Merriam-Webster’s word of the year for 2021….(drum roll)… Vaccine! Even Oxford’s word for the year is Vax. Surprised by this news?
Both Oxford Languages and Merriam-Webster chose these similar words for similar reasons. The number of lookups was significant and according to Merriam-Webster, those lookups “increased 601% over the year since 2020” and in August, it jumped by 535%.
It makes sense with the availability of the COVID-19 vaccines along with the bombardment by social media and news stories. This sparked debates in various political, religious, health, and social circles. Just think about how often vaccines were talked about between co-workers, friends, and family.
Obviously, there was a need for information. Some great resources for information about vaccines include:
The CDC provides:
Are you a history buff? The National Library of Medicine History of Medicine division has an interesting tour of their historical collections regarding vaccines.
And maybe you want to know how they’re developed and allocated? The World Health Organization has a series of postings, Vaccines Explained. The series includes illustrations and content covering such topics as how they are developed, the manufacturing, and safety.
Knowing more about vaccines can increase our understanding of their role in keeping healthy.