Cases of Covid-19 Continue to Decline
Last week the number of cases of Covid-19 in the United States showed a steady decline, and this seems to hold true for this week as well. However, experts warn that this decrease in cases does not mean Americans should be so eager to return to pre-Covid life. According to CNN, “letting your guard down could be an invitation for highly contagious variants to trample the US.”
In response to the lower rate of infection, states like New York and Massachusetts have rolled back Covid-19 restrictions around indoor dining and schools reopening, but Iowa has taken these relaxed measures the furthest. NBC News says Iowa Governor, Kim Reynold, went as far as to lift the partial mask mandate and allow businesses to stop enforcing social distancing orders and occupancy limits. Dr. Justin Lessler, an infectious disease epidemiologist at the John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, describes this relaxation of restrictions as “premature” and recalls that “when we remove interventions, we frequently see resurgences.”
While individual states may be letting up on restrictions, the Biden administration is considering a new measure to help control the spread of the virus and its variants. According to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, the team may soon require negative Covid-19 test results for domestic air travel. Ultimately the decision will fall upon the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and director Dr. Walensky thinks the measure might be useful, but finds the best thing is to encourage people not to travel.
In other news, the United States is making progress with vaccine distribution, with 10% of the country having received their first dose, according to the CDC. In order to accelerate the vaccine process, the Biden administration is working out a deal to get 200 million more doses by summer, says NPR.
One thing that has not changed since last week, is the encouragement to continue social distancing and wearing masks. For greater efficacy against the new strains of coronavirus, consider doubling up on masks with a disposable surgical mask or additional carbon filter under your cloth mask.