Why is number of Americans not returning for second COVID vaccine dose growing?

Coronavirus

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — New data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows millions of people are not getting their second COVID-19 shots.

Data shows more than five million people – that’s nearly 8% of Americans – have missed their second dose of Pfizer or Moderna.

According to the CDC, that number is only growing. But the question is, why?

Some health experts believe there are a number of reasons people are skipping their second dose –including convenience, feeling symptomatic after their first shot, shortages, and scheduling conflicts.

The CDC says getting your second dose gives you the most protection from the virus. They also say you should get your second shot as close to the recommended two to four-week interval as possible.

Dr. Onyema Ogbuagu with Yale Health says while millions haven’t received their second doses, he sees the glass half full.

“If eight percent didn’t show up for their second shots, it means 92 percent showed up for their second shots and if we think about a lot of the other multishot vaccine schedules that we do for other diseases…a completion rate of 92 percent is not too shabby,” he said.

Dr. Ogbuagu wants people to keep in mind that in that eight percent some suffered severe reactions to their first shots and were advised by their doctors not to get the second.

If you missed your second shot, the Department of Health will be contacting you a minimum of three times by phone, text, and email.

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