An internal poll conducted by the FDNY’s firefighter union shows that 55% of its members will refuse to take the COVID-19 vaccine that is scheduled to be approved by the Food and Drug Association within the next month.
According to the NY Post, this follows an MTA pool in August that detailed only 30% of transit employees were willing to get the vaccine.
Currently, two vaccines have been submitted to the FDA for emergency use. The Phizer and Moderna vaccines have shown to carry a 95% efficacy rate, which is one of the highest effectiveness rates for any vaccine.
A third, from Astrazeneca, has already been approved in the United Kingdom.
The news of the anti-vaccine movement would mean thousands of first-responders could remain exposed to the potentially deadly virus.
The FDNY says it will not make the vaccine mandatory for their firefighter/EMTs, though that may change depending on how bad the impact of the virus gets.
A separate study shows that firefighter/EMTs, especially those younger than 40, are less fearful of the virus and its effects. The study also cites that many of those same first responders have already been exposed or were infected with COVID-19.
One responded told the Post, “The 55 percent doesn’t surprise me. They’re called the Bravest, not the Smartest.”
The Police Benevolant Association is encouraging the NYPD to distribute the vaccine to officers, but only on a voluntary basis.
Health experts believe first responders could be able to get vaccinated by early 2021.
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