Experts now say the U.S. will likely have to learn to live with the virus

Experts now say the U.S. will likely have to learn to live with the virus
Delta variant: different from SARS-CoV2, perhaps, but symptoms like the common cold. CDC/LU Staff mage

[Ed. – Well, at least that’s settled.]

In the early days of the pandemic, experts kept a close watch on the number of new cases — one of the key metrics signaling success or failure of public health measures. But with new variants leading to more frequent breakthrough infections, mild COVID-19 cases will likely still persist, even if every person in the country is fully vaccinated.

“Even before any vaccines were authorized … we knew that this was going to be an issue,” said Dr. Lynn Goldman, dean of the George Washington University’s Milken Institute of Public Health.

“No vaccine is 100% effective at preventing infection,” added Dr. Kimberly Fisher, professor of medicine at University of Massachusetts Chan Medical School.

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Now, public health and infectious disease experts are shifting their metric of success.

With vaccines still highly protective against severe illness, experts said we should focus … on how many people are being hospitalized or dying.

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