According to the reports, around 40% of US Marines have declined the COVID-19 vaccine. The data recorded by CNN stated that 75,500 marines have been vaccinated, while 40,000 marines have refused to get the shot.
Camp Lejeune in North Carolina has particularly recorded the highest declination. As per CNN’s data, 15,100 out of 26,400 marines at Camp Lejeune have declined the vaccine. These numbers include II Marine Expeditionary Force as well as Marine Corps Installation East. Moreover, it is speculated that other branches might also be facing the refusal, but it’s not certain as the numbers haven’t been revealed yet.
Why are the Marines denying vaccines?
The sources say that there are many possible reasons as to why the Marines are denying the COVID-19 vaccine. But, one of the reasons that came forward is distrust of the vaccine. Apparently, the quick availability of the vaccine in the market is being questioned and the US Marines think that the process was “too rushed”.
However, the Marines spokesperson, Capt. Andrew Wood said, “The Marines mostly include young and healthy individuals.” He stated that there could be multiple reasons for their refusal. “For example, an individual may have deferred until later to allow others to get the vaccine, they may have gotten the vaccine on their own and not through military channels, they could be unavailable for a second dose in the prescribed time period for the vaccines that require two doses, they could expect the vaccine to become mandatory and are waiting until then, or they may be allergic to one of the compounds in the vaccine.”
According to the Marines spokesperson Andrew Wood, “The Navy and Marine Corps are providing substantial educational information broadly, and working with commands to ensure Marines, Sailors, and beneficiaries have accurate information regarding the safety and efficacy of the vaccines to encourage individuals to get immunized,”
Wood also added that the Marines denying the vaccine can always change their mind and get the shot. “We fully understand that widespread acceptance of the COVID-19 vaccine provides us with the best means to defeat this pandemic,” Wood said.