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    by Ngozi Osuagwu, MD | March 28th, 2021


    About this time last year, I wrote a blog titled, ‘Do Not Ignore Your Health’. In that blog, I wrote that the best defense against the coronavirus was not to get it and encouraged everyone to stay home. I also wrote that there were no treatments and no vaccines against COVID-19. One year has truly made a difference. We now have three vaccines and have more people leaving their homes to engage in activities that were essentially banned last year.

    April which is around the corner is National Minority Health Month (sponsored by the Office of Minority Health (OMH)) and the theme this year is #VaccineReady. OMH encourages us to do the following:

    1. Get the facts about COVID-19 vaccines – There is still misinformation regarding the vaccine that is leading to hesitancy in taking any of the vaccines. I am surprised by the misinformation and thought it was important to state some facts.
      1. The vaccines do not cause infertility. I would not have my two daughters taking the vaccine if I thought this would happen.
      1. There is no microchip in the vaccine. If you are truly worried about big brother, you have to take yourself off social media completely. You might even have to give up your cell phone.
      1. The vaccines do not contain live virus. There are no live viruses in the vaccines. The vaccines contain particles that look like part of the coronavirus so that when it is injected in the body, it provides instructions to the body to make the look-a-like so that the body can build antibodies. When you are then exposed to the real coronavirus, you have the antibodies to fight the virus.
      1. The vaccines save lives. We know this is a fact because we have less and less people dying from the virus. Getting the vaccine is safer than getting COVID-19.
      1. If you really want the facts, go to a reliable source – an example of a reliable source is the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
    2. Share accurate vaccine information – Once you know the facts, share it with your core group. Do not keep silent when you know somebody is not telling the truth and spreading misinformation. If you have taken the vaccine, share that information with your family and friends.
    3. Get vaccinated when the time comes –if you can get the vaccine get it. It is much easier to schedule the appointment online than using the telephone in most cases. Do not get frustrated and give up. If you are having problems scheduling an appointment to get the vaccine, notify your local health department.
    4. Practice COVID-19 safety measures – Getting the vaccine does not mean you throw caution to the wind. Only 14.3 % of the U.S.  Population has been fully vaccinated. Continue to wear your mask, wash your hands for 20 seconds, avoid large crowds and keep your distance especially if you do not know the vaccine status of the people next to you.

    There are three vaccines approved for use in the U.S. – The two-dose Pfizer and Moderna and one-dose Johnson &Johnson (J&J). Full disclosure, as most of you already know, I got the Moderna vaccine. My son got J & J. My husband and daughters just got their first dose of Pfizer. Everyone is doing well. If you have not gotten your vaccine and you are still hesitant, you can always reach out to me at and email your concerns and questions. If you have received the vaccine, thank you.

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    With her trademark wit and straightforward communication, Dr. Osuagwu continues to dole out valuable medical advice using the letter form and addressing women’s health conditions and issues in a method that was praised for its innovative approach in her earlier award-winning book, Letters to My Sisters: Plain Truths and Straightforward Advice from a Gynecologist. In this book, each letter is paired with reference sources and statistics about the condition that is the subject of the letter.

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    The book discusses common gynecological and women’s health issues in a series of witty and entertaining letters. These letters, all educational, offer suggestions on what approaches to take in tackling the medical problems that typically bring women to an ob/gynecologist. The letters are spiced with art, a poem and quotes. Although its emphasis is on gynecology and women’s health, it touches on some other medical issues that make women visit their doctors.

    The second half of the book briefly discusses the most common gynecological conditions and also provides an overview of sexually transmitted infections. A list of annotated websites dealing with the different topics in the book is provided for the reader who wants to pursue each subject in depth.

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