While there are currently over 1,100 clinical trials around the world searching for a vaccine that will be effective against the current coronavirus, some experts wonder if Americans will respond to the cure once it’s available.
Our track record for vaccinations is not encouraging. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that only 40 to 45 percent of U.S. adults received the flu vaccine in the past decade.
According to The Hill, the Congressional Research Committee says that individual states do have the right to mandate vaccinations and they have already exercised that right with children, allowing for a few exceptions — religious reasons, for example.
The Mayo Clinic states: “A vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 is perhaps the best hope for ending the pandemic.”
Lauren S. Grossman, assistant professor or emergency medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine told Stat News;
“To put this scourge behind us, I believe that our nation should, for the first time ever, require all Americans — or at least schoolchildren and workers in direct-contact jobs — to be vaccinated against the coronavirus.”
In the case of the current coronavirus, ending the epidemic could be a numbers game, requiring a lot of people to be vaccinated in order to contain the transmission of disease.
Merrill Matthew, in an opinion piece for The Hill, says that we need between 60 to 80 percent of the population inoculated against the virus to create what is called a “herd immunity.” That means there would be enough people who have either contracted the disease and recovered, or have been vaccinated to end the epidemic.
“If the COVID-19 vaccination rate is low, will the federal, or more likely the state governments step up in and mandate vaccination?” Matthew asked.
Attorney Alan Dershowitz confirmed that the state has the power to vaccinate people in order to prevent the spread of a contagious disease, according to Newsmax.
“Let me put it very clearly, you have no constitutional right to endanger the public and spread the disease, even if you disagree. You have no right not to be vaccinated, you have no right not to wear a mask, you have no right to open your business,” he said.
“And if you refuse to be vaccinated, the state has the power to literally take you to a doctor’s office and plunge a needle into your arm,” he added.
Matthew suggested that another avenue to stave off the virus is to find an effective treatment as well as a cure. Tamiflu, he pointed out, doesn’t cure the flu but reduces the severity of symptoms.
“Having an effective treatment wouldn’t eliminate the need for an effective vaccine. It would simply mean that those who weren’t vaccinated would still have the opportunity to reduce the symptoms and return tot their normal lives sooner,” he said.
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