Eighteen months ago, the world as we knew it stopped due to what is now a global household name: Covid19. By April 2020, the whole world became confined to their homes, with businesses shut down and all interaction completed safely on a virtual plane.
Thankfully, since that time, scientists and healthcare workers worked diligently to create a vaccine. Now, due to vaccinations freely available, especially throughout the United States, California is finally returning to normal.
The day will be remembered: California reopened on June 15, 2021.
This is phenomenal news for us here in La Jolla, San Diego County, and the whole of the Sunshine State.
However, given that the vaccine made California safe to reopen, if you haven’t gotten inoculated yet, the reason is likely due to vaccine hesitancy.
Given that everything surrounding Covid19 seems to have partisan roots, muddled with half-truths and outright lies, it makes sense that you do not want to put a foreign, understudied substance into your body. Yet, there are real consequences to this hesitancy. It is perfectly understandable if you have a few doubts. But the only way to win is for everyone to get vaccinated. If you are still on the fence, consider the following:
It Starts with Testing
If you have any hesitancy with regard to the vaccine, you should make it up by frequent testing. Not everyone is going to get vaccinated regardless of what anyone says. You can still do your part by taking an at home COVID test. Knowledge is power. And early detection is life. Like so many other maladies, your chances of surviving are greatly increased by early detection.
To avoid being in a COVID island, be sure the people in your social group are also testing routinely. Testing is not something you do once for all time. If you and your friends are unwilling or unable to get the vaccination, you need to keep your tests up to date so that you do not catch the disease or start spreading it to other populations without knowing that you are a carrier. You don’t have to be experiencing symptoms to spread the disease. If you get the virus without knowing it, that is a tragedy. If you spread it without knowing it, that is a tragedy multiplied.
One in a Million
What are the chances of you getting COVID-19? As of mid-April, 2021, the testing positivity rate was 5.5%. Your chances of developing the clotting issues that caused the Johnson & Johnson vaccine to be put on pause is less than one in a million. Your chances of being struck by lightning are better. What’s more, there is no evidence at the moment that those six, high-publicized cases were caused by the vaccine.
What we do know is that humans are very bad at risk assessment, especially when large numbers are involved. Most people have never seen a million of anything. It is a number that is too big to fathom. Your chances of getting COVID are very easy to visualize. The next time you are in a group of 100 people, imagine they all were tested for the virus. Now, look at any 5 of them. That’s the positivity rate. And it could be worse where you are. That means your chances of getting the virus are much higher than your chances of getting a concerning effect from the vaccine.
Your Doctor Was One of the First to Be Vaccinated
America has a checkered history when it comes to using people as unwilling test subjects in dangerous experimentation. But the thing that should give everyone confidence in the current crop of vaccines is that your doctor took it first. Also, some politicians were called out for “jumping the line.” People you might suspect of having only their interests at heart took the vaccines as soon as possible. They believe in it. And so should you.
The California Vaccination Lottery
Everyone likes free stuff, right? If you aren’t swayed for medical reasons, maybe prevention can be persuaded via a contest. The California Vaccination Lottery (not to be confused with the regular California Lottery) puts everyone who has received a vaccination in a state-wide lottery, for the chance to win dozens of awesome prizes. So far, California residents have won cash prizes of $50,000 and $1.5 million!
Here is what is still up for grabs:
- Dream Vacations
- Free food & merch deals
- Tickets to Six Flags
Plus, every person who receives a vaccine will get their choice of a $50 virtual cash card, Kroger card, or Albertson’s card.