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Local doctor addresses vaccine concerns

With so much focus on getting the COVID-19 vaccine, local doctors say they're getting lots of questions from patients right now.

LUZERNE COUNTY, Pa. — Is it safe? That is the question many doctors say they have been getting for weeks now from patients worried about untested side effects from COVID-19 vaccines.

“We talk about the vaccine development cycle takes about 10 years or at least close to that, this is going to be a vaccine that is going to come out in about a year, so is there a concern? Definitely, but this is a newer technology, it’s a lot safer technology," said Dr. Jignesh Sheth of The Wright Center for Community Health.

Dr. Jignesh Sheth said getting as many people vaccinated as possible is key to ending this pandemic, along with continuing to wear masks and social distancing.

He said those things are not going away anytime soon.

“In addition to that, the vaccine is going to provide some protection that really we all need and what the results are showing currently, the vaccination is going to be very effective.”

In addition to the vaccine, which Dr. Sheth said everyone should get, he said newly approved medicines to treat the virus are so important right now.

“Those medicines help you once you acquire the infection what it does is kill the virus; it targets the virus and kills them.”

Dr. Sheth is telling his patients there are unknown risks with these new vaccines and medicines, but serious effects from vaccines are rare. 

He believed the ones approved for this pandemic should be used by everyone.