Balancing risk

Those of you who are fearful of getting the COVID vaccine – I get it. I’ve heard all your reasons. I understand that it’s your choice.

Those of you who are afraid for yourself or loved ones if you/they get COVID – I get it. We’ve seen the ravages of this disease overseas, the unnecessary deaths (both from COVID and from overwhelmed health systems). Also understanding it’s not just death, but the potential impact of life-changing complications from COVID. Stroke, memory loss, severe cardiac or respiratory complications. Renal failure etc.

There are things we fear on both sides of this.

My personal reasons for getting vaccinated were many.

First up – science. Immunisation (along with clean water & sanitation) have saved more lives globally since use than most other treatments. I’ve been trained in science and understand how immunisation works. It’s a no-brainer to take the offer.

Moreover as a doctor my risk of exposure is high. I wanted to reduce my chance of passing on the virus to patients and loved ones. I didn’t want to take up an ICU bed that could be needed by someone after a car accident, surgery or organ failure for example. I don’t want my colleagues to have to intubate me and watch my survival hang in the balance.

As a community member I wanted to work towards ending lockdowns and giving children a safer more enjoyable life again. I want to travel again. And I want my immune system to be able to beat little covid virions into a pulp as revenge for what they have done to humanity.

As a human I don’t want to take a risk with my health. I don’t want to die or suffer long lasting complications.

That’s me. At age 53 in 1b, I was offered and gladly accepted the AZ 😆

So relieved to have that protection.

But you are your own person. I respect that. I care about all of you and understand you may not want to take risks. The decision about what risk you accept is yours.

Importantly we know that the risks of immunisation are minuscule compared to the risk of COVID once it’s widespread in the community. And widespread COVID seems to be the future…

You have a chance to do something now. Please don’t wait until it’s too late.

Do the right thing. Be a responsible community member. If you are offered a chance to be immunised then please take it.

The decision NOT to immunise is a high risk strategy. Me? I prefer to choose the less risky option and recommend the lower risk (immunisation) to folk I know.

Your high risk decision may have life changing consequences for you or your family. And have consequences for other people.

So if you are uncertain, afraid or just overwhelmed with the deluge of misinformation on Facebook and alarmist headlines, just speak to your doctor for unbiased information on the facts.

This conversation could save your life.

Choices – they are yours to make.

Please choose the less risky option

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