For months, many have been questioning when the coronavirus vaccine will be ready. As of now, four vaccine trials are underway with many entering their third phase. Especially, parents.
According to infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci, a vaccine could be ready by the end of the year, best-case scenario. But that being said, it “may take some time” before it becomes widely available to the public, he noted.
While the possibility has been exciting to some, for others, they are concerned — especially parents who are not confident a vaccine is safe for their children. According to a new report by NBC News, some are also worried they will be required to vaccinate their children in order to return to school.
Experts say that the US is headed towards a new wave of vaccine hesitancy in the months ahead and it won’t be just from anti-vaxxers.
Like many other subjects in the US, the coronavirus pandemic has turned political.
“You’ve got anti-vaxxers who are protesting along with libertarians and anti-government people and people who don’t trust science or politicians. It’s not a monolithic group,” Dr. Howard Markel, a pediatrician who is director of the Center for the History of Medicine at the University of Michigan, told NBC.
“I don’t know how it’s going to roll out, but it’s not going to be pretty.”
In addition, many are also worried that schools could make the vaccine mandatory. Which would not be a far fetched idea already.
Parents in most states currently need to obtain religious or medical exemptions in order for their child to attend a public school without receiving all of their vaccinations. But some states, like New York, are beginning to put their foot down on such exemptions.
Experts say it is certainly probable that a coronavirus vaccine will be mandatory in schools, given how deadly the virus has been. However, there is one caveat that should be noted.
The vaccine trials we have been talking about for months only involve adults. Up to this point, no major trials have been conducted on children and won’t be for quite some time until safety risks can be assessed.
With a background in the creative and educational fields, Amelia Finefrock is freelance writer, singer-songwriter and nanny based in Chicago.