Tip: write ‘Comirnaty’ on the back of your hand

Online amateur experts debate the relative merits of Moderna, AstraZeneca, J&J, etc as if they’re discussing Bordeaux vineyards. All I know is that I have a choice between a Chinese vaccine and another one, and my doctor advises the latter because ‘people seem to die’ (her words) after getting the former. Even our patriotic government is now admitting Sinovac might not be best for everyone.

For all that government’s faults, the front-line civil service can still organize big blockbuster projects. The procedure at the Sun Yat Sen Park Sports Centre vaccination place yesterday was a bit bureaucratic (I showed my ID card three times), but smooth and friendly. Before you get the jab, someone asks about allergies etc (say no if it’s just Hong Kong dust-sneezing), whether you’re a Yuu member – and which vaccine you have signed up for. They only offer one at each site, so this is some sort of backside-covering. But I hadn’t expected the question.

I mumbled something like ‘Comitatus? Comintern? You know – Pfizer. Not the Commie crap’. (This might help jog the memory. A branding company…) Then I was handed over to a reassuringly middle-aged Hospitals Authority nurse to administer the dose. Of course the ID card device wouldn’t read my latest-version chip (where are they manufactured, I wonder), so she had to input the details manually. The jab itself takes seconds. You tell her she and her colleagues are doing an excellent job, and they send you to sit quietly in contemplation for a quarter of an hour in case something goes Horribly Wrong.

The Hong Kong public sector’s money-no-object hiring policies obviously help make this a pleasant customer experience. Most boring job in the place: watching over people not having seizures and remembering when each one’s 15 minutes are up.

Was it my imagination, or was the proportion of Westerners coming for jabs there noticeably higher than a typical cross-section of the local community?

Here’s some expert comment on Hong Kong’s test-tracing and quarantine systems, including a reminder that while Sinovac does a good job of protecting people from serious illness/death (give or take a few elderly who keel over having it), it is only 50% effective in preventing actual infection. Slight snag: people with only mild symptoms can still transmit the virus to others. How can anyone trust a government that pushes this vaccine over clearly superior ones, just to grovel to the CCP?

David Webb has a go at Hong Kong’s inbound quarantine mess. (But at least it’s administered efficiently and with a smile.)

Vaccines are the ultimate in preventive medicine and have probably saved hundreds of millions of lives over the years. If you are ‘against’ them, you’re a moron (to be polite). I carry a historic reminder with me at all times: the scar just at the top right of my bandage is from a vaccination against smallpox before an overseas trip when I was a kid…

(Unlike the BioNTech jab, the smallpox gouge really hurt.)
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18 Responses to Tip: write ‘Comirnaty’ on the back of your hand

  1. YTSL says:

    “Was it my imagination, or was the proportion of Westerners coming for jabs there noticeably higher than a typical cross-section of the local community?”

    It might have been where you chose to get vaccinated that accounts for the high proportion of Westerners. But my personal experience is indeed that my local friends have become so distrustful of the government that they are adopting a “wait and see” (or “no, absolutely not”) attitude to the vaccination program — even one who has a masters degree in chemistry and works for a pharmaceutical company — while my Western friends have been champing at the bit to get vaccinated ASAP.

  2. Joe Blow says:

    Pro-Beijing “heavy weight” Maria Tam has been put on a sanctions list by the US Government. Ditto Edwina Lau, assistant Commissioner of Police.

  3. Hamantha says:

    I agree with YTSL that the high proportion of Westerners you encountered was probably just due to location.

    Case in point, I was the only Westerner there when I got the jab last week, Kowloon-side. Kind of an awkward situation, really.

  4. Chinese Netizen says:

    Do you get an official looking stamped and raise pressed notary seal card showing that you’re one of the vaxxed? And if so what use would it be anyway since apparently there is not an internationally (or even nationally) recognized “vaccine passport” program yet?

    Hopefully that will come along in a few months as more get vaccinated. Except for inbred American Trump fetishing males who love guns but are afraid of needles, but then again the most travel they do is to slaughter Asian massage parlour girls in Georgia (the state, not the country).

  5. HKJC Irregular says:

    The selection of tunes over the past few months makes me wonder whether Hemlock was a punk rocker in his youth… as I was, intermittently.

  6. Mark Bradley says:

    “Hopefully that will come along in a few months as more get vaccinated. Except for inbred American Trump fetishing males who love guns but are afraid of needles, but then again the most travel they do is to slaughter Asian massage parlour girls in Georgia (the state, not the country).”

    There are plenty of HK people not thrilled about a vaccine passport either. Anyway I think a vaccine passport is probably inevitable and I blame the CCP for starting this mess.

  7. Chris H says:

    Given the demographic split of those at the centres, and the centres which are actually packed, we may end up with a few mini zones of immunity in Hong Kong – Perhaps a vaccine passport to travel into Central and Western District or Happy Valley is on the cards??

  8. Mjrelje says:

    “Online amateur experts debate the relative merits of Moderna, AstraZeneca, J&J, etc as if they’re discussing Bordeaux vineyards.” — that’s all you get on my local FB group: “I’m boooked for Tuesday, so cooool”, “me too!! so exciting!!” fucking lemmings.

  9. Knownot says:

    “For all that government’s faults, the front-line civil service can still organize big blockbuster projects . . . a bit bureaucratic . . . but smooth and friendly.”

    So it was, when I got my new ID card.
    – – – – –
    What is Yuu?

  10. Low Profile says:

    Got my jab in Sheung Shui today – not another westerner in sight.

  11. Toph says:

    Second slight snag: You can still end up with long term health problems (chronic fatigue, cardiovascular damage, reduced lung capacity, cognitive impairment, all sorts of fun stuff) even if you have only had a mild Covid infection.

  12. Skreader says:

    I got vaccinated in San Po Kong (BionTech)yesterday, also more westerners than I expected. I think, looking people over, that most of the westerners were teachers or academic staff.

    They put masking tape with the time our rest-and-see-if-there-is-a-reaction would be finished on our sleeves.

    I must have been a baby when I got my smallpox vaccination, I have no memory of it

  13. dimuendo says:

    Skreader

    Depending on your age and then location you may never have had it. Depended on where you resided and where you were travelling to.

    Abolished in late 70’s, 1980, with (please) elimination of small pox although subsequently one person died (Birmingham, UK) with leak from sealed facility! From memory only now (supposed to be ) held in 3 locations.

    I and Hemlock are demonstrating our respective ages.

  14. Skreader says:

    Hi Dimuendo,

    I was born in a time and place where smallpox vaccine was routine and I have the scar. My biggest memory of vaccine tribulation was facing the tetanus shot when I was about 4 or 5 – the needle seemed enormous.

  15. Joe Blow says:

    Correction: the ‘Tam’ who was blacklisted by the US State Dept was NOT Maria-of-the-knickers-made-into-facemasks fame. It was, apparently, another “heavy weight” Tam. So there you are. *bowing my head in shame*

  16. Penny says:

    Knownot – I guess you don’t shop at Wellcome or any of the other Jardine owned supermarkets, otherwise you would not be able to avoid the yuu song:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PrKEb-hBYFM
    It’s a “loyalty card” – though why anyone would want to be loyal to a supermarket is anyone’s guess.

  17. Knownot says:

    Penny –
    Thank you very much. A nice little joke by our blogger.

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