Anti-vaccination activists in Georgia have disrupted multiple vaccine drives in the state and have even forced one of them to shut down entirely, a state health official said this week.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that Dr. Kathleen Toomey, commissioner of the Georgia Department of Public Health, said during a recent press briefing that anti-vaxxers have conducted harassment campaigns against public health workers at vaccination sites throughout the state.
"In one south Georgia county, the anti-vaxxers tracked down public health employees through social media and harangued them with messages of hostility and misinformation about vaccines," writes the AJC. "And the event that was canceled was a north Georgia mobile vaccination event, where an organized group of people showed up to harass and name-call public health workers."
Nancy Nydam, Toomey's spokesperson, tells the AJC that these tactics are having a major negative impact on the state's vaccination efforts because no one wants to get vaccinated in a location where they'll be harassed by an angry mob.
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp this week revealed that he is calling up additional National Guard forces to help the state's hospitals deal with an overwhelming number of COVID-19 patients.
Georgia trails behind the national average in terms of vaccinations, as only around 41 percent of state residents are fully vaccinated.