They have priority to get vaccinated against coronavirus, but for now they prefer to give up their place: despite a rampant epidemic in United StatesSome of the health personnel, generally favorable to vaccines, distrust the new ones because they consider that they have not been sufficiently tested.
“I think I’ll get vaccinated later, but for now, I’m suspicious,” Yolanda Dodson, 55, a nurse at a Bronx hospital who was in the center of the city this spring, told AFP. deadly battle against the virus.
“The studies carried out (on vaccines) are promising, but the data are insufficient,” said Dodson, who asked however “to recognize those who are willing to take the risk.”
Diana Torres, a nurse at a Manhattan hospital where several colleagues died from the virus in the spring, said being particularly suspicious of vaccines that are approved urgently in December by the federal drug agency FDA, at the request of the outgoing government of Donald Trump, who treated the pandemic as a “joke.”
These vaccines “were developed in less than a year, and will be validated by the same government and federal agencies that allowed the virus to spread like wildfire,” he said.
New York State is once again the focus of the pandemic in the United States. Still, many doctors prefer to wait to get vaccinated. Photo: AFP
The first vaccines will be like “a large-scale experiment. They have not had enough time or people to study the vaccine … So this time, I will give up my turn and wait to see what happens,” he summarized.
On his Facebook page, several of his fellow nurses express similar reservations.
“No thanks, I’m not anyone’s guinea pig“wrote one of them.
This mistrust seems to be quite widespread among health personnel, some 20 million people in the United States, according to Dr. Marcus Plescia, chief medical officer of ASTHO, the American association that brings together health officials from the states of the country.
The United States continues to lead the ranking of Covid-19 cases and deaths worldwide, with more than 273,800 deaths and almost 14 million infections.
“There are a lot of people who say ‘I’m going to get vaccinated, but I’m going to wait a bit,'” he said. “Even I would feel better if I knew that more people already did it and everything went well,” Plescia explained.
Many health workers claim that the vaccines did not meet the time required for testing and approval. Photo: REUTERS
“This could become a real problem,” he acknowledged, all the more so when the new vaccines will be authorized according to an emergency procedure that makes it almost impossible, legally, to impose vaccination on hospital staff.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday pointed to the danger of insufficient participation in the vaccination campaigns being announced, including by health workers.
“There is this whole anti-vaccine movement in general, to which is added an additional skepticism about this vaccine,” Cuomo said.
Polls reflect this mistrust: According to Gallup, 58% of Americans say they are willing to get vaccinated when possible, a slight increase compared to 50% in September.
A blood bank in New York announces that donations are needed, for coronavirus patients. Photo: AFP
It is because of this mistrust that the state of New YorkLike six others, it created its own vaccine evaluation commission, the governor stressed.
Dr. Plescia hopes, however, that the professional conscience of the medical body will make you reflect.
“Most of us feel an ethical obligation to get vaccinated,” he said. “We are in charge of vulnerable people, we do not want to transmit diseases to them.”
Mohamed Sfaxi, a radiologist at a New Jersey hospital who for three weeks has witnessed an increase in the number of patients with covid-19, is one of those who they try to convince their colleagues doubtfully.
“We have people who are distrustful, we have to talk to them and explain the data to them,” said the 57-year-old doctor, who has “no doubts” and hopes to get vaccinated as soon as possible.
The distrust, said the specialist, is due to the innovative technique of vaccines Pfizer/ BioNTech and Moderna – “messenger RNA” technology, which consists of injecting strands of genetic instructions to make our cells manufacture “antigen” proteins specific to the virus – and at the speed with which the vaccine was conceived.
“But the fact that we have gone very fast is simply because science has made progress and everyone has dedicated themselves to this,” he said.
This doctor, who observes virus-damaged lungs every day, then plans to take an antibody test every three to four days. “This will allow me to see when I start to have an immune reaction and have a little less distress.”