Analysis & Comment

Opinion | Covid Measures and Misnomers

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To the Editor:

​Re “Biden’s Plan for Omicron: Testing but No Lockdowns” (front page, Dec. 22):

In his address to the nation President Biden failed to forcefully present all of the steps that need to be taken to halt the spread of the Omicron variant. The steps he presented — such as beseeching the unvaccinated to become vaccinated and relying on our depleted postal system to distribute test kits — are not enough.

We must take these steps:

1) We need to drop the term “booster.” Full vaccination for Pfizer and Moderna is three doses.

2) The federal government should institute vaccination mandates where it has jurisdiction.

3) Proof of vaccination must be required on all public transportation and in all public gatherings and restaurants.

4) Health care workers, teachers and students must be required to be vaccinated.

5) Masks must be worn in all public spaces.

6) Test kits must be readily available for all.

Not taking all these actions will only lengthen our war with Covid.

Sidney Weissman
The writer is a clinical professor of psychiatry and behavioral science at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine​.

To the Editor:

Re “Most Covid Infections May Soon Be Breakthroughs,” by Eleanor Cummins (Opinion guest essay, Dec. 20):

The use of the term “breakthrough infection” for Covid infections among the vaccinated is problematic. Rendering the vaccinated completely free from future infection was never the goal of the vaccine development effort, and would have been an unrealistic one. The goal was to prevent severe disease and death, and to that end the effort has been successful to an unpredictably great extent.

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