6 Common Myths Debunked About COVID-19 Vaccines
As the Delta variant of COVID-19 spreads, it’s important to combat misinformation and myths about COVID-19 vaccines.
Air Date: July 22, 2021
Moderator: Suzanne P. Clark, President and CEO, U.S. Chamber of Commerce
Featured Guests: Dr. José Romero, Secretary of Health, State of Arkansas
As the Delta variant of COVID-19 spreads rapidly around the U.S., there’s more urgency than ever for governments and businesses to encourage vaccination among hesitant Americans. During the latest edition of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Path Forward series, six common myths about COVID-19 vaccines were debunked.
U.S. Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Suzanne Clark and Arkansas Secretary of Health Dr. José Romero debunked the following myths.
Myth 1: If You Had COVID-19, You Don’t Need to Get Vaccinated
“Having had natural infection does not protect you from being reinfected,” Romero said. “And as a matter of fact, there are now very nice studies that show that if you get a dose of a vaccine, your antibodies are boosted several fold and therefore presumably, it will give you greater protection.”
Myth 2: The Vaccine Was Rushed So It’s Not Safe
“These vaccines have been accelerated, but they have not sacrificed safety,” Romero said. “In all three phases of a clinical trial, [safety] has not been compromised nor has it been compromised after the release of the vaccine. And the vaccine has been now out in the general public for nearly six months. But prior to that, they were already being followed in the volunteers that accepted the vaccine in the trials.”
Myth 3: The Vaccine Impacts Fertility
“There is no data at this time to suggest that is a concern,” Romero said. “We have the information for women that are pregnant. At this time, there does not appear to be an increased loss of pregnancy from it. The data does not suggest that this is going to have a long-term effect on pregnancy now or in the future.”
Myth 4: The Vaccine Can Give You COVID-19
“Definitely not,” Romero said. “The vaccine does not contain live or attenuated COVID virus. They contain genetic material from the virus (the RNA) that can be used then by the body to make proteins. It does not contain the live virus, and it cannot give you COVID.”
Myth 5: The Vaccine Has a Microchip or Will Alter Your DNA
“It does not contain chips of any type,” Romero said. “It cannot alter your DNA. It is very safe.”
Myth 6: The Vaccine Created the COVID-19 Variants
“No. Let me use an analogy,” Romero said. "The reason why a factory that produces cars has consistency in the quality of the cars is because there is somebody doing quality control. For this analogy, the virus doesn't have quality control. And so, every virus that comes after the initial infection is different than the original virus. And if you keep getting these variants and changes, [you end up with] a lack of quality control. Eventually, you wind up with a virus that has a different genetic makeup than the one that originally affected you. And therefore, it is a variant. It has newer characteristics. That's how we've developed this new variant Delta. It spread rapidly through the population in India and eventually established itself as a new variant because it picked up enough changes and mutation in its RNA to lead to a new variant.”