Health departments facing vaccine hesitancy

Some vaccine providers say they are having a hard time filling up appointment slots.

Until now, the biggest problem with getting people vaccinated against the coronavirus has been a lack of supplies. But some health departments are beginning to face a different challenge – vaccine hesitancy.

What’s Happening: WWMT reports that some health departments in southwest Michigan have been unable to fill all the available appointment slots at vaccine clinics. This is especially true in more rural counties where vaccine skepticism is highest.

Rebecca Burns, health officer for the Branch-Hillsdale-St. Joseph Community Health Agency said that’s forced them to be more open about who can be vaccinated.

“When appointments aren’t filling, and it looks like I might have to carry those doses into next week, the only option I have left is to open it up to more people, so that we can get more people vaccinated,” she said.

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More urban and suburban counties – such as Kalamazoo County – aren’t facing the same problems. That fact may be tied to politics. People who associate with the Republican party are more hesitant to trust the coronavirus vaccines.

The bigger problem is that vaccine hesitancy may make it harder to get enough people inoculated to reach herd immunity.

You can read more here.

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