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Opinion
Palm Coast Tuesday, Aug. 17, 2021 10 months ago

Vaccine as dune, as insurance, as miracle

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Still hesitant? A few things to consider.
by: Brian McMillan Executive Editor

If you’re still deciding whether to get a vaccine, let me try a few new angles. For the facts on the coronavirus and vaccines, visit cdc.gov.

 

Dune

First, let’s compare the vaccine to another local issue: the dune that protects Flagler Beach from ocean surge.

Imagine that the ocean is the virus, and it’s crashing into our community and spreading far and wide. The dune, if it’s contiguous along the coast, is the vaccine, which is nearly 100% effective at stopping the virus.

A handful of oceanfront property owners have said they are suspicious of the government and are therefore refusing to let the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers build part of the dune on their property. In effect, that leaves holes in the entire community’s line of defense against storm surge. (Fortunately, most are coming around.)

Similarly, many people are declining the vaccine because they either feel their own health isn’t at risk, or they don’t trust the government for pushing the vaccine so hard. But that calculation leaves out the impact their decision has on their neighbors.

The more unvaccinated people, the more eligible hosts for the virus. Thus, the pandemic continues to flood the community, overworking health care workers, canceling elective surgeries, disrupting supply chains. Our community’s quality of life is diminished right now, and one way you can help is to get vaccinated and become part of the dune.

 

Insurance

Second, let’s think of the virus as health insurance. According to one study by health officials in Indiana, your chances of being hospitalized with COVID-19 if you are not vaccinated is 1 in 237. If your insurance doesn’t offer a waiver, even younger patients are paying an average of $3,800 in out-of-pocket costs for hospital treatments.

Typically, we are willing to pay good money for health insurance, but this insurance, in the form of a vaccine, is free at any pharmacy or the Department of Health. If you get vaccinated, your chances of going to the hospital with COVID-19 drop to 1 in 18,795.

Protect yourself against catastrophic hospital bills. Get vaccinated.

 

Miracle

Third, I want to talk to my fellow Christians. The Kaiser Family Foundation reported that a high number of white evangelical Christians — 22% — say they won’t get vaccinated. Some see the vaccine as a symbol of government overreach or conspiracy.

Let’s reframe it this way: The virus is a plague on a biblical scale. People of all faiths around the world have prayed for relief — and what was the result? A vaccine was developed in record time, thanks to decades of research that happened to come together at just the right time to battle COVID-19.

Let’s look at the vaccine not as a conspiracy or a mark of the beast, but rather as what it truly is: a miracle.

Whatever your beliefs, let’s be good community members and do our part to reduce human suffering. It’s time to get vaccinated.

Email [email protected].

Brian McMillan has been editor of the Palm Coast Observer since it began in 2010. He was named the Journalist of the Year for weekly newspapers in North America by the Local Media Association in 2012. He lives in Palm Coast with his wife and five children. Email...

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