“I think we can say with confidence that the worst is behind us,” Brown University Health School Dean Dr. Ashish Ja said on Friday in Good Morning America. “We will not see the kinds of suffering and death we have seen during the holidays. I think we are in much better shape ahead.”
The only thing that could jeopardize the prospects, he said, is the proliferation of coronavirus variants, making pressure to increase vaccinations even more critical.
Lower mortality and higher vaccination rates would be reasonable to aim for full opening by July 1st, CDC Director Dr Rochelle Valenski said on Friday.
“We are focused on vaccinating people, reducing the number of cases,” she told a White House news briefing Covid-19. “If we can continue at this pace, the incidence is decreasing, vaccinations are increasing, then I think July 1 would be a reasonable goal.”
But, she warned, “the virus has tricked us before,” and it will be crucial to monitor cases in the coming months.
The CDC provides both routine and Covid-19 vaccinations for adolescents
As officials seek to make vaccines, which are currently only given to those over 16, available to younger adolescents, missed routine vaccinations can be a problem.
Walensky said routine vaccinations among adolescents have declined this year. The need for routine immunizations for children returning to school, the introduction of the annual flu vaccine and the expected availability of Covid-19 vaccines for children 12 and older can be a logistical challenge, she said.
“A truly coordinated effort will be needed between families, health care providers and public health officials at the local, state and federal levels to achieve both the introduction of Covid-19 in adolescents and the rapid catch-up of routine vaccinations. Said Valenski. at an event organized by the Pediatric Academic Societies.
Valenski called on pediatricians to help with the effort.
“To achieve high levels of vaccination and reduce the transmission of Covid-19, we need rapid and extensive vaccination of children under 18 years of age,” she said.
Vaccination of younger people is becoming increasingly important as more older people are inoculated and those who report infections are distorted at a younger age.
In West Virginia, the average age for new cases is currently 34, Gov. Jim Justice said. This is 10 years less than a few months ago.
“The average age of someone infected with Covid-19 has really dropped in the last few months,” said the state’s coronavirus king, Dr. Clay Marsh.
“We know that our 10- to 19-year-old category is the highest level of positivity and prevalence of Covid-19,” Marsh said.
“I’m telling our young people, I’m telling you frankly, as much as I can tell you that you absolutely have to have a good concern,” said Justice, who called on young West Virginas to be vaccinated.
Justice said that the two biggest concerns about infecting young people are transmitting the virus to others “even if you don’t get sick” and the possibility of ending up with “significant side effects … [for] for the rest of your life. “
Most side effects of the J&J vaccine are not serious
Rare reports of blood clots have raised concerns about the Johnson & Johnson single-dose vaccine, but a new review of safety data found that only 3% of reported reactions after receiving the vaccine were classified as serious.
The report notes that so far the safety profile of the vaccine is similar to that observed in clinical trials, but safety monitoring at the time of vaccine release has rapidly identified blood clot incidents.
“A rare but serious adverse event, occurring predominantly in women, blood clots in large vessels accompanied by low platelet counts were quickly detected by the US vaccine safety monitoring system,” the CDC researchers wrote in the report. “Monitoring for common and rare adverse events following all COVID-19 vaccines, including the Janssen COVID-19 vaccine, continues.”
The data include 88 deaths reported after vaccination. Among these deaths, three occurred in patients with cerebral venous sinus thrombosis, and CDC researchers wrote that after preliminary examinations, “no other deaths appear to be related to vaccination.”
CNN’s Jen Christensen, Virginia Langmaid, Lauren Mascarenhas, Melissa Alonso and Jacqueline Howard contributed to the report.