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Getting vaccinated helps all of Fairbanks

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We are currently the most infected state in the country. This is a completely avoidable situation. (“This is now with the use of vaccines and masks, an avoidable disease,” NPR news report, Oct. 6, 2021.)

Compared to other countries, Covid-19 rates are declining nationwide except for Alaska. This is proved by simple graphs. Doctors in Alaska are being forced to choose between two patients — one who gets health care and one who dies. (“We had to choose somebody who had a greater probability of survival, and we ended up giving our last remaining ICU bed to a patient with Covid,” NPR news report, Oct. 6, 2021.)

It should be noted that people who are immunocompromised should not and will not be included in this. Based on the community perspective, or moreover, the doctor/patient perspective, people who are choosing to not get vaccinated for political, theoretical or other reasons are causing a great risk to the rest of the population.

Recent graphs from Fairbanks Memorial Hospital show there are 23 vaccinated individuals compared to 94 unvaccinated individuals in our hospital. This graph shows that, yes indeed, vaccinated people still end up in the hospital due to Covid-19 but the survival rate is much higher and the infectious rate of those individuals is much lower. Considering there is a vaccine coming out for younger children, based on what Dr. Laura Brunner, a doctor at Fairbanks Memorial Hospital said, (“There is a high chance of vaccines for young children,” FMH press release, Sept. 23, 2021), children here soon have the ability to get vaccinated. This is helpful considering more and more young adults, children and infants are dying because of the Delta variant of Covid-19, as stated by Angie Ramirez, chief medical officer at FMH.

As a personal opinion it would be ignorant to not get your child vaccinated. I understand the thought and reason behind free choice, but if you’re faced with the high possibility of you and your family getting very ill and/or one of your children dying, you would be ignorant, almost stunted, in the area of forethought. If you choose to not get vaccinated you are not only increasing the mortality rate among you and your family but also complete strangers, most of whom are good people. If you cannot get vaccinated for legitimate reasons such as having already gotten vaccinated for something else in the past two weeks, not enough money, no health insurance, being immunocompromised or already infected with Covid, then do the little things. Wash your hands after using the bathroom or leaving the store, wear your mask, social distance if you feel ill, or don’t leave your house at all.

If you truly cared about yourself and other people why wouldn’t you get vaccinated or do the little things to help the community out?

When people get Covid, right before they die they get a physical feeling called air hunger. This is when blood oxygen levels are the lowest and those individuals who are dying from Covid are at the lowest point of oxygen deprivation. They feel fine then suddenly they are gasping for air because they can’t breathe, or breathe enough, then they die.

I have never seen it, but if you choose to remain ignorant to the reality of this situation, imagine if you were in our doctors’ shoes.

Hailey Fontenot is a sophomore at Lathrop High School.

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