Millions of people reject one of humanity’s best weapons to save lives: vaccines


A a federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by employees of a Houston hospital who did not want to be vaccinated against COVID-19, stating that COVID-19 vaccines are not safe. In the June 12, 2021, ruling, U.S. District Judge Lynn Hughes rejected the main plaintiff’s assertion that the vaccines are experimental and dangerous.

This case is indicative of how a lot of people he believes the COVID-19 vaccine could kill them or harm them in some way. But as scientists Public health, infectious diseases i vaccine development, we know that these claims are not only false, but lethal. In the United States today, the vast majority of hospitalizations and deaths of COVID-19 occur among the unvaccinated.

Throughout history, vaccines have allowed humanity successfully combat viral diseases – some to the point of eradication. Here, we break down the role that vaccination plays in the fight against infectious diseases, illustrate how the benefits far outweigh the risks, and explain why everyone should want to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

Expanding the immune system

Vaccines are one of the most innovative public health interventions in medical history. They activate the most effective human weapon against viruses that exists: our own immune system.

Vaccines show the immune system what the virus is like so that our bodies can make it specifically antibodies to this virus. These antibodies bind and inactivate or destroy invasive viruses.

In addition to antibodies, the immune system also generates immunodeactive lymphocytes programmed to specifically search, bind, and destroy invasive viruses. Together, these antibodies and immunodeactive lymphocytes help the immune system to quickly recognize viruses and often eliminate them before the host knows they have been exposed. The immune response can also reduce the consequences of the infection to little more than minor symptoms.

The latest weapon against viruses: mRNA vaccines

MRNA vaccines they only contain the genetic code of the file ear proteins COVID-19 virus is used to bind to cells, not the virus itself. This code prepares the immune system to recognize the ear protein and make antibodies against it. When the real COVID-19 virus arrives, the immune system prepares to produce antibodies against the invader’s spike protein and thwart its entry into cells.

This technology is new only in the sense that it had not yet been deployed when COVID-19 emerged. MRNA technology tests have been performed running since the early 1990s.

He took less than a year develop a mRNA vaccine against COVID-19. This did not happen because the process was rushed, but because it was has already been studied in detail for previous outbreaks. Scientists he knew it in advance how to block coronaviruses from infecting cells.

The short-term reactions most people experience when they receive Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, such as muscle pain and fatigue, come from the body boosting their immune system to attack the protein they had just been instructed to make. This reaction is a good sign: it means your immune system is working. Keep that in mind none of the vaccines in use today can cause the disease they were designed to prevent.

Adverse effects of vaccines

That said, viral vaccines have no risks. Because humanity is so diverse, there will always be a small fraction of the population that reacts poorly to one or more of the vaccines. ingredients. But these same risks also apply to frequently used medications, such as aspirin or insulin, which not everyone can use safely. People continue to use these medications because the benefits far outweigh the risks.

There has been reports that suggest that the deaths that occurred shortly after the administration of the vaccine were due to the vaccine. But yes no causal link has been confirmed between these deaths and the COVID-19 vaccine. The vast majority of these deaths are likely to be coincidental. For example, about 7,800 dead unrelated COVID-19 vaccines occur every day in the U.S. If the entire population was vaccinated at the same time, it may be tempting to think that the approximately 7,800 deaths that occurred that day were caused by the vaccine. But that would not be true.

People should also remember that early vaccination efforts gave priority to the elderly, often weakened. long-term care centers. Given their advanced age and fragility, it is not surprising that a number died of natural causes or other diseases common to older adults during the post-vaccination period. This is not to say that the vaccine has caused these deaths.

Collective responsibility of humanity to combat COVID-19

Vaccines are one of the safest interventions against viral diseases and do not operate by introducing synthetic drugs into our body, but by activating and training our own immune systems to recognize and destroy viral invaders.

If the viral transmission pathways are blocked to a level high enough to reach them herd immunity, the disease caused by the virus – and sometimes the virus itself – can decrease or disappear. For example, smallpox was eradicated in 1980 due to a coordinated global vaccination effort. But not before that it killed 300-500 million people in the 20th century alone.

For viral vaccines to be fully effective, it is not enough to vaccinate just a few people. Those who choose not to participate in vaccination efforts are not only at risk of disability and death. They can also serve as reservoirs for viruses to remain active and mutar to become potentially more lethal to everyone, including those already vaccinated. COVID-19 strains that have more have already appeared transmissibility, get well virulence and diverse ability to evade vaccine-induced immunity.

The fact that a new weapon has been developed and deployed to combat COVID-19 means that humanity’s battle against all viral diseases can and must be renewed with increasing vigor. Choosing not to use these vaccines would be a tragic denial of our collective responsibility and would waste one of humanity’s most important public health discoveries. Winning the battle against COVID-19 and other viruses – and the disease, disability and death they cause – requires us all to play our part.

S. Jay Olshansky, Professor of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of Illinois at Chicago; Leonard Hayflick, Professor of Anatomy, University of California, San Francisco, i Ronald Hershow, Associate Professor, Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of Illinois at Chicago

This article is republished from The conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

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