Some people not showing up to get second vaccine dose
SOUTH BEND, Ind.-- In a recent report from the Center for Disease Control, 88% of Americans have received both doses of the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, and almost 9% of Americans have not received their final, second shot in the first several weeks of the nationwide vaccine campaign.
“I think part of what we are seeing too is sort of the early adopters, the people that were really eager to get vaccinated have gotten in and have gotten both their doses and have gone about their lives. The people who are more skeptical, may be the ones,” St. Joseph County Deputy Health Officer Dr. Mark Fox said.
The same story goes from a nationwide level, to a local level. Majority of people here in St. Joseph County have turned up ready for their second shot, but there’s also a small group of folks who’ve been no shows.
“It’s a relatively small number, but there certainly are some and what we’ll be looking to see is if that proportion is growing over time,” Dr. Mark Fox said.
The CDC recommends getting both doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccine for full vaccine effectiveness, so not going back to get the last, defiantly raises the question as to why.
“I suspect there are a couple of factors that contribute to that. One is there’s good word on the street that if people are going to have side effects, local or systemic side effects to Pfizer or Moderna, they’re likely to be more pronounced with the second dose. So, some of it is the desire to avoid those side effects. Also, in the last month or so, there’s good data about the level of protection people get after one dose, which is really encouraging,” Dr. Mark Fox said.
While it's not necessarily required though to get the second dose, it is however recommended by health officials to better protect yourself and the community.
“The second dose does offer a higher level of protection. Even with two doses you can get infected with Covid, so your risk will go up even if you’ve only had one dose and the more Covid activity we see in the county, the greater likelihood that it will be the set up for the emergence of variants,” Dr. Mark Fox said. “We’re trying to get a handle on is the number of people who haven’t gotten their second dose within say a 5- or 6-week window of their first dose.”
While getting your second shot should be administered as close to your recommended time frame as possible, it’s not too late for you to get it if you’ve missed out. Unlike some cases with other vaccines, if you miss out you need to start all over again, but that’s not the case here and you won't have to restart the two-shot process.