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Local experts say vaccine hesitancy may play a part in U.S. vaccine surplus

Posted at 12:20 AM, Apr 30, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-30 00:21:32-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Dr. Temple Robinson is the CEO of Bond Community Health Center.

"That's what we're seeing everywhere, we're seeing it also in Tallahassee," said Robinson.

She's talking about the number of vaccines that haven't made their way into arms yet.

"Early on we were worried about cracking open a vile and not being able to use it by the end of the day, that is still a great concern," Robinson said.

Before that concern was due to a limited supply of vaccines, now it's because not enough people are coming to get them.

In the state of Florida more than 8,000,000 people have been vaccinated.

Out of that a little more than two million have only had one dose of vaccine.

According to the CDC more than 14,000,000 doses are still available statewide.

Something the COVID-19 state task force has been working to decrease.

"With the pause that was given to J&J some people have even more questions which means we really have to get out and do a continuous effort towards education so that hesitancy will decrease," said Elaine Bryant, Project Manager for the Coronavirus Education and Engagement Task Force.

Leon County has vaccinated more than 111,000 people.

The task force says to get more people vaccinated, they are being consistent with their plan.

"We try to go to a trusted place, collaborating with churches to have them share the information and as we do our canvassing encourage people to come and get their shot," said Bryant.

Health experts say the only way to prevent wasting vaccines is to increase confidence in the science.

"We have good expiration dates their pretty far out, but if we don't give them we'll all have this problem," said Robinson.