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Answering questions about the COVID vaccine if there’s no doctor

Published: Jun. 4, 2021 at 7:46 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Alabama continues to lag behind much of the nation when it comes to vaccinations. Some of that vaccine hesitancy may come from people who need questions answered about the vaccine. But what do you do if you don’t have a doctor to ask those questions?

The state of Alabama continues to lag behind much of the nation when it comes to vaccinations. As of Friday, 1.7 million have gotten at least one vaccine shot. That is about 34% of the state population. A long ways to go to get the 70% President Biden wants to see by July 4.

Vaccine hesitancy is a problem in Alabama. In Walker County, it’s a problem because only 31% have received the vaccine at this time, despite an ample supply.

“We are trying to dig in and figure out the hesitancy in the community to get the vaccine or access to the vaccine.” Elyse Peters, Health Partnership of Walker County said.

The Health Partnership of Walker County plans listening sessions next week with its coalition of partners to help determine that hesitancy. If it comes down to getting questions about the vaccine answered, how do those who may not have doctors get those questions answered?

“I think you look to your professionals in that community if you don’t have a doctor. Again, you have your pharmacy and you have your local health department,” said Dr. Karen Landers with the Alabama Department of Public Health.

Landers said health departments are reaching out to those in rural communities and to the homeless communities to get those questions answered. The Jefferson County Department of Health continues to reach out the rural area and even the homeless to try to convince them to take the shots.

“Now we are at the hardest population. Those who say ‘I don’t think I need to get. I don’t need to get it’. We are still trying to figure out how do we provide information for people to rethink their stance on this,” said Dr. David Hicks.

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