Amidst the pandemic taking its toll again, easing up the restrictions doesn’t seem like a good idea. On Thursday, President Joe Biden declared measures to convince Americans to get vaccinated. Incentives were introduced and mandates were imposed.
Incentives are in the form of cash prizes, lotteries, college, and school scholarships. But those who are stubborn about not getting vaccinated will have to follow some rules. These rules include getting tested for the COVID-19 vaccine regularly, maintaining social distance, wearing masks, and following rules and restrictions.
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Biden earlier pointed out the pandemic gradually becoming the pandemic of the unvaccinated. About 90 million Americans who are eligible still remain unvaccinated. Biden called it an American tragedy. He said that people who don’t have to die are dying. He urged unvaccinated people out there to get vaccinated. Biden finds this situation heartbreaking because it’s preventable.
The scientists say that the new variant, delta, is the most infectious variant the world has seen so far. It is gaining momentum, increasing hospitalization, and tearing down the immunity of people. The CDC has also introduced mask guidance urging people to mask up even when indoors.
The vaccination mandates are being introduced by many institutions. California, New York states, and the Department of Veteran Affairs are planning vaccine mandates for their employees, and those who do not adhere will have to face regular testing. Many states are following this lead and recommending mandates. Many states like Los Angeles County and Washington DC have asked the residents to mask up regardless of their vaccination status. New York may soon follow.
Tech giants Facebook, Google and Netflix are taking action in this direction as well. Recently they announced that companies would require their employees to get fully vaccinated.
After three long months of freedom and health, the daily rate of coronavirus positive cases has increased to 60,000 per day, and the deaths are over 2,000 per week. The cases three months ago had dropped to 11,000. The total cases of the US have increased to 34.7 million with a total of 611,900 deaths.
The COVID-19 virus had its physical effects that we all know about, but scientists are just finding out that its mental impact is increasingly worrisome.
Some trials conducted recently have found shifts in the brain’s biology after the patients are hospitalized with COVID-19. The problem lingers for months after onset and the scientists doubt a link between smell loss and mental sharpness in older people. There are rising concerns that these symptoms may cause dementia in patients after years or decades.
The vice president for medical and scientific relations at the Alzheimer’s Association, Heather Snyder, said that this may be part of the puzzle of things contributing to dementia risk, which they don’t certainly know of but there is a need to understand.
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Pfizer and BioNTech released data according to which their vaccine’s efficacy wears off after six months, but they still do not agree on requiring a booster shot. The study, which hasn’t been published yet, showed the vaccine’s effectiveness gradually decreased from 96% to 84% in the span of six months. The company argues that even after decreasing, the vaccine is still highly effective in preventing COVID-19. For the six months followed by the first dose, the efficacy remains 97% high.
Mitch McConnell, Senate Minority Leader used the campaign funds that remained unspent of buying radio ads across Kentucky in which he tries to encourage people in getting vaccinated and take advantage of this medical miracle.
Many Republicans and conservatives have tried talking people against it, but McConnell has, for months, worked on vaccination and ending the pandemic.
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