For those reluctant to get COVID vaccinations, important points:

1. Certain ill people cannot get the vaccine. Other illnesses render the vaccine less effective. Unfortunately, these people also are at greatest risk of death from COVID. Let’s call them the No. 1’s.

2. Why not get the vaccine? Is it inconvenience, fear of needles, sore arm or brief achy symptoms? If yes: You can help save No. 1’s by getting vaccinated. The sooner “herd immunity” happens, the sooner the COVID threat goes away. What’s herd immunity? Herd immunity means so many people are immune, the virus stops circulating. It allows No. 1’s to buy groceries and gas, visit loved ones and go to doctors just like you do, without fear of death.

3. Is it because of mixed messages, media reports? If yes, I sympathize! Consult your family doctor, ask questions.

4. If you don’t get vaccinated, you are a threat to No. 1’s. With herd immunity, No. 1’s can go out in public or have caregivers and loved ones around them without fear of COVID (and certain death). Smallpox, a highly fatal illness, completely disappeared decades ago due to vaccination herd immunity.

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The unvaccinated should please reconsider. I was vaccinated for three reasons:

  • I care very much about the welfare of No. 1’s; my conscience made me.

  • COVID cannot make me severely ill, if at all.

  • Things like businesses and activities will get back to normal sooner.

P.S. I had a mildly sore arm, that’s it.

Mary Koponen, Grand Forks

Koponen is a retired medical technologist.