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Some Americans concerned about possible side effects of a COVID-19 vaccine: “We just don’t know enough”

“CBS This Morning” explores whether America is ready for a coronavirus vaccine in a special three-part series, Road to a Vaccine. Part two airs on Tuesday, October 27 and part three airs Wednesday, October 28 on “CBS This Morning,” 7-9 a.m. on CBS.


Two major clinical trials for coronavirus vaccines are resuming in the United States, after being paused over safety concerns. Estimates show the earliest time for an approved vaccine could be the end of November.

But a recent STAT-Harris poll showed a sharp decrease in the number of Americans who would get a vaccine right away.

CBS News senior medical correspondent Dr. Tara Narula spoke with a wide-ranging group about their thoughts on a vaccine.

Asked to rank their confidence level in a vaccine on a scale of 1 to 10, California resident Seana-Marie Sesma said 6; fellow Californian Adam Davis said 7.5; Lissi Marshall, a neuroscience college student from Philadelphia, said 7 or 8; Michigan resident Alyssa Kogut, who is diabetic, said 8; and Chad St. Clair, who is from California, said 1 or 2. 

St. Clair is adamant he will not get the vaccine, while Kogut said she definitely will. Marshall said she trusts the science but will wait a few months to get a vaccine. Sesma is still unsure due to concerns about potential side effects, and Davis is hesitant but open to it.

“If somehow, after however many months the participants of the preliminary vaccine research start to come out with any side effects … that would definitely change my mind,” Marshall told Narula. 

“I feel that, though the FDA has done the majority of good things, they have also taken products off the market that they approved at one point,” Sesma said. 

“We just don’t know enough about the vaccine yet. I’m young, I’m healthy. I exercise. And I’m low risk,” St. Clair said.

Sesma agreed with him. “We don’t know much about the vaccine or the long-term — short-term or long-term effects,” she said. 

Davis agreed he is concerned about potential risks or side effects. But Kogut said it was the “opposite” for her. 

“I know this virus, and I know what it can do to you,” she said. “I have diabetes, and my daughter has asthma. She’s only 7. So I would definitely take it to protect me and my kids.”

St. Clair said he is “on the other side.”

“I don’t want to panic. I know a lot of people who have had it and have recovered nicely, as well as our leader of our country,” he said. 

“For me, if I see people actually taking it and working, I’d be more inclined to do it,” Davis said.

Dr. Kathryn Stephenson, director of the Clinical Trials Unit of the Center for Virology and Vaccine Research at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, participated in the early development of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine candidate, and is an investigator in trials of other COVID-19 vaccine candidates.

Asked how she reassures people

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The Latest: UNGA Head Concerned NY Mayor Won’t Meet on Virus | World News

UNITED NATIONS — The president of the United Nations General Assembly has expressed concern that New York Mayor Bill de Blasio rejected a meeting with him to discuss the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the work of the 193-member world organization.

Volker Bozkir said in a statement that the United Nations “has been proud to call the city its home since the middle of the last century” and is “happy to generate billions of dollars in economic benefits and tens of thousands of jobs in New York City.” But the Turkish politician said he was disappointed at the mayor’s refusal to meet him.

Bozkir said: “This lack of interaction concerns me.”

His spokesman, Brenden Varma, told reporters that Bozkir reached out about two weeks ago to ask for an appointment with the mayor. But the assembly president received a response a few days ago declining the request, he said.

Penny Abeywardena, New York City’s commissioner for international affairs, responded to the assembly president’s statement without mentioning the mayor’s decision not to meet Bozkir.

She pointed to de Blasio’s “excellent relationship” with U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and “deeply collaborative relationship with Mr. Bozkir’s predecessors,” and said the city looks forward “to continuing our partnership with the United Nations.”

HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE VIRUS OUTBREAK:

— France surpasses 1 million coronavirus cases

— WHO says Northern hemisphere at ‘critical juncture’ with rising cases, deaths

— FDA approves first COVID-19 drug: antiviral remdesivir

— UN chief says G-20 leaders must coordinate to fight coronavirus. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is frustrated leaders of 20 major industrialized countries didn’t do it in March as he proposed.

— Schools from New Jersey to California have been hit with teacher and staff layoffs. Urban areas lacking the property wealth of suburban communities are especially vulnerable to budget cuts, with many schools hoping for a new round of federal money.

— An online Japanese-language text messaging service for suicide prevention has grown to 500 volunteers since March.

Follow all of AP’s coronavirus pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:

MADISON, Wis. — Nearly 4,400 more Wisconsin residents have contracted COVID-19 as the disease continues to surge unchecked across the U.S. state.

The state Department of Health Services reported 4,378 newly confirmed cases on Friday. The daily record is 4,591 cases, set on Tuesday. The state has now seen 190,478 cases since the pandemic began in March.

DHS reported 42 more people have died, bringing the death toll to 1,745.

The Wisconsin Hospital Association reported 1,243 people were hospitalized with COVID-19 on Friday, setting a new record for the second straight day. Two patients were at a field hospital the state has set up at the state fairgrounds in West Allis as of Friday.

NEW YORK — The number of people hospitalized in New York because of the coronavirus has climbed back over 1,000.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said there were 1,023 hospitalizations around the state as of Thursday. That’s more than

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Dearnaley concerned with Kaizer Chiefs legend Tshabalala’s fitness

Former AmaZulu marksman George Dearnaley has highlighted the influence which newly-signed forward Siphiwe ‘Shabba’ Tshabalala will have in the Usuthu dressing room.

The Durban-based club has been on a spending spree following a change of ownership and former Kaizer Chiefs and Bafana Bafana player Tshabalala was unveiled this week as one of 10 new arrivals, with others including Luvuyo Memela, Augustine Mulenga and Siphelele Mthembu.

Tshabalala is now 36-years-old and has not played since May 2019 for Turkish side BB Erzurumspor.

Dearnaley admits to having a bit of a concern over the player’s lengthy inactive period. In that respect, it will be crucial for the Usuthu technical team to manage Tshabalala’s game-time and steadily help him regain full match fitness.

But as Dearnaley points out, the former Free State Stars and Amakhosi winger’s influence will extend beyond the time he’s out on the pitch during matches.

“I don’t have a problem with his age, I’m more concerned that he hasn’t really been playing competitively for nearly 18 months,” the former Usuthu striker told IOL.

“He is an experienced player, a legend of South African football, and I think people underestimate the impact that players like this can have on the squad.

“This ranges from giving advice to young players at training, being under pressure in massive games, and sharing those experiences with the less experienced players and even giving the coaching staff some advice.

“It’s all of this that happens on the training field and in the dressing room – not just match performances – that makes him a great signing for the club.”

AmaZulu begin their league campaign against Orlando Pirates at Kings Park Stadium on Saturday night.

At this stage, it appears that Tshabalala is unlikely to start and may perhaps be limited to a cameo appearance off the bench, as head coach Ayanda Dlamini revealed in an interview with the Sowetan: “They joined us this week, and some of them, when it comes to fitness, are very behind. We know Shabba hasn’t played for some time now. So is Mthembu,” Dlamini said.

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