Questions You Should Ask Yourself Before Taking the Vaccine

At this time, there are 13 approved vaccines around the world in at least one country. Some are Pfizer Covid-19/BioNTech, AstraZeneca/Oxford, Sputnik V, Sinovac, among others. In Mauritius, there is currently campaign vaccination for AstraZeneca and Bharat Biotech: Covaxin ongoing. WHO (World Health Organisation) has not yet approved Covaxin.

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How does the vaccine work?

AstraZeneca is a viral vector vaccine which means that it uses one’s body cells to produce antigen through a modified virus (vector) to deliver genetic code for antigen. On the other hand, Covaxin is an inactivated vaccine, meaning that the virus genetic material has been destroyed, so it cannot infect cells or replicate but can trigger an immune response.

What is the recommended dosage, and what is the interval for the second dosage?

According to the WHO, the recommended dosage for AstraZeneca is two dosages, and the second dose should be after 8-12 weeks. For the Covaxin vaccine, its second dosage is supposed to be after a 28-days interval.

Can the one still get infected by the virus or infect others after the vaccination?

Clinical trials have yet to confirm that after taking the vaccine if one might still get infected, and if it will protect one from transmitting the virus to somebody else.

Should a vaccinated person still practice social distancing and take sanitary precautions?

Social distancing and sanitary precautions should continue even after one has been vaccinated because the transmission can still happen, and there is no clinical evidence to use the vaccine in some age groups. Moreover, there are not enough vaccines out yet to protect everyone, and it could put those not vaccinated at risk.

Should someone who had Covid-19 before, get the vaccine?

People who were infected by the virus before and have recovered from it may still get vaccinated as it is possible to get infected again.

Finally, everybody has the legal right to choose whether they want to take the vaccine or not. Educating oneself about the pros and cons and having well-balanced information before making this crucial decision can make a difference.

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