Virtual faith-based community town hall address concerns about Covid-19 vaccine

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LANSING, Mich. (WLNS)– Today during a virtual town hall, religious leaders and doctors made up a panel to discuss the Covid-19 vaccine.

“It’s all about spreading hope and not Covid, spreading hope and not Covid,” said Dion Williams, director of Faith Based & Urban Affairs for Governor Gretchen Whitmer.

Dr. Joneigh Khaldun also was apart of the event and says it’s important to have conversations like this so community members can hear about the vaccine from other members of their community.

“It’s no question that this country’s health care system has a history of mistreating people of color in particular, and this is part of the reason why there’s so much mistrust of the health care system and vaccine hesitancy in many brown and black communities,” said Khaldun.

They touched on obstacles and talked about questions some might be having when it comes to getting the Covid-19 vaccine and their religion.

“For me, coming from a religious perspective, something that’s important to say out loud, at least in Jewish tradition it is not just a choice but an obligation to protect your health and just as much to protect the health and safety and life of others,” said Rabbi Mark Miller of the Congregation Beth El in Bloomfield Hills

Dr. Herbert Smitherman, from Detroit Receiving Hospital, says the country needs an 80 percent vaccination rate in order to create what’s called herd immunity.

“That’s to stop the spread of the virus and that means we have enough vaccinated individuals to that we can stop the disease transmission disrupting the chain of infection, therefore, stopping the pandemic,” said Dr. Smitherman

If you want to see the full town hall, you can click here.

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