Dolly Parton Hasn’t Gotten the COVID-19 Vaccine Yet, Despite Helping Fund Research
Dolly Parton donated $1 million to help fund research for what became Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine in 2020, but the singer hasn't yet gotten her shot, she explains in a new interview with AP News.
Even though Parton's age makes her eligible to get the vaccine — she turned 75 on Jan. 19 — she says she's planning to wait a little longer so that others who need the shot can get their doses first.
"I don't want it to look like I'm jumping the line just because I donated money. I'm very funny about that," Parton admits. "I'm going to get mine, though, but I'm going to wait."
She says she considered getting her shot as part of her recent birthday celebrations, but ultimately decided against it. "I thought, 'Nah, don't do that. You'll look like you're just doing it for a show.'"
"I'm going to get mine. I want it. I'm going to get it," she reiterates. "When I get it, I'll probably do it on camera so people will know, and I'll tell them the truth, if I have symptoms and all that. Hopefully it'll encourage people."
"I'm not going to jump the line just because I could," the country icon insists.
Throughout the pandemic, Parton has taken social distancing protocols very seriously, even declining the chance to accept the Presidential Medal of Freedom because she didn't want to travel at a time when case numbers were high. From the onset, it has also been important to the singer to help those affected by the virus' spread however she could. That's what led her to make her donation to vaccine research, Parton explains.
"I'm a person of faith and I pray all the time that God will lead me into the right direction and let me know what to do. When the pandemic first hit, that was my first thought: 'I need to do something to try and help find a vaccination,'" she says. "I just did some research with the people at Vanderbilt [University] — they're wonderful people, they've been so good through the years to my people in times of illness and all that. I just asked if I could donate a million dollars to the research for a vaccine."
See Dolly Parton Through the Years