Wilmington residents talk willingness to take COVID-19 vaccine

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — It will still be several months before the COVID-19 vaccine is available to the general public in North Carolina, but there are already concerns over how safe it is.

Local health officials say they want everyone to know that vaccine is safe, and some believe that it is.

“Yeah I’m going to take it,” said Wilmington resident Daniel Floyd. “I mean too many have died from it and I don’t want to be one of them.”

However not everyone is convinced. Many say they’re not rushing to be first in line.

“I don’t really plan on taking it,” said resident Pauline Glenn. “I’ve been working the whole time through COVID and I still haven’t gotten it yet so I just don’t see myself going and getting a shot for it.”

North Carolina Secretary of Health and Human Services Dr. Mandy Cohen says it will likely be well into spring before the vaccine is readily available to the average person. “It will be free of charge, but some say they want to hold off.

“There’s some people who have taken it already, so we’ll kind of wait and see what happens to them,” said Wilmington resident Preston Frybarger.

“Me personally, I will not get it,” said resident Tyler Rivenbark. “I know COVID-19 is a very serious thing and I take my precautions when necessary, but I just don’t know if there is enough involved in studies right now to know if I really want to put that inside of me.”

New Hanover County Assistant Health Director Carla Turner says she’s heard concerns from the public that the vaccine was developed as quickly as it was.

“These companies went by the same rules that they’ve always had to go by,” Turner said. “So there were no corners cut, they were just able to move the process along a little more quickly and part of that is due to just improvements in technology.”

She also refutes concerns that getting the vaccine could actually infect the recipient with COVID-19.

“There’s no live vaccine in there but it mimics the virus and makes your body think the virus is there so then you develop antibodies to that and that’s where immunity comes from,” Turner said.

Turner hopes as the vaccine becomes more widely available, more people will be willing to take it.

“It is completely up to the resident of New Hanover County to determine if they want to get it. Do I want everybody to get the vaccine? Yes I do,” she said. “The more people who get it, the quicker we get what’s called herd immunity.”

Click here for more information on the vaccines.

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