Is allergy a reason not to get vaccinated? 20:36
(CNN) – The United States is likely to reach its COVID-19 vaccination targets for the boreal summer, but indecision over the vaccine and variants could still cause another spike in the winter, an influential model predicted Thursday.
With the identification of more variants around the world, such as B.1.617 that has triggered cases in India, authorities are quick to motivate Americans to get vaccinated and help the country achieve herd immunity before variants that are resistant to the vaccine develop and reach the United States.
In certain circumstances, virus transmission can increase “rapidly and explosively,” according to the University of Washington Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME).
On Friday morning, Pfizer / BioNTech announced that it began seeking full approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of its vaccine for people 16 years of age and older. It is the first vaccine against covid-19 in the United States that is in the evaluation phase to obtain full FDA approval.
Pfizer’s two-shot mRNA vaccine is currently operating under FDA Emergency Use Authorization (US).
President Joe Biden announced Tuesday a goal for 70% of the nation’s adult population to receive at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine by July 4.
The IHME expects that goal to be reached by the end of May. And by September, 185 million Americans, which is equivalent to about 88% of the adult population would be vaccinated, according to the authors of the model.
From there, demand is likely to decline as the US hits the wall of people who are hesitant to get vaccinated, the researchers say.
The authorities and health experts have set out to combat this indecision and reach 70% or 85% of the total population that must be immune to the virus, either through vaccination or previous infection, to control its spread.
Incentives and Requirements Could Help, Survey Finds
Cash, workplace clinics and mandatory vaccinations before trips or big events could encourage more people to get vaccinated, the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) said Thursday.
According to the survey, three in 10 adults who don’t want to get vaccinated right away said they would be more likely to get vaccinated if the vaccine was available somewhere they normally go for medical care or if they only needed one dose. The survey was conducted April 15-29 and was conducted among 2,097 American adults.
And as the U.S. prepares for the long-awaited emergency use authorization of the Pfizer / BioNTech covid-19 vaccine for use in children ages 12-15 next week, the Kaiser Family Foundation also found that 19% of parents said they would definitely not vaccinate their children.
The KFF notes that “parents’ intentions to vaccinate their children against COVID-19 largely coincide with their own experiences and vaccination intentions.”
Children: how and when can they get the vaccine against covid-19? 4:00
Reopening and relaxation of measures
Faced with the decline in demand for vaccines and in reported cases, many officials will reduce efforts to prevent the spread of the virus.
The Missouri National Guard began to decrease its involvement in mass vaccination sites, Gov. Mike Parson announced Thursday.
“At the beginning, the demand for vaccines far exceeded the supply of them. Now, we are seeing the opposite and the need for large-scale vaccination events has decreased, ”Parson said.
Minnesota Governor Tim Walz announced a timetable to end COVID-19 restrictions, including a state requirement to wear a mask.
So our way forward is pretty clear. Now in Minnesota, in the next three weeks, it’s up to you to get vaccinated, “Walz said. “It is up to you to talk to your neighbors. It is up to you to talk to your doctors. They’re available. They are out there. Each one of those who are vaccinated moves us forward.
Reinforcements may be required to deal with variants
Starting doses may not be the end of the fight, and vaccinators say a booster may be needed in the next year.
“At some point there will be reinfections, and the best way to ensure that new outbreaks do not occur in well-vaccinated countries is to strengthen and maintain the highest possible levels of neutralizing immunity,” said Dr. Stephen Hoge, president of the Modern pharmaceutical company.
Moderna said Wednesday that a booster injection of its covid-19 vaccine reactivates the immune response against two worrisome variants of the coronavirus: variant B.1.351 registered for the first time in South Africa and variant P.1 registered for the first time in Brazil.
The lowered immune response in people naturally infected with the virus also suggests the possible need for boosters, Ozlem Tureci, BioNTech’s co-founder and chief medical officer, told CNN.
Pfizer / BioNTech states that tests show 90% efficacy in preventing symptomatic disease, Tureci reported.
“The good news is that mRNA technology allows for frequent boosts,” he said.
–Lauren Mascarenhas, Naomi Thomas, Keith Allen, Chris Boyette and Jacqueline Howard of CNN contributed to this report.