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Op-ed: No knockout blows against COVID-19. Instead, a prolonged war.

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No one should take this out of context. But it’s an unpleasant and underreported fact that in terms of ending the pandemic, the COVID-19 vaccines have been oversold. So far, they have not shown convincing evidence of bringing the pandemic to a halt and it is becoming increasingly unlikely they will do so in 2021.

This should not be misconstrued as a rationale to avoid the vaccine. Anyone who is eligible to be vaccinated but has not done so should get the vaccine immediately; vaccines remain our best weapon against the virus. They have been quite effective at ensuring people do not contract or transmit the virus. And if one should contract COVID-19, vaccination is undeniably effective in minimizing severe illness and death. But quite or undeniably effective is not the same as completely effective. Infection, transmission and severe illness are still occurring, albeit at a significantly lower rate than previously.

This is also happening in other, even more highly vaccinated countries than the U.S. Israel, Iceland and the U.K., each of which has a higher vaccination rate than the U.S., are all experiencing higher case averages than they did one year ago, before the vaccine was deployed. No one expected that.

The inclination has been to blame the unvaccinated, and they certainly shoulder an important share of responsibility, but........

© Chicago Tribune

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