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Thursday, August 5, 2021

The US Risked Losing Covid-19 Gains If Americans Eased Up On Safety Measures Warn Health Experts

The US’ Covid-19 gains could be wiped off with Americans easing up on safety measures as highly contagious variants struck more widely, CNN reported.

CNN quoted the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention director, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, saying that at that level of variant-induced cases spreading, the US risked losing the ground it had earned. She urged that her words be clearly heard and acted upon.

The US Risked Losing Covid-19 Gains If Americans Eased Up On Safety Measures Warn Health Experts

She said fresh infections were seen rising again at around 2% more in the past week as against the previous week. The development came after case numbers were seen tumbling over weeks. 

The US Risked Losing Covid-19 Gains If Americans Eased Up On Safety Measures Warn Health Experts

Following the trend, there had been a rise of over 2% in the most recent seven-day deaths, average to around 2,000 deaths daily. She went on the name the states relaxing safety mandates.

She said that reports of more states easing up on the very measures recommended to secure public health and protect against Covid-19 had her worried.

She further urged citizens to continue to be strong in their convictions and wear masks that fitted well and take other preventative actions that had been seen to work. 

She added ultimately, vaccination would see the US through the pandemic, and more vaccination would get the US there. 

Meanwhile, this week’s positive development was the administration of the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine would start.

According to Dr. Eric Rubin, professor at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, there was something of a new urgency about it.

Rubin added with viral variants now appearing and chances of some of them becoming resistant to the protection vaccines provided, it was important to roll out fast. 

According to a senior Biden administration on Sunday night, the J& J vaccine numbering 3.9 million doses would get distributed to tribes, states, territories, community health centers and pharmacies.

The official added that the J&J doses would be delivered by Tuesday morning this week. 

Walensky said since it was a single-dose vaccine, people did not need to return for the second dose to get protection.

Additionally, the vaccine did not require to be stored in freezers and could be stored at refrigerated temperatures. Therefore, it was easy to store and transport and allowed for wider availability across community settings and mobile sites with the scaling up of supply.

The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines under distribution had efficacy rates of around 95% and could afford better protection against the disease in its more severe form.

With the J&J’s 72% demonstrated efficacy rate against mild, severe, and critical disease in trial participants in the US, it had higher efficacy with around 85% protection in severe disease.

According to health experts, J&J’s lower side numbers need not deter Americans. The J&J vaccine had come up for testing at a later stage with surging infections and amid a wider spread of variant strain.

The vaccine from J&J had also been used in South Africa at the time B.1.351 strain was dominant there, but the protection it afforded in severe cases was seen to be quite strong.

Health experts, including Dr. Anthony Fauci, had said they would gladly get the Johnson & Johnson shot if it was the only one available as the three vaccines under distribution in the US had high efficacy against severe Covid-19.

Further, if that was the only vaccine available for the area, one needed to get it once one was able to, CNN medical analyst Dr. Leana Wen said on Monday.

She added one might think about the other vaccines that one got. If one went to get the flu vaccine, she did not think anyone would ask the flu vaccine brand or where it was manufactured. 

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