Is vaccine refusal enabling the delta variant? Check this article out.

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My daughter in Chicago who works at the VA just told me that due to the rise of the delta variant, all federal hospitals such as the V.A. are now requiring vaccination for all their employees. This trend is also taking place in many hospital systems and in some workplaces.

The case for mass vaccination 

In NJ, close to 60% of the populace has been vaccinated against covid-19 and our numbers are rising as well.  Nationally, about 50% have been vaccinated. The governor of NJ has not reinstituted a mask policy and is not upending the school year again due to the negative effect of homeschooling on math and reading scores. It may be due to our high vaccination rates or due to this being an election year. Covid-19 is an international problem that has upended the world economies.  The data clearly is showing that the current outbreaks are a result of non-vaccination in certain communities and states. It is true that those who get covid-19 develop a durable natural immunity to it. Vaccine immunity has allowed us to find normal faster, but the virus continues to do much more damage within unvaccinated groups. Transmission rates grew this past month in NJ as a precursor to the current numbers in NJ which have risen but are much lower due to high levels of vaccination. Those who have been vaccinated may still have breakthrough infections that are asymptomatic, somewhat symptomatic, or reduces your risk of hospitalization.

Vaccination and misinformation are incompatible with each other.

Unfortunately, some have spread misinformation with being the latest media example. Many of these articles may contain valuable information but in the end, are a sales tool for a book or a product. This is part of the problem while influential media outlets like Fox News have changed their point of view as their own commentators have taken ill. True, the vaccine is not fully authorized by the CDC although expect full approval by September. On the other hand, studies show the vaccine is also capable of helping us develop a durable immunity. Some have argued that emergency usage is not good enough even though 50% of us in the US are already fully vaccinated. While some have had difficulties with the vaccine, the vaccines themselves have shown themselves safe for usage with adults across a broad spectrum of the populace.

We need to reach herd immunity faster.

Protecting the herd requires mass adoption.  With certain groups, mostly along political or ideological lines not being vaccinated, we have become two countries; those who are at lower risk and those at higher. The vaccine is not perfect but as we are likely the largest vaccine trial in history, we should not be vaccinated without understanding those risks which are much smaller than if we have a bad covid-19 infection.  On the other hand, not being vaccinated statistically is far riskier as we are now seeing not only to individuals but to our economy and lifestyles as well. Then there is the constant push from Pfizer to add a third dose which may be more marketing hype to help their bottom line than a necessary expectation.   Scientists are not fully agreeing that this is necessary however, it may depend on how we develop long-term immunity to the virus.  Nor are they agreeing that the vaccine is needed by small children who are at exceptionally small risk as compared to older adults. Since the vaccine does have some risk, do we really need a booster or the risk associated with a third dose?  Also, many of us will get covid-19 but the effects will be blunted by the vaccine's immunity effect.  It is reasonable many of us over time will also acquire a natural immunity as well, something nobody has talked about. This is an interesting learning experience for those who have been vaccinated and those who haven't been.   Some who have resisted are now considering taking the vaccine as they see the world fall apart around them.   Others may get the vaccine when the FDA fully approves it in the near future. Covid-19 vaccination is good for getting back to normal while society benefits from fewer infections and a lower risk of variance. Vaccination lowers risk but is not without risk. Vaccination will reduce your risk of severe illness if you do get covid-19 as well as reduce the risk to those around you.  Hospitals see this as population health which is the theory behind what is good for everyone using data for formulating healthcare policy.   While this is a one size fits all approach, it has shown itself to be effective with Covid-19 which is why we have a mass vaccination policy. Check out this NY Times article

The Delta Variant Is the Symptom of a Bigger Threat: Vaccine Refusal

There are almost as many reasons for vaccine hesitancy and refusal as there are unvaccinated Americans. But this problem, not the variant, lies at the root of rising infection rates.

By Apoorva Mandavilli Published July 25, 2021 After an all too brief respite, the United States is again at a crossroads in the pandemic. The number of infections has ticked up — slowly at first, then swiftly — to 51,000 cases per day, on average, more than four times the rate a month ago. The country may again see overflowing hospitals, exhausted health care workers, and thousands of needless deaths. The more contagious Delta variant may be getting the blame, but fueling its rise is an older, more familiar foe: vaccine hesitancy and refusal, long pervasive in the United States. Were a wider swath of the population vaccinated, there would be no resurgence — of the Delta variant, or Alpha variant, or any other version of the coronavirus? Read more