Bracing for fall viruses and ‘vaccine fatigue’
Remember last fall and winter when so many people were coughing, wheezing and feeling achy? We were facing a “tripledemic” of respiratory diseases.
This month, we’re going to be asked to roll up our sleeves for another round of vaccines to avoid a repeat of last year’s waves of viral illness. There’s the annual flu shot, a new vaccine against COVID-19 coming out and new protections against Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV).
But health officials are concerned that people may not line up for them. As coronavirus circulates again, “vaccine fatigue” is setting in. Fewer people are getting immunized against a wide range of infectious disease, and hesitancy is even spilling over into routine child immunizations.
MPR News host Angela Davis helps you sort out immunizations and talks with an infectious disease doctor and a pediatric nurse about what needs to happen to rebuild widespread trust in vaccines.
Dr. Greg Poland is an internal medicine physician at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., and an infectious disease expert. He’s founder and director of the Mayo Vaccine Research Group and the Editor-in-Chief of the medical journal Vaccine.
Sheyanga Beecher is a pediatric nurse practitioner with Hennepin HealthCare. She’s also medical director of the mobile pediatric clinic, which runs out of a van and has provided thousands of vaccines against COVID-19 and childhood diseases, along with other basic health care.
Use the audio player above to listen to the full conversation.