COVID Vaccine

The hot topic of winter 2020. Will you be getting the COVID vaccine? If so, WHY? 

Oh boy, I’m having flashbacks to when we decided on a vaccine plan for our 3 children. The endless google searches to try and make the right decision. Similar to that experience, I heard a lot of things about vaccine safety, spacing and requirements. I didn’t really get involved until we were closer to delivery AKA required to make a decision. 

The beauty about 2020 is access to more information and searching in the right places. Example, understanding that a news article is not going to include the information in a medical journal. That a medical journal is peer reviewed and different from a medical publication. Also, having more direct access to real process workers on the front lines. Meaning, I can go follow an infectious diseases researcher like Laurel Bristow or PH.D student like Kennen Hutchinson, on Instagram. 

Today, I am a ‘healthy’ middle aged woman with no underlying health conditions. I’m average weight and activity level. I work from home and do very little traveling by plane or outside of the states. I might get swollen tonsils yearly but that is really about it. To my knowledge, one time I had the flu but it was the mild type that makes you feel tired NOT sick in bed for a week.  I do not take a lot of prescriptions and I am not quick to medicate myself, even with stuff like Tylenol. I tend to drink some water, close my eyes and wait it out. So with all that said, I don’t feel very concerned about COVID, but I understand the severity and real effects. I do not believe it to be a hoax and realize this is a GLOBAL problem with many educated people from varying backgrounds working on the problem. 

I feel like I’m no where near the top of the list of people who need to consider this so I haven’t. I’ve been consuming some of talking points and doing a bit of investigating to better understand the concerns to develop my personal policy on the matter. 

My personal concerns include: 

  1. The timeline for development and production of a vaccine
  2. Messenger method 
  3. Fetal tissue/aborted babies
  4. Bell’s palsy 
  5. Government overreach/money, money, money 

So how did they whip this up so fast?!? I mean we’re still researching other major health concerns such as cancer and isn’t the flu vaccine whack? Side eye + scrunch face= visual of my thoughts.  Well, you’re going to have to read. And I don’t mean an article on Fox or CNN but the actual document that outlines guidance https://www.fda.gov/media/139638/download

So this is MY interpretation of what I read. 

  1. So the first thing they cut is the public comment waiting period on the federal registry. It wasn’t removed completely but rather open for comment WHILE the development is underway and will be replaced on the registry after. (Per the introduction.)
  2. Then in general considerations III. A bullet point 2 it points out development acceleration based on knowledge from similar products manufactured with the same well-characterized platform technology, to the extent legally and scientifically possible. 
  3. Acceleration approval- from what understand, that last portion of the post trial requirement is not quite met at the time of approval.  Also, when a manufacturer meets the requirements outlined they’re moving to the front of the “approval” line. 
  4. The document further outlines requirements for study groups, facilities, quality control. The process for using a novel product (toxicity studies) Clinical trials, selecting participant etc.  You’re going to need to read the document to pull out the items of concern for your  research. 
  5. https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/basics/test-approve.html look into how vaccines are historically approved and the requirements for each study. The .gov link will at least provide the sites for additional review and research on your part. 

MY final thoughts on the development and availability of the vaccine for public use. I believe there are protocols and regulations in place that all manufacturers must meet to be considered a candidate and eventually receive accelerated approval. Various populations were tested which included a person that likely has a similar health history. The vaccine in itself must safe and effective to receive an approval, so why do I still feel apprehensive about receiving it? For me it is time, I want a minimum of 6 months history from administering a vaccine to my population group to consider all adverse reactions. I do not see myself being offered a vaccine for quite some time and I would likely start my personal 6 month timeframe from that point. Short answer, I will not be first in line when the vaccine becomes available for me. I’m not shutting the door on ever taking it or saying I will NOT take a vaccine.

Since this is already a lengthy post, I will tackle the remaining areas of concern in future posts but I thought I would summarize my thoughts on my first area of concern today. Who knows, I might change my mind in the future. 

I’m clearly not an expert in vaccines or infectious diseases.  I am only in expert in MY body and MY health advocate. I have to consider the pros and cons for what I believe to be true for my health and the safety of people around me. I’m sharing with you, so you can get a better understanding of how I’m coming to my personal decisions. 

2 thoughts on “COVID Vaccine

  1. Thanks Jessie! I appreciate your perspective on this subject. I too will wait and see, at least 6 months 🙂

    1. Thanks for your feedback. I think being healthy and able to navigate the virus thus far allows me the privilege of waiting. BUT, if something changes and I need to take it before then I would be ok with that too.

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