As Black people and communities of color, we have valid reasons for fearing and distrusting the health care community. These reasons should not be ignored. Black Americans suffer from:
- Multiple health disparities
- More deaths from COVID-19
- Different quality of health care
Now the COVID-19 vaccine is here, and you have to decide whether to get it. You need trusted, fact-based information, like what you will find on this website, to make an informed decision. You have control over what happens to your body. Consider the virus, the vaccine and your immune system. See the chart below. Remember – the Choice is Yours!
Is it safe?
- Vaccines have passed U.S. Food & Drug Administration safety requirements
- Millions of doses given to date with few adverse reactions reported
- Long-term vaccine side effects unknown
- Info on vaccines’ population impacts still being collected
DO I HAVE:
- History of allergic reactions
- Hyper or underactive immune system
- Chronic disease (i.e. heart, diabetes, asthma, cancer)
Consult your doctor if you have any of these health issues.
Does it work?
- The vaccines protect 95% of people who get them from serious COVID-19 illness. That’s more than 9 out of 10 people
- Effectiveness rate applies across age, sex, ethnicity and people with underlying medical conditions
- Not yet known how long vaccines will protect from virus
- Vaccine effectiveness can vary by virus strain
DO I HAVE:
- Very low-risk contact
- A high-risk essential job
- Experiences with vaccines in past
When and where can I get it?
- Healthcare workers and nursing home residents vaccinated first, then essential workers followed by adults with high-risk medical conditions and those age 75+
- Vaccinations free whether health insurance or not
- Currently, limited vaccination sites
- Uneven vaccination rollout among states and communities due to availability
DO I HAVE:
- Health insurance (not needed to get vaccine, but helpful when engaging with health care systems)
- Digital access to info
- Transportation to vaccination sites
Can I get what I need?
- Grassroots efforts underway to get information and vaccines to people of color
- U.S. purchasing hundreds of millions more vaccine doses
- Lack of racial and ethnic data on vaccination counts presents barrier to equitable distribution
- People not yet eligible getting vaccinated ahead of others
- Qualify for vaccine right now
- Have ability to take off work if I have side effects
- Have a doctor to help me decide
Do I have fact-based information?
- Lots of available vaccine information
- President Biden has promised increased vaccine distribution transparency
- Some vaccination information conflicting and confusing
- Not all answers about vaccines known yet
- Know whether to trust vaccine information
- Understand quick development of vaccine
- Trust health care system
If You Decide to Get Vaccinated, Contact One or More of These Organizations:
- St. Louis City – http://bit.ly/STLcityCOVIDVax or call 314-621-5100, press 1. You can receive text alerts on distribution news by texting “STLCOVID” to 888777.
- St. Louis County – www.stlcorona.com or email DPHCovidVaccine@stlouisco.com or call 314-615-2660.
- Missouri – https://covidvaccine.mo.gov/residents/ or call 1-877-435-8411
- Illinois – https://coronavirus.illinois.gov/s/vaccination-location or call 1-800-889-3931
- BJC Health Care – www.bjc.org/vaccinate or 314-273-1252
- Vaccinate STL – http://vaccinatestl.org/