Key to Ending the COVID Pandemic
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It's disheartening that we may be on track for the COVID-19 pandemic to be the deadliest in modern history. For now, the Spanish Flu of 1918 is the deadliest when it killed 675,000 Americans. Worldwide, it killed up to one hundred million. What we have that they didn't are highly effective vaccines, but that won't help us beat this virus unless we do four things.

The American Association of Medical Colleges says the first is to mitigate variants of the virus. As the virus spreads, variants arise. Some, such as the Delta variant, develop ways to cause more severe disease.

The second key is vaccination. We have a long ways to go to vaccinate enough Americans for herd immunity. But vaccine hesitancy is a barrier that allows variants to arise. So, we may eventually need to re-vaccinate with boosters or even better vaccines.

That's why we must continue monitoring for new variants but the US lags behind the world in genomic sequencing of COVID viruses circulating in the population.

Finally, we don't know how long vaccine immunity will last. We may need an annual booster shot to extend immunity or protect against variants, just like the flu shot.

The "home run" ball here would be a universal vaccine that covers a large number of coronavirus strains.

Barring that, we must focus on these four key areas with each of us doing our job of getting vaccinated if we haven't already.

For more information…

The vaccines and the variants: Four keys to ending the pandemic
Vaccines work well against the current variants, but to end the pandemic, we need to stay ahead of the evolving virus...

Protecting The Immuno-Compromised Against COVID Could Be Key To Ending The Pandemic
There's mounting research to suggest that protecting people who are immuno-compromised from getting COVID is important not just for their sake - it could be critical in the effort to end the pandemic for everyone...

CDC COVID-19 Information
Latest news and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention...