Lexington task force looks to reduce fear over COVID-19 vaccines

Posted at 6:16 PM, Jan 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-28 18:20:19-05

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Even with established vaccines, whose safety and efficacy have been proven over many years, there are those who express concern of the potential for long and short terms side-effects. As a result, you can imagine what health officials are wrestling with since the roll-out of the COVID-19 vaccines.

Members of the coronavirus vaccine task force, established by Lexington Mayor Linda Gorton, are aware of the issue and plan on addressing it beginning in February by using a wave of public service announcements.

“Everything from traditional advertising; radio, tv, print, digital. And non-traditional, or social media,” said Kip Cornett, a member of the task force.

Cornett is concerned some will pass on receiving the COVID-19 vaccine, and he’s basing that concern on statistics.

“Over the past few years about 50% of Fayette Countians take the flu shot,” Cornett noted. “If we’re going to get to the level that we need to get to in Fayette County (with the coronavirus vaccine), then we need to get beyond that,” he said of the 50 percent not receiving the seasonal flu shot.

In addition to the PSA campaign, Tyler Scott, Mayor Gorton’s Chief of Staff, eluded to another initiative that could be implemented as the vaccine roll out continues.

“We’ve floated the idea of putting together virtual town halls, with a few congregations able to talk to medical experts we’ve asked our providers to make available,” Scott said.

Fear and access for those in certain areas of town are two of the bigger concerns.

“There’s not one magic TV commercial that’s going to drive us to get there. We know there’s a lot of moving parts to this,” Cornett said.