It’s a historical thing. We haven’t done anything since the 1918 flu pandemic, 102 years ago, said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
It really is a terrible situation that we have been through and are still going through. And that’s why we continue to advocate for public health measures – because we don’t want it to get much worse than it already is.
And to the first. Another 91,000 Americans are expected to die from the disease in June, according to the University of Washington’s Institute of Metrology and Health Assessment.
A drop in the number of new cases of Covida 19 disease and the number of hospitalizations in recent weeks has prompted some state and local politicians to ease restrictions.
However, with new variants of the coronavirus spreading, medical experts say doubling down on safety measures is essential to prevent another catastrophic outbreak.
The most uncertain factor determining the course of the epidemic over the next four months is how people will respond to the steady decline in cases and deaths per day, the MCHI team writes.
A faster increase in mobility or a decrease in mask use could easily lead to an increase in cases and deaths in many states in April.
Fast growing strain B.1.1.7 expected
Several new variants of coronaviruses have been discovered in the US, including the highly infectious B.1.1.7 strain, first discovered in the UK.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention predicts rapid growth of strain B.1.1.7 in the U.S. and indicates that this strain will likely be the dominant one in the country by March.
According to the IHME team, strain B.1.1.7 is currently likely responsible for less than 20% of coronavirus infections, but could reach 80% by the end of April.
For this reason, experts believe that the United States should also intensify testing: not only to detect infections and antibodies, but also their variants.
We’ve been behind on testing since day one, Kathleen Sebelius, former state director of Health and Human Services, said on Saturday.
She said the United States should focus on both the tests needed to determine if the disease is present and serological tests that tell us more about circulating antibodies and variant.
5.5% of the United States is fully vaccinated
Vaccination will continue, but it is unlikely that the United States will achieve herd immunity in the near future.
To date, more than 42.8 million Americans have received at least the first dose of the Covida 19 vaccine, according to the CDC.
More than 17.8 million people are fully vaccinated. This represents about 5.5% of the US population.
Immunity occurs when a large proportion of the population acquires immunity to infectious diseases, either through infection and cure or through vaccination.
Fauci estimates that 70 to 85% of the U.S. population must be immunized to achieve herd immunity to the virus.
The IHME team wrote that they do not expect the country to achieve herd immunity before next winter.
The model suggests we will have a quiet summer, IHME director Dr Chris Murray told CNN on Friday. But we do know that Covid is very seasonal. So when next winter comes, we need a much higher level of protection to stop Covid in its tracks than we’re likely to get.
To get at least the first dose in hand more quickly, the United States should consider delaying the second dose of vaccine, another expert said.
Everyone needs a second dose, there’s no doubt about that, said Dr. Ashish Jha, dean of Brown University’s School of Public Health, on Friday. I think the problem is that we are now waiting four weeks between the first and second dose. What if we left for 6 weeks, 8 weeks or 10 weeks – not much more.
On the same day, two senior US officials – Andy Slavitt, senior adviser to the White House’s Covid 19 response team, and Fauci – said the United States should not delay or skip a second dose of the vaccine. Jha says her proposal is a medium-term plan to quickly vaccinate more high-risk people.
Teachers union asks for CDC guidelines for railing safety
Given current immunization problems and fears of another epidemic, local leaders are also trying to determine what a safe return to classrooms might look like.
School opening guidelines released this month by the CDC focus on five key strategies to contain covid-19: general and proper masking, physical separation, hand washing, cleaning and improved ventilation, and contact tracing, isolation and quarantine.
The vaccine and tests are additional layers of protection, the agency said.
CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walenski told a White House briefing Friday that these strategies will allow schools to remain open regardless of how far the virus spreads in the community.
According to Walenski, there are opportunities for classroom training at all stages of the … Community awareness. In fact, I would encourage the schools to look at this and see what needs to be done to try to get more and more children back to school.
Randy Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, told CNN Saturday that the agency’s guidelines are a guarantee of protecting teachers – and in a recent survey, most teachers said they would feel comfortable going back to the classroom with testing, prioritization of vaccines and mitigation strategies.
But so far, only 28 states and Washington have begun to allow all or some teachers and school personnel to get the vaccine.
And schools face another challenge when it comes to reopening face-to-face classes, Weingarten added.
If schools take some of these measures, such as reducing class sizes and socializing, they will need more space and more teachers, Mr. Weingarten said.
The reason you have so many places in the hybrids is because they have no room and no teachers, she said. The real challenge now is how we can help capture the remote seats and turn them around.
CNN’s Maggie Fox and Lauren Mascarenhas contributed to this report.