The COVID-19 vaccine candidate has come to the world as a big breakthrough. It has above other things poured impetus to the trust in science to proffer solutions to human’s health issues.
But the breakthrough has also come with so much concerns.
For instance, as part of efforts to end the deaths increasing in the United States, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved for the use of the vaccine.
There are over 16,200,000 cases of COVID-19 in the United states with over 299,000 deaths.
Really, this approval is a pointer to chances of the vaccine approval by other nations.
What Is In The COVID-19 Vaccine?
According to the FDA, the Pfizer BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine includes the following ingredients: mRNA lipids ((4-hydroxybutyl)azanediyl)bis(hexane-6,1-diyl)bis(2-hexyldecanoate), 2 [(polyethylene glycol)-2000]-N,N-ditetradecylacetamide and 1,2-Distearoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphocholine, and cholesterol).
Other ingredients are potassium chloride, monobasic potassium phosphate, sodium chloride, dibasic sodium phosphate dihydrate, and sucrose.
The vaccine has undergone three trial phases.
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In the third trial phase, the vaccine candidate was found to be more than 90% effective. It prevented COVID-19 in participants without evidence of prior SARS-CoV-2 infection in the first interim efficacy analysis.
According to Pfizer, the analysis evaluated 94 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in trial participants.
The study enrolled 43,538 participants, with 42% having diverse backgrounds, and no serious safety concerns have been observed.
The participants were 16 years and older.
Dosage And Application
The vaccine candidate is a two-dose regimen, with a 21-day interval application.
Each individual gets two doses.
Basically, countries with high COVID-19 cases anticipate vaccination of at least 70% of the population.
The countries believe that at this level, containing the virus is possible.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, mRNA vaccines are a new type of vaccines that protect against infectious diseases.
The vaccine works by teaching the body’s cells how to make a harmless piece of “spike protein”.
Basically, the spike protein is found on the surface of the virus that causes COVID-19.
This protein then triggers an immune response inside the body.
Like most vaccines, the COVID-19 mRNA vaccine is given in the upper arm muscle.
After the injection into the muscle, the cells begin to make the protein piece.
Thereafter, the cell breaks down the instructions and gets rid of them.
Basically, the entire process helps the immune system recognise that the protein doesn’t belong there and begin building an immune response.
The immune system produces antibodies that ward-off the virus.
It is similar to what happens when a person’s immune system naturally fights off COVID-19.
At the end of the vaccine process, the body learns how to protect against future infection.
Benefits Of mRNA Vaccine
Categorically, there is an advantage that the mRNA vaccines have over natural recovery.
Indeed, a vaccinated person gets protection against contracting the virus again.
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The vaccine takes away the risk and serious consequences of getting sick with COVID-19 ever again.
But when natural recovery occurs, the person could contract the virus again.
That immune response, which produces antibodies, is what protects us from getting infected if the real virus enters our bodies.
Side Effects Of COVID-19 Vaccine
Sadly, the vaccine is not without side effects and risks.
According to the FDA’s list of risks, different side effects have been reported with the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine.
- Injection site pain
- Muscle pain
- Chills, joint pain
- Injection site swelling
- Injection site redness
- Feeling unwell
- Swollen lymph nodes (lymphadenopathy)
Also, there is a remote chance that the vaccine could cause a severe allergic reaction.
This reaction would usually occur within a few minutes to one hour after getting a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
The signs of severe allergic reaction listed by the FDA are:
- Difficulty in breathing
- Swelling of the face and throat
- A fast heartbeat
- A bad rash all over the body
- Dizziness and weakness
COVID-19 Vaccine Concerns
Furthermore, there are other concerns that people have expressed about the vaccine.
One is somewhat religion-relate.
Indeed, there are records in the scriptures of the anti-Christ coming with a number 666.
According to the scriptures, this number will be on the arm or the forehead. Some said the number CORONA is a six digit word.
This religious inclination has resulted in fears that the vaccine could be the entrance of the anti-Christ.
Sadly, this concern is because the mRNA vaccine is new. Majority do not know so much about it.
Also, there are claims that the the vaccine comes with a chip that would allow the monitoring of humans. Some persons claim that it could also alter DNA.
These claims have been dismissed as false in a BBC report.
Again, there are concerns that vaccination will be forced on everyone.
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Basically, there are rumours that vaccination report could become part of the requirements before a person makes international travels.
Should this happen, it is a partial way of forcing the vaccine on a class of persons if not everyone.
For instance, Nigerians present a Yellow Card (yellow fever immunisation) in some countries before entry.
Also, if vaccination report is required in offices, people who do not want to take the vaccine may be out of jobs.
Indeed, there are so much talks around these concerns that the world will have to look into.
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