Facts vs. Fiction
Covid 19 edition
With the omicron variant now in Pennsylvania and the importance of getting vaccinated becoming more important to prevent serious illness, Pastor Steve and Dr. Hurley felt that addressing the misinformation about the Covid vaccine would be of help to our congregation in making decisions regarding the vaccination of themselves and their families. The information is taken from the Center for Disease Control (www.CDC.gov/coronavirus, www.CDC.gov/vaccine/acip/meetings), Johns Hopkins University (www.hopkinsmedicine.org>health>coronavirus), and The Mayo Clinic (www.mayoclinichealthsystem.org).
Fiction: The vaccine contains microchips to trace our location.
Fact: None of the vaccines contain microchips, nanotechnology, or other electronics that can trace your location.
Fiction: The vaccine causes you to become magnetic.
Fact: None of the three vaccines contain metallic substances, either magnetic or non-magnetic.
Fiction: Fetal tissue is used to produce the vaccine.
Fact: No fetal tissue was used either in the development or production of any of these vaccines.
Fiction: The vaccine is new and untested.
Fact: The technology to produce the mRNA vaccine has been present for the past 20 years. It was originally developed to combat the SARS 1 virus. The vaccines were tested in thousands of volunteers in three phases. No shortcuts were taken in the process. The time between phases was able to be shortened by federal financial support. The results were scrutinized carefully by researchers and drug companies, and then by the FDA who also monitors the manufacture and distribution of the product. This has been the most studied medicine in history.
Fiction: The vaccine affects fertility and pregnancy.
Fact: Both male and female fertility have been extensively studied and no decrease or problems were found. Also, those women who were pregnant and then vaccinated were not found to have an increase in stillbirths, birth defects, or spontaneous abortions.
Fiction: The vaccine alters your DNA.
Fact: The vaccine contains only mRNA that does not enter the nucleus where the DNA is located. There is no interaction between the two so no change in the DNA can occur.
Fiction: You can get Covid from the vaccine.
Fact: The vaccine produces only the spike protein and not the whole virus. The illness cannot be produced by only part of the virus.
Fiction: The side effects can be severe.
Fact: The common side effects of the Covid vaccine and practically all vaccines include arm soreness, headache, malaise, and low grade fever. These are short lived and relatively mild. Anaphylaxis is extremely rare and less common with Covid vaccines as they are not derived from eggs or horse serum. Myocarditis (inflammation of the heart) has been reported especially in young males and after the second dose. The cases have been mild and resolved quickly with minimal intervention. Recovery has been complete. The incidence of this side effect is rare. Of 133 million second doses of the vaccine, only 636 cases (0.00478%) have been reported and continue to be monitored. It is estimated that out of one million doses, the incidence in 12-17 year old females will be 0.001% and 0.0069% in males.
Fiction: You do not need the vaccine if you have already had Covid.
Fact: You will produce antibodies if you contract the Covid virus. The question has been the level of antibody production and how long they last. The more severe the infection, the higher the levels of antibody production. Studies following antibodies reveal that with milder infections the levels are lower and that they don’t last more than a few months. We also know that patients that have had Covid are two times more likely to get reinfected if they are not vaccinated after their illness.
Fiction: The vaccine does not protect you from Covid.
Fact: No vaccine is 100% protective. Historically, the gold standard is the measles vaccine which is 95% effective. The Covid vaccines have been found to be 69-99% effective in preventing infection. If a breakthrough infection occurs, the vaccines will make the illness milder with 87-97% of those patients not requiring hospitalization.
Fiction: The vaccines cause variants to form.
Fact: Every time the Covid virus replicates, there is a chance that its genetic makeup will change. The more it replicates, the more changes can occur. If a person is vaccinated, fewer replications occur and there is less chance a variant can be formed. The more people are vaccinated, the fewer of these variants will be produced.
Fiction: The vaccine can give you a positive Covid test.
Fact: The Covid test is designed to detect the virus. Since the vaccine only results in the spike protein being produced, it is not picked up by the Covid tests.
Fiction: The vaccine causes shedding of the virus.
Fact: Again, the vaccine produces only the spike protein so that there can be no complete viral particles present to shed.
Fiction: The vaccine is not safe for children.
Fact: There has been much interest in vaccinating children for three reasons. First, with school starting up again children are in close contact with each other. Second, the incidence of positive Covid tests is highest in the 1-20 year old age group. Finally, a condition called Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C) has been identified in the younger age group which occurs 2-6 weeks after the Covid illness and results in 60-70% of these patients being treated in the ICU and 1-2 % dying. This occurs in one of every 3200 Covid infections in this age group. Vaccines in the 5-12 year old group as well as the 12-18 year olds have been carefully and extensively studied. The doses of the vaccines were adjusted for children. Thousands of children have been vaccinated and monitored carefully. Other than the expected minor side effects, the myocarditis issue was previously addressed. Given the increasing incidence and the possibility of MIS-C, the risk versus the overwhelming benefit of vaccination is obvious.
We hope this clarifies the present state of the Covid vaccination science. Please contact us with any questions.