Still, many health officials warn that a balance is needed to ensure continued Covid-19 testing efforts even as the country pushes for more coronavirus vaccinations
“Converting some of these large-scale sites from testing to vaccination, at least for now, makes sense – just because we need to start scaling up vaccination, but I think there is a balance,” said Plescia.
“We can’t just switch everything to vaccinations,” he said. “We must continue to have the resources to allow people to get tested.”
Ballparks are turning into massive vaccination sites
The announcement noted that the resource transfer will “temporarily reduce testing capacity” in LA County, but “will more than triple the number of daily vaccines” available to residents.
“Vaccines are the surest way to beat this virus and to lead a cure, so the city, county and our entire team are putting our best resources on the ground to get Angelenos vaccinated so quickly, safely and efficiently as possible. “
“These stages are wonderful areas to reuse for larger mass vaccination efforts,” Freeman said, but added that testing was always a priority.
“We have so many places across the country that are still experiencing high levels of transmission and resurgence of the disease, that we cannot afford to drop testing just yet,” she said. “We are too early in the vaccination process to do this because we still have to mitigate and manage the spread of the disease, even during vaccination.
More mass vaccination sites are likely to appear after the US Department of Health and Human Services announced Tuesday that the federal government will help states set them up.
‘We are not going to vaccinate our way out’ of the current outbreak
After plunging in late December, testing in the United States rebounded to an all-time high it reached before the holidays. According to the Covid Tracking Project, the seven-day average of new tests has reached more than 1.9 million per day and has never been higher.
“Counties and local public health departments are going to find ways to continue to do testing and do large-scale testing,” said Bryant.
Reusing stadiums and other large sites for vaccines will be good for vaccine delivery, she said. “When it comes to testing, we know at the local public health level that this is still very important and that we wouldn’t do one to sacrifice the other.
Tests and vaccinations serve different purposes.
“In an ideal world, we would have enough resources to optimize vaccine deployment and to continue testing at the necessary volumes,” she said. “I think there will always be a bit of give and take.”
Plescia, of the Association of State and Territory Health Officials, agrees immunization is the way out of the pandemic – but it’s not the way out of the record number of cases and deaths that the country is currently experiencing.
“This problem that we find ourselves in right now with rapidly increasing infection rates, with hospitals filling more and more people dying, we are not going to vaccinate to get out of it,” Plescia said.
“What we are doing now with vaccination is not really going to materialize for several months. So to control what’s going on now, we need to keep doing the testing, isolating and quarantining people, wearing masks, and servicing people. social distance. “