SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – There are mixed feelings across the state when it comes to whether or not people will be jumping in line to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
According to Food and Drug Administration Commissioner, Dr. Stephen Hahn, a significant portion of the U.S. population needs to get the vaccine in order for it to be effective.
“We need to get to herd immunity and that requires a substantial percentage of Americans to be vaccinated,” Dr. Hahn said.
In order to reach herd immunity, the FDA predicts that 70% of the U.S. population needs to be vaccinated with a vaccine that is at least 70% effective
“It’s very important and we want everyone to get the vaccine,” Baystate Health Infectious Disease Dr. Daniel Skiest said.
But people are skeptical.
“I’ve had some health issues and I’m a little hesitant about getting it right away. I might consider it down the road after it’s been tested a lot more,” West Springfield resident, Lynn Rowland said.
Similarly, West Springfield resident Michele Ranger said, “Not enough testing I think and I’ve never had a flu vaccine and never get the flu so I’m taking my chances.”
“I understand the concerns about it being a new vaccine but thousand of people have already had the vaccine with no significant serious side effects,” Dr. Skiest said.
According to a Quinnipiac University poll, 61% of people are willing to get the COVID-19 vaccine. Another poll at Quinnipiac University found that 37% would get the vaccine as soon as its available, and 41% would wait a few months.
“It’s really to protect yourself, and your family and your coworkers. It’s really important to get the vaccine. There’s really no reason not to get it,” Dr, Skiest said.
There is still no set date for when the COVID-19 vaccine will be approved by the FDA.