We waited for some time for a vaccine to be developed to protect us from coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19). We are fortunate to have lived through the pandemic and hopeful that the worst of times will have passed. But sadly, there are those who do not want to be vaccinated, or are wanting to wait for the “safest” of all the vaccines.
It is incredible how scientists, researchers, pharmaceutical companies, collective institutions and governments were able to develop in less than a year their vaccines against one of the most challenging threats in modern times. While the private companies are profit-oriented, others have altruistic intent. Still, they all should be commended — if not declared as heroes in this World War against Covid-19. But the virus may not be totally eradicated for as long as there are those who oppose vaccination.
Ever since a vaccine was introduced in the West by Edward Jenner in 1796, there have been anti-vaxxers. The objections raised could be one of the following grounds: sanitary, religious, political, human rights, consumeristic and mistrust of science.
The World Health Organization, which has a broad mandate to guide and coordinate international health policy, says that “Immunization is a key component of primary health care and an indisputable human right. It’s also one of the best health investments money can buy. Vaccines are also critical to the prevention and control of infectious-disease outbreaks. They underpin global health security and will be a vital tool in the battle against antimicrobial resistance.”
The United Nations body claims that there are “now vaccines to prevent more than 20 life-threatening diseases, helping people of all ages live longer, healthier lives. Immunization currently prevents two-three million deaths every year from diseases like diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, influenza and measles.”
Let us therefore be wary of misguided, misconceived, ignorant, if not irresponsible arguments raised by anti-vaxxers. Also, there is a debate on whether vaccines from China, Russia and India are less effective than those made by the West. Now that is more of politics and business competition rather than of health risk.
Personally, I believe in modern medicine. I have gone through many health scares in my life. I am thankful to the doctors and the treatments that have allowed me to live until this writing. I regularly take four prescriptive medicines to keep my heart beating. And once I am called for vaccination against Covid-19, it’s guaranteed, I’ll respond promptly.
Let us get vaccinated.