The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention predicts that Covid-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths will drop over the next four weeks. The forecast from the CDC ensemble concludes that there will be a total of 596,000 to 606,000 deaths from Covid-19 by June 19.
Many states offer incentives for people to get the vaccine. The latest is California, which attracts residents with a whopping $ 116.5 million in freebies, touting it as the nation’s largest vaccination incentive program.
Children must be protected more
And those who are not eligible, who are children under 12, need to be careful. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children 2 years of age or older who are not fully immunized wear a properly fitted face mask.
The updated guidelines recommend that children wear a mask at school, in child care programs, at camp, when playing with friends, and playing indoor and outdoor sports with contact. narrow. There are exceptions for sports where masks can be a hazard, such as gymnastics.
Masks should be used outdoors if the child is in a large group or when it is impossible to keep a good physical distance from others, according to the AAP.
The AAP has also recommended that children wear one at home if they are living with someone who is immunocompromised or at risk of developing severe Covid-19.
“COVID-19 vaccines are remarkably effective, but we must remain vigilant,” AAP President Dr Lee Savio Beers said in a statement.
To help adolescents and adults who have moderate or worse cases of Covid-19, the United States Food and Drug Administration has cleared sotrovimab monoclonal antibody therapy for those 12 years and older at risk of serious illness or death. .
Many states offer vaccination incentive programs
California and Minnesota are the latest states to offer new incentives for people to get vaccinated.
California offers gift cards and cash prizes, including a $ 15 million grand prize to be distributed among ten vaccinated Californians.
It will include all residents who have already been vaccinated and those who receive an injection before the state fully reopens on June 15, according to Gov. Gavin Newsom’s office.
The next two million residents vaccinated will be eligible for $ 100 million in gift cards, distributed in installments of $ 50 in the form of a Visa gift card or prepaid groceries.
About 50% of eligible Californians are already fully vaccinated and 12% have received a dose of the Covid-19 vaccine, but an additional 12 million people are eligible but have not yet been vaccinated, state officials say.
In Minnesota, Gov. Tim Walz has launched the “Your Shot to Summer” campaign where 100,000 Minnesota residents who get their shots between Memorial Day weekend and the end of June will be able to choose from a range of incentives, including state park passes and fishing licenses. as well as tickets to state fairs and regional theme parks.
“We wanted to match a program that we thought matched Minnesota,” Walz told reporters. “We think it’s a great way to start the summer. “
“I especially think those dealing outside were very Minnesota, we want to encourage people to come out, we hope they last a lifetime. This could be some people’s first fishing license, we hope they buy one every year after that, ”he said.
Minnesota’s Covid-19 restrictions on businesses, sporting events and social gatherings end on Friday and Walz took on an optimistic tone for the upcoming holiday weekend.
“All the mitigation is being taken out of business, commercial capacity and stuff like that, so it’s going to be a real Memorial Day weekend,” he said.
‘Get vaccinated, go to the beach’
New York has its own plan to get everyone vaccinated. The city will provide vaccination buses to beaches and parks to offer free vaccines during the weekend.
“We’re going to go the extra mile, no matter what,” New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said. “You’re going to be seeing our vaccine buses all over New York in the next few days. “
He added, “Come on, get your shot, go to the beach. Really simple. ”
De Blasio also announced that the city has vaccinated more than 9,000 people at home and will expand the program to include people with disabilities and those 75 and over. To date, the city has administered a total of 8,130,889 doses of the vaccine.
Vaccine boosters will be needed at some point
But experts reiterate that getting the vaccine now may not be enough and that booster shots will be needed at some point.
Dr Peter Marks, director of the US Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, said current wisdom regarding boosters suggests they will be needed, but the exact time is not yet known. .
“The exact time the boosters are needed will likely be a combination of two things,” he said. “First, how quickly this immune response falls, but that can also depend on the variants of Covid-19 that are circulating. ”
Participants in the original vaccine trials are currently being monitored so that their immune response can be examined over time and there is evidence that it “decreases somewhat” over time, Marks said during a webinar on the. Covid-19 vaccine education and equity project.
He explained that this is because certain levels of immunity are sufficient to prevent Covid-19 with the original strain of the virus, but it may not be good enough for other variants.
“We’ll have to see where it all interacts. Is it possible that we need a booster at some point? Yes. Is it likely? Yes. Do we know exactly when? No, ”Marks said. “But if I were to look at my crystal ball, it’s probably not sooner, hopefully, than a year after being vaccinated for the middle / aged adult. However, he believes it may be different for immunocompromised or older adults who might need a booster shot sooner.
“The good news is that the immunity may last longer,” Marks added.
CNN’s Lauren Mascarenhas, Jen Christensen, Deidre McPhillips, Mirna Alsharif, Keith Allen, Cheri Mossburg, Naomi Thomas contributed to this report.