Last updateWed, 14 Apr 2021 11am


Summertime COVID: False Sense of Security?

SummertimeThere’s a lot of debate on whether the COVID-19 vaccine is worth it. Of course, looking back on this idea even a few months back may have left the public more worried, but the vaccine rollout combined with warmer weather has left many wondering if they can wait it out.

The Monmouth Polling Institute found that although Americans are generally happy with the direction of the vaccine roll out, a quarter of the population is still unwilling to receive the vaccine.

Many would rather not have their older family members roll the dice. The polling institute states that “worry about a family member getting seriously ill from the virus has dropped sharply in recent weeks,” yet a possible resurgence in cases this fall could spell trouble for those hoping to wait for everyone else to take action.

“Currently, 40 percent are very concerned [of a family member becoming sick] and 28 percent are somewhat concerned about this happening in their families,” a report from the polling institute states. “The number who were very concerned had been climbing since the fall. It hit 47 percent in September and 50 percent in November, and then topped out at 60 percent in January, before dropping in the current poll.”

This is pure speculation, but one could suspect people’s lack of concern with their family becoming sick has to do with the false sense of security the warm months has lulled us into. As last summer indicated, COVID-19 cases are not easily spread outdoors. The warmer weather allows more opportunity for people to meet outside, so cases go down.

The last thing someone would want is for a family member to not receive the vaccine out of hopes of the virus becoming fully eradicated over the summer, as variant and hybrid formats could easily rise again next fall as people resume indoor activities.

It is very easy for those sitting on the fence of receiving the vaccine to quietly keep their head down in hopes of everyone else’s efforts to quell the virus, but my concern is that this is a delay to the issue instead of a solution.

“There has not been a lot of movement in willingness to get the vaccine – or not,” the polling institute’s report goes on to state.

“Currently, 24 percent of Americans claim they will never get the vaccine if they can avoid it and another 21 percent prefer to let other people get it first to see how it goes. These numbers are virtually unchanged from January (24 percent and 19 percent, respectively). A majority of the public, on the other hand, have been vaccinated already (16 percent) or plan to get the shot as soon as they are allowed (38 percent).”

Let’s say you have one parent who is vaccinated and the other is not. The latter may be attempting to schedule an appointment, but has not received much luck in being able to do so. Convincing them to keep trying is difficult, but you’d rather all their bases be covered so another resurgence in the fall doesn’t affect them.

A quarter of Americans do not plan to receive the vaccine for a myriad of reasons. If a family member does not wish to receive theirs out of the false sense of security the summer brings, one could encourage them to play it safe and be part of the solution instead of just hoping it will be gone before the weather cools back down and indoor gatherings continue.

It’s important not to pry into people’s personal reasons for not wanting the vaccine. There’s plenty of political and personal motivations behind the decision, but if someone is not doing so out of a suspicion that their dose would not matter in the long run, you may want to help them reconsider. If they still refuse, do not pry, as it is a personal decision at the end of the day.


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