Gov. Larry Hogan tested positive for COVID-19. The 62nd Governor of the State of Md. tweeted about the recent update earlier today.
“This morning, as part of my regular testing routine, I received a positive rapid test for COVID-19. I have been vaccinated and boosted, and I am feeling fine at the moment,” Hogan said on Twitter.
“As the Omicron variant becomes dominant, I want to urge you to get vaccinated or get your booster shot as soon as possible,” Hogan also tweeted, amid coronavirus vaccination debates.
Hogan’s announcement underscores important considerations adults face, while considering how to protect themselves, in addition to their loved ones, from COVID-19. A portion of Americans are still struggling with the choice of weighing complications of getting the vaccination or skipping it. At the same time, information about variants of the virus is constantly being updated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In the backdrop, Christmas and New Year holidays are approaching. Private gatherings are underway. However, the Delta variant is spreading fast.
Although 77.3% of individuals in the U.S. who are over five have at least received one vaccination, there are 50,636,126 cases, and 802,969 total deaths to date, per information provided by the CDC. Variants of COVID-19 are pushing up transmission rates.
“The Delta variant is highly contagious, more than 2x as contagious as previous variants,” the CDC also shared online. “Some data suggest the Delta variant might cause more severe illness than previous variants in unvaccinated people.”
Until recently, wearing masks was the primary method of protecting young children from the coronavirus. The urgency of protecting them is being addressed. Information on Maryland.gov stated that full approval for the Pfizer vaccine for individuals who are 16 and up has been granted by The Food and Drug Administration (FDA). COVID-19 booster eligibility is also explained while mentioning the breakdown of ages. Additionally, children in Md. who are between the ages of 5-15 can receive the Pfizer vaccine, because of “emergency use authorization.”
Vaccination distrust in the African American community dates back to historical incidents such as the Tuskegee Syphilis Experiment beginning in 1932, which involved Black men being subjected to a medical experiment, without their knowledge. Nevertheless, African Americans who opt to skip COVID-19 vaccination are among racial groups who are being greatly impacted in the unfortunate new wave of coronavirus infections. Data offered online by the CDC showed a higher incident of hospitalization and death of people of color from COVID-19, in comparison to Whites.
While some individuals are taking less precautions against the virus, others welcome the requirements such as wearing masks and proving vaccination status in public spaces. A mask-wearing guide is also available on the CDC’s website. As COVID-19 continues to fuel this long pandemic, commitment to safety can remain top of mind, especially before reuniting with family and friends this Christmas season. To find a COVID-19 testing site in Md, please visit https://coronavirus.maryland.gov/pages/symptoms-testing.