Should Seniors Be Concerned About Trump’s Push For COVID-19 Vaccine?

President Trump continues to push for the rapid production of the COVID-19 vaccine. Health experts continue to grow concerned on the legitimacy and safety of the vaccination, when vaccines typically take years and multiple trials to perfect. Will Medicare Beneficiaries have free access to the upcoming vaccine? Should seniors consider not getting the first round of vaccinations? 

Will Medicare cover your vaccine?

Yes– When a vaccine becomes available, Medicare or Medicare Advantage will cover the cost. 

Medicare covers vaccines in a variety of ways, depending on the vaccine. It may be through Medicare Part B, Medicare Part D, or a Medicare Advantage plan if you are enrolled in one. Part B covers vaccines only for certain illnesses: flu, pneumonia, and Hepatitis B (if you are at medium or high risk). Medicare Advantage is also required to provide these vaccines at no additional costs. 

Refusing the vaccine

Two-thirds of U.S. voters say they won’t try to get a coronavirus vaccine as soon as it becomes available, and one in four say they don’t want to ever get it, according to a new USA TODAY/Suffolk Poll.

Vaccine driven by politics?

The controversies surrounding the upcoming COVID-19 vaccine never cease. Trump is accused of rushing the vaccine, even saying,

“We’re going to have a vaccine very soon, maybe even before a very special date. You know what date I’m talking about (November 1).”

He of course is referencing the presidential election and this all of the sudden “rush” has experts concerned.

As the President’s trade adviser, Peter Navarro, puts it, we are all on “Trump time.” Among other government officials, Navarro has argued that the FDA’s slowness has cost lives during a pandemic.

The concern is whether it will be safe for the 72 percent of Republicans and 82 percent of Democrats who are worried that the vaccine’s rapid production has been driven more by politics than science. 

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Hiccups in Oxford vaccine trial

One of the top leading Oxford vaccine trials, AstraZeneca, seems to have hit a stumbling block. The company has officially put a hold on its COVID-19 clinical trials worldwide while it investigated an adverse reaction in a trial participant in the United Kingdom.

It’s not clear how long the stoppage will last. Sometimes reactions happen during a trial that are purely coincidental, but if they are serious enough, research is put on hold until they can be fully investigated.

“We are working to expedite the review of the single event to minimize any potential impact on the trial timeline,” AstraZeneca said in a statement late Tuesday. The company is testing a vaccine originally developed at Oxford University. “This is a routine action which has to happen whenever there is a potentially unexplained illness in one of the trials, while it is investigated, ensuring we maintain the integrity of the trials.”

No “normal” without vaccine

Many experts warn that life won’t return to “normal” until a vaccine is widely available. Currently, approximately 140 COVID-19 vaccines are in development across the world, according to the World Health Organization. 

More than two dozen have started clinical trials and some drugmakers believe a vaccine could be available to the public in 2021. Dr. Fauci certainly agrees with fellow health experts on the impact that a vaccine will bring to society returning closer to “normal.”

“The ultimate solution to a virus that might be coming back would be a vaccine. The same way a vaccine for other diseases that were scourges in the past that now we don’t even worry about,” said Dr. Fauci.

Tell us what you think!

Is hurry on the COVID-19 vaccine worth the potential harm? Are you going to get the vaccine when it becomes available? Let us know on Facebook

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