A personal journey about how misinformation has impacted me

Misinformation has impacted people that I know in a negative way. It has made people divisive, it has caused me to question relationships with certain people, it has caused people to make decisions that might not be medically sound. As I think about it for this blog, topics that come to mind are:

  • Misinformation about former President Obama
  • Misinformation about immigration
  • Misinformation about topics regarding COVID-19 and vaccines

So many people did not and do not trust the COVID-19 vaccine. I won’t highlight others in this post because I am willing to show my own evolution on this topic.

A little over a year ago the first vaccines were created and became available to the public. Since I work in the healthcare field, our organization made it possible for all employees, clinical and non-clinical, to get vaccinated. I knew the importance of getting vaccinated but I had my concerns about being vaccinated early in the rollout. I had so many questions and felt like I was being told just to “trust” the medical community. I felt like I didn’t have the facts to trust the medical community. Then I was hearing and seeing people share information that was contrary to what my healthcare organization was saying. All of this caused me to question if I was really making the right decision to get vaccinated. According to a 2020 report by Statista.com, 47% of the U.S. had seen false information about COVID-19. This thought caused me to pause. Did I really not have the facts? Upon self-reflection, I realized that I had the information but I just didn’t understand some of it. Medical journals are very hard for me to read and dissect. My eyes tend to glaze over. This was the healthcare industry’s first mistake in my opinion. They didn’t make the information easily digestible for non-clinical people. I turned to a trusted friend who is a scientist and she broke down the information for me. She also helped to be able to talk to others about the science behind the vaccines. She also told me about Kizzmekia Corbett who is one of the scientists who helped to create the COVID-19 Moderna vaccine. Kizzmekia, Kizzy, looks like me. Oh my, representation in the scientific community on an issue that impacts people who are being told to “trust the medical community” when the medical community has failed people of color for years. According to a study that Medium.com reported on, “black patients, for example, are more likely to seek out black doctors for treatment”. For me, as a Black woman, I loved learning more about Kizzy and her work. She became a trusted source of information for me. On social media, she openly talks about the failings of health communication and mistrust. To help with educating the public about who they can trust, she posted “50 experts to trust in a pandemic

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