Many Oregonians still skeptical, uncertain about getting a COVID-19 vaccine

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OHA plans to promote the vaccine and build confidence in it, in a culturally responsive way.

Posted: Dec 17, 2020 9:13 AM
Updated: Dec 17, 2020 9:14 AM

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PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -- Leading up to the first COVID-19 vaccinations, scientists and doctors have worked to reassure the public that the vaccines are safe and effective, but even after seeing hospital workers get the very first doses in our area Wednesday, some people are still skeptical.

In the flood of comments, our FOX 12 Facebook page gets every day, when it comes to the COVID-19 vaccine, responses vary from can’t wait to get it to you couldn’t pay me to get it.

On Wednesday, Oregonians watched live as hospital workers became the first people in the state to get the initial vaccine dose, but as for getting it themselves, the Oregon Health Authority has said 49% of people in Oregon weren’t sure they want to get the vaccine immediately when it becomes available.

"I just don’t trust it, it hasn’t been on the market long," Shannon Clausen, who lives in Oregon City, said.

She said she'd rather take her chances getting COVID-19 than the vaccine. She’s worried there could be unknown complications. She said in order to trust it, she'd need to see more people get it and what the side effects could be.

Nkenge Harmon Johnson, President, and CEO of the Urban League of Portland said it’s sad to know there’s a lot of uncertainty about the vaccine specifically among Black and brown people who’ve already been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic.

"Unfortunately, because of the history of sort of weaponized medicine in our country, there are lots of Black and brown people who don’t think they can trust the scientists who don’t think they can trust medical professionals," she said.

She now fears mistrust could cost lives.

"It’s a real tragedy because I think people will be harmed because of it, people may lose their lives because they’re not able to feel they can trust the vaccine."

At the same time, other Oregonians are ready to roll up their sleeves as soon as possible.

"I'm feeling very confident in what they’re doing yes I would take it," Jessica Bechtol said.

Clausen said if all goes well into spring and summer, then she might be open to getting it too.

"If more people get it and everything’s fine and they're healthy and they’re not dropping dead and getting ill or being hospitalized then yeah I think I will," she said.

Harmon Johnson said trusted health organizations in our community must speak up and say why a vaccine benefits different demographic groups for people to feel more confident about it.

OHA plans to promote the vaccine and build confidence in it, in a culturally responsive way.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 387485

Reported Deaths: 5116
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah59768836
Washington41571393
Marion39592504
Clackamas32426376
Lane29856354
Jackson24672350
Deschutes23182185
Umatilla15087180
Linn14488178
Douglas13236286
Josephine10057240
Yamhill9665142
Klamath8979145
Polk813698
Benton605137
Malheur591586
Coos5573106
Columbia423855
Jefferson416865
Lincoln357252
Union336854
Crook330156
Wasco314846
Clatsop258335
Baker217531
Tillamook214345
Hood River211337
Morrow197025
Curry190136
Harney119332
Grant108314
Lake104016
Wallowa74713
Sherman1903
Gilliam1844
Wheeler1141
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 5060048

Reported Deaths: 74129
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles152429427102
San Diego4047084319
Riverside3849455306
San Bernardino3718825944
Orange3329505675
Sacramento1674002423
Kern1565171781
Fresno1558992246
Santa Clara1511691922
Alameda1246581500
San Joaquin1070001833
Ventura1036461188
Contra Costa1032921045
Stanislaus912991413
Tulare856141082
San Francisco56614669
San Mateo56058629
Monterey52340625
Solano47422356
Santa Barbara47035548
Merced44807664
Sonoma42912412
Placer41881468
Imperial38128769
Kings35038358
San Luis Obispo31294358
Madera26005311
Shasta25917440
Butte25295309
Santa Cruz22028222
Yolo21451257
Marin18342248
El Dorado18166161
Sutter14494181
Napa13372104
Yuba1070088
Tehama10230129
Humboldt10043117
Nevada9914103
Mendocino848894
Lassen792355
San Benito775977
Tuolumne767790
Lake6990110
Amador573766
Siskiyou470954
Glenn455136
Calaveras435685
Del Norte371242
Colusa323519
Inyo254345
Plumas19127
Mono18294
Mariposa156718
Trinity98817
Modoc7475
Unassigned2430
Sierra2170
Alpine1060
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