, and how the island has become a success story in vaccination rate in the United States.

An excerpt:

The island has long struggled to raise its economic and government institutions to the same level as U.S. states and many residents see strong public health as a key indicator of progress, said Carlos Suárez Carrasquillo, a Puerto Rico native and a University of Florida political science professor.

Suárez said many older residents remember when government-run health care was affordable and accessible, and are frustrated that a newer model of private clinics and hospitals, funded via government insurance, is less effective. Those older residents who remember the devastation of polio and measles before widespread vaccination campaigns eradicated them from the island were thus primed to be both receptive of the COVID-19 vaccine and government efforts to distribute it, he said.

"People historically expected more out of the state, and the idea of the individual pulling themselves up by the bootstraps is not as strong there as it is in the United States," he said. "The libertarian streaks that we have in the U.S. are not as strong in Puerto Rico."

Read the full story here: