Remember the long lines to get the COVID-19 vaccine? When the vaccines first became available to the public, demand overwhelmed the supply. Now, demand has virtually disappeared, and doctors are trying to persuade patients to get vaccinated.
They might have a new tool to help them convince people to roll up their sleeves: a new study by the American Medical Association shows more than 96% of physicians have been vaccinated. The study surveyed 300 physicians nationwide, in a wide variety of specialties.
"There’s no reason a physician would go and get vaccinated if they didn’t think that it was gonna help protect them,” said Dr. Marc Napp, the chief medical officer of the Memorial Health Care System.
Dr. Napp said the survey shows the public that if doctors are willing to get vaccinated, the bizarre conspiracies out there about the vaccines are simply not true.
"Physicians at their heart are scientists, they believe in the science, and they understand that there’s a tremendous amount of rigor that goes into developing and testing a vaccine, or any medication for that matter, and they wouldn’t put something in their own body that they didn’t think was safe and effective,” Dr. Napp said.
Throughout the pandemic, primary care physicians have been on the front lines of the fight against Covid. Dr. Cesar Corretjer-Russi strongly recommends all of his patients get vaccinated, but said he regularly runs into misinformation and outright lies.
“Someone who read five minutes in Wikipedia something and now you’re an expert,” Dr. Corretjer-Russi said, shaking his head. “A person actually listen more to gossip than regular doctors.”
Dr. Napp said in order to persuade patients, doctors have to address their individual concerns about the Covid vaccines.
“But without beating people over the head, somebody who has deeply held fear or deeply held distrust, you’re not gonna get past that just by saying listen, the vaccine’s safe, the vaccine’s effective,” Dr. Napp explained.
Dr. Corretjer-Russi agrees and said with vaccine-reluctant patients, he uses himself as an example.
“We put ourselves in the line, showing you that this works,” he said.