COVID-19 vaccine scams ramping up, experts say beware

An average of 10,000 people a week are getting the covid vaccine through Henry Ford Health System.

"We want to remind everyone that vaccines are not available at their doctor's office, at the emergency department, or at urgent care centers because there is a lot of misinformation out there," said Bob Riney, president of health care operations, Henry Ford Health System. "We are not offering walk-up vaccinations at any of our sites.

"Vaccinations are offered by appointment only and we notify our patients when it is their turn to sign up."

This is the largest vaccination effort of its kind and demand is still outpacing supply. The COVID-19 vaccine is free to anyone who wants it.

But both law enforcement and health officials say you need to beware of scammers who are trying to profit during the pandemic.

"No one from Henry Ford or any other reputable healthcare provider or government agency will call you to ask you to pay for the vaccine or to turn over highly confidential personal information," Riney said. "No one will do that. 

"If you get a call, hang up, these people are criminals, and they are trying to steal your money or identify."

Meanwhile, as more and more people are getting the vaccine medical professionals say some people have complained of body aches after the second shot.

"(It is) very normal, symptoms are short-lived," said Adnan Munkarah, M.D. Henry Ford Health System. "We don't want you to be scared, it lasts about 24-48 hours and then energy levels return to normal."

With Super Bowl Sunday a little over a week away and indoor dining set to resume on Monday, health professionals are urging people to make smart decisions before they head out.

They say avoiding large gatherings, practicing good hand hygiene and mask-wearing remain at the top of the list when it comes to preventing the spread of COVID-19.