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Survey: 56.4% of respondents say they would take COVID-19 vaccine

Most of the 55 people who participated in a Star-News online questionnaire this week said they would take or already have taken a COVID-19 vaccine.

Fifty-six percent (31 people) indicated that they would take or have already taken a COVID-19 vaccine. The other 24 participants (43.6 percent) indicated they will not take the vaccine.

Those who don’t plan to take the vaccine listed reasons such as concerns that it was developed too quickly; worries that it was not adequately tested; and potential long-term effects.

“I’m worried about the long-term effects that might come from the vaccine,” one Covington County resident wrote. “While it might stop the spread of COVID-19 I don’t think ‘we’ know what it will do to us three years down the road.”

Another resident agreed.

“It is a completely untrialed vaccine that they do not even know the effects of,” the participant wrote. “Plus, the flu vaccine clearly doesn’t prevent the flu.”

Another resident agreed that it was rushed through the trial period.

“I don’t feel comfortable with injecting my body with whatever we are told is a vaccine, that was ‘RUSHED’ to be developed and then rushed to be mass produced,” the participant wrote. “It’s just scary, scary times we live in these days.”

Proponents said they trust the science behind the vaccine and that they have done research of their own.

“It’s the best option we have for dealing not only with the virus, but protecting those around us from those who improperly or out-right ignore the precautionary procedures,” one resident wrote.

“I have done enough research from credible/scientific/medical resources that I believe the vaccines to be safe and effective,” another wrote.

More than half of the participants (24) rated their confidence level in the effectiveness of the vaccine at 6 or above on a scale of 1-10 with 10 being the highest. Twenty people rated their confidence level at 5 or lower, with a dozen people rating it at 1.

Sixty-six percent of participants rated their concern about the COVID-19 virus at six or higher, with 54 percent rating their concern at 8 or higher.

Sixty two percent (33 out of 55) said they were being extremely precautious by wearing masks, social distancing and avoiding large crowds. Eighteen percent (10 of 55) reported they are being moderately cautious, and 21.8 percent (12 of 55) are only taking minimum precautions.

In this survey, 55.6 percent of the participants  (30 people) were female and 44.4 percent (24 people) were male. One participant did not select a gender.

“Andalusia, as a community, has shown little concern for the virus,” one survey participant wrote. “There is no leadership in regards to the mandates (mayor doesn’t wear a mask or show any outward support), large gatherings/events continue to happen with full support of individuals and families. Where other communities have extended (and some move to only) virtual school offerings at the beginning of this semester, Andalusia City Schools went to all in- person (unless you call “virtual” going to central office). People are sick and dying here but there is little admission or acknowledgement and so little support for healthcare workers and all they are doing.”

The Star-News appreciates the participation of its readers.