Vaccines have rolled out all over the globe, as the virus still continues to spread. The vaccines though effective on different levels, have not yet put a stop to the ever-rising cases. There are instances where people have gotten the first shot and have still contracted the virus, not knowing how the vaccine works. Even after getting both the shots, it is vital to abide by all SOPs set, as the vaccine won’t start its work immediately and it’ll take a few weeks for the antibodies to be produced. Moreover, all our bodies and our medical conditions with some underlying health conditions are different. Even after the vaccine, the virus might attack, however, the symptoms of it will not worsen, as the body will be immune to it. Death, in this case, is highly unlikely.
Read more about how the vaccines work: Coronavirus Vaccine in the UAE: Benefits & Updates
This week, we interviewed a sixteen-year-old resident of the UAE, Muhammad Sarim Malik, who alongside his family and friends, got vaccinated. Here’s his experience:
1. Sarim, where did you get vaccinated from, and was it free as stated?
“I got the vaccine from a community center in Al Warqa 4 Dubai, The vaccine was free and you just had to show the visa copy of your residence in the UAE.”
2. How long did you have to wait for your turn and how was the entire experience of getting the shot?
“For the first dose, I was actually lucky that I went with my mother since I was able to enter without standing in a long queue. For the second dose, I wasn’t quite lucky. I went to get my second dose on Saturday at 9 am which was the time of opening time but unfortunately, I didn’t get the chance of getting the second dose on Saturday. The queue for families was long, and for males and it was even longer. It was chaotic and mismanaged. I went there 3 times in the hope of entering but they closed the gates. The next day I arrived at the same place at 8 am and waited in a not so long queue but it kept increasing minute by minute. By 11 am I was in the hall and by 12:30 pm I got the second vaccine. The second dose experience was quite unpleasant.”
3. Which vaccine did you get and how many people from your family got it?
“My parents and I got it. We got the Sinopharm; Beijing vaccine.”
4. Did you have any side-effects?
“My father and I didn’t experience anything unusual but my mother had a reaction.”
5. What reaction did your mother have?
“She had a terrible headache, followed by vertigo, swelling of hands, and shivering. However, we were told that the reaction was normal.”
6. What are your thoughts on getting vaccinated?
“I think it is better than not being vaccinated. It’s a safety precaution and I really hope that it keeps me and my family safe.”
7. Why do you believe that there is an option of you not being safe after getting vaccinated?
“Well, my friend’s father who got vaccinated contracted the virus shortly afterward, and he got the worst symptoms, and struggled to battle it. I understand that his body had not yet produced the antibodies and that all bodies are different, but it’s still scary to know that the virus can still have such an impact on you. Furthermore, some people contracted the virus right after the first dose, and yet there are many others who didn’t, so I believe it’s best to get vaccinated and still keep social distancing intact till we get rid of it.”
Sarim, like many others, fears that even with the vaccine the danger still lurks. But, the UAE is one of the few countries that's rapidly vaccinating its people and ranks 40 when it comes to new cases and deaths. For all those who are skeptical about getting the vaccine, know that it is only fair that we take all necessary precautions, since that is in our hands, and what the universe throws at us, is not. We’re all in this together!
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