Dozens of medical groups call for mandatory health worker vaccinations – US politics live

Anthony Fauci, the White House chief medical adviser, said on Sunday top US health officials were discussing whether to revise mask guidance for Americans vaccinated against Covid-19.

“This is under active consideration,” Fauci told CNN’s State of the Union, though he also emphasized that local governments can issue their own rules under current guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Los Angeles county and St Louis, Missouri, have reinstated indoor mask requirements and other cities are weighing whether to do the same.

After a significant drop in Covid-19 cases because of the national vaccine campaign, infections are rising in all 50 states and Washington DC. The increases are highest in states with large groups of unvaccinated people. More than 610,000 have died from Covid-19 in the US.

At a White House briefing on Thursday the surgeon general, Vivek Murthy, said 97% of hospital admissions and 99.5% of Covid deaths were occurring among unvaccinated people.

More than 162.7 million Americans are vaccinated – or 49% of the population, according to the CDC.

Yolette Bonnet, 60, the chief executive of a group of community health clinics in underserved neighborhoods across Palm Beach County, Florida, got vaccinated. Perhaps this would be unremarkable, except that she got her shot Thursday, more than seven months after she was eligible to get the vaccine with ready access as a healthcare provider.

Bonnet, who is Black, described her resistance as a mix of hope the pandemic would fade, and skepticism born from the American medical establishment’s history of racism.

Bonnet’s story is just one example of how people in a vast, heterogeneous country are reckoning with the re-emergence of the pandemic with the more contagious Delta strain predominantly causing new cases and their own willingness to prevent it using the most powerful tool at humanity’s disposal – the vaccine.

It also reveals the complex, highly personal deliberations behind a stalled vaccination campaign in the US, one that threatens to undermine vaccine efficacy as each new infection provides an opportunity for the development of a new variant.

Bonnet said she was still uncertain when she got her first Pfizer shot, but the encouragement of her two daughters, husband and staff prevailed, and amid fanfare she got the shot. So did 12 of her staff members, who saw their leader’s willingness to get vaccinated as a sign of its safety.

Dozens of medical groups call for mandatory vaccinations of health workers


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