Last week marked two years since the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 to be a pandemic. While infection rates and hospitalizations in the U.S. continue to decline, there are some areas of concern globally.
“China, Hong Kong, Ireland, the U.K. and Denmark are seeing surges back up again,” explains Dr. Gregory Poland, head of Mayo Clinic’s Vaccine Research Group. “These countries, many of us experts believe, prematurely dropped mask-wearing and nonpharmaceutical interventions, and really have stopped pushing and encouraging people to get vaccinated. I think that’s a mistake.”Dr. Poland explains that public health measures — and vaccination and boosters — are still the best way to protect yourself from COVID-19.
“What can I say but what we have said all along,” implores Dr. Poland. “Hands, face, space and vaccines. It works.”
On the Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Poland discusses the latest COVID-19 news, including a study on the true death toll of COVID-19, an update on the BA.2 variant and the latest on vaccines for children under 5.