Addressing The Fears Around A COVID-19 Vaccine

 
In this July 27, 2020, file photo, nurse Kathe Olmstead prepares a shot that is part of a possible COVID-19 vaccine, developed by the National Institutes of Health and Moderna Inc., in Binghamton, N.Y. Moderna said Monday, Nov. 16, 2020, its COVID-19 shot provides strong protection against the coronavirus that's surging in the U.S. and around the world.

In this July 27, 2020, file photo, nurse Kathe Olmstead prepares a shot that is part of a possible COVID-19 vaccine, developed by the National Institutes of Health and Moderna Inc., in Binghamton, N.Y. Moderna said Monday, Nov. 16, 2020, its COVID-19 shot provides strong protection against the coronavirus that's surging in the U.S. and around the world.

AP Photo/Hans Pennink

The race to develop a vaccine to protect against COVID-19 is moving quick. On November 16, 2020, biotech company Moderna, Inc. reported its vaccine showed 94.5% efficacy in early results. On November 9, Pfizer and its partner BioNTech announced it’s vaccine showed an efficacy rate above 90%. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the U.S. government’s top infectious-diseases expert, called these developments ‘light at the end of the tunnel’ when it comes to the pandemic.

But just because there’s a vaccine, doesn’t mean that people will take it when it becomes widely available. And there’s sure to be a lot of misinformation out there about the vaccine’s safety. Many Americans struggle with public health guidelines to wear a mask — will a COVID-19 vaccine be an easier messaging battle? 

The 21st spoke to a senior behavioral scientist and an assistant professor about the cloud of uncertainty around a potential COVID-19 vaccine. 

Guests:

Laura Bogart, PhD, Senior Behavioral Scientist for Rand Corporation and Faculty Member at Pardee RAND Graduate School  

Prof. Chris Brooke, Assistant Professor at the School of Molecular and Cellular Biology, UIUC

Dr. Richard Novak, Chief of infectious disease at the University of Illinois — Chicago and the lead investigator of the clinical trials for the Moderna vaccine at UIC where they participated in Phase 3 trials

 

Prepared for web by Zainab Qureshi

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