by Brian Good
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has published a study that offers another reason for companies to encourage their employees to get vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus, as well as talking points for those still concerned about potential risks involved with getting the shot. The primary takeaway to continue encouraging vaccination among your co-workers and workforce and your friends and family: unvaccinated people are 11 times more likely to die from a COVID-19 infection than those who are fully vaccinated.
Vanessa Romo of NPR reported that the CDC data “also found that vaccinated people were nearly five times less likely to get infected and 10 times less likely to get so sick they ended up in the hospital.”
According to Romo, the new federal agency research comes from a recent review of COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths across 13 different U.S. states.
In a White House press briefing detailing the findings, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the CDC, said the study offers further evidence of the importance of vaccination.
“As we have shown, study after study, vaccination works,” she explained.
The message to get vaccinated against COVID-19 continues to be incredibly important to get out — especially since public health officials have cautioned that a large portion of both the Black and Latin American communities remain unvaccinated.
ABC News and the Kaiser Family Foundation recently reported that as of Aug. 16, 2021, 60% of Black people and 55% of Latinos were not at least partially vaccinated against the virus, compared to 50% of white people.
Brandi Collins-Dexter, a digital ethnographer who tracks the spread of disinformation within the Black community, told ABC’s Hyeyoon Choi that many vaccine hoaxes deterring people from getting the shot continue to draw on both historical and modern instances of racism.
“One such hoax that circulated among the Black community claimed that the vaccines could lead to issues with fertility, piggybacking on the Black genocide frame,” Choi said. “Latinos have also been subject to widespread vaccine-related misinformation due to social media platforms’ lack of ability to accurately detect misinformation written in Spanish.”
In March 2021, researchers working on behalf of Voto Latino reported that 51% of unvaccinated Latinx individuals were resistant to vaccinations primarily because of misinformation they had seen online.
“In 2020, an analysis by Avaaz, a nonprofit organization that investigates disinformation, found that Facebook did not post warning labels on 70% of Spanish-language misinformation, compared to 29% of English-language content,” Choi reported.
As Walensky and the CDC repeatedly pointed out in the new study, fighting these types of misinformation and encouraging people to get vaccinated will not only help the nation recover from the pandemic but also continue saving a significant number of lives.