Position Statement on COVID-19 Vaccination by Devotee Doctors

[Reprinted from a message sent out via the GBC Strategic Planning Team email news.]

Recommendations by medical devotee doctors affiliated with the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON), Founder-Acharya: His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada

The undersigned medical doctors who are Krishna devotees affiliated with the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) recommend that everyone above the age of 16 years get the COVID-19 vaccine as soon as possible.

1. COVID-19 refers to the ongoing pandemic of coronavirus disease also known as SARS-CoV-2

1. As of April 12, 2021, 135.4 million people have been infected worldwide with 2.9 million deaths.1

2. Recommended preventive measures include social distancing, wearing an approved face mask2 and self-isolation for the symptomatic and certain exposed individuals.

3. As of April 12, 2021, the following vaccines are authorized by at least one national public health regulatory authority for emergency authorization use: two mRNA vaccines (the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines), three conventional inactivated vaccines (BBIBP-CoRV, Covaxin and CoronaVac), four viral vector vaccines (Sputnik V, the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine (Covishield in India), Convidicea, and the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, and one peptide vaccine (EpivacCorona)

4. It is not possible to contract the COVID-19 virus from any of the above-mentioned vaccines.

5. There is currently no evidence that any of the COVID-19 vaccines cause fertility3 problems or alter DNA.4

6. As of April 12, 2021, 781 million doses of one of the above-mentioned COVID-19 vaccines have been administered worldwide.

7. COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective. COVID-19 vaccines were evaluated in tens of thousands of participants in clinical trials. Serious side effects that would cause a long-term health problem are extremely unlikely following COVID-19 vaccination.

8. Very rare cases of blood clots and decrease in platelet counts following vaccination with Europe’s AstraZeneca Vaccine and Johnson & Johnson Vaccine have been reported. 

9. The safety and efficacy data from clinical trials of vaccine candidates are examined by Drug regulators of each country before granting the license for the same. Hence, all the COVID-19 vaccines that receive license will have comparable safety and efficacy. However, it must be ensured that the entire schedule of vaccination is completed by only one type of vaccine as different COVID-19 vaccines are not interchangeable.

10. A Scottish study where more than 1.1 million individuals were vaccinated has shown that the hospitalization rate fell by 84%, four weeks after receiving the vaccine.

11. Vaccination reduced the overall attack rate from 9.0% to 4.6% in United Sates of America. Vaccination markedly reduced adverse outcomes, with non-ICU hospitalizations, ICU hospitalizations, and deaths decreasing by 63.5%, 65.6% and 69.3% respectively. 

12. Individuals who are pregnant, breastfeeding,10 have a history of autoimmune disease, cancer, or who have had a severe or immediate allergic reaction (“anaphylaxis”) 11 to any of the ingredients in the vaccine should consult their own doctor prior to getting a COVID-19 vaccination. Approved COVID-19 vaccines are safe for HIV patients.

13. It is important for the people who have had COVID-19 to take the vaccine because the immune response to two doses of vaccine might be bigger, better and longer lasting than just getting the infection one time.

14. It is vital that everyone continue to wear a mask, sanitize and maintain social distancing after getting vaccinated until experts gather more data.

15. Vaccination remains the most potent public health response to this pandemic.

16. Vaccination is safe, effective, and humanity’s first line of defense against the deadly COVID-19 pandemic.

Disclaimer: The above posting does not express the official position of the GBC Body and is solely the opinion of the author. The GBC Body does not give medical advice and neither does it encourage/discourage vaccinations or any other medical precautions or treatments.

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