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COVID vaccine misinformation could cause continued health crisis

Doctors Elizabeth Racz and Christine Mathews with the South Dakota School of Mines have a...
Doctors Elizabeth Racz and Christine Mathews with the South Dakota School of Mines have a warning for people: false claims about coronavirus vaccines could lead to a continued public health crisis.(KEVN)
Published: Jan. 26, 2021 at 5:31 PM MST
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KEVN) - Misleading and untrue claims about COVID-19 vaccines are being widely circulated on the internet.

Doctors Elizabeth Racz and Christine Mathews with the South Dakota School of Mines have a warning for people: false claims about coronavirus vaccines could lead to a continued public health crisis.

Mathews said that the claim that the vaccine could give you the coronavirus is simply not true. However, receiving the vaccine won’t make you immune until a couple of weeks later.

“It is theoretically possible that you could get a COVID vaccine, and then you could get COVID in the first couple of weeks after you have received a dose of the vaccine,” Mathews said. “That would be a coincidental event, and not caused by the vaccine.”

Mathews said, therefore, it’s important to remain diligent about safety precautions like masks and social distancing even after you receive the shot.

Racz said that the speedy manufacturing of the vaccines may also be cause for suspicion, however, she says the vaccine was built off years of research.

“The people working on this vaccine didn’t come up with it from scratch,” Racz said. “There were components that we’re already in place for a long time, relied upon, and are sound, known components that we’re just used in a new way.”

That new way is using what’s known as mRNA in the vaccines. This type of vaccine is also raising suspicions because of a claim that this method can change DNA. Mathews said that this is also untrue and likens the harmless mRNA data to self-destructing messages in spy movies.

“Think of your DNA as being part of your master code or master template,” Mathews said. “If you want to make something from that template, you don’t take the entire template with you. You want to take just a little piece that has those instructions and take it to the manufacturing place for just long enough, and then the instructions go away.”

The epidemiologists say neither vaccine was made from fetal tissue.

Both doctors also say to discuss any questions or concerns about the vaccine with your physician before receiving the shot.

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