HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) – As the pandemic enters its third year, are people still motivated to follow daily precautions to protect themselves and others?
Hawaii News Now went to Magic Island and spoke with 10 people about vaccines, mandates, and how people felt about the increase in cases.
Then a respected epidemiologist reacted to his opinions.
“As a healthcare worker, it makes me nervous,” Leah Oehlert, local nurse. “We just had Christmas, we had New Years, that makes me nervous.”
Oehlert would like to see more restrictions to reduce the case count.
Oahu resident Antonio Anagaren believes the problem is simple.
“I am not totally concerned about COVID,” he said. “Of course, I am already vaccinated. I received my booster injections. As long as I do the things I have to do, there is no need to worry about it. “
David McDermott, another Oahu resident, almost wore his mask on his walk outside. You think the commands and restrictions have helped.
“Of course, we are Americans, we do what we want to do,” McDermott said. “And the pandemic doesn’t care if you are a free thinker or not, it will catch you. And this variant is worrying because it is very contagious ”.
Of the people Hawaii News Now spoke to, most didn’t seem to mind the restrictions and all were in favor of vaccines.
One person did not trust the shots or information from public officials.
“I feel like it’s a facade, it’s a scare tactic,” said Tammy Rodriguez. “Get out with the so-called virus and immediately get out with the vaccine? It’s just a corrupt world. “
Rodríguez said her employer ordered the vaccine and that she was the only one who decided not to.
“I stood up and was not going to be a fan,” she said.
In response to skeptics, DeWolfe Miller, an epidemiologist at the University of Hawaii, said Rodriguez’s view is discouraging.
“I don’t know how to reach these people with reason and caution,” Miller said. “We live together in a community and we recognize that a community will be safer if we all get vaccinated.”
But overall, Miller found people’s comments to be encouraging.
“I’m fully vaccinated, I got the booster shot, I’m wearing my mask,” said Louisville resident and Oahu visitor Michael Noble. “The restrictions are not a problem. It makes me enjoy my time here more. “
“The number of cases is really worrying,” said resident Ann Riley. “I am vaccinated and reinforced. I think it’s sensible. “
“Do more research, wear your masks, stay six feet away,” Elizabeth Corey said. “We are an island. So obviously something like this can affect us enormously. “
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