Black Americans Still Hesitant to Take Covid Vaccine According to New Data
Ever since the emergence of the coronavirus vaccines, minority communities have voiced concerns and apprehension about the safety of these new drugs. A new survey conducted by The National Foundation for Infectious Diseases found that, "Forty-nine percent of Black adults plan to get vaccinated against COVID-19 once a vaccine is available to them." Of that 49% population, approximately 31% said they prefered to wait rather than getting incoulated right away.
The survey also found that Black women and Black adults under the age of 45 are the most reluctant to get the vaccines. And while historical and systemic racism arguably play a large role in Black mistrust of the vaccines, many citing the 1932 Tuskegee Syphillis Experiement, the community continues to be disproportionately affected by the pandemic in the United States.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "Recent studies have consistently found that among those tested for COVID-19, non-Hispanic Black, Hispanic or Latino, and people who identify with more than one race and are non-Hispanic were more likely to have positive test results as compared with non-Hispanic White or non-Hispanic Asian people."
When it concerns covid-related deaths, "34% of deaths were among non-Hispanic Black people, though this group accounts for only 12% of the total U.S. population." Despite the disparities surrounding how the virus impacts minority communities, Black Americans remain lukewarm towards the vaccines.
This is something that Kizzmekia Corbett, PhD, virologist and senior researcher for the National Institutes of Health, has addressed. Dr. Corbett is also one of the researchers behind the Moderna coronavirus vaccine.
In a virtual town hall with the NAACP, Dr. Corbett, who is also a Black woman, sympathized with her community, "It is at no fault of yours that you do not trust a system that has done you and your ancestors wrong for hundreds of years. I would consider to be the onus of us on the side of the science and the vaccine developers to earn the trust back."
And while there is a large portion of the Black community that does want to get vaccinated, it has proven to be extremely difficult to get a hold of a vaccine, especially if you are a person of color. The Kaiser Family Foundation is currently collecting and analyzing the data for vaccine distribution by race and ethnicity. So far, the foundation has found, "Across the 23 states reporting vaccination data by race/ethnicity, there was a consistent pattern of Black and Hispanic people receiving smaller shares of vaccinations compared to their shares of cases and deaths and compared to their shares of the total population."