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Mayo discusses COVID-19 vaccine concerns; doctors say minorities are less likely to get the vaccine

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ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) -- On Thursday, Mayo Clinic doctors held a virtual town hall to expose myths surrounding the COVID-19 vaccine.

The group specifically covered how vaccine myths and concerns are swaying minorities from getting the shot.

"African Americans and Latinx individuals are a lot less likely to endorse a plan to get it," said Dr. Francisco Moreno, University of Arizona.

One myth that was addressed, was if getting the COVID-19 vaccine could create infertility for women.

"Misinformation. I know of no data to support that if an individual receives the vaccine, that it will put them at risk for infertility," said Dr. Richard White, Mayo Clinic.

Concerns about how fast the vaccine was created was another issue.

"This data has been collected for years. This is decades of work, based on previous endemics, other coronaviruses like the MERS virus. All of that work is what allowed us to be able to come up with a vaccine so fast, that's effective, very effective," said Dr. Ivan Porter, Mayo Clinic.

Another issue is if the vaccine was tested on enough minorities.

"25 percent of the participants in the trials of the Pfizer and the Moderna were identified themselves as Hispanic or Latino and 9 and a half percent as African American or Black," Dr. Juan Gea Banacloche, Mayo Clinic.

Banacloche was on the FDA advisory committee that recommended the Pfizer vaccine for emergency use. He says it's rare for a vaccine to have a 94 or 95 percent efficacy rate. That is the efficacy rate for the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines.

But what about vaccine side effects?

"You may have a headache, and be unable to function at work for one day. But those are effects that usually last for 24 hours. They typically resolve for three days. But they have nothing, nothing compared to even a mild case of COVID," Banacloche said.

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KaMaria Braye

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