Christine and Daye, both 17 years old, are eager to avail of the COVID-19 vaccine. Same with Kurt, 16, who believes that everybody should be vaccinated to achieve herd immunity.
They are only three of my many friends, ages 15-17, who are willing to be inoculated. While vaccine hesitancy seemed to be a problem some months ago among adult Filipinos, this is contrary to the young people who are ready to be injected with the COVID-19 vaccine.
Here are three reasons, cited by young people like me, why we should be given COVID-19 shots:
1. We want to go back to traditional school.
Online learning is very difficult. Internet is unstable. Electricity fluctuates. We need to have social interaction with our classmates and professors which is essential in building our ability to develop social skills. But we can only go back to school when we have COVID-19 vaccine for all individuals including ages 17 and below.
“We can only be safe if we are all vaccinated,” said Kurt.
2. We are at high risk.
In their household, Christine and Daye are the only ones left unvaccinated. People who have been vaccinated could still be infected with COVID-1 but the symptoms would not be severe and they could be asymptomatic. People vaccinated could still infect others who have not yet been vaccinated.
“If I get sick with COVID-19, the vaccine will help reduce the severity of the virus symptoms. If not vaccinated, my condition could be severe unlike those who have the vaccine. If I get myself vaccinated, I will be protecting myself and others,” said Daye.
3. We could be the conduit of a new strain.
We may have higher immunity but the longer more people hesitate and are not vaccinated, the higher chances of new strains coming out. And since young people are without vaccines, we could be the conduit of the new strain.
Last May 2021, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention in the USA has issued an advisory encouraging young adults, 12-17 years old, to get the COVID-19 vaccine. We sincerely hope that the Philippine government would start inoculating the youth against this deadly disease. We are all dying to go back to our pre-pandemic lives.
Photo Credit: Gulf News Official Website