As intimidating as Delta is, the best firewall we can put in place is obvious. Vaccinations are the number one reason Illinois’s seven-day moving average positivity rate is now below 1%. Illinois had 259 cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, up from a peak of 17,608 last November. And yet, despite this progress, more than half of Illinoisians have yet to be fully immunized. The state’s daily average for immunizations increased from over 100,000 per day in the sprint to the current seven-day moving average of 43,219 vaccines administered.
“The delta variant is currently the greatest threat in the United States to our attempt to eliminate COVID-19,” said Dr.Anthony Fauci, the country’s foremost infectious disease expert, in a recent White House briefing on the virus. “Good news: our vaccines are effective against the delta variant. … We have the tools. So let’s use them and crush the epidemic.
Young Americans, those in their late teens and early twenties, have been particularly reluctant to get the vaccine. The reasons vary from strong ideological opposition to vaccines to indifference to the need to obtain them. The Biden administration has said it will redouble efforts to get young Americans vaccinated.
In the meantime, everyone within earshot of a Gen Z individual – parent, grandparent, sibling, neighbor – should get the message across. Do you want everything as it was? Pin for a time when masks stay in drawers? Want to roll back the threat of the delta variant? To get vaccinated. It’s free, it’s easy, and it’s the best and only way to put the pandemic in our collective rearview mirror.