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Life | Giving it a ‘Shot’ – The COVID-19 Vaccination

by Jacke Tan

On 21 December 2020, Singapore received our first batch of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine. Vaccinations for healthcare workers started on 30 Dec 2020, while vaccinations for the elderly (starting with those aged 70 and above) started from February 2021. At the vaccination centre, members of the public are greeted cheerily as they enter the various air-conditioned halls, and diligently shepherded to where they need to go. The processes are methodical, swift and smooth on the ground.

What were my thoughts when I entered the vaccination centre?

Frankly, my heart was pumping even though I was 30 minutes early. I was gearing to go but was also a bit worried as I wasn’t sure if I was going to suffer any of those side effects (like having a fever and such).

How did you feel after the vaccination?

I felt relieved that my first dose was done; the process was swift and virtually pain-free. But I had a slight, warm burning sensation on my left arm where the shot was administered and a slight swelling followed.

What has changed for you?

I don’t think things will be very much different, I will still have to take my precautions and not take things for granted. I am very well aware that the vaccination is not a cure-all for Covid.

What are you looking forward to after receiving the vaccination?

I am hoping that this will ensure that I can keep my mom safe, as she is unwell. And while I am still interacting with different people (though I’ve minimised my social contacts quite a fair bit), hopefully this will act as an additional layer of protection and assurance for people around me.

Are you glad that you have made this choice to take the vaccination?

In some ways, yes. I think despite the latest news questioning the efficacy of the vaccine, I think it will help to slow down the virus from spreading too quickly. I hope that through this, I can do my part in helping to flatten the curve.

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