A promising return to a more normal life!
Vaccine acceptance is required for community (herd) immunity. However, 20% of Canadians have said they will not get vaccinated if the vaccine becomes available. Vaccine hesitancy comes from a variety of sources:
- mistrust of vaccine benefit
- worry about unforeseen future negative effects
- a concern about commercial companies making profit, (the filthy lucre concept)
- preference for natural immunity
We do not know the number of vaccinated individuals we need for COVID-19 herd immunity. We do not know how long the immunity lasts, and we do not know if we will need booster doses to maintain immunity. Is a COVID vaccinated individual less infectious if they get COVID? we do not know, but I do know that if 20% of our population refuses the COVID vaccine, and others (up to 36 %) postpone due to lack of data or discomfort about attending large vaccination clinics (no judgement here) I have serious concerns in our ability to contain the virus.
How do we combat this hesitancy? Speak to us, your primary providers.
92 % of Canadians trust their Family Physician or Nurse Practitioners.
You turn to us for accurate information, when undecided about choices in treatment or vaccination. You ask for clarification, you ask questions. These conversations can create an opportunity to air concerns, become informed, even change an opinion.
I am repeatedly asked…when will my mother, father, or I can get the COVID vaccine?
I DO NOT KNOW! Family doctors do not know when they will be able to administer the COVID vaccine, because we have not been informed.
Did you know that there is no Family Doctor on the Ontario Vaccination Task force?
Family doctors are not even at the planning tables for Vaccine rollout plans! Yet, Family doctors administer the bulk of vaccinations in this country.
A system that is predicated on primary care has not effectively involved primary care. Trust me, this is not sitting well with Family physicians.
Ontario College of Family Medicine is taking on this challenge. It is partnering with other primary providers and our political bodies to urge our Governments that Family Medicine, Nurse Practitioners, must be involved in further vaccine planning roll outs.
Vaccination of those living in congregate settings (retirement homes, long-term care homes, chronic care) is progressing at a snail’s pace. Only 48% of 72,000 long-term care residents have been immunized as of Jan 20 2021. Those that live in the community who may be no less vulnerable to COVID due to age and medical conditions, those vulnerable socially, economically, continue to be left out. Front line workers in hospitals are not all immunized. Community physicians are not immunized. Inequities to vaccine access continue. Delays in vaccine shipments do not help. Governments reminding us that there will be enough vaccine is not the same as having enough of the population immunized.
To date 1.8% of Canadians have been immunized.
Large vaccination clinics will supply the majority of vaccinations in Ontario (as they should) to reach large volumes of the population. I will be there along with many others. At some point vaccine administration may trickle down to the individual clinics.
Our staff, Tanya, Erin, and myself are here to answer your questions, to provide guidance, and help you plan to get the vaccine when it is available. In “Help me Rhonda” I will keep you updated on all aspects of COVID-19 in Ontario/Canada. When I am informed, you will be informed. Using the management systems developed in our clinic, all information about your COVID vaccination (once received) will be in your file, ready to access anytime if required.
In the meantime,
Stay well. Stay safe. Stay distanced. Practice good hygiene, Wear your masks.
Help us track COVID contacts. Download the COVID app.