(L) Central Meadville, MS; (R) Mark Thornton, Franklin County emergency management director, at the courthouse in Meadville, Mississippi, on March 19, 2021. Photos: Annie Flanagan for Elemental

Inside One of America’s Vaccine Deserts

How rural areas could affect our Covid-19 immunity

Franklin County Memorial Hospital in Meadville, Mississippi.
Cynthia Ann Wilkinson and Suzanne Brown near the Mississippi State Extension office in Meadville, Mississippi, on March 18, 2021.
Notes about Covid-19 precautions adorn the tax office at the courthouse in Meadville, Mississippi, on March 19, 2021
Sean Dunlap, editor at the Franklin Advocate, stands by the archive of recent papers in his office in Meadville, Mississippi, on March 19, 2021
Mark Thornton, the Franklin County emergency management director, made a list of recommendations to the county government for Covid-19 safety precautions. Many protocols were executed but ultimately ignored.
Mark Thornton’s mask lays on his desk.

“We can’t afford to leave parts of America vulnerable.”

Suzanne Brown near her office at Mississippi State Extension in Meadville, Mississippi on March 18, 2021.
(Clockwise from top) Lake Okhissa in Franklin County, Mississippi; Center of Meadville, Mississippi; Franklin Elementary School.

Jillian Kramer is a journalist whose writing has appeared in the New York Times, Scientific American, Travel + Leisure, and more.

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