On Friday, Director of the Department of Health in Hillsborough County (DOH-Hillsborough), Dr. Douglas Holt said concerning the rise of COVID-19 cases–“By now we should have more people vaccinated and it’s very concerning that so many people have chosen to not get vaccinated. The vaccine is safe, effective and widely available. Most doctors have gotten vaccinated. We’ve encouraged our own families to get vaccinated. Your life or the life of someone you care about could be saved by getting vaccinated. In Hillsborough, about 45 percent of the eligible population are fully vaccinated.”
DOH-Hillsborough is encouraging those who are not fully vaccinated against COVID-19 to get their vaccine as soon as possible.
Dr. Holt continued, “I’ve heard that many pregnant or nursing mothers fear getting vaccinated. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommends that pregnant and nursing mothers get vaccinated. The ACOG also “strongly recommends that all eligible persons receive a COVID-19 vaccine or vaccine series, depending on the product. Obstetrician-gynecologists and other women’s health care practitioners should lead by example by being vaccinated and encouraging eligible patients to be vaccinated as well.”
School will restart from summer break very soon, and Dr. Holt added, “The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends adolescents ages 12 and older get vaccinated against COVID-19. Additionally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) updated its clinical guidance to allow COVID-19 vaccines to be administered at the same time as other routine vaccines. It is vitally important that these children get vaccinated prior to going back to school.”
While many things have gotten back to normal, Dr. Holt added, “In Hillsborough we have less than half of our population vaccinated and that has made an impact that saved countless lives. But we are not at the finish line yet and we need those who are unvaccinated or not yet fully vaccinated to help us win the battle against COVID-19.”
Dr. Holt ends, “The longer the virus has an opportunity to spread, the higher the chance for it to evolve and undo the success of the COVID-19 vaccine.”