The COVID-19 outbreak that was first reported in Wuhan in China in December 2019 exploded into a global pandemic within months. COVID-19 virus continued its deadly spread with new waves of infection from new virus variants.
Anthony S. Fauci, MD, Director, US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, significantly led the US through this COVID-19 pandemic with experience and intelligence.
Millions of health care workers, including physicians, nurses, technicians, and other health care professionals, have faced the challenge of providing care for patients who suffered from COVID-19 and risking their own lives to save others.
Over 217 million people have received the first dose of vaccine in the U.S. and states. However, more than 65% of the total U.S. population has received at least the first dose of vaccine. In addition, the rate of vaccine hesitancy in some areas cast doubt on the possibility to stop the spread of the Delta variant, which has grown rapidly in states with low vaccination rates. As a result, some organizations recommend wearing masks and safety protocol mandates to curb the spike in infections from the Delta variant.
Over 715,000 people in the United States have died from COVID-19, making it the most deadly pandemic in American history after the Spanish flu in 1918. The re-opening of schools, colleges, and other efforts to resume normal activities has added new authorities’ concerns. As per the CDC COVID data tracker, the U.S. has averaged over 80,000 new infections daily in the past week. Rates rose sharply once again for several weeks as the Delta variant continued to strike the unvaccinated people who represent the large majority of new cases and deaths. Although the death toll had slowed as the country emerged from the Pandemic, it is still recording more than 1,200 deaths per day and threatening to pass even more grim milestones of lives lost to the pandemic. Resistance to vaccines and mask-wearing continues to be a significant factor in the level of infection rates (and deaths).
A recent study shows that complete vaccination was 80% effective in preventing SARS-CoV-2 infection among frontline workers during the last eight months, affirming the highly protective benefit of complete vaccination. However, the vaccine effectiveness estimates declined from 91% before Delta to 66% since the Delta variant became predominant. This trend should be interpreted cautiously because the effects might also decline as time elapsed since vaccination increases.
Role of Healthcare Workers
COVID-19 pandemic has affected the life and health of over 1 million people globally. This overwhelms various countries’ healthcare systems and affects healthcare workers such as nurses fighting to safeguard affected people’s lives.
Doctors, nurses, and other healthcare workers have a significant role in fighting against the COVID-19 pandemic. Also, the Nurses are facing critical shortages of nursing staff, beds, and medical supplies. Therefore, addressing these needs and providing medical supplies are essential.
More advanced research is to be carried out to understand the experiences of nurses who are on the frontlines for better preparedness for such kinds of pandemics.
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