Doctors frustrated with anti-vaccine flyers in Yankton


YANKTON, S.D. (KELO) — On a day when the CDC eases guidelines for those who are fully vaccinated, someone is trying to tell young people in Yankton that they should avoid the vaccines. Cars in the parking lot at Yankton High School were blanketed with flyers telling the students that the COVID-19 vaccines will cause long-term side effects.

The flyers originate from two websites. One with catchy slogans aimed at teenagers, like “say nope to the poke” and “know the harm before you give them your arm.”

The other is from a website started by a Beverley hills doctor who promotes hydroxychloroquine, is selling a book and who is facing charges in the insurrection at the Capitol. The flyer claims vaccine side affects can include sterility, cancer, brain damage and diabetes to name a few.

“The side effects of the vaccine that they claim on this pamphlet, they’ve all been debunked,” said Dr. Josh Crabtree from Sanford Health.

Dr. Crabtree says its frustrating to see this type of misinformation being repeated, especially targeting young people. The virus has been spreading fastest among people ages 18 to 43 and according to the CDC, doctors are seeing more cases among those ages 14 to 17.

“The CDC, the FDA are not trying to hide side effects from the vaccine, just like what they did with the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, when we become aware of a side effect we make it known to the public, so I still recommend strongly the vaccine to all people,” said Avera’s Dr. Rick Kooima.

Doctors from both Sanford and Avera say there is no scientific evidence to back up any of the claims being peddled to the teenagers.

“We also want our young people to get back to their usual activity, get back to sporting events, get back to choir concerts and band concert and all those things that we know to be a very important part of our children’s social development through their younger years,” said Crabtree.

Both doctors say getting vaccinated is the fastest way to getting back to the life we knew before the pandemic.

KELOLAND News reached out to the Yankton School District to see if they had any information on who may have placed the flyers on the cars at the High School.

We have yet to hear back from them.

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