Washington, May 18: A new survey has revealed that the COVID-19 pandemic in the US will not come to an end until children are vaccinated against the disease.
The New York Times on Monday quoted epidemiologists as saying in the survey that the true end of the pandemic, when it becomes safer to return to most activities without precautions, will arrive once at least 70 per cent of Americans of all ages are vaccinated, reports Xinhua news agency. COVID-19 in US: 18 States, Some Major-Label Businesses Announce Plans to End COVID-19 Face Mask Mandates
Adolescents in the US just began receiving vaccines this week, and those for children younger than 12 are not yet
approved, according to the newspaper.
"Children are key to ending the pandemic," said David Celentano, chair of epidemiology at Johns Hopkins University and one of the 723 epidemiologists who participated in the survey this month.
The experts also believe that COVID-19 will circulate at a lower rate in five years, but no longer be a public health crisis necessitating lockdowns.
"It feels like there is a light at the end of the tunnel," said Gretchen Bandoli, an assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of California, San Diego.
"We have the tools we need to get there, and it feels within reach."
In the survey, about 85 per cent of respondents said it was likely that Americans would be able to safely gather for Fourth of July barbecues this year.
A slightly higher share said it was likely that schools would be able to be fully open in the fall, and that families would be able to safely gather indoors for the winter holidays.
(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on May 18, 2021 02:22 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).