Viewpoints: Bringing US In Line With Other Nations In Covid Fight; Will Unvaccinated Pay More For Insurance?
Opinion writers weigh in on these covid issues.
The Washington Post:
Biden’s At-Home Covid Test Program Epitomizes Our Public Health Failures
Last week, with covid-19 cases surging and more Americans testing positive for the omicron variant, White House press secretary Jen Psaki was asked at a news briefing why the United States doesn’t provide universal free at-home coronavirus tests. “Should we just send one to every American?” she retorted sarcastically. (Katrina vanden Heuvel, 12/14)
Insurance Industry Must Make Difficult Business Decisions For The Unvaccinated
An Illinois state legislator proposed a bill in which neither the state nor health insurance providers would have to pay for COVID-19-related medical care for those who choose to remain unvaccinated against COVID-19 and become infected. Such a bill clearly is government overreach. The legislator, Rep. Jonathan Carroll, subsequently withdrew the bill due to threats made against him, his family and his staff. Yet this proposal opens for discussion the risk calculus that goes into providing health care and how health insurance premiums are set. (Sheldon H. Jacobson, 12/14)
What Will Covid Do Next? A Top Pandemic Doctor Has Some Ideas.
There are early signs that omicron will supplant delta and become the dominant virus, until something comes along to supplant omicron. There are also signs that the existing vaccines might not be as effective at protecting people from the new strain. If all this winds up being true, might we need a vaccine tailored to omicron and — if so — do we wind up chucking all the existing vaccine and return to Go, without collecting $200? Might not this happen over and over again — and we produce billions of doses of vaccines that don't get into people before the virus mutates around them? (Michael Lewis, 12/13)
America Is Passing 800,000 Dead From COVID-19
This week, the United States is passing a harrowing marker: 800,000 people killed by COVID—and that official number, as enormous as it is, is likely an undercount. One in every 100 Americans 65 and older has been killed by the virus. For nearly two years, we have all been surrounded by a marathon of death. (Clint Smith, 12/14)
COVID-19 Passports Have Worked For Other Countries. Maybe The US Needs Them.
The omicron variant hit Chicago and much of the nation just as infections were already increasing. In Chicago alone, the number of cases has tripled, and the Illinois case positivity rate has soared. The plunging temperatures have moved us indoors for social activities and gatherings which increases the risk of COVID-19 transmission. Schools such as Gates Elementary in Aurora and DePaul University are choosing remote options to temper or prevent outbreaks. (Craig Klugman, 12/14)