Understanding COVID vaccine skepticism: It’s not all anti-science

vaccines families main kh bfd e ef e a b b c f e
Credit: Tim Lahan/NBC News

Even though vaccines have virtually eliminated the risk of many preventable diseases, there has been an increase in refusal and hesitancy over the past two decades. Typically vaccine refusal is most prevalent in wealthy, white areas, but polls that seek to understand the pending coronavirus vaccine indicate high levels of hesitancy and refusal among marginalized communities, too. In fact, these groups appear to be the most skeptical, with only a quarter of Black respondents and 37 percent of Hispanic respondents in the AP-NORC poll saying they would commit to getting the vaccine whenever it is available.

Considering that Black, Hispanic and Indigenous communities are at the highest risk of infection and are overrepresented in COVID-19 deaths, this result may look like a curious discrepancy. But it is not hard to understand these groups’ caution and, in some cases, their downright refusal to engage with public health recommendations when one considers the historical racism embedded in the fabric of the medical systems and the harm suffered at the hands of biased science.

Related article:  'Fight or flight': Body's natural stress response linked to depression, diabetes and heart disease
Follow the latest news and policy debates on agricultural biotech and biomedicine? Subscribe to our newsletter.

The people and institutions responsible for designing the communication around the coronavirus vaccine have to consider this broad backdrop if we want to get COVID-19 under control. Validating the ways in which the American people, and marginalized groups in particular, have sometimes been misled, mistreated and misunderstood at the hands of “science” is the first step in regaining their trust.

Read the original post

Outbreak Daily Digest
Biotech Facts & Fallacies
Genetics Unzipped
Infographic: How dangerous COVID mutant strains develop

Infographic: How dangerous COVID mutant strains develop

Sometime in 2019, probably in China, SARS CoV-2 figured out a way to interact with a specific "spike" on the ...

Philip Njemanze: Leading African anti-GMO activist claims Gates Foundation destroying Nigeria

Nigerian anti-GMO activist, physician, and inventor pushes anti-gay and anti-GMO ...
News on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.
glp menu logo outlined

Newsletter Subscription

Optional. Mail on special occasions.
Send this to a friend