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'Don't let anybody know': Missouri doctor says some ask for anonymity when vaccinated

Aaron Torres, The Kansas City Star on

Published in News & Features

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Amid the current push for Americans to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, some have now started disguising themselves when they go to their vaccine appointments, a southern Missouri doctor said.

On July 18, Ozarks Healthcare posted a video on its Facebook page in which Dr. Priscilla Frase, a hospitalist and chief medical information officer for Ozarks Healthcare in West Plains, said a pharmacist informed her of some people asking to remain anonymous when receiving the vaccine.

“They’ve had several people come in to get vaccinated who have tried to sort of disguise their appearance and even went so far as to say, ‘Please, please, please don’t let anybody know that I got this vaccine. I don’t want my friends to know but I don’t want to get COVID,’ ” Frase said.

“But they’re very concerned about how their people that they love, within their family and within their friendship circles and work circles, are going to react if they found out they got the vaccine.”

With the rise of the highly contagious delta variant, and with more cases rising across the country — including in Missouri — health care and government officials are urging people to get vaccinated. Only 49.5% of the population has been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

 

In Missouri, 41.3% of the population has been fully vaccinated. But as vaccine rates are still low, COVID-19 infection rates continue to climb. Missouri confirmed 569,756 total cases including 9,667 deaths as of Saturday.

Across the country, more than nearly 35 million people have contracted COVID-19 and 613,092 have died, according to Johns Hopkins University.

“We’ve got to stop ridiculing people that do or don’t want to get the vaccine, like you see on social media and so many posts and just get the right information out there,” Frase said. “My fear is that people are getting information from the wrong sources and therefore making uninformed decisions rather than informed decisions. It’s very important that people make truly informed decisions.”

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