CDC Director discusses winter COVID forecast

Published: Oct. 27, 2022 at 5:53 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - CDC Director Doctor Rochelle Walensky shared COVID information and preventative measures for the upcoming winter.

“One of the lessons that I have learned is that that policy and action do not spare the holidays,” Dr. Walensky said. “We went from Thanksgiving to Christmas in really a three-to-four-week period of time, and we were seeing this massive scale up of cases.”

Following the trends in past data, the CDC says that this holiday season could follow the same pattern.

“Anybody who has had at least two doses should get this bivalent booster vaccine this season, and we’re ideally really pushing before Halloween,” Dr. Walensky said. “About 79% of people have received a primary series, about 49% had received one booster before we rolled out our bivalence campaign, and about 7% of people have received a fall booster.”

Dr. Walensky says that while the high-risk population is doing better, there is still more work to do.

“We are in a different phase of this pandemic. We observed in real time a decoupling of cases of severe disease. There are still in my mind far too many Americans that are dying of COVID, partially due to low vaccine, low booster uptake,” Dr. Walensky said.

“I don’t necessarily know which infectious or noninfectious threat will be the one that comes knocking on our door and that it’s so critically important that we have a robust public health and health care infrastructure working in partnership to address whatever may come next,” she said.

The CDC website keeps an active map of COVID-19 community transmissions, as well as the most recent health guidelines.

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