COVID-19 Vaccine Update

Over a year ago, the world shut down and, people were told to stay home. A dangerous disease was spreading at a massive rate everywhere. The scariest part was that no one knew anything about this disease. As people panicked, scientists were put to the test to study Covid-19, the effects, cures, vaccines, and mutations. Scientists broke records and produced vaccines against Covid-19 at the fastest rate ever. 

Now there are multiple different vaccines against the virus all over the world. 

Currently, three vaccines are being given to citizens of the United States. The Johnson and Johnson vaccine is a one-dose vaccine against Covid-19. This vaccine uses a cold virus that is inactive and harmless. It helps spark a body’s immune system by making antibodies. This one-dose vaccine is quicker and efficient as it needs to be stored between 2°C and 8°C. However, as of now, only people 18 years or older can be given this vaccine. Alongside the Johnson and Johnson vaccine is the Moderna vaccine, which has the same rules. For this dose to activate, a patient needs two shots with 28 days in between. The vaccine is called an mRNA vaccine and is a more recent technology. This advancement in technology has sped up the process of developing vaccines. An mRNA vaccine injects the mRNA sequence into a human to deliver it to a cell. The cell then uses the mRNA and codes a spike protein from the Covid-19 virus. This process is not dangerous but instead helps a body to code antibodies against the virus. Finally, the last vaccine is the Pfizer-BioNTech for citizens 16 years and older. This is also an mRNA vaccine and activates after two doses with 21 days in between. 

Each state has its phases for who can get a vaccine. California’s first phase consisted of health care workers and long-term care residents. The next phase was to vaccinate anyone who had a high chance of exposure to Covid-19 and people who were 65 years or older. As of April 15, 2021, everyone in California who is 16 years or older can get a Covid-19 vaccine. Vaccines for younger teenagers and children are currently undergoing trials. Many hope that children will be able to be vaccinated by the fall and in time for the next school year.

We are thankful for all the essential workers who have put their lives on the line to serve the community. We are also very grateful for the scientists who quickly produced a vaccine and may end this pandemic for good.