To the Journal editor:
Infectious diseases over the course of human history have been a scourge to mankind. Approximately one century ago, vaccinations were developed to reduce or eliminate the most feared diseases.
Never before has a vaccination been more controversial or politicized. History will show that President Trump’s greatest accomplishment will be the massive rapid development of multiple vaccines. The Democrats now support the vaccines and the far right is digging in for battle.
The second dilemma is how to educate the public about how science works. It is largely based on probabilities or chance — good outcome versus bad. With the vaccines having about 95% effectiveness, it means that if you’re in a crowd of 100 vaccinated people, 95 will be protected and 5 won’t.
The risk of long-term complications from the vaccines is extremely rare – one in a million or less. With 190 million being vaccinated that still leaves plenty of room for examples to be paraded on social media. A statistician has calculated that the minimum odds ratio is 350 to 1 in your favor to get vaccinated.
As a physician, I encourage every patient and family member I see to get vaccinated. In every case of resistance is based on fear for oneself. The excuses are too numerous to recite and include fear of a tracking device, sterility, etc.
Never is the impact considered of you transferring Covid19 to your family, friends, or co-workers who may be immune compromised and will die of the disease. Never in 40 years of being a physician have I seen more death, disability and pain from a disease.
Yet, I have not seen a single complication from the vaccines.
I speak now to physicians and health care workers to encourage their patients and family who are unvaccinated to get vaccinated. It’s difficult to counter the false social media but most folks still trust their physician to give them accurate medical advice.
Second, I speak to pastors and church leaders to encourage their parishioners to get vaccinated. God has given some people a skill to create vaccines such as He has to others to make devices that unclog our arteries.