RAPID CITY, S.D. — Since the COVID-19 pandemic struck in February, many have been waiting for a vaccine to be made available.
Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine arrived in Rapid City Monday, one week after Pfizer’s.
According to Monument Health officials, it could take until next summer for the vaccines to be available for the general public.
So, how would Black Hills residents react to taking the vaccine?
“I don’t really know what the symptoms are and they kinda made like a vaccine for a global pandemic pretty quickly,” said Caleb Valandra of Rapid City. “So I just don’t really trust it right now.”
“I just don’t know enough about them,” said Shane Tipps of Rapid City. “Until I know more about it and I see some results than I might be more apt to take it.”
“I just feel like there was not enough time put into it, I think they just threw something together to help people feel better,” said Rhiannon Wright of Martin. “That’s just my opinion.”
Despite skepticism, local health officials say by taking the vaccine and voicing their experiences, they can lead by example for the community.
“That will be another encouragement to other people that you can do this and that will help you to get back to work and back to normal activities,” said Dr. Terry Graber, a Staff Physician at the Hill City Clinic and Custer Care Center.
Top health officials also reiterating that the shots are safe and will save lives.
“I look forward to receiving this vaccine myself in the coming days as part of our efforts to demonstrate to Americans that these vaccines are safe and incredibly effective at preventing COVID-19,” said Alex Azar, the Secretary of Health and Human Services of the U.S.
Health officials also say that it’s still imperative for people to social distance, wear a mask and practice CDC guidelines even after taking the vaccine.