The stragglers will be key to stopping Covid, however, and what exactly the government can do to encourage and cajole anti-vax Americans is coming soon.
There are anomalies among states (states with lower vaccination rates tend to be more Republican) and within states. But other countries couldn’t dream of those numbers.
The question is when will enough get vaccinated to protect the country.
And that will take some pushing and prodding, particularly with younger Americans.
“The trouble is they feel like they are invincible and that makes them a tough group to reach,” she said. The next line of the story is that she hasn’t been able to get her own children vaccinated.
“I’m still working on them and I shame them every day,” she jokes.
If you isolate to just Americans under 30 and assume recent vaccination rates, only 57.5% of people under the age of 30 will have received at least one dose of Covid-19 vaccine by the end of August, according to one projection.
Carrots to get vaccines. We’re all familiar with the freebies, the raffles, the lotteries and the other come-ons the government and companies have hatched to get the disinterested and the disaffected to roll up their sleeves.
Things are starting to get more direct. As in, if you don’t get the vaccine, you can’t study or work here.
The school eased around state law by requiring vaccination, but not documentation of the vaccination. The students argue that’s beside the point.
“They’re suing because they’re being stripped of their constitutional rights to make medical treatment decisions for themselves and to protect their own bodily integrity. After all, they are adults and they would like to weigh the risks and consequences of taking the vaccination or getting Covid,” James Bopp Jr., lead attorney for the plaintiffs, told CNN’s Ana Cabrera.
One interesting question courts could answer is whether state universities — congregation points for that young, unvaccinated cohort — are arms of the state.
A federal judge rejected a suit brought by more than 100 employees against Houston Methodist Hospital, which required employees to get vaccinated to keep their jobs. The employees have appealed the decision.
It’s obviously important to track these lawsuits, but it’s also important to recognize the scale of discontent, which actually seems quite small.
It’s a less-than 1% problem. From CNN’s report: Houston Methodist CEO Marc Boom said earlier this month that 24,947 employees were fully vaccinated… On Tuesday, a hospital spokesperson said 153 employees either resigned during a two-week suspension period that began June 8 or were terminated this week.
LaTricia Blank, an ultrasound technologist, is one of the fired employees. She argued to CNN’s Erin Burnett that the three vaccines used in the US have gotten only emergency use approval from the FDA and she worries that they went through a rushed process.
“You’re not going to turn away a patient and give them care if they don’t have a vaccine. Don’t take away my choice,” she said.
116 year-old precedent: States can mandate vaccines. It’s not clear how long or even if these questions will make it to the US Supreme Court, but it’s notable the court’s most important vaccine mandate story dates back to 1905, when the city of Cambridge, Massachusetts, levied a $5 fine on people who refused to get smallpox shots.
Pastor Henning Jacobson sued in 1902, arguing “compulsion to introduce disease into a healthy system (the vaccine) is a violation of liberty.”
That sounds exactly like the students in Indiana today.
Courts take forever. That key Supreme Court decision was handed down a year before the US Food and Drug Administration, which approves drugs today, was founded in 1906. Things have changed in 116 years!
Life and liberty. The difference today could be the many US states, under Republican governors, passing laws that defer to liberty over public safety when it comes to vaccines.
In the US, it’s the honor system. Traveling to Europe is another story.
Everyone is making a choice about their own vaccination. But those choices have consequences, particularly as the more-contagious Delta variant spreads through the country.
One victim’s wife said they had both considered getting the vaccine but were still concerned about things they felt were unknown.
“We were just researching and trying to follow up about the vaccine, we just wasn’t ready yet,” she said.
Meantime, the government will try to get as many Americans vaccinated as possible.