We've finally had some amazing (and badly needed) news about COVID. Vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna are about 95 percent protective against COVID. But perhaps more importantly, according to interim analyses, Moderna's vaccine is 100% protective against severe COVID. This number is not only more impressive but may also be more clinically relevant.
We got some very good news in the past week. Vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna greatly exceeded expectations. But Drs. Seley-Radtke and Bloom argue in the Duluth News Tribune that antiviral drugs will still be needed, no matter how good the vaccines are.
We've just gotten a whole bunch of good news – news we really needed – about finally getting the upper hand against COVID-19. Two vaccines, both more than 90% effective at protecting clinical trial participants against the disease, were announced just seven days apart. These numbers are well beyond expectations, but some critically important questions linger. Here they are. The answers will determine how successful the vaccines will be.
Operation Warp Speed brought together a broad array of government resources to achieve a similar, seemingly impossible rapid pace of development, regulatory approval, and distribution of vaccines to prevent COVID-19. But no matter how quickly or successfully vaccine(s) are developed we have been woefully ineffective in the development of other ways to tame the pandemic, especially readily available and accurate tests and proper PPE. Will the Biden plan pick up the slack?
Americans -- so desperate to end the need for masks, social distancing, and limited access to restaurants, salons, concerts, and schools -- will surely be clamoring for a vaccine as soon as it’s available. Or will they? Recent polls suggest that only about 40% of Americans would take the vaccine. It is vital that this number be increased. But how? Let's explore this issue.