Mayo Clinic gives update on COVID-19; one doctor says generations to come will be dealing with the virus
ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) – Two years dealing with the pandemic has taken a toll on millions of Americans
“We are bearing down on a million Americans who have died in the last two years, directly attributable to COVID-19,” said Dr. Gregory Poland, Mayo Clinic Director of vaccine research.
“One in 450 children in the United States has lost a parent or caregiver to COVID,” said Dr. Caroline Poland, a licensed mental health counselor.
On Wednesday, Mayo Clinic hosted a panel discussion with health experts on the current stage of the pandemic.
Health officials say that nationally COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths are down.
However, Omiricron and subvariants BA.2 are making up 100 percent of the current COVID-19 cases.
BA.2 makes up 25 percent of cases. Mayo said the BA.2 variant is 50 to 60 percent more contagious than the original Omicron.
Doctors want people to continue practicing COVID prevention measures.
“Indoor setting I would still wear a properly fitted mask, said Dr. Raj Palraj, Infectious Disease Specialist. “As the vaccines are not 100 percent in protecting mild infections, and we know mild infections can still have long-term consequences.”
Gregory predicts generations to come will deal with the virus.
“Because of the way we have handled this, our great great great... go as far as you want, grandchildren will be getting COVID vaccines or dying of COVID or have complications as a result of infection,” he said.
So the classification as a pandemic could take some time to come to an end.
“There is no way to know, when you hear people say, ‘yep, this is the end of it.’ They are speaking out of ignorance frankly. We do not understand the biological, virologic and immunologic rules, in which viruses become an endemic,” Gregory said.
Caroline also talked about mental health and the importance of going outside to soak in the sun, getting enough rest, and eating healthy foods.
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