In much of the developed world, vaccine orders are soaring into the billions of doses, coronavirus cases are easing and economies are poised to roar back to life. In many less developed nations, though, the virus is raging on, while vaccinations are far too slow to protect even the most vulnerable.

The problems go well beyond the availability of vaccines to deep-seated logistical problems and vaccine hesitancy.

The stuttering global rollout is having calamitous consequences. Unvaccinated nations are being walloped by the virus. New variants could emerge in reservoirs of untamed infections, prolonging the pandemic for rich and poor nations alike.

This is an excerpt from the NYTimes article, and I'm having difficulty understanding the meaning and usage of "to" marked in bold.

To me it sounds like 1) the availability of vaccines 2) deep-seated logistical problems 3) vaccine hesistancy are all different, separate issues. But I'm probably missing something here because 1) and 2) is liked with "to" and 2) and 3) is linked with "and", which I guess would mean the right way to structure this sentence is

"the problems go well beyond [1) & 2)] and [3)]."

but then I don't know how to understand "the availability of vaccines to deep-seated logistical problems" especially because "to" has so many different meanings. Can anyone explain to me the grammatical role of "to" here and the meaning of the entire sentence it's included? Thank you in advance.

1 Answer 1


You are correct reading them as three distinct issues, but the latter two are grouped. That word to is used here in describing a range.

...the problems range from [availability] to [logistics and hesitancy]...

It seems to say that simple availability is the least serious of the problems, and logistics and hesitancy are more serious.

That could be the case if lack of availability can be solved by increasing production, making it a short-term problem, but logistics, in the sense of lack of distribution capacity, and hesitancy, may be longer-term or intractable.

The other reading, ... availability of vaccines to ... logistics problems... doesn't make sense in terms of meaning. Even if it were susceptibility rather than availability, it still wouldn't add up.

  • Thank you so much for your answer! So you mean it isn't incorrect to say "The problems go beyond A to B"? I probably would've understood it more easily if the expression used was "problems range from A to B", cause I thought "(problems) go beyond" is collocated only with the preposition "and".
    – dbwlsld
    Jan 11, 2022 at 3:04
  • 1
    Yes, go beyond A to B and C works. You could simplify it to say The problems go as far as B and C, with as far as meaning beyond A. Jan 11, 2022 at 3:17

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .