A potential new challenge is on the horizon for COVID-19 vaccines.
Health officials are predicting that vaccine supply will soon outpace demand.
Health officials are expecting that vaccine enthusiasm will reach a tipping point in the coming weeks. That’s because fewer people are signing up for vaccines. In fact, many states are now reporting unfilled open time slots, especially in rural areas. Now, you asked if this is concerning, and I’ll be honest and answer yes.
We really need a lot more people to get vaccinated. Right now, about 26% of Americans are fully vaccinated. And roughly 40% have received at least one vaccine dose. In order to reach herd immunity, and suppress the spread of this very contagious virus, we need 70 to 85% of our population to be either vaccinated or have immunity through a previous infection.
I'd prefer we reach herd immunity sooner rather than later. Because the less room the virus has to mutate, the less likely it’ll change into a variant that is more dangerous.
There are several reasons why fewer people are signing up.
The younger population thinks that they’ll be fine if they get sick. Not realizing that younger people are now filling up many of the hospital beds all across the US.
That’s likely due to the virus mutating - it’s just not as kind to younger folks as it was in the past.
Also, some people are hesitant, saying that the vaccines are too new. They’re worried that they’ll be long-term health effects. Which by the way, is extremely unlikely. Others, sadly, can get misled by false claims and misleading information. You also asked me if access is an issue. Yes, it can be, especially for communities of color.
There are lots of folks that need help with things like transportation or getting access to the internet to fill out forms.
I think what we really need to do now is set up smaller clinics in our communities, where people are working and living. That would make it easier for folks in those areas to get vaccinated. Again, I can’t stress how important vaccines are. I have been vaccinated, and so have many of my family members.
I would not put them or myself in jeopardy if I didn’t believe that these vaccines were safe and effective. Please if you’re not vaccinated, protect yourself and your loved ones by getting immunized against COVID-19.