Vaccine hesitancy is still present in Central Oregon’s rural areas.
“We had a lot of vaccine interest at the beginning,” Diana Burden, Mosaic Medical Prineville clinic medical director said. “It’s kind of tapered off over the last month or so.”
Burden says she has seen this hesitancy first-hand and hopes FDA approval of the Pfizer vaccine will help.
“Some people have actually indicated that they’re hesitant because of the fact that it hasn’t been approved by the FDA,” Burden said. “So again, hopefully now that it has been, we’re going to see those people feeling a little bit more confident, that they know that all the testing is up to date, and the FDA believes that everything is safe with the vaccine.”
Not all locals believe this will convince their unvaccinated neighbors.
One Prineville resident tells Central Oregon Daily News, “I don’t think anything could help Crook County.”
Burden is also the interim clinic medical director in Madras, and says Mosaic Medical has already created more opportunities to receive a Pfizer vaccine in Crook and Jefferson counties.
“It really is a type of vaccine that we believe is going to be really safe,” Burden said. “And we know is safe.”
Burden says Pfizer has been approved before other COVID vaccines because those clinical trials were completed first, but she anticipates Moderna and later Johnson & Johnson will not be far behind.
What is needed now is that newfound confidence.