Should I get the COVID-19 vaccine?
Health Q & A with Dr. Michael Jacobson, D.O.
Editor’s note: Vaccinations and immunizations are ineligible for sharing. For more information, see CHM Guideline O and the Appendix. To view past and current situation reports from Dr. Jacobson, visit our coronavirus page.
In April 2020, a group of researchers from Oxford University, England, announced they successfully tested in monkeys a vaccine for SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus responsible for COVID-19. Researchers are now testing humans with hopes that a safe and effective vaccine will become available to the general public by fall.
A ministry member posed the following question through CHM’s Facebook page:
Dr. Jacobson mentioned vaccines in a previous situation report. Does he have any videos or written responses to the safety of vaccines? I’m always leery of new vaccines, especially when they are pushed out in a rush. I’m also concerned about the ingredients in vaccines. Does Dr. Jacobson encourage all vaccines or just some?
I’ve written a number of columns over the years discussing the merits of vaccines. The issue is quite complex, because vaccines are treated differently than every other category of medicine.
They’ve proven unequivocally valuable as protection against many otherwise contagious—and even deadly—diseases. However, their effectiveness depends upon widespread adoption to develop herd immunity—indirect protection from infectious disease that occurs when a large percentage of a population has become immune to an infection, whether through previous infections or vaccination. Thus, a number of vaccines are compulsory, mandated by government, schools or both.
Further complicating the matter, vaccine manufacturers are protected from lawsuits; anytime a select group is protected from accountability of the law, integrity becomes paramount.
Assuming I have reasonable assurance that The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is satisfied with its safety. I will accept the vaccine as soon as I am able. The alternative represents unnecessary risk.
Please note: My office requires a one-week turnaround for medical information. If you have an acute or emergency medical incident, please seek immediate medical attention.
If you have a health question for Dr. Jacobson, CHM Medical Director, please email it to firstname.lastname@example.org. This information is not intended to replace the advice of your physician.