On this last day of the year, we contemplate the events of 2020. Who would have thought a year ago that this year would pan out the way it has? No one. A year ago, rumours started to spread about a new virus in China, but no one foresaw a pandemic of historic proportions.
It’s been a difficult year. The lives we’ve lost, the suffering, missing our relatives that live far away. But there are wins to remember as well. It took less than a year for the scientific community to come up with a vaccine. That’s, by far, the shortest time ever for making a vaccine for a novel virus. If everything goes according to plan, the pandemic could be controlled during 2021. As long as everyone does their duty and get vaccinated.
Anti-vaxxers around the world have busy days trying to persuade people not to get vaccinated. If they get their way, there’s no stopping this pandemic. It’s your responsibility to get vaccinated, it’s not optional. Unless you have a medical condition that prevents you from taking the vaccine, you should get your shot. Through large-scale vaccination, the few that cannot take the vaccine will still be protected. But if you, for ideological reasons, refuse to get vaccinated you are letting the virus win. It’s a selfish and foolish act. You are letting everyone else take the risk, while you expect to get the benefits. If there are too many people like you, vaccinating won’t work, the virus will continue spreading, and innocent people that couldn’t take the vaccine due to medical reasons will still be dying.
It’ll be interesting to see how the vaccination process continues in 2021. Will countries demand a certificate of vaccination to let people into the country? Will health care organizations around the world demand that their co-workers get vaccinated? Will patients demand to be treated only by doctors and nurses who have been vaccinated? Will customers of close contact services, such as massage and hairstyling demand to see a certificate?
It’ll take a long time before the vaccine has reached the entire population of the world. Half of the vaccine is reserved for 1/6 of the world’s population. There’s no surprise that the developing countries will be the last to get it. Not only do they have limited resources to buy vaccines for their people, but they are also lacking in logistics and infrastructure. The Pfizer vaccine has to be stored at very low temperatures, making this a non-option for many developing countries.
So when it’s your turn to get vaccinated, step up and do the right thing. Take the shot. For all of us.