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Covid-19 Vaccine trial on pause

By Liz Valls

Healdsburg District Hospital

Photo by: Harrison Threlfall 

The Covid-19 vaccine run by Oxford University and AstraZeneca, a pharmaceutical company, has reportedly come to a halt as of Tuesday night (September 8) in the UK. This vaccine had been testing numerous people but has stopped as one person developed severe spinal cord damage. 

Some people, like Dr. Amesh, a senior scholar at John Hopkins Center for Health, says we can't be sure the medical problems were caused by the vaccine. He says, “It’s possible that the volunteer’s health problem was a coincidence unrelated to the vaccine.” The National Institute of Health (NIH) is very skeptical of resuming the trials. 

Health leaders are saying that Astrazencea is no longer releasing information regarding the patient, which is concerning as we have no idea what is going on behind closed doors. Dr. Avinda Nath says “Everyone’s hopes are on a vaccine, and if you have a major complication the whole thing could get derailed.”

   A vaccine will have a positive impact on everyone. Without it, we will have to follow safety procedures like we have been doing for the past couple of months. Dr. Jesse Goodman, a Georgetown University professor, and physician states, “There is so much interest and potential concern about a COVID-19 vaccine that the more information that can be provided, the more reassuring that would be.” 

The FDA is saying they will not speak of how long it will take to get back on track with the vaccines. The U.S. is currently running six different vaccines hoping that if the UK one fails, at least one of theirs will be up and running soon.

This can greatly affect us students at HHS. With some vaccine trials being stopped, this means we aren’t getting any closer to resuming in-person schooling. Distance Learning can take place for weeks or even months at this rate. A vaccine is very much needed and when it comes, students will most likely be one of the first groups to get it.

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