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Good news on the COVID front

Here in the US, life is getting better – a LOT better.

The three main COVID indicators – deaths, hospitalizations, and infections, continue to trend down. That’s due to multiple factors – immunization rates, warmer weather and more outdoor time, and continued physical distancing and mask wearing.  Oh, and about 33 million of us have had confirmed COVID diagnoses…

Deaths are now at their lowest point in almost a year,

Hospitalizations are down by double digits, although ICU admits remain stubbornly high.

And almost half of us have been fully vaccinated.

Parties, events, family get-togethers and social gatherings are becoming more common (we celebrated our daughter’s 30th birthday/engagement at a party with real live people not wearing masks this weekend).

Ok, so that’s all good news.

The not-as-good news is…

Vaccination rates are tapering off, meaning it will likely be tough to get to 75% immunity.  It appears some of the more creative vaccination campaigns are working…NJ’s Shot and a Beer, the Ohio million dollar prize for 5 people picked by lottery, a marijuana joint reward happening in DC and others are showing increases of 8% in the population immunized.

The mask thing.

There’s been a lot of talk about the CDC’s new maskless guidance for those of us who are fully vaccinated (except on airplanes etc) and the “confusion” surrounding the announcement.

While this could definitely been handled better, the back story is we now have a CDC that is completely free from politicization. It looks like the White House and CDC are going above-and- beyond to keep the politicians away from the CDC’s public health guidance. The result is going to be the CDC making announcements and policy recommendations on its own, without guidance from the White House. [Thanks for typo correction Kathy!]

This is a good thing.

What does this mean for you?

Get shotted up so we can get together and do fun stuff!

Joe Paduda is the principal of Health Strategy Associates



A national consulting firm specializing in managed care for workers’ compensation, group health and auto, and health care cost containment. We serve insurers, employers and health care providers.



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