Freeman Cebu Business

Let’s celebrate innovation

INTEGRITY BEAT - Henry J. Schumacher - The Freeman

After the first vaccines have arrived in Cebu, I feel it is time to celebrate. I am aware that the discussions about vaccination are intense. And that is understandable. The images of people on breathing machines fighting for their lives are in our bones (definitely in my bones, given my age). 

To be vaccinated means protection from such a fate. And for others, it is also about material existence, keeping businesses going and people employed. Vaccination is the great bright spot, not least to eventually regain the long-awaited normalcy; although that’s still a long time away!

In this situation, however, we do not need to compete over sequences and supposed privileges, but rather to pause first. It’s time to be grateful; it’s time to celebrate the innovation drive of the pharmaceutical industry!

When the pandemic emerged in all its severity almost a year ago, no one would have dared to hope that they already had a vaccine that was not only thoroughly tested, but was also so effective that it actually gave rise to hope capable of overcoming the pandemic in record time. 

Perhaps gratitude can help to deal with the vaccination in solidarity: to give priority to vaccination to those who are particularly vulnerable because of age, because they have a disability or because for other reasons they are at particular risk. And it also means prioritizing those who give us medical care.

But solidarity also means that people are ready to be vaccinated at all if the necessary vaccination quantities are available. No matter how much every intervention in one's own body should be based on one's own decision, in the end the vaccination is also an expression of love for one's neighbor.

Because the less willingness to vaccinate, the greater the risk that the virus will spread again and endanger people's lives. That alone is a reason for myself to get vaccinated when it is my turn.

We also have to be grateful that the vaccine manufacturers are reacting to the virus mutations and adapt the active ingredients accordingly .

So have Moderna , Astra-Zeneca , Novavax and Curevac now specifically the development of modified Covid vaccines announced. The first clinical trials with these variants could start in the course of the next few weeks.

With regard to the virus variants, Curevac recently agreed new alliances with both the pharmaceutical company GSK and the British government. Moderna is already working intensively on a modification of its vaccine; so are BioNTech and its US partner Pfizer. The companies said that the development of virus mutations is being closely monitored. They are convinced that the mRNA platform offers great flexibility to develop a new agent if necessary. Johnson & Johnson just joined the group of companies rescuing us!!!

In conclusion: let’s celebrate change, let’s be grateful that there are plenty innovators around; let’s be encouraged to become innovators ourselves. I look forward to your responses; contact me at [email protected]

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