TAMPA, Fla. — Since people 65 and older got the COVID-19 vaccine first, experts are now seeing a drop in deaths and hospitalizations, and they credit that to the vaccine.
They hope to continue to see other benefits as different age groups get vaccinated.
“We’re still hovering around October numbers right now. We’re not at last May. We’re still 10 times higher than last May when this whole thing was really starting to heat up. We want to get down to where we were last May to call it safe,” said Dr. Jason Wilson, Associate Medical Director of the Emergency Room at Tampa General Hospital.
He says we haven’t seen the decrease in the number of cases yet that we need to get to.
In order to reach those numbers, Wilson says we have to start seeing younger people get vaccinated too, something that is starting to happen now that all adults are eligible for a vaccine in the state.
“Now we should start to see also the overall case numbers start to decline as well as long as we can get people to get in and get vaccinated,” said Wilson.
Many CDC forecast models show cases start to stabilize and then slowly begin to decrease by the end of April.
Although the effect won’t be immediate, experts say as more people get vaccinated over time, we can get into a much safer zone.
“If we want to get to the place where we get these case numbers back down to where we were last March, April, May, or even before that then it’s going to be really important that young people, healthy people, understand they also need to go get vaccinated,” said Wilson.