Monday, October 11, 2021

The Difference Between Last Year And This Year

A year ago, Ontarians were in a very bad spot. Bruce Arthur writes:

This time last year Ontario’s previous chief medical officer of health was worrying about how you cooked your turkey, and the premier was recommending gathering indoors and said the curve was flat. It wasn’t. It was a year ago, and a lifetime.

Since then, holidays have come and gone, and time has been stolen from people, and families and friends have often followed a grim new ritual of staying apart. The pandemic, though under control at the moment in Ontario, is still on. We’re not back to normal.

But we're getting there:

Thursday chief medical officer of health Dr. Kieran Moore delivered public health recommendations around Thanksgiving, and if you remembered you could see how much has changed in a year. Moore opened a door we all knew was there.

“When gathering indoors with a group of fully vaccinated individuals, you could consider removing your face covering if everyone is comfortable,” said Moore. “But if you gather indoors with people from multiple households who are unvaccinated or partially vaccinated, or you don’t know whether they’ve been vaccinated, you should wear a face covering and physically distance.”

So we still must be cautious. Dr. Isaac Bogosh, an infectious disease specialist at Toronto General Hospital says, "What’s public health going to do? [Say], ‘well if you have this many vaccinated people, and this many unvaccinated people?’ I think it’s fair to say, be cautious about a couple things: one, unvaccinated individuals; two, symptomatic individuals; and three, being around frail, elderly individuals or immunocompromised individuals. And then, is anyone at risk for infection based on what they do or where they go? And then, let common sense prevail."

I note that Maxime Bernier -- and many of his followers -- are still not vaccinated. So common sense is still having a hard time. Nonetheless, when it comes to COVID, common sense seems to be making a comeback.

Something to be thankful for.



Lorne said...

I think that Bruce Arthur has provided exemplary writing throughout this pandemic, Owen. Let's hope we can continue on our positive trajectory.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Anonymous said...

We've known for over a century that vaccine mandates work and are a necessary part of effective public health policy. Voluntary measures result in 70-80% of the population getting vaccinated. In the case of Covid's delta variant, that alone is not enough to contain spread, as AB and SK have conclusively demonstrated.

Workplace and school vaccination mandates are needed to get us the rest of the way to herd immunity. People talk tough about quitting if they're forced to vaccinate, but few follow through. Once the air and rail travel vaccination mandates kick in, Bernier and his ilk will find the cost of non-compliance to be very high indeed. The vaccines we have are safe, effective and save lives, and there is no reasonable principle behind most refusals to get vaccinated.


Owen Gray said...

Arthur has been an excellent and reliable source on the pandemic, Lorne. I turn regularly to his column.

Owen Gray said...

It's a shot, Cap. We have shots for lots of things. Those who refuse to recognize the simplicity of the solution simply deny reality.