The Value in Vaccines [Mark Sternhagen]
Why did you get the COVID-19 vaccine?
Well, it's pretty simple really why I got the COVID vaccine. It was available to me. As soon as it was, I got it. The main thing is it's the right thing to do. There isn't any question about that. The other thing is, you know, I had polio as a child. And the reason I got polio was because the vaccine was in short supply. And I ended up not getting vaccinated, so I got missed. Nine months later, during polio season, I got polio, and no one else around did. I know, for a fact, had I been vaccinated, I would not have gotten polio. And so I look at the same thing with COVID, and think about that. If I get the COVID vaccine, the odds are very good I'm not going to get COVID. If I don't get the vaccine, the odds are quite good I'm going to get COVID.
What was your experience like when you got vaccinated?
Honestly, it was, I won't say completely painless, but as painless as it possibly could have been. I got it at the Swiftel Center at one of the PODs, and they were extremely organized and so helpful. Everybody knew what they were doing, knew their task, and did it very efficiently, and were friendly, and courteous, and helpful, in every possible way. That part of the experience was fantastic. It couldn't have been better. It couldn't have gone better. The only thing I had out of either one was a slight soreness on my arm for about 24 hours. And the first one didn't start for 24 hours, but then lasted 24 hours. The second one started after maybe six hours after I got the vaccine, and lasted about 24 hours, maybe a little more. Not debilitating in any way. It was just annoying.
Do you feel comfortable with the safety of the vaccine?
Absolutely. One of the easiest ways to feel comfortable with it, is the fact that every medical professional that I know was very happy to get it, were first in line, and happy to be first in line to get it. The way the vaccine is created doesn't give you COVID. It triggers your immune system to create the antibodies that are required, which is exactly how the Salk killed-virus polio vaccine worked. It tricked your body into thinking you had polio, you created the antibodies that were required, and so it gave you immunity.
What would you tell someone that's thinking about getting vaccinated?
I would say absolutely get vaccinated. I would say if you're concerned, talk to medical professionals that you trust, real medical professionals, medical doctors, nurses that have worked in that area, in the field, that have been working in the hospitals. Talk to some of the people that have been on the frontlines of this. My worst nightmare isn't so much that I get COVID even that I maybe would die from COVID. It's that I might pass it along to somebody else who didn't have a choice, and they died. So I'm looking forward to maybe a better normal. I'm hopeful that that's what we're going to get. Not back to what we were as normal, but maybe better.