‘We need the vaccines soonest as an urgent measure for our survival. And there is no other scientific way.’
HUMOR is healthy, especially during a pandemic. We all need it, together with a positive attitude in this world calamity that has afflicted almost 113 million people and claimed about 2.5 million lives.
Perhaps I find some of the fake news on social media amusing because I am a physician, more scientific and objective in my thinking, totally relying on evidence-based data about diseases, and can separate medical facts from fiction more readily.
A few examples of these ridiculous claims include the following: That there is actually no coronavirus, no pandemic; that billionaires like Bill Gates are financing a “project” to lessen the world population; that masks and distancing do not work; that getting the COVID-19 vaccines will change a person’s DNA; that the vaccines contain fetal tissues, microchip, and that it causes infertility; that the vaccines are causing brain and spinal cord injuries; that is it safer to get COVID-19 instead of receiving the “dangerous” vaccine; that after receiving the shots, people do not need masks and distancing any more. The misinformation goes on and on.
Adding insult to injury, all these false data are e-blasted on the internet to countless viewers around the world. And many disseminated the same falsehood to millions more, and the cycle continues. Of course, wrong information is dangerous. During a pandemic, it could even be deadly.
The other popular assertion is that we, the people, are being used as guinea pigs in this massive experiment, which further stokes fear among the innocent, ignorant, gullible people, who think everything on social media is a gospel of truth.
From the medical point of view, yes, to some extent the current therapy/vaccination administered to people is partly an “experiment,” an exploration to find out more facts, the truth about the long-term effects of the vaccines to protect the public, with no better clinical alternative than using us as “guinea pigs,” metaphorically speaking. But it is not in the evil sense.
Before drugs or vaccines are released for public use, they have to undergo extensive sophisticated research and development, and at least three phases of clinical trials, using thousands of human volunteers, until the scientific results show the drugs or vaccines are effective and safe for human use. On top of this, they have to pass the rigid and stringent FDA requirements, even for emergency use, like the current COVID-19 vaccines. So, if we, the people, are being used as “guinea pigs in this experiment,” it is for observation of the long term (future) behavior of the vaccines we received. This is the only way to get those facts.
Since these vaccines are new, the only things we know about them are that they are safe for majority of people and 52 percent effective after the first dose, and 95 percent after the second dose, both for the Pfizer-BioNT vaccines. We also know that those with a history of allergies could develop a sensitivity reaction (some serious) to the vaccine within 30 minutes. These patients are advised to seek a consultation with an allergist/immunologist prior to getting the vaccine.
How long after receiving the first shot will it confer immunity to prevent the person from getting infected and could vaccinated individual still able to transmit the virus, science still does not know yet. How about after the second shot? These data would be available only with the passage of time, the reason why I said, to this extent, this is an “experiment,” using us people as “guinea pigs.” But this is only proper, necessary, and prudent. We need the vaccines soonest as an urgent measure for our survival. And there is no other scientific way.
The alternative is not to use the vaccines now among people; limit it to laboratory animals for another two years from now, and know all the answers first, allowing more people around the world to get infected and exponentially raise the number of deaths from 2.5 million to 50 million or more while waiting, like the death toll from the 1918 Spanish Flu.
After two years of added “experimentation” and observation of the laboratory animals, the answers we do not know today, we would know then. But by then, we could most likely lose billions and not only millions of lives globally. This would be irresponsible and inhumane.
Philip S. Chua, MD, FACS, FPCS, a Cardiac Surgeon Emeritus based in Northwest Indiana and Las Vegas, Nevada, is an international medical lecturer/author, a Health Public Advocate, and Chairman of the Filipino United Network-USA, a 501(c)3 humanitarian and anti-graft foundation in the United States. Visit our websites: philipSchua.com and FUN8888.com Email: email@example.com