From the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, there have been all sorts of conspiracies. There hasn’t been an age, so advanced like this. Information today travels at light speed as compared to the days of my grandparents where delivering messages were through letters and newspapers.
With the advantage social media has given us over the period before google, we still have to be careful of the information we listen to or promote. The wrong information has a widespread effect and can affect major proceedings if not managed efficiently.
The covid-19 vaccines are not dangerous and this article is written to prove just that and answer all your questions. I suggest the way to move forward is to look at facts and evidences to draw well informed decisions. So, let’s begin by explaining a few things
What is the Covid-19 vaccine?
First of all, it will help to understand what a vaccine is. A vaccine is a pharmaceutical preparation that stimulates the body's immune system to recognize the agent as foreign, destroy it, and "remember" it. In this way, the immune system can more easily recognize and destroy any of these microorganisms in future encounters.
There are available vaccines against 23 diseases (or pathogens that cause them). Combined vaccines protect against multiple diseases by using a single product. (WHO)
The covid-19 vaccine works the same way in helping your body fight off the covid-19 virus. So, it means you have a better chance at staying healthy and not developing symptoms from being infected by the coronavirus.
How many vaccines are they?
Researchers are currently testing 71 vaccines in clinical trials on humans, and 20 have reached the final stages of testing. Currently, there are 12 that are being produced at scale and rolled out in respective countries including Pfizer-Biontech, moderna and Sputnik V (Newyorktimes).
Will the vaccine kill me?
No…..the vaccine will not kill you. I know you have probably heard the conspiracy theories that Bill and Melinda Gates want to wipe the African race to preserve the world’s natural resources but think about this;
No one willing to kill you will try it on themselves first. If you look at this chart you will realise that we are way behind with the vaccination happening around the world. As indicated below, we have other countries carrying out vaccinations on their population. It is the normal way to fight against infectious diseases.
Now, lets talk science. The two vaccines that will be available for the covid-19 roll out in Ghana are 600,000 doses of the AstraZeneca/Oxford vaccine (Covax vaccines) licensed to Serum Institute of India and Sputnik V, one of the world's top three coronavirus vaccines in terms of the number of approvals issued by government regulators.
The AstraZeneca/Oxford vaccine produced by the University of Oxford and the British-Swedish company AstraZeneca, is a non-harmful weakened form of the coronavirus which when injected in the body raises defence mechanisms to fight it. The body eliminates the virus and puts in these defences to fight off the actual covid-19 virus when infected.
Sputnik V produced by Gamaleya Research Institute, Russia, works the same way. This is how vaccines for polio, tuberculosis, yellow fever and others you get at the hospital work.
These vaccines have been approved in several countries and are in their final phases of clinical trials. The FDA has also validated them and have declared these vaccines safe. However, we need to know how well these vaccines will do and it's efficacy as well as it adverse effects among us, Ghanaians.
The only way this can be done is if we take the vaccines. In so doing, we are able to take a step further in providing Ghanaian solutions to Ghanaian problems is to carry out the processes in administering the vaccines.
As the vaccines are being rolled out, there will be investment in infrastructure which later on will be left after this initiative by government, to manufacture and test our own drugs and even develop our own vaccines. So in actual sense, it’s a win-win situation.
Another reason we have to note is the rising number of cases and the rapid increase in the death toll in the past weeks which has placed government in a tight spot to seek drastic measures to eradicate the coronavirus.
Vaccines are a technology invented a long time by humans to eradicate infectious diseases. The covid 19 vaccination isn’t a death sentence but an initiative to solve the problem we are all facing as at now. We are not well equipped now to fund and create our own vaccines to give to the Ghanaian or African population but that can be corrected by the covid19 vaccine roll out process.
A lot of conspiracy theories and wrong information have been circulated which needs to be corrected by providing the right education. We are here to answer any questions you may have on the covid19 vaccine, so send your questions and comments to our social media platforms or put them in the comments section below.