5 Reasons Silverswords Should Get Vaccinated


Lisa Galindo-Morris

Daniel Morris, 21, received his first Covid-19 vaccine in mid-August.

Hawai‘i is experiencing the highest numbers of coronavirus infection rates since the disease reached the islands in March 2020.

The state’s hospital beds are overflowing with a record number of unvaccinated patients as Hawai‘i’s vaccination rates reach a stand still. As of Sept. 8, according to health.hawaii.gov, 64.8 percent of the state’s population has been fully vaccinated for Covid-19, while 73 percent have received their first dose. We are progressing better than the national average; however, due to the strikingly transmittable Delta variant, residents and tourists have been spreading coronavirus amongst Hawai‘i’s communities at a staggering rate.

In a news conference on Aug. 23, Gov. Ige urged tourists around the world to revise their travel plans to the islands. This announcement followed after The Queen’s Health Systems declared an “internal state of emergency” on Aug. 20 due to a spike in Covid-19 patients on O‘ahu. According to the Washington Post, “Ige indicated that the state could shut down if the surge continues to hammer Hawai‘i’s hospitals.”

As a large gathering place, Chaminade University of Honolulu has asked its students to get vaccinated as soon as possible. If you’re still on the fence about getting vaccinated, here are some notable reasons to get the shot:

Convenient. On Aug. 23, Chaminade welcomed students back to campus in person with a vaccination clinic hosted by Hawai‘i Pacific Health (HPH). If you missed this opportunity, HPH is coming back to campus on Sept. 13 to administer follow-up shots for students. Vaccinations are also widely available in a variety of locations on O‘ahu. According to oneoahu.org, some of these sites include Longs Drugs, Walmart, Sam’s Club, Costco, Walgreens, Safeway, Times, Foodland, Kaiser Permanente, The Queen’s Health System, Hawai‘i Pacific Health and Adventist Health Castle. Same-day appointments can be made online or walk-ins are available at some places as well. If you need a ride to your appointment, Lyft and Uber are making it even easier by offering free rides to and from vaccination sites.

Eligibility. According to vaccines.gov, everyone 12 years of age and older is now eligible to get a Covid-19 vaccination. It is FREE to all U.S. residents regardless of immigration or health insurance status.

Proven Effective. According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson are authorized or approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), have been assiduously tested, and found to be reliable and effective in preventing critical Covid-19. Notably, the FDA granted full approval to the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine (for people 16 years of age and older) on Aug. 23. Some may be skeptical because it is possible to contract Covid-19 after full vaccination, but the point is clear – it decreases the risk of hospitalization and death. According to a data analysis from 40 states and Washington D.C., The New York Times said, “Fully vaccinated people have made up as few as 0.1 percent of and as many as 5 percent of those hospitalized with the virus in those states, and as few as 0.2 percent and as many as 6 percent of those who have died.” Vaccines are created to improve immunity against viral diseases. They are not an all-saving cure; however, they have the power to protect you and the people around you.

Incentives. To further encourage this crucial step, Chaminade provided an extra incentive. Students who uploaded their vaccination card by Tuesday, August 31, 2021, were entered into a drawing to win one of ten $500 cash prizes. Additionally, Chaminade made a donation to the Hawai‘i Food Bank on behalf of every student that provided proof of vaccination. Due to the economic disparity of the pandemic, food insecurity in Hawai‘i has upsurged by over 50 percent. This is one way that Chaminade is giving back to the community, so the university can support residents who struggle with hunger and find themselves in a vulnerable situation. If you have not submitted your proof of vaccination, you will be required to test for Covid-19 on a weekly basis to comply with Chaminade’s Vaccination/Testing Policy for students.

Moral responsibility. As a Marianist university, we hold responsibility to support the commonwealth of Honolulu, the island of O‘ahu, and beyond the Hawaiian Islands. Aspects of students’ college experience enables them to understand the interconnectedness of social, economic, ecological, political, and cultural issues. Vaccinations are the best safeguard we have against infectious diseases and they’ve made it possible for us to return to in-person classes. As university students, we must respect Hawai‘i residents and get vaccinated.