Vax or Pass

Kimberly Medina , Managing Editor - La Pantera

Since the start of the Global COVID-19 Pandemic in late December of 2019, numerous vaccines have been developed by scientists to combat the symptoms and stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus. 

One of the first vaccines to undergo a clinical trial is the mRNA-1273 vaccine, developed by Moderna Inc, along with researchers at NIAID, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. The vaccine is a two dose shot and has been reported to have just over 94% effectiveness at preventing COVID-19 in people with no underlying issues or illnesses. This vaccine can be administered to people 18 years of age and older. Since then, a few other vaccines have also undergone trials and have since been released to the public. 

The Pfizer company began their clinical trial for their version of the vaccine shortly after Moderna, publishing the data of their clinical trial in August of 2020. This vaccine is a two dose shot, with a reported 95% effectiveness at preventing Coronavirus. This shot can be given to people as young as 16 years of age. 

The Johnson and Johnson vaccine for COVID-19, also known as the Janssen vaccine, was the third to be released into the market with a 66% effectiveness at preventing people from contracting the virus. This shot differs from the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines, with it being a single dose that can be administered to people 18 years and older. 

So why are people choosing to receive these newly developed COVID-19 vaccines? From planned trips and anticipated events, to the prevention of illness and possible death, the reasons range from person to person. 

Here is what some Paschal High School’s students who have received the COVID-19 vaccine have to say: 

“I have [gotten vaccinated] because I wanted to not get sick, especially since my mom’s a doctor and it would be bad if she got sick. Secondly, I wanted to feel more relaxed about going out to places.” Said Junior Thomas Powderly, who has gotten the Pfizer vaccine. 

Another Senior at Paschal, Alejandra Chavez, also talked about her experience getting the COVID vaccine. “Yes I’ve gotten my vaccine…my parents didn’t tell me I was going to get it…even if I didn’t have a choice, I don’t think it was a big deal to get the vaccine shot despite the news of the COVID vaccine might not being safe, I just have faith in God that everything is going to be okay.” 

“I am vaccinated. I got my first dose of the Pfizer vaccine a couple weeks ago. I got COVID back in February and I had to quarantine for 10 days, it wasn’t fun.” Told Cristian Mendez, a Junior at Paschal. 

Plenty of students are also planning to receive their COVID-19 vaccines, but have not gotten them as of yet:

“I plan on getting the vaccine because it prevents me from going out like I used to. I have planned events I want to attend without putting myself or others at risk.” Said Antonia Olvera, who is a sophomore at Paschal and plans to get the Pfizer vaccine. 

“I’m going to [get vaccinated] for the simple fact that I’m high risk and I need it to go back to school, but I haven’t gotten it yet…” Expressed Zaya Hall, a Junior at Paschal High.

Several other Paschal students have also expressed their concerns on the vaccine. Some of the most commonly asked questions are “Is this vaccine safe for me?” and “How effective is this vaccine?” With all three of the vaccinations mentioned previously sporting over a 66% effectiveness in people with no underlying illnesses, with the Moderna and Pfizer shots being 94% and 95% effective respectively, many people feel it is the right step to take to prevent further spread of the COVID-19 virus. 

There are currently no COVID vaccines that are fully FDA approved, but all three mentioned have been authorized for emergency use. It is encouraged to do your research if you have any questions or concerns about any of the vaccines. 

Whether or not you decide to get vaccinated, it is still important to follow COVID-19 safety regulations to stop the spread of the virus, and ensure not only your safety and health, but the health of others as well.