coronavirus vaccine

People Attempt to Pick and Choose COVID-19 Vaccine as More Options Become Available

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With grocers like Safeway and others now offering shots in their pharmacies there are thousands of COVID-19 vaccination sites in neighborhoods across the United States and hundreds in the Bay Area.

“I think it’s awesome,” said Christina of San Jose. “It will be easy for  a lot of people to get the vaccine.”

And with clinical trials of the new AstraZeneca, another vaccine option could also be just weeks away, pending FDA approval.

“The AstraZeneca vaccine looks great,” said Dr. Monica Gandhi of UCSF.  “79% efficacy, 80% across older people, and complete efficacy against severe disease. They all protect against the scariest thing about COVID-19, which is severe disease.”

Some people say they prefer the Pfizer vaccine, or the Johnson & Johnson one dose because they want just one shot with no booster down the road.

“If everybody gets a choice, I hear Pfizer has a pretty high success rate,” said Kaushik Poluri of San Jose.

There are even a few websites like can actually find whether a certain clinic or pharmacy offers one or two-dose or one dose options -- and in some cases the manufacturer of the vaccine. 

But Gandhi says a key to beating this pandemic is getting yourself immune as soon as possible and that means getting the first shot available.       

“Your immunity helps your friend’s immunity, helps your neighbor’s immunity, because we all get to reducing cases and reducing transmission in the community faster, and we’re going to get to herd immunity faster,” she said.

She also warns against comparing efficacy rate differences in the newest vaccines ---Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca --- to the higher rates in the earlier Pfizer and Moderna trials.

“The later stage trials were performed in the setting of different variants, and they all had really good efficacy against severe disease – I mean 100%,” she said.

Many Bay Area residents said that if push comes to shove, they will do just what Gandhi recommends and take the vaccine they are offered. And with the U.S. agreeing to purchasing a total of more than 500 million doses between all four vaccines, there should be more than enough to vaccinate every adult in the country before summer.

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