Vaccines have been around for a while, but an age-old debate has resurfaced along with the availability of those that address COVID-19. Are they safe and effective?
AXA, one of the Philippines’ leading insurance providers, takes a closer look at the myths and misconceptions, as well as the hard facts, which can help you decide if vaccines, indeed, do the job they’re intended for.
Myth 1: Vaccines can make a person sick.
Fact: According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), you can’t get sick when administered with a vaccine. However, some people can experience mild side effects, such as soreness on the part of the body where the vaccine was injected. Such side effects disappear quickly, and more serious side effects are not common.
Myth 2: Vaccines can cause the very disease it aims to address.
Fact: It is unlikely that a vaccine can cause a disease to develop, but certain individuals may not reach the needed immunity level from the vaccine to fight the disease. Like most medicines, some vaccines aren’t 100% effective and people react to it differently, affecting its efficacy, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). This doesn’t mean that a vaccine isn’t safe or effective or is a catalyst for the disease. It only shows that a few may not respond to it as well as others, according to the American Academy of Allergy Asthma &Immunology (AAAAI).
Myth 3: It is better to get natural immunity from a disease than get it from a vaccine.
Fact: Without being vaccinated, your body may build immunity from natural infection, but you also put yourself at risk for serious complications and even death. For example, when you don’t get your child vaccinated for Hib (Haemophilus influenza type b), this may cause intellectual disability. Without getting vaccinated for measles, this may lead to death, according to WHO.
The same is true with the COVID-19 vaccine that has been hotly debated recently. Without getting vaccinated, it may lead to hospitalization or death. According to the CDC, you may also develop what is called “long-COVID,” where you may experience the chronic symptoms associated with the disease, like headaches or shortness of breath-.
Myth 4: COVID-19 vaccines can give you the disease or may have serious side effects.
Fact: COVID-19 vaccines are designed to build immunity against the disease by using weakened or killed SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, the virus that causes COVID-19. As for the adverse effects, there are some mild or short-term effects associated with these vaccines, such as fever, headaches, or body aches, which signal that the vaccine is working to build your immune system against the disease, according to the Cleveland Clinic in the U.S. However, it is recommended that you consult a doctor if you have allergies or any other pre-existing medical condition to assess your risk.
Myth 5: You get immunity for life when vaccinated against COVID-19.
Fact: According to the CDC, it’s still early to tell if a shot or two of the COVID-19 vaccine can give you life immunity. Studies continue to be conducted on a regular basis to check for its long-lasting effects, and formulas continue to be adjusted to develop immunity against other strains or variants of the disease.
Immunity against certain diseases doesn’t happen overnight, but research has shown that vaccines effectively provide protection against some of life’s most dreaded diseases. For critical illnesses that you may encounter as you get older, the best way to safeguard your health against them is to get protected as early as now.
The best way to do this is to get yourself a health insurance plan like AXA’s Global Health Access, which offers customers the best access to healthcare services here and abroad.
“Aside from the threats of COVID-19, critical illnesses like cancer, stroke, and heart attack remain in our midst, so we should also protect ourselves against them. With Global Health Access, it is easier for policyholders to avail of medical care wherever they are in the world through our partnership with over 1,400 hospitals and clinics locally and over 9,000 hospitals worldwide,” says Rahul Hora, President and Chief Executive Officer of AXA Philippines.
Global Health Access policyholders can now reimburse COVID-19 vaccine costs up to P5,000 and other eligible home care expenses, boosting the confidence of our customers in these challenging times. See here the full details of the coverage.
Global Health Access also includes coverage for epidemic and pandemic diseases like COVID-19, allowing customers to get comprehensive treatment for such illnesses, on top of other top-tier health benefits, such as up to P175 million coverage for inpatient and outpatients treatments and executive health checkups of up to P20,000 per year. Moreover, the health plan allows cashless payments, which makes it more convenient for customers these days due to the ongoing pandemic.
When it comes to health, it’s always better to boost your protection. To know more about Global Health Access, visit www.axa.com.ph/health-protection/global-health-access.