Vax Fax

Everything you need to make an educated decision

On April 9, the state of Missouri opened up vaccinations against COVID-19 to anyone over the age of 16, meaning older students at FHC are now able to receive their shots. Many have already taken the opportunity to do so.

Junior Emma Sieveking has received both doses of the Pfizer vaccine on April 2 and April 23.

“My experience with getting vaccinated was mostly positive,” Sieveking said. “The process was easy and stress-free, and anyone I came in contact with at the facility was extremely friendly and encouraging.”

Sieveking stated she experienced side effects with both doses, but the second was particularly rough on her.

“The only side effect with [the] first dose was swollen lymph nodes,” Sieveking said, two days after her second vaccine. “The second dose… has really knocked me down. My body generally doesn’t do well with fighting illness, so I’ve felt pretty run-down and achy all weekend.”

Junior Sarah Percy has yet to receive either dose, but plans to. Percy works at Walgreens, a place where the vaccine is administered.

“We gave [the] Johnson & Johnson [vaccine], and we gave it for a couple of weeks,” Percy said. “[However], some people were starting to get blood clots because of the vaccine, and so we recalled it, and it took us about a week before we could get Pfizer in.”

Percy says a key reason she wants to get vaccinated is to keep others safe at her job, but also at school.

“In both situations, I just want to keep everyone safe,” Percy said. “At Walgreens, we have lots of sick people come in, because it’s a pharmacy, and they’re at higher risk, so I want to get the vaccine so I don’t get them all sick.”

According to Sieveking, many students are willing to get the vaccine to help keep the community safe.

“I feel like the student body is split down the middle about their decision to get vaccinated,” Sieveking said. “On one side, you have students who have taken the time to educate themselves on COVID and the vaccine. This group of students are [the] same ones who continue to wear their masks correctly.”

But, she admits, plenty of students are in the opposite camp, favoring ignorance and disregarding safety.

“On the other side, students are oblivious to anything COVID-related and probably are unaware that the vaccination process has reached a point to which they are eligible to get their dose,” Sieveking said.

Percy agrees that many students are apathetic toward COVID-19 safety.

“I do think that a lot of the kids at our school don’t really see it as a big issue, just based on the amount of cases that we’ve had, overall,” Percy said. “I see a trend of people not really caring as much about COVID, not really thinking it affects them, until it does.”

Sieveking claims that there is a third group of students, who she terms “middle grounders.”

“There are some middle grounders, who question the vaccine, or still feel that it ‘isn’t their turn’, or ‘don’t want to take it away from someone in need,'” Sieveking said.

Percy would likely fall into this group, as she delayed getting the vaccine to prioritize high-risk groups.

“I wanted to give the older people a chance to get the vaccine before I got it,” Percy said. “Now that they opened it up to people my age, I’ll probably get it soon.”