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Doctor, Epidemiologist, Describe “Five-Point Plans” To Mitigate Pandemic

Doctor, Epidemiologist, Describe “Five-Point Plans” To Mitigate Pandemic

In a discussion of the ongoing pandemic, and the overarching effect on society, an important question arises: what can we actually do that would address the pandemic, and mitigate the worst effects? Here are a few takes on the answer.

[Photo by Mark Rightmire/MediaNews Group/Orange County Register via Getty Images]

The question sprang from a discussion of what the pandemic is doing to the healthcare system. When Uché Blackstock, MD, a physician and researcher, warned that the increasing numbers of hospitalized patients are untenable and will be too much for the healthcare system, MSNBC‘s Chris Hayes asked for 5-point plans legislators could implement

Dr. Blackstock offered her suggestion: First, provide high-quality masks and tests for everyone. Second, actually expect people to use them in public places. Nobody gets on a domestic flight without a vaccine, everyone who can work from home does so, and for those essential workers who can’t stay home, implement workplace protections.

Dr. Eric Feigl-Ding, an epidemiologist who has weighed in on policy and health education throughout the pandemic, ahead a similar list.

Like Dr. Blackstock, he suggested free high-quality masks and tests for all. He also would like to see “fully vaccinated” include a booster shot, and some changes that can be done more structurally, so individual reluctance to follow rules doesn’t come into play — better ventilation and disinfectant standards.

When it comes to the refusal to comply, though, Dr. Feigl-Ding has a suggestion for that too — the unvaccinated should pay higher insurance premiums, he says.

He added a few additional points, echoing Dr. Blackstock’s call for vaccination requirements (or at least testing, he says) for air travel, and also calling for vaccine passports for indoor activities and large gatherings.

Ultimately, though, he returned to one major point: infrastructure that would make schools and workplaces safer, not just through this pandemic but going forward.

“[W]e need to make the air more hygienic in schools and workplaces with better indoor air infrastructure!”

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