The intensive care unit and the pulmonologist Dr. Vin Gupta told CNBC’s “The News with Shepard Smith” that patients should stop weighing the pros and cons of the Covid vaccine and still get the first shot in the arms as soon as possible, a new Israeli study that shows that the Pfizer vaccine will actually stop the spread of Covid.
“People say maybe I want the Pfizer vaccine instead of Johnson & Johnson or another,” said Gupta, a professor at the Department of Health Metrics and Assessment at the University of Washington, during an interview Monday evening. “That’s the wrong way to think about it. The brand here doesn’t matter. Get the first vaccine available.”
Gupta tweeted a photo of the lungs of a Covid patient who died of life support. The lungs developed holes that were once lung tissue, and Gupta said the vaccines can prevent this type of severe progression of the virus.
“This right-sided image is severe pneumonia that requires life support,” Gupta said. “All vaccines in the pipeline or approved prevent this, regardless of the variant.”
According to the Johns Hopkins University, the United States has exceeded 500,000 deaths from the coronavirus pandemic, and that’s twice as many as any other nation. In fact, the US has recorded an average of one death per minute over the past year.
President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris honored the lives lost on Monday with a moment of silence and a candle-lighting ceremony in the White House. White House press secretary Jen Psaki also ordered Biden to lower the state flags to half the staff for the next five days. The bells at Washington National Cathedral rang 500 times in memory of the Americans killed by Covid.
The grim milestone of the pandemic comes when virus numbers improve. According to Johns Hopkins, the average daily cases are 69,986, a 52% decrease in this month alone. The average daily deaths are 1,872, the lowest since December 2. Hospital admissions are down 41% this month alone, according to the Covid Tracking Project.
However, Gupta told host Shepard Smith that people shouldn’t give up their vigilance when it comes to the virus.
“I think right now we have to be very careful how we feel about this good news,” said Gupta. “We still have to be vigilant, but yeah, that’s really good news, bright at the end of the tunnel, hopefully by midsummer.”
The highly transmittable new Covid variants have surfaced in several places in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The British variant was found in 44 states, the South African variant in 10 states and the Brazilian variant in 4 states.
Gupta noted that the US doesn’t have the sequencing technology to understand the “true spread” of the variants and is another reason for Americans to remain vigilant against the virus.