Opinion: Are We Conquering COVID-19?

Spring officially arrives March 20. The daylight hours are already getting longer and the temperature is getting warmer. The big question for Spring 2021: is this the end of the coronavirus pandemic? 

The good news – per the Louisville/Jefferson County Information Consortium (LOJIC) the confirmed COVID-19 cases continue to decline in KY and Louisville including the 40291 zip code area.

And, in case you didn’t see it, the February 17 Wall Street Journal (WSJ) contained a positive opinion article by Dr. Marty Makery, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, who wrote:

COVID cases have dropped by 77% since January 1 and he predicts we’ll have herd immunity about April. He stated that natural immunity from prior infection is far more common than can be measured by testing. He then applied a time-weighted capture average to the 28 million confirmed cases and determined about 55% of American have natural immunity. He also included the 15% (at that time) of American that have received the vaccine in his prediction. His prediction that Covid-19 will be mostly gone by April is based on laboratory data, mathematical data, published literature and conversations with experts. Former Food and Drug Commissioner Scott Gottlieb estimates about 150 million people will have received the vaccine by the end of March. You can read the entire article at: https://www.wsj.com/articles/well-have-herd-immunity-by-april-11613669731

In Kentucky, Governor Beshear instructed the state’s regional vaccinations centers to begin providing Phase 1C shots on March 1 and Louisville Mayor Fisher stated in mid-February that Louisville’s mass vaccination site at Broadbent Arena may be able to move to the 1C category in “late March or April,” . Phase 1C “Essential Workers” list includes food services workers which is good news for our restaurant members. Governor Beshear said in his 1C announcement the state will “probably take small steps” to increase restaurant capacity above the current 50% level.

Also, Kentucky began receiving an additional 29% vaccine supply the week of February 22 and both Pfizer and Moderna announced in late February they would about double the vaccine production and deliveries – Pfizer by mid-March and Moderna by April. With the increased vaccine supplies, the additional shot locations and the starting of Phase 1C in March/early April, perhaps Phase 2 (all others) can start by mid-summer.

The WSJ also reported in the February 22 edition that consumer demand is back and the factories are finding it difficult to keep up: https://www.wsj.com/articles/consumer-demand-snaps-back-factories-cant-keep-up-11614019305

This is all positive news, but does it mean we’re back to “normal”?

Per the experts, pandemics are hard to predict accurately. The safe assumption is that this spring most likely will be like spring 2020 and this summer will be close to normal (perhaps the new post-virus normal). The Kentucky fall and winter weather could possibly produce some rough spots, but no major outbreaks.

So, the answer appears to be – we can see the light at the end of the tunnel, and it’s not a train.

FCCACC is returning to its normal operating procedure beginning with the April Monthly Luncheon meeting; see meeting details on luncheon page.

Welcome Back!