Vaccines are on the horizon. Will the public accept them?

A woman gets a vaccine.
A pharmacist gives Jennifer Haller (left) the first shot in the first-stage safety study clinical trial of a potential vaccine for COVID-19 at the Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute in Seattle on March 16, 2020. The world's biggest COVID-19 vaccine test got underway July 27 with the first of 30,000 planned volunteers. The experimental vaccine is made by the National Institutes of Health and Moderna Inc., and it's one of several candidates in the final stretch of the global vaccine race.
Ted S. Warren | AP

After months of mask-wearing, social-distancing and general COVID-fatigue, a vaccine for the coronavirus is on the horizon. According to one tracker, 11 vaccines are in the final testing phase to determine safety and efficacy.

But developing the vaccine is just one finish line. The next step is to mass produce and distribute the vaccine. 

To achieve herd immunity, at least 70 percent of the public must get vaccinated, which could be a challenge. The Pew Research Center found the percentage of U.S. adults who would get a COVID-19 vaccine dropped from 72 percent in May to 51 percent in September. 

In some communities of color where the virus is having a disproportionate effect, some are skeptical about volunteering for vaccine trials or being first in line for a new vaccine. So what’s the best way to proceed? 

Monday at 9 a.m., MPR News host Kerri Miller spoke with two experts about the science and the art of educating the public about the much-hoped-for vaccine.


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