Vaccine reluctance

What does this have to do with protecting lives AT THIS MOMENT? I couldn’t care less at the moment where this originated. I only care about our lives and returning to some sense of normalcy.

Wuhan can be investigated parallely or later. For that matter, let’s investigate how badly the US and many states handled the virus from the start, politicizing basic issues like masking and social distancing. Let’s get to the bottom of both. But not at the expense of more lives, as well as an indefinite continuation of the pandemic.

With the greatest respect to whatever political persuasion one is, even Republican leaders are now finally begging people to get vaccinated. Here’s an example from the Republican Governor of Alabama Kay Ivey:

“Let’s be crystal clear about this issue. And media, I want you to start reporting the facts. The new cases of COVID are because of unvaccinated folks. Almost 100% of the new hospitalizations are with unvaccinated folks. And the deaths are certainly occurring with the unvaccinated folks. These folks are choosing a horrible lifestyle of self-inflicted pain,” Gov. Ivey said … in Birmingham Thursday.

When asked how the state can get more shots into the arms of residents, Ivey did not hold back her displeasure with the lack of success previous plans have had.

“I don’t know, you tell me. Folks are supposed to have common sense. But it’s time to start blaming the unvaccinated folks, not the vaccinated folks. It’s the unvaccinated folks that are letting us down,” she said. “I’ve done all I know how to do. I can encourage you to do something but I can’t make you take care of yourself.

Many of the very senior political folks who termed this virus a “hoax” or said that vaccines/masking/distancing were unnecessary or a matter of “personal choice” have done a 180 this week on the vaccine issue. That pretty much says it all.

ETA: I suppose the reason for the 180 degree change is the utter savagery of the Delta variant. India’s example was horrific, both in terms of how transmissible the virus was and its lethality. One saving grace that we have in the US is that essentially no one in India was vaccinated when the Delta variant hit. So, we are, in the aggregate, in a much better situation than India. But that’s the key: vaccinations, as well as masking and distancing, AFAIK.

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I think the 180 degree change is from those who truly opted to wait and see - wanting more info. They waited and now it’s really easy to see the difference in odds, plus that extremely few have vaccine issues, esp compared to Covid issues. Before they had to trust the scientists. Now there’s a whole lot of real life data.

Then there are those whose minds were made up and pretty much nothing will change it.

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H called me yesterday to help his co-worker find a certain vaccine (pfizer). She is going on vacation with her son next week - who has covid now. I was happy to help, but at the same time I’m thinking “Does she understand how this works? She has 5 weeks before she’s fully vaccinated.” I hope her son is just about over it…

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Good heavens…

Can’t say I saw/read about any of those politicos.

I would say not that they had to “trust the scientists” but rather that they had to understand the math from the trials, how sample sizes work statistically and what they say about a population, etc. All three vaccine trials were rigorous and the results statistically valid. Extraordinarily so.

Waiting so that they could somehow more easily see the odds simply means that they didn’t understand the math or statistics from the trials. The “whole lot of real life data” doesn’t actually tell us much that the trials did not.

Rejecting expertise is a sad thing.


BTW re: employee requirements for vaccines, something to keep in mind is that a LOT of college/university employees are year to year. So while this year’s contract may not require a vaccine, a school could always say, more or less, “Get vaccinated or you’re not coming back next year.”

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I agree. People would rather accept YouTube videos instead of rigorous statistical studies. It’s so discouraging.

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My uncle who is in late 60s, diabetic and has few other health issues finally got his first Pfizer yesterday. He was not against vaccination but was afraid of adverse reaction. At this point fear of Covid was greater then fear of adverse reaction.

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For better or worse this does now seem to be driving a modest uptick in vaccinations.

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Quoted from the article: “I’ve done all I know how to do. I can encourage you to do something but I can’t make you take care of yourself." Immediately followed by, “Ivey also repeated her statement on schools coming back during the pandemic, saying that it is up to the individual schools to make decisions on mask mandates.

Sounds to me like she is trying to absolve herself of all responsibility.

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I think there is ignorance of statistics and how the trials were run. And, unfortunatel, some of the reluctant are suspicious of corruption in big pharma industry.

Among many things…

She has done the opposite of all she knows how to do.

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Realizing that vaccine skepticism is disproportionately killing off your own voter base also has that effect, I’d imagine.

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But those who don’t get the vaccine are oftentimes “the cause of someone’s death.” It is little consolation when that death is their own.

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Good old fashion marketing is the way to go. Sports stars, rock stars, church elders encouraging groups to get vaccinated. Have events one can only get into with a vaccine card or by rolling up your sleeve (have the sports stars there). NFL announced yesterday that those who aren’t vaccinated and miss games because of covid will not be paid. The players need to be in the community telling everyone ‘Get vaccinated. I did.’

Amazon is now giving out community college scholarships for getting vaccinated. Walmart $100 gift cards. I liked WV giving out hunting and fishing licenses to vaccinated people.

Is it ridiculous that we have to bribe people to get vaccinated? Of course, but anything that works.

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My loved ones and I could die if I don’t get vaccinated? Meh.
I get to go fishing if I get vaccinated? Well sign me up!

It looks like being in a town where the virus is spiking and hospitals are overrun can be an incentive, like Springfield, Missouri:

The pastor who arranged a vaccine clinic at his church did get hate mail. I was surprised to read that some people believe the vaccine contains “alien blood” or is the “Mark of the Beast.” Hadn’t heard those before.

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Bribing may get a few who are wavering, but won’t work for the diehards. I’m not optimistic that the vaccination rate for the entire US population will even exceed 70% in the current environment.

Most humans don’t really bother with all of that TBH - the subject doesn’t matter. They watch or listen to their news sources. Those sources can be TV, print, or other traditional news or they can be what they hear in the grocery store checkout line or from family/friends. One would have to be really tuned in to certain sources not to hear dissent about the vaccines, often by people who had MD after their names. This generally causes one to pause.

Many of us worked through it continuing to try to get at the truth by looking at what multiple MD’s said (vs just a couple) and reasoning things out. But for others, they opted for a wait and see because they either didn’t know how to differentiate or didn’t care to take the time to do so.

Now there’s no question whatsoever TBH unless one is totally into really baseless news stories. Odds are much better with the vaccine than without. Those folks honestly falling back on wait and see now have plentiful info out there to see.

Those who are anti-vax for whatever reason will always remain that way except maybe if someone they love falls seriously ill. They’re dead set in what they believe and no amount of anything is going to convince them otherwise. They have too much invested in it to change their minds. If they get vaccinated at all they’ll need something to blame it on (work requirement, wanted free tickets, etc) in order to make it work in their minds.

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