The Covid 19 pandemic has continued to leave illness and death in its wake. The situation is in such a worrisome state that even the director of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention is concerned about the outcome. Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the current director of the CDC that the growing number of cases has caused her to feel scared and a sense of “impending doom”.
The Situation At Present
Tuesday’s report on the situation in the country brings to light new Covid 19 cases that have arisen in the past few days. There are now reportedly around 65,700 new cases each day in the past week. A noticeable increase of about 22% as compared to last week’s numbers. The situation is so precarious at the moment that both White House officials and medical professionals are pleading with the public to take precautions and be vigilant.
So far there are three vaccines available to the public- the Moderna vaccine, the Pfizer vaccine, and the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Each vaccine seems to be providing ample protection against the virus and its associated variants. However, even though eligibility for the vaccine is more diverse, variants of the virus seem to be particularly infectious. Moreover, only a fraction of the population has been fully vaccinated. The rest are still vulnerable to the effect of the Coronavirus and all its deadly variants.
According to epidemiologist and former health commissioner of Detroit Dr. Abdul El-Sayed, “Vaccines don’t work until they hit people’s arms and we just don’t have enough vaccinations in people’s arms yet to be able to achieve the kind of herd immunity that we need.” Of all the variants at play currently, the B.1.1.7 variant or the UK variant seems to responsible for being the most deadly and infectious.
CDC director Dr. Walensky commented on the B.1.1.7 variant being culpable for 26% of the Covid-19 cases at present throughout the country. She said, “That is concerning. So far, it appears that the B.1.1.7 is neutralized by our current vaccines, but if you have enough virus circulating, those variants can mutate even more and lead to sort of more troublesome variants in the future, which is why we just really want to stop the circulation of virus.”
So far the situation is not being helped with several states lifting their Covid 19 safety precautions. Despite warnings from several health officials, many state governors have opted to relax the safety mandates in their states. They have cited lower Covid-19 numbers and vaccinations as cause enough for their relaxation. Louisiana’s Governor has lifted restrictions on businesses but is continuing to enforce the mask mandate.
The Governor of Delaware, John Carney declared that he was easing restrictions for outdoor gatherings. He stated, “We know that gathering outdoors poses a lower risk of Covid infection and transmission. That’s why we’re comfortable easing certain outdoor restrictions as we head into spring.”
The Governor of Alabama is planning to put an end to the mask mandate in the state by April 9 says the Governor’s spokesperson. Spokesperson Gina Maiola also said, “We have made progress, and we are moving towards personal responsibility and common sense, not endless government mandates.” Several more Governors seem to navigate the pandemic with this plan of action.
President Joe Biden in a statement on Monday pleaded with governors and local leaders to re-establish mask mandates. President Biden said, “I’m reiterating my call for every governor, mayor, and local leader to maintain and reinstate the mask mandate. Please, this is not politics.” Mounting concern over the approaching situation has caused several health officials to encourage people to actively make an effort so that the Us can “change this trajectory”.