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Covid-19 vaccines

Dear Beit Am Community,

It has been a blessing to watch the COVID-19 vaccines’ progress from an abstract hope at the beginning of the pandemic to a reality protecting healthcare providers, frontline workers, and individuals at high risk of illness. This fantastic development has brought forth a multitude of questions about the COVID-19 vaccine. We want to know more about everything from the research & development process, to the vaccines’ ingredients, to how eligibility for doses is determined.

The leadership at Beit Am encourages all members of the community to get a COVID-19 vaccine based on the state’s eligibility criteria and the recommendation of their healthcare providers. This is one of the best ways to prevent illness in yourself and others, and along with other prevention strategies, will help our community resume more activities. To that end, we are sharing the message below from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention about the COVID-19 vaccine and links to information and local resources.

Have you already received a vaccine or planning to soon? Check out the CDC’s guidelines for fully-vaccinated adults.

Beit Am members who need assistance scheduling and appointment or transportation to a vaccine site can contact Myra Blatt with Beit Am’s Chesed Circle.

Rabbi Phil has reviewed the statements and teshuvot issued by the major movements with regard to ethical questions and our Jewish obligations around vaccination against COVID-19. He is in full agreement with the strong consensus among Reform, Conservative, and Orthodox authorities that Jews are obligated to vaccinate themselves and their children, excepting only cases where vaccination would endanger an individual with pre-existing medical conditions that prevent it.

Here are two different teshuvot from the Conservative movement’s Committee on Jewish Laws and Standards.

And an article on JewishPortland.org by Rabbi David Kosak representing the Oregon Board of Rabbis

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COVID-19 vaccine: It’s our turn to roll up our sleeves and get vaccinated!

It’s hard to imagine a time when we didn’t know COVID-19 existed. Now when people say “virus,” we know what they mean. The impact of COVID-19 on our lives, our activities, and our freedom has affected us all. The responsibility is ours, as a community, to help stop this virus. Now we have a new, safe, and effective tool to help us do that—COVID-19 vaccines.

It takes everyone.

We all need to step up to beat COVID-19. We ask you to join us in protecting yourself, your family and friends, and our community by getting vaccinated.

Getting vaccinated adds an important layer of protection for you, your family, and loved ones. Here are some things you should know about the COVID-19 vaccine:

  • All COVID-19 vaccines currently available in the United States are very effective at preventing the disease.
  • The most common side effects are pain in the arm where you got the shot, feeling tired, headache, body aches, chills, and fever.
  • Stopping a pandemic requires using all the tools we have available—wearing masks, staying at least 6 feet apart from people who don’t live with you, avoiding crowds and poorly ventilated spaces, washing your hands frequently, and getting vaccinated.

We want everyone in our community to be safe and get back to hugging our families and friends and shaking hands with our neighbors.

We all play a part in this effort, and you are key. Information for how to sign up to get your COVID-19 in each Oregon county is at https://www.oregon.gov/oha/covid19/Pages/vaccine-information-by-county.aspx

Samaritan Health Services has information about vaccine distribution in Linn, Benton, and Lincoln Counties at samhealth.org/GetTheVaccine

Benton County residents can also go directly to https://www.co.benton.or.us/covid19/page/covid-19-vaccine

If you have questions about the COVID-19 vaccine, visit CDC’s FAQs web page: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/faq.html.

Read a message from the Beit Am Board from June 2020 about Covid-19

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