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COVID-19 Pandemic Over? Opinions, Please

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COVID-19 Pandemic Over? Opinions, Please

(CTN News) – COVID-19 isn’t really over, I know. Every day, people get sick. This year, there will be 150,000 COVID deaths in the US. In the next 12 months, Israel will have just over 1,000 COVID deaths.

Despite the documented dangers, there comes a time when we just have to “live with COVID.” Not just in words, but also in action.

The moment came when indoor mask mandates were relaxed for many people. I and my wife, Jody, held on longer. Five weeks ago, we received the Omicron booster vaccine, which we consider to be our turning point.

The feeling on that day was: We’ve done everything we can. According to Trevor Bedford, a virologist at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center, this booster won’t prevent us from getting COVID again (COVID likely continues to infect 50% of us every year), but it may lessen the severity of the disease.

Apart from that, I had a positive experience with Paxlovid when I caught be immunocompromised, but if I survived it once, I’ll survive it again.

In crowded places, on public transportation, and on airplanes, we still mask up. As a result, things get awkward.

In The Atlantic, Kathryn Wu writes, mask wearers are a shrinking minority in society. Once again, the act has become strange.

As Joe Biden declared on 60 Minutes, “The pandemic is over… If you notice, no one is wearing masks anymore.”

Wishful thinking does not constitute epidemiological accuracy. When he announced in 2020, “One day – like a miracle – it will disappear,” Trump wasn’t some Greek oracle. COVID-19 isn’t going away by itself.

COVID-19 is still a huge problem.

One of Israel’s biggest HMOs, Maccabi Healthcare Services, found that 34.6% of participants weren’t back to their baseline health condition after recovering from COVID-19.

Even so, masking is down to 29% of the population in America, down from 50% to 80% in the first two years.

It’s like showing up in a weird hat,” Wu’s friend told her.

My mask prevented COVID-19. I couldn’t resist. Doctors know best.

Meghan McCoy, an immunocompromised physician, says feeling alone is difficult. “It is noticeable.”

A dysfunctional immune system doesn’t always manifest itself as a big sign, McCoy says.

There are masks on those kinds of signs now.

Unlike wheelchairs, prosthetic devices, or service dogs, masks draw attention in a post-COVID-19 world. They “invite skepticism, condescension and invasive questions,” Wu writes.

Wu explains that mask-freeing is like reverting to a safer, more peaceful past. People may feel jettisoned when they discard masks, while clinging to them reminds them of a difficult memory.

The “new normal” is also an admission of failure.

  • An unstoppable virus now circulates among humans. Annual flu outbreaks still contain DNA remnants from the 1918 flu pandemic.

  • Mask-wearing and vaccines became political issues, not matters of public safety.

  • FAIL TO EMBRACE EFFECTIVE GOVERNMENT OVER POPOPISM.

Jody and I attended the screening of Cinema Sabaya, Israel’s top Ophir award-winning film. As soon as we heard the man behind us coughing, we donned our masks and felt safer.

Before big events or vacations, we wear our masks more consistently so that we don’t miss out.

Wu asked her Taiwanese mother, “How is masking working in Taipei? ”

In public places, even where it is not mandated, it is quite common.

Her mother’s response to Wu’s question was telling.

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