FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) –
The state is making an extra push to get older Michiganders a COVID-19 vaccine, especially if they’re hesitant.
“It is not the virus, it does not play around with your DNA etc. Its MRNA not DNA it does not mess with your cells,” said Dr. Herbert Smitherman, President CEO of Health Centers Detroit Foundation.
On Thursday State Health leaders held a virtual town hall to clear up some of the misinformation adding to that concern. With one of the biggest concerns being vaccine hesitancy.
“If we’re going to have herd immunity how do we convince these folks who use every conceivable package of misinformation to convince themselves not to do this?” asked Reverend Horace Sheffield III.
Wanda Bowman with the Detroit Area Agency on Aging, explained that by providing an example, having her team vaccinated and educating the public on that first-hand experience is the first way to start making an impact.
“When we have those conversations with the seniors we can help to quam their fears by saying, hey I’ve had it, I’ve had no complications a little soreness in the arm after a few days that’s over,” said Bowman.
At the Memorial Health Care in Owosso President and CEO Brian Long says he hasn’t seen much vaccine hesitancy towards the older population. What he has seen is other health care needs being put off.
“Don’t forego, you know… regular checkups because we’re seeing a progression of disease and illness at levels that seem to be more acute, or serious because of the reluctance, if you will, to seek out care in some cases,” said Long.
Both the health department and Memorial Healthcare urge those who are hesitant to get the vaccine to reach out and ask questions.
“We’d be happy to get out of the phone and talk to folks and do our best to alleviate any concerns or questions they may have,” added Long.
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