Covid-19: Is the pandemic over?

July 26, 2021

 

In early 2020, an outbreak of respiratory viral disease was reported in Wuhan, China and quickly spread around the globe. The pandemic has affected the economic sector as well as peoples’ lives and physical, mental well-being due to social isolation, loss of jobs and housing.

The vaccination efforts started earlier this year after the development of mRNA vaccines marketed by the drug companies Pfizer and Moderna, followed by inactivated J&J vaccine. A lot of controversy surrounded these immunizations in terms of safety and efficacy. There have been very few serious side effects reported so far. Staywell Health has been administering the Moderna vaccine for over 6 months now and continues to offer free testing at our South main location.

During the past 2 months, the state of CT and the whole nation has noticed a significant drop in covid cases and hospitalizations due to the public health and vaccination efforts. Regardless of this, many individuals remain opposed to getting the vaccine due to safety and other concerns.

In recent weeks, there has been a sharp increase in Covid cases due to the resurgence of a mutated version of the virus better known as the ‘delta variant’. This altered and more powerful strain has caused more patients to get infected and hospitalized, especially unvaccinated individuals, which has led to reinstated mask mandates in some communities.

In my opinion, which is shared by the scientific community, the pandemic is far from over and we will continue to see surges in virus cases due to mutated strains if we do not achieve herd immunity globally, keeping in mind international travel and household contacts. Everyone should be encouraged to continue to wear their face coverings and masks in any crowded setting especially indoors. Also we should spread the word and increase efforts to convince our friends and family members who are not vaccinated to do so as soon as possible to prevent them from contracting the virus, getting ill, being hospitalized and dying especially if they are elderly or have chronic medical conditions like diabetes, kidney, liver, lung disease, obesity and low immune function.

It has been proven that all 3 vaccines are safe. There have been very few severe allergic reactions and other side effects including blood clots and heart inflammation in specific age/gender groups but the rates of these incidents remain less than 1 in a million individuals. There is no scientific data to suggest that these vaccines are implicated in infertility or death. One has to be careful with the information shared by word of mouth as well as on social media.

StayWell is currently administering the Moderna and the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. To find out more information and schedule your appointment, please visit our Covid-19 page

If you have any questions or hesitancy about the vaccine or any other inquiry please contact your local Infectious disease specialist at ehelou@staywellhealth.org.

 

 

Dr. Elie Helou, MD

StayWell Health Center

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