10 Reasons Why I Will Get the COVID-19 Vaccine
Countries around the world started rolling out the COVID-19 vaccine. Step by step, the vaccine will be given to groups of people (healthcare professionals, high-risk population, system-relevant jobs, etc.).
Now that the vaccine is rolling out, it does not mean life will go back to normal immediately. Some groups will not be getting the vaccine soon, and it is our collective duty to try our best to protect them.
First of all, let me tell you that the mRNA vaccine (Pfizer/ BioNTech & Moderna) is brilliant at a scientific level. I’m not in the medical field, but this technology is pretty interesting, and its future applications are incredible.
Our immune system attacks anything foreign to our body. So, if it sees a virus, bacteria, or anything that it doesn't recognize, it goes into attack mode.
Attacking viruses is tricky; our immune system has to figure out what part of the virus is vulnerable first. This process might take days, and in this time, the virus is enjoying an illegal party in our bodies, and it's duplicating and spreading all over the place.
Once our immune system fights off the virus and gets rid of it, it remembers this virus. Think of your immune system as a bouncer, and now it has the picture of the virus on its no-entry list. Your immune system will not allow this virus to enter and cause mayhem again.
With the COVID-19, scientists analyzed the virus and figured out that a protein outside the virus is our best attack strategy. And believe it or not, this protein turned out to be very important for the virus. It needs this protein to infiltrate our cells.
Looking into the DNA of the COVID-19 virus, scientists could isolate the parts of the DNA responsible for this protein. Scientists then took this DNA and made a messenger RNA from it, which includes the build’s instruction for this protein — and this is the vaccine currently being rolled out.
This means that the mRNA vaccine does not include any parts of the virus. It only includes the building instruction for the protein located typically outside the virus-cell. Thus the vaccine cannot infect you with COVID-19.
What happens is that the vaccine instructs our body to build this protein, then our immune system fights this protein because it does not recognize it. Our immune system won’t get rid of the protein immediately, it never saw it before. It has to learn the protein weakness, and slowly it will ramp up anti-bodies production vs. this protein.
After the immune system gets rid of the protein, it remembers it. Remember, our immune system is like a bouncer, and now it has the protein picture on its no-entry list.
Now, if the COVID-19 virus finds its way to our body, our immune system remembers the protein on the outside of the virus, and our immune system will fight it off and get rid of it. Without the protein, the COVID-19 virus cannot infiltrate our cells. Therefore, it cannot replicate or infect us.
This is the beauty of this mRNA vaccine. Oh, and the instructions we got with the vaccine do not stay in the body. Our body will get rid of the instructions. It does not need some instructions swimming around.
Thus being said, I’ll be getting this vaccine once my group is eligible for it, and here is why.
- I’ll be taking the vaccine for the benefit of others. Small kids, pregnant women, and some adults cannot get the vaccine. I want to play my role in offering them the best protection possible.
- I want life to go back to normal. Yes, I do not remember when my last concert visit was, but I want others to enjoy concerts and all other activities from before the pandemic.
- The vaccine gives me protection vs. the virus without getting sick. Why should I get sick and isolate myself for two weeks or more if I can just get the vaccine?
- Vaccines allowed us to defeat some of the worst diseases on earth; smallpox and rinderpest (cattle virus) are eradicated, according to WHO. And we are close to eradicating polio with less than 500 cases annually.
- Because others, Doctors and nurses, in particular, have been carrying the weight. Getting the vaccine is the least I can do to take some weight off their shoulders.
- Every medical professional I’ve asked didn’t have any reservations about the vaccine.
- Because it has a higher efficiency (95%) than the annual flu shot (between 40% and 60%), and I’ve been taking that annually for the past 5 years.
- Because I’ve seen many friends and family members get sick with the COVID-19 virus. It is not something I want to go through, nor do I want to be the reason for infecting somebody.
- Because I believe in science and not in conspiracy theories.
- Vaccines are something we do for the benefit of us all as a society and not as individuals. For example, babies under 12 months are very vulnerable to measles but cannot get vaccinated before 12 months. It is our collective duty to make sure that these babies are protected by getting vaccinated ourselves.
Look, our lives changed dramatically after the pandemic. And I believe it is our duty to do our best to get back to normal. Whether it's by wearing a mask, social distancing, or getting vaccinated, I believe we should play our minor role in fighting this pandemic.