Veteran vaccine acceptance comes down to trust and truth, according to VA Office of Health and Equity’s Dr. Ernest Moy. On this bonus episode, Dr. Moy provides updates on Veteran vaccination rates and vaccine acceptance. He speaks on health care disparities, trust and transparency in vaccine trials and VA’s success in vaccinating minority populations.

Dr. Moy began his career over 25 years ago at VA Manhattan during medical school, followed by a residency at VA Philadelphia and a first job at VA Baltimore. He began to study health care disparities at a time when people didn’t believe the disparities existed. Now, Dr. Moy explains how VA and other health care systems address the disparities instead of denying their existence.

Health care disparities exist in areas such as race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status and geographic location. Dr. Moy works to diminish these disparities to make health care more equitable and accessible to all Americans. At VA, he aims to identify high risk populations so VHA can address issues faced by specific populations.

Dr. Moy explains the rationales of Veterans who refuse the vaccine at VA health care centers, which is often a matter of choice, not outright refusal. Veterans are still getting vaccinated, just on their own terms.

In this episode, Dr. Moy explains how VA is more effective than public health care systems at easing the worries of minority populations about the COVID vaccines and why rural Veterans aren’t getting vaccinated as quickly as urban Veterans.


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Jana Jenkins is a podcast intern with VA’s Digital Media Engagement team. She is an undergraduate student at the College of Saint Benedict studying Communication.

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