It has been somewhat of a bumpy ride, but the vaccines have started arriving in Scott County.
Bumpy because of the limited number of doses and some miscommunications, but the fact we have a vaccine less than a year after COVID-19 was first identified is nothing short of a miracle. Once again, we may soon be able to go to work or school or even eat at a restaurant without significant risk of infection.
But it all starts with the vaccine. It is a gift of science, and we should be ready to accept it.
Already healthcare workers at Georgetown Community Hospital, first responders in our community and long-term care facilities are receiving the vaccines or receiving a schedule. This will take time because of number of doses is limited and each vaccine requires two doses administered weeks apart, but the plan has begun.
Yet, there seems to be a big question about the COVID-19 vaccines and whether Americans will agree to receive it. Skepticism of inoculations is not uncommon, although there is overwhelming scientific proof they work. Even so, shots are unpleasant and sometimes come with side effects.
A Pew Research Center survey in September polled 10,000 adults and found that just 21 percent would definitely get the COVID-19 vaccine and 24 percent said they definitely would not. The remainder were unsure.
If that is true, it is troubling. If we hope to return some type of normalcy the majority of people must be willing to take the vaccine. There is a lot of misinformation being distributed, plus the speed with which the vaccines were developed has caused anxiety for some.
But look at history if you need assurance. Diseases such as polio and smallpox were eradicated in the United States by vaccines. Measles was eliminated decades ago, but has made a small comeback because some parents have stopped vaccinating their children.
In Scott County, our first responders will be among the very first to receive the vaccine. That should provide some comfort for those with doubts.
On the other hand, WEDCO Health District is getting overwhelmed wth requests for the vaccine. The priority is to vaccinate the elderly and those in nursing homes first along with those are on the front line in the fight against COVID-19 such as healthcare workers. Teachers are likely to be next. Eventually, it will be our turn, but that could be weeks if not months from now, depending upon how many doses become available. Keep an eye on WEDCO’s Facebook page or the News-Graphic’s webpage for the priority schedule, but let’s allow our health care workers to do their job and vaccinate in the order set forth by the state and the Centers for Disease Control.
This vaccine is a blessing and it offers hope that one day soon we may be able to visit a movie theater or concert soon.
That day is coming, but first we need to get vaccinated.
This vaccine is a gift of science. A gift we should all appreciate.