40%, ONE, Three Months discussed on PM Tampa Bay with Ryan Gorman
L A Me bring in someone to help give us a sense to work. Things stand with pandemic here in the state of Florida. I'm joined now by professor and epidemiologist at the University of Florida, Dr Cindy Prince to talk about the coronavirus caseload and also how vaccinations are going throughout the state. Dr. Prince Thanks so much for taking a few moments. Talk to us and and let's start with the current case numbers that we're seeing. What does the latest data tell you about the spread of the virus across the state? What I've been seeing across the state is that we were on an upward trend for a while. It looks like we are potentially Platt towing now in some places, But you know, I'm a little nervous to say that yet because we know that Florida can quickly change and and go the other way. But my hope is that We're trending downward a little bit and starting to see the effect of vaccines and on the subject of vaccines, the amount of vaccinations that have taken place in Florida up to this point How does that help us with the pandemic and how much further do we need to go before we get to a really good place here in the state of Florida, where perhaps we get close to whatever that herd immunity number is Yeah, So right now we have about maybe 28% of people who are fully vaccinated. 40% have at least one dose and that's pretty good production. We want more protection than that. We want both doses. But getting that vaccine certainly does help with the cases. We know that our older population is Pretty highly vaccinated and well covered, and we've definitely seen that We've had decreases in cases and that population decreases that hospitalizations for them, too. The problem is our younger populations were not having as much uptake as we'd like with the vaccine where may be stalling out a little bit right now, there was a recent study a survey done by morning console that said one in five Floridians are not planning on getting a covert 19 vaccine. There's another 16% or so that remain uncertain about whether or not they'll get vaccinated with those potential numbers. Will it be possible to reach her immunity here in the state of Florida? I think that we still can. I mean, even with one in five, saying that they definitely won't get it. I think some of those folks may come around eventually. Now we have to remember that we're still waiting for approval for Children under 16 to be able to get the vaccine and their critical part of her to meet any a swell, But I think at some point people will start to realize the benefit of the vaccine, not just in protecting them against Cove ID. But also in allowing them to go out and do the activities that they want to do like travel like to get together with other people and not feel at risk When you're taking a look at The herd Immunity issue. Do you also add in those who have already been infected with the coronavirus? Do we know how long that immunity potentially last? Yeah. You know, that becomes a complicated question. Certainly we know that people have some immunity after they get infected with covert 19. We don't tend to think that it was going to last reliably much longer than about three months. It may last a little bit longer, But I usually tell people you may be covered for three months. Not longer than that. We know that the vaccine will provide longer immunities than that, so you can count in people who've had coveted to some extent for herd immunity, but it's not a long enough lasting immunity. To really make me feel confident that that's going to help control the pandemic. So the vaccine is really the way to go. Whether you've had Cove it or not. I'm joined by Dr Cindy Prince, professor and epidemiologist at the University of Florida. So earlier today, the CDC issued some new guidance for those who are vaccinated and also for things that are safe to do outside. What can you tell us? About how the virus operates in an outdoor environment. Yeah, so outdoors, you know, we have a lot more air volume. We've got air currents and things that are helpful in preventing some of that viral spread. And I think as we see cases go down and vaccines go up. We can start to reliably be outdoors without masks. Now, the caveat. There is, if you're in a large crowd of people, especially while we haven't hit that herd immunity point yet I would still have that mask on hand and I would wear it. But you know if you're just with a smaller group of people, friends that, you know, um And you're you're not going inside and and hanging out if they're not vaccinated, then I think you're okay to be outside without a mask. And especially, we know that mask wearing in Florida and summer is not a fun activity. You're absolutely right about that. It is not fun. One final question for you. If you've been vaccinated and you with other people who have been vaccinated, Can you pretty much take the mask off at that point indoors outdoors wherever and return to some kind of normalcy. Yeah, I think that if you are fully vaccinated, and that means two weeks after your second dose of a two votes, dose vaccine or one week after the Johnson and Johnson, you can start to go back to normal. Small groups of friends. We're not looking at large gatherings and doors. But, you know, certainly You can have a few friends over. You can sit with them. You can eat with them. You could be without masks. And have a little bit of that normal back. Dr Cindy Prince, professor and epidemiologist at the University of Florida Doctor prints Thanks so much for your time and sharing your insight..