New coronavirus cases in the United States have dropped to rates not seen in more than 11 months, prompting optimism that vaccination campaigns are causing severe cases of COVID-19 and the spread of the virus.
As cases, hospitalizations, and deaths steadily fell this week, pre-pandemic life in the United States has largely resumed. Hugs and crowds without masks returned to the White House, a Mardi Gras-style parade marched through the port city of Mobile, Alabama, and even states that have adhered to pandemic-related restrictions ready to drop them. Despite this, health experts he also warned that not enough Americans were vaccinated to completely extinguish the virus, leaving the potential for new variants that could spread the pandemic.
With the seven-day average of new cases falling below 30,000 daily this week, Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, noted that cases have not been as low since June 18. 2020. The average number of deaths in the last seven days also fell to 552, a rate not seen since July last year. It is a dramatic drop since the pandemic reached a devastating crescendo in January.
“As it goes on every week and as we continue to see progress, these data give me hope,” Walensky said at a news conference on Friday.
Health experts accredit efficient deployment of vaccines for change. More than 60% of people over the age of 18 have received at least one vaccine and nearly half are completely vaccinated, according to the CDC. But demand for vaccines has fallen in much of the country. President Joe Biden’s administration is trying to convince other Americans to aim for shots, through an optimistic message that vaccines offer a return to normal life.
White house health officials Friday even devoted itself to offering advice on dating. They join dating apps to offer a new reason to “slide right” by inserting vaccination badges into profiles and app bonuses for people who have received their opportunities.
Ohio, New York, Oregon and other states lure people to get vaccinated through lottery prizes of up to $ 5 million.
Across the country, spaces and events reopened after closing for much of last year.
On Saturday, Karen Stetz prepared to welcome what she hoped to be a good crowd at the Grosse Pointe art fair on Lake St. Clear of Michigan.
With the natural ventilation of the lake and the reduction of mask capacity and capacity, Stetz was optimistic that the artists who made a living traveling through a circuit of shows that stopped last year would begin to rebound. The event usually gathers between 5,000 and 10,000 people.
“I think most people are ready to go out,” Stetz said by phone shortly before the fair opened. “It seems like people are anxious, but it’s still hard to know. I’m sure there is a percentage of people who will wait until they’re comfortable.”
At Mobile, thousands of cheerful partygoers, many without masks, competed for the plastic pearls and trinkets thrown from the floats Friday night as the port city of Alabama launched a Mardi Gras-style parade. But only a quarter of the county’s population is completely vaccinated. Many went without masks, even though health officials had urged personal responsibility.
Alabama’s vaccination rate — 34 percent of people have received at least one dose — is one of the lowest in the country. It is part of a strip of southern states where vaccine uptake has been slow. Health experts are concerned that areas with low vaccination rates may lead to new, more vaccine-resistant virus variants.
“My biggest concern is the new strains of the virus and the need to remain vigilant in the coming months,” said Dr. Philip J. Landrigan, a public health expert at Boston College.
A Louisiana medical center reported Friday that it has identified the state’s first two cases of a COVID-19 variant that has spread widely since it was identified in India. He COVID-19 variant has been classified as a “variant of concern” by Britain and the World Health Organization, meaning there are some tests that spread more easily among people, that cause more serious illnesses or that can respond less to treatments and vaccines. The variant has also been reported in several states, including Tennessee, Nebraska and Nevada.
Although Landrigan said the large drop in cases across the country was “the best news we’ve had about the pandemic” and showed that vaccines worked, he warned that people should remain vigilant in the face of local outbreaks. new cases.
Many states have largely abandoned orders to wear masks and stay away from other people. Meanwhile, even places like California, the first state to issue a statewide shutdown when the virus emerged in March 2020, were preparing to remove restrictions on social distancing and business capacity next month. .
State Health Director Dr. Mark Ghaly said Friday that the decision was based on drastically lower virus cases and increased vaccinations.
But in Vermont, the state with the highest percentage of people who have been shot, the governor. Phil Scott has linked the lifting of restrictions to the vaccination rate. He offered to lift all remaining restrictions before the July 4 deadline if 80% of those eligible are vaccinated.
Landrigan thought a nationwide vaccination rate of at least 85% would be needed to eliminate the virus. But for now, the sharp drop in cases gave him hope that pandemic-level infection rates will soon be a thing of the past.
“It’s getting to the point that by July 4th we could declare this thing over,” he said.
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Citation: US: New cases of COVID-19 fall to lowest levels since last June (2021, May 23), recovered on May 23, 2021 at https://medicalxpress.com/news/2021-05- covid-cases-plummet-lowest-june. html
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