TORONTO – With the supply of vaccines on the rise and the provinces getting more and more armed, some Canadians are wondering if it would be ethical to take the shot if they were not so vulnerable to COVID-19.
Provinces continue to expand eligibility for COVID-19 vaccines. Some provinces vaccinate patients at high risk of serious illness or death, but some of those eligible under that rule think they can wait for their peers to be called before receiving their dose, not wanting to take a shot from someone else.
It is up to individual Canadians to respond to their moral and ethical concerns about when to get vaccinated, especially those in hotspots who can work safely from home or have health conditions that they can easily manage at home.
Tara Sachs qualifies for the vaccine in Ontario as part of Phase II, but is willing to wait until her age group qualifies before getting the vaccine.
“I have this condition, but it does not affect me every day, I do not know, because it does not affect me every day, I can use some as a token to get my vaccine,” he told CTVNews.ca in a phone interview on Monday.
From the beginning she was able to maintain the mask, physical distance and infection, and it was comfortable to continue until her peers called for the vaccine.
“I’m taking those steps to protect myself, so far it has worked, so I’m not worried about getting vaccinated,” he said. “I don’t have that concern, while others in my life insist and talk about it, and they need to get over it quickly.”
She works from home and has more control over who she interacts with so she believes she can get it by waiting for someone more vulnerable.
“I can control events like my social expression, there are those unpretentious individuals, so I wish someone else would get that opportunity,” he said.
Socks have no ill will against those who want to do everything in their power to get the vaccine quickly.
“We are all living through this collective trauma of this epidemic and not everyone has the means or support to cope,” he said.
Putting ourselves on top of others is part of the human condition, he said.
“Especially in these epidemics, you see how strong we as human beings are to think that our comfort, our security, our personal well-being motivates those around us.”
For some who live in COVID-19 hotspots it is not very cut and dried. Amelia worked at Viscondi restaurants last summer, and plans to reschedule when they are allowed to reopen, and vaccinate people 18 and older in her Toronto neighborhood.
“There are a lot of people now, especially people who work in the front row, they are out every day and I need that in front of me,” he told CTVNews.ca in an interview. “On the other side of the spectrum, I’m scared about this virus.”
She wants to go back to service this summer without having to worry about bringing the virus home to her dad.
“In a selfish case, if I get this vaccine, I can go back to work and feel safe,” Viscondi said.
But she still worries that if she goes to a pop-up vaccination hospital next to her, she will take someone else’s place.
“I can never, ever look at the numbers in front of me, and I can never make a moral decision that way,” she said.
This is a complex situation that is not facilitated by clear guidance on who the vaccine roll should target.
“It’s a matter of personal conscience,” University of Toronto biochemist Kerry Bowman told CTVNews.ca in a phone interview.
He said the rollout was aimed at the most vulnerable, but not always when the COVID-19 hotspots feature both $ 2 million homes and shelter for the homeless.
The other side of the argument is that fast vaccines can go into the arms, removing fast COVID-19 restrictions, but the vaccine supply is not yet ready for it.
“Just to say something for use, we’ll vaccinate quickly and get it soon. So, if there’s an appointment, take it with you,” said Colin Furnace, an epidemiologist at the University of Toronto.
Furnace said people should be accommodated to vaccinate those who are most vulnerable first, but waiting to see if anyone has been vaccinated is not going to solve any problems.
“If people decide to prevent the vaccine because others are in urgent need of it, it should be linked to some kind of program to actively reach those who need it,” he said.
According to Furnace, if the eligible people stop vaccinating to accommodate the most vulnerable, but the governments do not take any action to get the vaccines to those who need them, the whole system will collapse.
“Provincial policy and vaccination campaign strategy are really important here. It focuses on different steps [local health authorities] It’s important to reach out to those marginalized people, “said Furnace.
Since herd immunity is the goal of vaccination programs, it may seem counterintuitive to wait longer than required for vaccination.
“It’s not like you’re deviating from the herd immunity equation, you’re waiting for another place later in the herd immunity equation, so you don’t deviate from that,” Bowman said.
Making a protocol decision about getting the vaccine or waiting for vulnerable people to get it first is more complicated than simply following the rules.
“Many people think ethics follow rules,” he said. “Ethics and law are two different things.”
To complicate matters further for Bowman, the management hospital staff qualified for the vaccines in the first phase and most of them took them.
“They had people who had not set foot in the hospital for eight months. These were management people, and they were vaccinated like a terrible role model,” Bowman said.
“Mostly they are hopeless, I think it really hurts a lot because they sent a very strong message, go for it,” he said.