Covid-19 vaccines are rolling out across the country as health officials and state governors work together to distribute the vaccine. The percentage of people vaccinated to create herd immunity in the United States is not yet known according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC.
Elderly people over the age of 85 are still the most at-risk group to be hospitalized or die from complications of Covid-19. However, some St. Ambrose students have had the opportunity to receive the vaccine early.
For now, the vaccine is not available to everyone as priority goes to those who work with the public such as healthcare workers and public servants. Jadie Knecht, a freshman at St. Ambrose, was able to receive a dose of the vaccine because of her job at a nursing home.
“I was lucky enough to get the vaccine early. I am happy that I can keep all the residents at the nursing home safe, as they are all at greater risk of having complications with Covid-19. I was not scared at all to be one of the first people to get vaccinated because this virus has caused too much destruction and I am ready for it to end,” Knecht says.
Knecht falls under Phase 1a of Iowa’s plan to get the vaccines distributed in the most efficient way possible. Each state Governor has outlined a different plan to slow the spread of Covid-19 in each respective state.
“I have not received the second dose of the vaccine yet and from what I have heard that is when people get more side effects. Something I would want to say to someone who is scared to get the vaccine would be that, I know hundreds of people who have gotten the vaccine with little to no problems. I believe that the good outweighs the bad when it comes to the vaccine,” Knecht says.
In Iowa’s plan of distribution of the vaccine, people 65 and older are eligible to get the vaccine starting February 1, 2021, according to Gov. Kim Reynolds. Each state has different reasoning behind the groups that receive priority when it comes to vaccine distribution.
For Kay Smith, an Iowan in her 70’s, she was unable to get vaccinated despite the fact she is in an at-risk group. However, Smith spends her winters in a gated retirement community in Florida where she was able to get the vaccine earlier.
“Florida seems to be moving a lot quicker than Iowa when it comes to distributing vaccines. I was shocked but excited when I found out that I could get the vaccine in Florida. I feel safer now that I have been vaccinated and I would advise anyone who has the opportunity to get vaccinated to do so,” Smith says.
Covid-19 vaccines continue to be distributed across the United States. More and more groups are getting the opportunity to receive the vaccine. Herd immunity continues to be a topic of debate as health officials continue to research Covid-19.