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Fewer than 1 in 6 African Americans have trust in the impending coronavirus vaccines soon to receive federal approval, a recent study found.

The study by the COVID Collaborative found that 55% of Blacks and 73% of Latinos said they knew someone who had been diagnosed with the coronavirus, WTOP reported. Plus, the study reported 48% of Blacks and 52% of Latinos said they know someone who has been hospitalized with or died from the virus.

On the matter of the effectiveness of the vaccine, 18% of Blacks and 40% of Latinos said they trusted it. In addition, the study reported 28% of Blacks and 47% of Latinos expressed confidence the vaccine will be tested specifically for their racial or ethnic group.

The study was based on a questionnaire posed to 1,050 Blacks and 258 Latinos, all adults.

Dr. Geoffrey Mount Varner, an emergency room physician and health care entrepreneur based in Bowie, Md., said one reason for the reluctance of Blacks to embrace vaccines is the Tuskegee experiment that took place from 1932-1972 in Tuskegee, Ala., where Black males were used to observe the natural history of untreated syphilis by government scientists without their full knowledge and consent.

“Who’s going to present this to Black Americans, saying, ‘Hey everybody, you all have seen me, you know me and you trust me’?” Mount Varner said, WTOP reported. “I understand the concern but because of a crisis, we must go into crisis mode and think outside the box and right now the goal is to save your lives and the lives of our loved ones.”

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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