Doctors Concerned Over Slowing Vaccination Rate

As vaccine clinics continue to pop up across the region, doctors are seeing a slowing in demand and it is concerning. KDKA's Bryant Reed has the story.

Video Transcript

ROYCE JONES: After a pause following reports of a rare blood clot, health care providers have been given the green light to add the Johnson and Johnson vaccine back to their toolkit to fight COVID-19. The state health department says, so far, nearly eight million Pennsylvanians have had at least one shot, and remind everyone that anyone 16 and older is eligible for a shot.

Good evening, I'm Royce Jones. Thanks for joining us, and welcome to those of you watching on CBSN. The one shot Johnson and Johnson vaccine can be used again. The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines were still being used during that pause though, but doctors are still concerned. Bryant Reed shares why.

BRYANT REED: Every week, more shots go into the arms of the people who want them. But doctors say that number is slowing down, and it's concerning. That's why they're meeting people where they are and bringing the vaccine to them.

It seems every week, more and more vaccine clinics pop up. The workers are there and so is the vaccine, but it's the community that's been missing.

BARBARA NIGHTINGALE: Now I think where we are is, sort of, if it's available and easy to get, you have people that are willing. And then also some people are, sort of, just a little bit worried.

BRYANT REED: Dr. Barbara Nightingale says we're at a crucial time in the fight against COVID.

BARBARA NIGHTINGALE: I'm definitely worried where we are now, because it feels like where things are slowing down in the vaccination rate, and there's still a lot of work to do.

BRYANT REED: So they're taking the vaccine to communities. Today's clinic was in Clairton, a population UPMC has highlighted as underserved. They're working to vaccinate communities disproportionately affected.

BARBARA NIGHTINGALE: Those disparities are there and actually maybe even increasing at this point. And we have to really work on getting out to the communities, and making sure we're decreasing disparities, and working harder to make the vaccine available for them.

BRYANT REED: And as for the vaccine, they only use what they need. She says even with the decreased numbers, little vaccine is wasted. In Clairton, I'm Bryant Reed, KDKA News.