ALABAMA (WHNT) – Doctors say some people in Alabama still do not take COVID-19 seriously.
Only 50% of the state is vaccinated, and health professionals are still working tirelessly to convince those who are hesitant to be vaccinated.
They describe it as a war against COVID and a war against misinformation.
It’s now two years into the COVID-19 pandemic, and medical staff in Alabama say they are engrossed in the large number of patients who still use misinformation on social media to refuse to get the vaccine, even though it has been proven that it prevents hospitalization and death.
“It’s hard not to be frustrated with the scenario itself and to look at it,” says Dr. Todd McCarthy of UAB Infectious Diseases for News 19.
McCarthy says he is still trying to find out if there is enough misinformation about the vaccines his patients have purchased.
“It’s hard, but I think the degree of frustration varies when I ask why. Too many patients comment on the lack of access or worry about side effects, ”McCarthy said.
Dr. Wes Stubblefield of the Alabama Department of Public Health agrees. “Having difficulty finding reliable sources of information has always been the case. It’s just been highlighted more under COVID-19.”
Stubblefield says the amount of misinformation has stressed both health care and hospital nursing staff.
“Healthcare providers have borne much of the bulk of both taking care of the patient’s side and trying to get the factual information out about the disease and about the vaccine, and continue to have their own family and work-life balance and all that other stuff. ”
In Alabama, only 17% of the child population between the ages of 5 and 11 are vaccinated. It ranks dead last in the U.S., and doctors say misinformation to parents can affect those numbers.
“As much as this has affected our ability to control Covid itself, this misinformation campaign will spread to other areas of life,” McCarthy said.
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