Perspectives: The Time Has Come For Vaccine Mandates; Health Insurance Discounts For Covid Vaccination?
Opinion writers examine these covid, mask and vaccine topics.
The Washington Post:
It’s Time To Admit It: The Vaccination Campaign Has Hit Its Limit. Mandates Are The Only Way Forward.
It’s time to acknowledge what few in the public health field are willing to say: The campaign to persuade all Americans to voluntarily accept coronavirus vaccinations has hit its limit. The Biden administration’s vaccine rollout has been remarkable in distributing 400 million doses in the United States. But we have hit a wall with this voluntary approach. The only way out of our covid-19 morass is to mandate vaccines. There are a number of lessons to glean from the failures of the vaccination strategy. Here are a few: (Joseph G. Allen, 8/2)
Would You Get A Covid Shot For A Lower Health Bill?
With the highly transmissible delta variant spreading rapidly in the U.S. and Covid-19 vaccine uptake in some areas still disappointingly low, it makes sense to push every lever available to get people protected. One underused tool is is the cost of health coverage. Health insurance is a significant expense for many Americans and could create powerful financial motivation for holdouts to get shots. Using it isn't just the right thing to do for public health as cases surge. Higher vaccination rates can also save money for health plans by reducing avoidable and expensive Covid cases. Further, extra costs don't just fall on the unvaccinated, but on their employers, colleagues via potential monthly premium increases, or other taxpayers. (Max Nisen, 8/2)
The New York Times:
Don’t Want A Vaccine? Be Prepared To Pay More For Insurance.
America’s Covid-19 vaccination rate is at around 60 percent, for ages twelve and up. That’s not enough to reach so-called herd immunity, and in states like Missouri — where a number of counties have vaccination rates under 25 percent — hospitals are overwhelmed by serious outbreaks of the more contagious Delta variant. (Elisabeth Rosenthal and Glenn Kramon, 8/2)
Fort Worth Star-Telegram:
About-Face On Masks Undermines Confidence
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott recently issued a new executive order that will make it harder for local officials to require face coverings, including in schools, and forbids the state from mandating vaccines. "Today's executive order will provide clarity and uniformity in the Lone Star State's continued fight against COVID-19," said Abbott in an accompanying statement. "The new Executive Order emphasizes that the path forward relies on personal responsibility rather than government mandates." (Cynthia M. Allen, 8/2)
The Star Tribune:
Vaccine Questions? Experts Have Answers
Still undecided about getting the COVID-19 vaccine? Consider this confidence-boosting data point: 99.99%. That skyscraping percentage is the result of some basic math indicating how well the shots work. Among the 163 million Americans considered fully vaccinated, just 6,587 "breakthrough" cases leading to hospitalization or death have been reported to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). (8/2)
Our Children Will Suffer If Adults Can't Get School Covid Precautions Right
We will not be lighting up cigarettes in our children's classrooms. I don't expect my child's teacher to light up a cigarette in his or her classroom either. The thought sounds ludicrous to most of us. Why? Because secondhand smoke has been proven to kill. Think of being unvaccinated like being a smoker who is spreading their secondhand smoke. Let's call it secondhand SARS-CoV-2 (which causes Covid-19). It is bad for the person who has it and terrible for the innocent bystanders who are now exposed to this highly contagious infectious disease that can make them very sick. (Comilla Sasson and Robin Cogan, 8/2)
The Star Tribune:
Did Americans' Well-Being Improve During The Pandemic?
Throughout the pandemic, curious minds have wondered what effect lockdowns and social distancing were having on individual well-being and mental health. Humans are a social species and, although temperaments vary, they generally enjoy and seek out social interaction. COVID-19 restrictions have curtailed opportunities for that. Yet a new study finds that individual well-being has, in fact, improved for many Americans over the past year. (8/1)