Due to widespread vaccine hesitancy, some states are being forced to come up with increasingly desperate methods to encourage their residents to get vaccinated against covid-19—a fact that has, at times, made me feel like we’re living in the absurd world conjured up by some science fiction dystopia. While dangling the lure of a million dollars to people who sign up to get one of the several vaccines available to Americans seems to have paid off, the stark contrast of having to essentially bribe people to protect themselves and others from death, all while billions of people around the globe still can’t get vaccinated, is enough to make anyone weep and feel ashamed.
But there are some creative public health efforts that officials in the U.S. have mounted that I fully, 100 percent, absolutely support. One of those is turning strip clubs into official vaccination sites, as Las Vegas and New Orleans have done, in an effort to, as one public health official put it, “access our population.” Meet people where they’re at!
More, via the Associated Press, on how Las Vegas’s Hustler Club turned into a pop-up vaccination site, and one that seemed fairly successful in convincing at least a few vaccine-hesitant men to get the jab:
The clinic opened for several hours Friday night, administering shots to about 100 people before the strip club opened for its usual business. Several workers at the club, including Hamner, a dancer at a topless revenue, got their shots at the clinic along with members of the public.
Some people who showed up to get shots admitted they were reluctant to get the vaccine but decided to go for it if it meant visiting a strip club.
Roberto Montti, who lives near the club, said he had been putting off getting his shot but realized he should get it in order to resume his love of traveling.
Montti said he probably would have gotten his shot at a more humdrum venue but decided to go to the Hustler Club because it felt familiar.
“I’ve been here so many — I’ve been here a few times. ... Maybe 10 times, give or take,” he said with a laugh.
“I was going to wait, I tell you that,” said Las Vegas resident Michael Myers as he stood between a full-length picture of a naked woman and a sign promoting social distancing and other behaviors to mitigate the virus spread.
Myers’ wife, Lisa Harper, said he changed his mind when she told him they could both get it at the Hustler club.
“I said, ‘Flynt’s Hustler?’ She said ‘Yeah.’ I said, ‘Oh! Let me consider,’” Myers said with a laugh.
“A lot of people that wouldn’t ordinarily do it, a lot of guys, they said, they came here because it’s Hustler,” his wife Harper said. “To take away the stodginess of it, to make it Hustler, it’s very clever.”
As another man who got vaccinated at the club told the AP, “Nothing says vaccinations like a stripper pole.” Not quite a statement that I fully understand, but one I wholeheartedly endorse!
And it probably helped that the club offered some other freebies other than the opportunity to not die of covid-19. Again, via the AP:
Las Vegas officials said the Hustler Club approached them about holding the clinic after hosting in a similar vaccination site at the company’s New Orleans location. The club offered its own incentives to those who show proof of vaccination: a membership card giving them and five friends free admission, a complimentary bottle of alcohol, dances from “a vaccinated entertainer” and other perks.
Sign me up!