The instances of coronavirus infections in the US are on the decline. At the same time, the number of vaccinations is on the rise. Still, health experts are stressing on two main COVID 19 safety measures; masking and social distancing. They have to do it for some time more. The number of coronavirus infections is still bad. It is almost the same as that of summer. Besides, as per reports, a new variant may aggravate the situation.
A Safer Future Just Months Away, Still Safety Measures Recommended
The US has an average of 57,400 instances of COVID 19 instances per day. This is 13% less than that of the last week. It is much below the numbers the country had to handle last January. But the present situation is the same as that of last summer. In that summer, the country saw these numbers as horrific. At present, people are habituated to such levels of transmission. And it is decreasing further. The medical fraternity is expecting the downward trend to continue. It may come down to 10000 per day. But the detection of the new variant first detected in the UK is a cause of concern. According to a health expert, B.1.1.7, the new variant is being detected in 30-40% of the cases examined in the US. Another instance is that the number of infections was just 1% a few weeks ago. Now it has reached 50%. In Houston, the surveillance testing of wastewater from 21 plants. It reached 31% on February 8. After two weeks, it was 31.
According to the medical fraternity, the new variants of the virus still pose a threat. And it is not the time to relax. Others in the field, too, share the same apprehensions.
The US is not done with COVID 19. New variants are popping up every now and then. No one declares victory in the third quarter, experts observe.
If people stop wearing masks, we can expect the worst scenario. They will start assembling together. This may cause a surge of infections in April.
The number of hospitalization and deaths, too, is on the decline. As on Sunday, the number of COVID 19 patients was 43,100. This is half of what it was last week. The country has an average of 1,502 deaths per day last week. This is 22% lower than the week prior to it. And it is the lowest since November.
Despite these warnings, States are keen to relax restrictions. One State plans to remove all restrictions with regard to capacity in restaurants and other retail stores. Fitness centers, hair and nail salons and indoor recreation centers are the institutions included in this category. The limits on the capacity of churches, too, will be removed at the earliest. The State will require physical distancing, though.
Still, another State plans to relax the requirement of masks. It will also allow business institutions to restart their normal operations. Its government is urging citizens to be personally responsible for their own actions while they walk to the restarting of their traditional spring and summer activities. The other States, too, are joining the chorus. They plan to lift the requirement of masks.
Even in this scenario, experts advise caution. They urge the Americans to take all precautionary measures like social distancing and masking.
Almost 60% of the elderly have received at least one dose of the vaccine. Still, the country is months away from acquiring herd immunity. The elderly are given priority because of the risk of falling ill because of COVID 19 than those who are 5-7 years of age.
From Monday, teachers in all 50 States will be eligible to receive vaccines. The same will apply to Washington DC.
The CDC has published guidelines allowing vaccinated people to visit others who are vaccinated safely. But the agency still recommends safety restrictions.