The staggering death toll from Covid-19 in the United States has been exposed in images showing the extent of the devastation.
Images from an exhibition honoring those who have died from Covid-19 in the United States have revealed the magnitude of the devastation the country suffered.
Artist Suzanne Brennan Firstenberg has placed more than 660,000 white flags in Washington’s National Mall park to represent people who have died from Covid in the United States. She will continue to add to the screen each day as the death toll rises.
“We have to remember that this happened and learn from it… We can never allow this to happen again. Never again, ”Firstenberg told the Washington Post.
There have been more than 41 million cases of Covid in the US since the beginning of the pandemic and the country has been one of the worst affected regions in the world.
While the US was able to reduce cases after a winter spike earlier this year, cases have risen again and currently averages 170,000 new infections each day and 1,800 deaths.
Despite the population having free access to vaccines since April, more than a third are still unvaccinated, making the US the least vaccinated G7 country.
It comes as US health authorities revealed that fully vaccinated people were 11 times less likely to die from Covid and 10 times less likely to be hospitalized compared to unvaccinated, as the highly contagious Delta became the most common variant.
The data comes from one of three new articles published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, all of which underscored the continued effectiveness of Covid vaccines against severe outcomes.
For reasons that are not yet well understood, data from one of the studies suggests that Moderna’s vaccine has offered a slightly higher level of protection in the Delta period.
It comes a day after US President Joe Biden announced an aggressive new immunization plan that includes requiring companies that employ more than 100 people to vaccinate or test their workers on a weekly basis.
“As we’ve shown in study after study, vaccination works,” CDC Director Rochelle Walenksy said during a news conference Friday.
The first study examined hundreds of thousands of cases in 13 U.S. jurisdictions from April 4 to June 19, the period before Delta dominated, and compared them to June 20 to July 17.
Between these periods, a vaccinated person’s risk of Covid infection increased slightly: from being 11 times less likely to be infected compared to an unvaccinated person, to five times less likely.
Protection against hospitalization and death remained more stable, but decreased more among those 65 and older than among younger age groups.
The CDC and the Food and Drug Administration are evaluating the need for booster shots, and the elderly are likely to be among the first to receive them when the Biden administration begins rolling them out later this month.
One of the studies, which evaluated the effectiveness of the vaccine from June to August in more than 400 hospitals, emergency departments and urgent care clinics, stratified efficacy by brand.
Efficacy against hospitalization was highest for Moderna at 95 percent; then Pfizer at 80 percent; and finally Johnson & Johnson at 60 percent.
The overall efficacy against hospitalization was 86% for all age groups, but decreased to 76% for those older than 75 years.
The two mRNA vaccines, Pfizer and Moderna, have always performed slightly better than the J&J adenovirus vector vaccine, possibly because the latter is administered in a single dose.
It is not clear why Moderna’s vaccine appears to have a slight advantage over Pfizer in the Delta period.
It could be related to your higher dosage level of 100 micrograms versus 30 micrograms, or possibly the longer interval between the first and second injections (four versus three weeks), which could be associated with an increased immune response.