As Thanksgiving approaches, heralding the second holiday season for the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us will no doubt reflect on the difference between this winter and the last, in large part because of vaccines and reminders. effective and widespread. But while things are more normal than they have been for some time, much of it is still the same, including the headlines about security concerns and mask warrants, and reports. of cases increasing nationwide. It is reasonable to wonder when the pandemic will really be over and when pre-COVID life can resume. Here’s what the experts have to say about the end of COVID. Read on to find out more and to ensure your health and the health of others, don’t miss these Sure Signs You Have Ever Had COVID.
Experts point out that the COVID-19 pandemic is not over. Despite the advent of effective vaccines and boosters, sixty million people in the United States are not vaccinated. âOverall, there is still a lot of human wood to burn for this coronavirus wildfire,â Dr. Michael Osterholm, head of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, said on his podcast this month.
Osterholm said he was âskeptical that we won’t see new hot spots emerge in this country in the coming weeks and months. as high as we just had, but they will happen. “
In January, Nature surveyed more than 100 virus experts on whether COVID-19 will be eradicated or become endemic, which means that it will continue to circulate in places around the world for years to come. Almost 90% said COVID will become rampant.
âIt doesn’t stop. We just stop worrying. Or we care a lot less,â predicted Jennifer Nuzzo, an epidemiologist at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, in the Washington post last month. “I think for most people it just fades into the background of their lives.”
For now at least, vaccinations have made COVID a lot less risky: if you’re fully vaccinated you can develop a breakthrough infection, but there’s a good chance it looks more like a bad cold that won’t put you on not in the hospital.
âI think it’s slowly becoming part of the furniture,â said Andrew Noymer, an epidemiologist at the University of California, Irvine. To post. He still wears masks in public but not an N95. “I don’t want to wear scuba gear everywhere I go. It’s just part of the human environment now.”
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Vox Explain that for an infectious disease to be considered endemic, the infection rate must stabilize from year to year (apart from the expected seasonal outbreaks). “A disease is endemic if the number of breeding animals is stable at one. This means that an infected person, on average, infects another person,” said Eleanor Murray, epidemiologist at Boston University. “At the moment, we are a long way from that. Each infected person infects more than one person.”
“Usually, a virus becomes endemic when we – health experts, government agencies, and the public – collectively decide that we agree to accept the level of impact of the virus, âsaid Vox. “And obviously that’s a tricky thing: people will differ as to what constitutes an acceptable level.”
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Experts say to protect yourself in the short term: get vaccinated and get vaccinated. Make sure those around you do the same. Even if you are vaccinated, wear masks in public when transmission in your area is considered “substantial or high” (ie more than 50 cases per 100,000 population). Continue to wash your hands regularly.
But things get a little slippery after that. What exactly is certain? Go to the cinema? Thanksgiving or Christmas with several generations of the family? How about that indoor winter wedding?
For now, many experts say that once you’re fully immunized and boosted, your resumption of pre-pandemic activities depends on your level of risk tolerance. And that will involve doing a mental math: will everyone around you be vaccinated? Is it an indoor activity? Will everyone be wearing masks? What is the transmission rate in the local area? Will you be going home with someone who is not vaccinated or who is vulnerable to severe COVID-19?
âMy feeling now is that we are approaching a steady state where things could get better or worse a bit, over the next few years. It’s not great, but it is,â he said. said Robert M. Wachter, chairman of the Department of Medicine at the University of California at San Francisco, in the Washington To post. âThere is no cavalry coming up, so decisions now have to be based on a near-equilibrium state. For me, especially once I have had my booster, this prompts me to accept a little more risk, mainly because if I’m not comfortable doing it now, I’m basically saying I won’t be doing it for several years, and maybe forever. “
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Follow the basics and help end this pandemic, no matter where you live: get vaccinated as soon as possible; if you live in an area with low vaccination rates, wear an N95 facial mask, do not travel, do not go far away, avoid large crowds, do not go inside with people you are not safe from (especially in bars), practice good hand hygiene and to protect your life and the life of others, do not visit any of these 35 places where you’re most likely to catch COVID.