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The Newsroom Special Edition: Covid-19 myths, misinformation, questions, and concerns

Tens of millions of people still haven't had the shot and, in most cases, it's not because they don't have access to the vaccination sites — it is often because of lingering fears and concerns about the vaccine. WHQR's team tackled these concerns, but also the question, 'can anything change the unvaccinated's minds?'

The latest wave of Covid-19 pandemic, driven by the Delta variant, is ravaging the county — and while that affects everyone, the unvaccinated make up most of the new cases, hospitalizations, and deaths. Some who haven't gotten the shot yet cite myths or misinformation, but others have more reasonable concerns.

To answer some weedy medical questions, we spoke to Dr. Paul Kamitsuka, chief epidemiologist for New Hanover Regional Medical Center and an infectious disease physician with Wilmington Health. Ivermectin? Hydroxychloroquine? Altered DNA? We get into it.

Then, we spoke to Carla Turner — New Hanover County's assistant health director — and Dr. Michael E. Thompson — professor of public health at UNC Charlotte — about changes in public health policy, and people's resistance to it.

Plus, we went for a beer — hey, journalism is hard work — to hear from people who attended a vaccination clinic at a local brewery. What changed their mind? It might surprise you.

Ben Schachtman is a journalist and editor with a focus on local government accountability. He began reporting for Port City Daily in the Wilmington area in 2016 and took over as managing editor there in 2018. He’s a graduate of Rutgers College and later received his MA from NYU and his PhD from SUNY-Stony Brook, both in English Literature.
Kelly Kenoyer is an Oregonian transplant new to the East Coast. She attended University of Oregon’s School of Journalism as an undergraduate, and later received a Master’s in Journalism from University of Missouri- Columbia. Contact her on Twitter @Kelly_Kenoyer or by email: KKenoyer@whqr.org.