Presbyterian | Your Story | Centennial Care | Summer 2021
2 Thousands of people in New Mexico have gotten the COVID-19 vaccine (shot). But we still have a long way to go. And it’s important that those who can get the vaccine do so as soon as possible. Some people, however, are not eager to be among the first to get the vaccine. But taking a “wait and see” approach is a big gamble. COVID-19 has already killed millions of people around the world. Plus, there are good reasons you can be confident in getting the vaccine now. They’re safe and they work The COVID-19 vaccines now in use have been studied in thousands of people. Studies show that the vaccines are safe, cause few side effects, and are very effective at preventing COVID-19. Even if you do get sick, your illness may be less severe if you’ve had your vaccine. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration also continue to keep a close watch for any problems in those who have gotten the vaccine, just as they do for all medicines. While we still have things to learn about the long-term effects of the vaccines, there’s no reason to think they’re any less safe than other shots that have cleared the clinical trial process. On the other hand, the dangers of getting COVID-19 are very real. Three more reasons to roll up your sleeve Besides reducing your own risk of getting COVID-19, there are other reasons to get a vaccine now. For starters, you’ll be helping to: 1. Bring an end to the pandemic. When enough people are immunized against COVID-19, the virus will be less able to spread around. That’s called herd immunity. We don’t know the exact percentage needed. But a large portion of people will need to get their vaccine to reach herd immunity, the World Health Organization says. 2. Protect the healthcare system. You’ve heard about the strain COVID-19 has placed on our local hospitals. When infections surge or nurses and doctors get sick, they may have less chance to care for the very ill. Staying healthy helps ensure that care will be available for those New Mexicans who need it. 3. Safeguard those around you. Getting your COVID-19 vaccine as soon as you can may make it less likely that you will spread COVID-19 to your inner circle, including those loved ones who may not be able to get the vaccine yet. It’s worth doing—for yourself and for your community. COVID-19 shots: Why you shouldn’t wait Schedule your vaccine today! If you still have not gotten your COVID-19 shot, don’t delay. Sign up today at the New Mexico Department of Health (NMDOH) COVID-19 vaccine registration site. When it is your turn to get the shot, you will be notified and can make an appointment at a location near you. Visit the NMDOH vaccine registration site at cvvaccine.nmhealth.org to get scheduled. The COVID-19 vaccines now in use have been studied in thousands of people. Studies show that the vaccines are safe, cause few side effects, and are very effective at preventing COVID-19.