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Why don’t more Americans get COVID-19 booster shots?




New cases of COVID-19 have been widespread throughout the United States in recent weeks. On Thursday, President Joe Biden tested positive. Symptoms of fatigue, runny nose, and dry cough are considered mild.

According to the latest figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) COVID data tracker, the highly infectious and highly transmissive BA.5 subvariant of the coronavirus omicron variant accounts for nearly 80% of new cases.

Initial vaccinations are effective in preventing hospitalization and death, but their immunity weakens over time.

“So more people got COVID-19, even those who may have been protected from past infections and vaccinations,” says the CDC.

Therefore, the CDC will add vaccination boosters to immunized adults and children over the age of 5 within 5 months, and children over the age of 50 will receive a second boost for new protection. Is recommended. However, so far, the CDC reports that only about half of adults are boosted and only 28% over the age of 50 receive a second dose. This provides additional protection from illness.

This makes millions of people more vulnerable to the latest Omicron variants.

“I’m very worried that many qualified boosters choose not to get a booster,” David Grabowski, a professor of healthcare policy at Harvard Medical School, told VOA. “There is a very strong study suggesting the protective effect of these boosters on COVID.”

The White House warned this week about a surge in BA.5 subvariant cases, urging Americans over the age of 50 to take booster shots.

“It may save your life,” said Dr. Ashish Jar, the government’s COVID-enabled coordinator.

Many health advocates have warned that public momentum against COVID-19 is waning.

“Some people don’t feel the urgency to get a booster shot, even though it’s available in most parts of the country,” Grabowski said.

Dr. William Schaffner, a professor of infectious diseases at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, said part of the reason could be a lack of communication by public health authorities that confused the public.

“Public health officials haven’t explicitly stated when to get a booster and that’s an important step,” Grabowski told VOA.

“People may have received booster shots and may not have realized that they were eligible for another within a few months,” said Dr. David Aronov, director of medicine at Indiana University School of Medicine.

Tina Lanian, a professor of family medicine and community health at the University of Massachusetts School of Medicine, also wondered why she would bother to get a booster because BA.5 symptoms are usually mild to vaccinated people. I have. She said getting a booster wouldn’t provide much protection, as some people think they’ll get COVID anyway because of the prevalence of highly contagious strains.

But Dr. Anthony Fauci, a top US infectious disease expert, said that wasn’t true.

“If you’re not well vaccinated, that is, if you don’t get boosters according to the recommendations, there is an increased risk that vaccination can mitigate,” he said on July 12. .. Press conference between the White House COVID-19 response team and public health authorities.

Despite the warning, health experts say that COVID-19 fatigue is causing a lack of response.

“People are ready to put their COVIDs behind them and they just want to return to a more normal lifestyle,” Schaffner explained.

It may be a moment to return to normal as new subvariants keep popping up.

Kelly Althof, associate professor of epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Maryland, said:

Meanwhile, new vaccines are under development to target the Omicron subvariants BA.4 and BA.5.

Jha, White House’s COVID-enabled coordinator, said:

“We hope to have new vaccines available to target certain variants in the future when they emerge,” Aronov said, but currently available vaccines, including boosters, “hospitalize people.” It keeps away from COVID and prevents them from dying. “




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