We know pharmacies have been a mainstay for flu shots and shingles vaccines and other immunizations, and we know that the industry is capable of vaccinating millions of people on a monthly basis. So this will provide vaccinations in communities, gets those shots into arms and help us. Try to. You know manage this race against time, the variants that are emerging and so it’s critically important, they’re trained, and they know how to do this, and so they’ve got to be one of those sites that you know people can go to uh because it sort of meets Them where they’re at and now we just heard some states are rolling back some of their covid restrictions in the next few days. On the one hand, there are lots of concerns about these new variants out there. On the other hand, numbers are declining and we can’t stay shut down forever. So what do you think about the timing here? So i think that it, i know it’s hard people want to get back to their daily lives. They want to do the things that they used to do. They want to get moving, but we’ve seen this story come to us before. Where we get lacks, we let our guard down and cases rise, and we don’t yet know the impact of vaccinations. We know that in certain communities, it’s certainly making a difference, and we know that over the long term it will but it’s critically important that we mask up.
We keep our distance minimize those household gatherings and ensure that we’re doing the things we need to to curb transmission because the less community spread there is the less cases. We’Ll have the less hospitalizations and the less deaths. And is there a sense of how much the lowercase numbers we’ve seen lately are due to vaccinations? Yes, so given uh so far about uh 10 of americans have gotten at least one vaccine dose. You know it’s impossible to know the causes of declining cases of hospitalizations. Given so few of the population has been vaccinated, part of immunity is not only immunity delivered by vaccinations, but also natural immunity for those folks that have gotten infected with kova, 19 and so we’ve, seen in certain communities and certain groups of people where it has made A difference, for example, the la fire department had 75 percent of their folks vaccinated and their daily number of positive tests have dropped. So this is a sign that the vaccines are showing impact, just as they did in their clinical trials and just um. I know colleagues of mine who have been vaccinated versus those that haven’t and in even small groups those folks that have gotten vaccinated have not tested positive, whereas those that have not gotten vaccinated have so we’re. Seeing uh real life examples and i think it’s going to take some time before we quantify it at a larger scale. Facebook also now says it’s launching a campaign to correct vaccine disinformation.
What are you hoping to see from this campaign? What kind of concerns have you seen in the communities you serve, so i think we’ve got to do everything we can collectively to fight misinformation and the anti vax movement uh. You know in my community, where 80 of my patients are black i’ve, seen uh the challenges that the history of mistrust has posed: uh tuskegee henrietta lacks and the everyday discrimination racism that these communities might face that further contribute to mistrust. You know one myth about a vaccine side effect could lead to a community feeling very differently about getting vaccinated. Five percent of black americans have been vaccinated versus sixty percent of white americans in 23 states that are reporting. We know copenhagen has disproportionately hit people of color in poor communities, and we’ve got to do everything we can to help move them along uh to get vaccinated and sometimes for my patients – it’s, not just the first conversation, but it takes three or four conversations. It takes me holding their hand. It takes me meeting them in their community in order to help them understand that we’re here to support them to keep them safe and keep their family and loved ones safe, yeah and one concern that i’ve heard. This is both with testing and with vaccination is that people are afraid they’ll be exposed when they go to get the test or when they go in this case, to get the vaccine.
What do you say to that concern? I think it certainly is a valid concern. I think then, the conversation i’ve had with my patients – i know my colleagues have had – is that the places that are testing and vaccinating by and large are doing the things that they need to do to keep people safe, and you know i think, it’s it’s those Kinds of one on one conversations or larger scale: education, uh in communities that makes a difference. I also think that we’ve got to reorient people around the notion that their vaccine side effects it’s, really the difference between side effects versus the immune system working once you get the vaccine to help build antibodies so that they can keep people safe. So i think also the conversation about you know we live with coronaviruses every day before coven 19 and after covet 19 and so it’s really about getting people vaccinated and safe. So we can decrease community spread and treat it like. We do other infections, dr j bot, great, to have you here today. Thank you thanks for having me dad have a great one. You too, hi everyone, george stephanopoulos here, thanks for checking out the abc news, youtube channel, if you’d like to get more videos, show highlights and watch live event coverage click on the right over here to subscribe to our channel and don’t forget to download the abc news.