ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The Pfizer vaccine now has full approval from the FDA so will people who were holding out on getting the shot change their minds? It seems at this point, many people who have already chosen not to get vaccinated are not going to budge.
On Friday, Leanna Derrick with Call to Action New Mexico protested alongside local healthcare workers against vaccine mandates. “Their first concern was the issue of safety,” Derrick said Friday. “They are very concerned with the COVID vaccination. It is still experimental. It is not FDA approved.”
Now just three days later, the FDA has given full approval for the Pfizer vaccine. KRQE News 13 asked if that had changed Derrick’s mind. “No, because for me, I look at the science behind it,” Derrick said.
Derrick said she is concerned about the unknown long-term effects of the vaccine and how it may impact children. To Derrick, the FDA approval doesn’t mean much. “It simply is just another step in the process,” Derrick said. “It is simply just an approval.”
News 13 asked if there was anything that could be done to make Derrick want to get the vaccine. “No,” Derrick said. “Given my health criteria that I am very familiar with, nothing could induce me to take the vaccine.”
Some people who have been vaccinated said the approval is good news. “I think the fact that it is verified and recognized by the FDA is a good thing for certain,” Parker Engel said.
“I mean I wasn’t worried about it, but it is nice to hear,” Paul Stratakos said. “It is nice to hear. It is comforting.”
From February 1 to the week of August 16 in New Mexico, 91 percent of cases, 92 percent of hospitalizations and nearly 98 percent of deaths were from those not fully vaccinated. News 13 asked Derrick what her response is to the state calling out unvaccinated New Mexicans for spreading the virus.
“They can blame all they want,” Derrick said. “That simply is their posture they are taking, but I am a constitutionalist and a Christian,” Derrick said. “My body is my body. What I choose to do is my choice.”
With the new FDA approval, it is expected that more businesses will require COVID vaccines. The Pfizer vaccine is still under emergency use authorization for 12- to 15-year-olds.