ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Following the Food and Drug Administration’s clearance of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine, officials are not only worried about who gets the vaccine but if they’ll take it.
“We’re almost there. The light’s at the end of the tunnel,” said Albany County Executive Dan McCoy.
With who is getting the vaccine is already figured out, the county executive is concerned whether a large enough amount of people will take the vaccination.
“We have to convince people that it’s the right thing to do or we’re going to be in this … situation for a long time,” McCoy said.
Health experts say 75 to 80 percent of the public needs to take the vaccine by the end of 2021 in order to get back to some sort of normalcy. But for now, a majority of people say they won’t take the vaccine.
In a News10ABC poll, 48 percent of people said they would not take the vaccine if it were offered to them today. 42 percent of people said they would take the vaccine and 10 percent were unsure.
Chairman of Capital District Latinos Dan Irizary said the hesitation to take the vaccine may be due to messaging.
“The messaging around COVID was so inadequate. We did not really get the kind of response that we would need to effectuate a proper response around COVID,” Irizary said.
In particular, minorities communities are a group officials are worried won’t take the vaccine. Stakeholders like Irizary are working with officials as a liaison to bridge trust in the vaccine.
“If you were vaccinated as a child, you should not have the same aversion because it’s kept you from having horrible diseases that were once ubiquitous throughout the world,” Irizary said.
A recent Gallop poll said 63 percent of Americans are willing to take the vaccine. The favorability for taking the vaccine has increased in the last couple months.