COVID advice needs to be hopeful and realistic — and needs to tell people vaccines allow less restriction

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3/5/2021 12:01:00 AM

Opinion | COVID advice needs to be hopeful and realistic — and needs to tell people vaccines allow less restriction. By jbarro.

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Yet, there goes the CDC, positing anextremelynarrow band of newly-allowed behavior after vaccinating. The 90-day guideline is also bleeding into state recommendations. New York is creating another exemption to its travel quarantine rules, this time for people who have been vaccinated, but also

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.What message does this send to the public?On one hand, it's yet another government message suggesting the vaccines aren't that good. If we have policies built on an implication that the vaccines only work for three months, how does that encourage people to get vaccinated? On the other hand, the people who

aregoing out there and eagerly getting vaccines are doing so on the reasonable assumption that the vaccines work, perhaps not for a lifetime, but for much longer than 3 months.Absent surprising new research findings, they — and I — are going to ignore any public health directives that tell us to act as though our vaccines are no longer effective after 90 days. headtopics.com

You need to be honest and realistic with peopleGottlieb urged public officials to set date-specific targets for when in the future they expect to lift restrictions. This provides hope to the public and a good argument for continuing to comply with restrictions for now.

"March is a little bit premature, I think, to lift everything, but certainly getting on a glide path towards lifting a lot of these provisions right now makes sense," he said.But he is worried the new CDC guidance about vaccines will instead be"overly prescriptive and conservative" — so onerous that people will just ignore it. Instead of making it seem like a choice between Texas-style free for all or months more of tight restrictions — which would result in many people choosing the former — a middle ground can keep people safe and encouraged to get the vaccine.

Tell people they can hug their grandkids againGottlieb and Quick both noted that guidance that relaxes restrictions only for interactions among groups whereeveryoneis fully vaccinated isn't plausible at a time when the vaccines are not approved for use in children.

A major reason that older Americans are lining up to get vaccines is so they can interact with their children and grandchildren in ways they have not recently been able to do. Vaccines provide extensive protection to the recipient, especially against severe disease and death, and those recipients will — and should, if that's what they want — use that protection to resume closer contact with their relatives, including unvaccinated children. As Gottlieb notes, they need plausible advice on how to mitigate remaining risk when doing that, not guidance that tells them to wait several more months before doing so. headtopics.com

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Our lives are about to get a lot better. It's not just okay to say that — it's necessary, if you want people to listen to you about what to do along the way.Was this article valuable for you? Read more: Business Insider »

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jbarro $TCDa get some shorts are way down a poopy creek without a paddle jbarro I just moved to your city, who wouldn't mind showing me interesting places? jbarro I think I’d rather know the truth ... jbarro We need hope.