The COVID-19 pandemic has hit the world with devastating tragedies, a great deal of uncertainty with job losses, social isolation and many other unprecedented circumstances. Since the start of the virus six months ago, discussions have been raised about creating a vaccine in hopes that people will be cured and go back to their daily lives. However, I would like to point out to those who believe the vaccine is the answer to curing the virus problem and therefore aren’t taking safety precautions seriously that it is time to wake up. The proposed vaccine is not a magical cure that will cause COVID-19 to disappear instantly so we can return back to pre-pandemic life. If anything, the vaccine will not be a reliable solution in which people can put all their hope and trust; sorry to burst anyone’s bubble. This vaccine will not only be ineffective, but will also not deliver to communities that need it the most.
“The Proposed vaccine is not a magical cure that will cause Covid-19 to disappear instantly so we can return back to pre-pandemic life.”
It should be noted that COVID-19 has disproportionately affected communities of color, whose members are actually at a higher risk of dying from the disease. Apart from the lack of accessible testing, if the vaccine goes out, who will ensure that testing will be brought to communities of color first? This is a major problem that I believe we need to look into, apart from the healthcare disparities that have been exposed due to this virus. If we do not look into these basic facts, we are thinking wishfully. Above all, there is still so much we don’t know about COVID-19. If we do not know the effects of the disease, how can we possibly come up with a cure and just hope that it works for hundreds of thousands of people that are diagnosed? That is a dangerous mentality considering the recent uptick in COVID-19 cases.
“If we do not know the effects of the disease, how can we possibly come up with a cure and just hope that it works for hundreds of thousands of people that are diagnosed?”
According to Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, “We don’t know yet what the efficacy might be. We don’t know if it will be 50 or 60%.” 50 or 60% is only half-effective, which means there is a great chance the vaccine won’t work out. I’m not saying a vaccine is bad for us to wait on, but it can’t be the only thing we rely on. Many people also don’t realize how many people need to take the vaccine in order to reach the so-called 50% capacity. According to a National Public Report (NPR) article, Carlos Del Rio, an infectious disease expert at Emory University states, “In order to get 40% of a population immune through vaccination, you’re going to have to vaccinate 80% of the population — so that’s not going to happen right away.” How is this protocol expected to work? On the news, we hear how many people have to stay in line for hours, and therefore do not have access to testing. If this is the case for a diagnosis, how different will it be for a vaccination? We also seem to be missing the fact that many people don’t have access to proper healthcare, let alone access to affordable vaccinations. There are many problems ]regarding a potential COVID-19 vaccine, and putting all our focus in a vaccine that may or may not work is unwise. We should wait until we have more information about a potential vaccine before jumping into creating it. Even if we have this vaccine, people are still going to suffer from this disease since the effects of COVID-19 are still unknown.
“In order to get 40% of a population immune through vaccination, you’re going to have to vaccinate 80% of a population.”
Contrary to popular opinion, the pandemic will not disappear just because a vaccine exists. Safety protocols of basic hygiene that should not be questioned, like washing our hands, maintaining six feet or more of social distancing and above all wearing a mask (which shouldn’t be up for political debate)! We can ultimately stop the spread of this pandemic and go back to our normal lives if we remain cautious.