American Heart Association urges high-risk individuals to get vaccinated
Black adults and pregnant women are the lowest vaccinated groups in the United States.
FARGO, N.D. (KVRR) – The American Heart Association is urging vulnerable populations to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
The American Heart Association supports COVID vaccinations for everyone who is eligible to receive it, especially individuals living with cardiovascular disease and those who may develop cardiovascular disease from getting the virus.
“People who seem to be most susceptible to severe forms of COVID are people who have certain risk factors: obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure or preexisting cardiovascular disease. In 2020 and again in 2021, the leading cause of death in Americans is heart disease and stroke, even in the age of COVID. So we want to protect ourselves against both of these things and the best way to do that is to manage our health, get with our doctors, and make sure we get vaccinate,” American Heart Association President Dr. Donal Lloyd-Jones said.
Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that one of the main groups with low rates of vaccination is young black adults. Dr. Donald Lloyd-Jones says that it is not about race but access to quality health care.
“It really has nothing to do with race, the color of your skin, or your ethnicity, it is all about those social determinants and how good access to quality healthcare is probably the most important feature. If people are regularly contacting their health system, they are managing those risk factors, they are gonna be at a much lower risk,” Dr. Lloyd-Jones said.
Pregnant women are also a vulnerable population that reportedly show a low rate of vaccinations. This may be caused by assumed risks that it may pose on a healthy pregnancy. He says that despite this uncertainty, the vaccine is very safe for pregnant women.
“Vaccines have shown through the trials to be very safe for pregnant women so we are strongly recommending that pregnant women should get vaccinated to protect themselves, protect their pregnancy, and to protect the baby. They do not cause extra miscarriages, there is nothing happening with the placenta,” Dr. Lloyd-Jones said.
There is misleading information on the vaccine and Dr. Lloyd Jones says that it is best to seek out answers from a medical professional. Research shows that the pros outweigh the cons by a landslide.
“If you get vaccinated you are 5 times less likely to get COVID, you are 10 times less likely to get hospitalized, and you are 10 times less likely to die. So this a no-brainer, the real information out there should be that vaccination is the way we get out of this; it protects ourselves, it protects our families, and it protects our communities,” Dr. Lloyd-Jones said.
The American Heart Association aims to educate vulnerable populations about the importance of COVID vaccinations.