COVID-19 vaccines started rolling out in December of 2020. Since then there’s been a steady increase in doses administered each day in Canada and globally with over 1 billion doses being administered. Can we tell if they’re working?
Israel was first out of the gate with an aggressive vaccination program early in the year. With 56% of its population fully vaccinated (80% of adults), it’s a great case study for the impact of vaccines on transmission rates.
In January, Israel had over 10,000 new cases a day when its vaccination program kicked off.
In February, cases started to steadily drop.
In March, they lifted the lockdowns.
Yesterday (May 11, 2021) they had only 43 new cases of COVID!
Here in Canada, there a few ways to see the impact of the vaccine rollout so far – targeted communities (like Prince Rupert) and targeted demographics (like seniors and first nations).
On B.C.’s north coast, the port city of Prince Rupert managed to rid its reputation as a COVID-19 hot spot in just over one month thanks to wide uptake on mass immunizations.‘A massive sigh of relief’: Prince Rupert closer to post-COVID life after mass immunizations – Global News
Canada’s 3rd wave of COVID-19 has lead to more cases and hospitalizations, but mostly among younger Canadians. For people over the age of 80 (which were given vaccines back in February), the share of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths have dropped dramatically. (Source: cbc.ca)
So yes, the vaccines are doing what they’re supposed to – reducing the number of number of deaths, the number of hospitalizations, and the spread of COVID-19.
Getting the vaccine isn’t just about protecting yourself. It’s about protecting those around you, and getting us past the lockdowns and mask wearing mandates. High vaccine rates are how we get back to normal.
The biggest challenge now is convincing everyone to get them. The good news is Canadians are more accepting of vaccines than other nationalities – over 80% expect to get vaccinated compared to 67% of Americans (source).
Hopefully the success of the vaccine rollout is convincing enough for most people who are debating. But if they need extra prodding, they should read this article about a woman from Quebec.