Weekly Update

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I want to reiterate two points I made at yesterday’s Joint Task Force briefing.

1. Vaccines are normal, safe, effective, and life-saving.

Think about it—for years, they have been required for our children to go to school. The vaccines required for school can be found here. For the most part, vaccines have all but eradicated diseases like smallpox, polio, and the measles just to name a few. All of us have received vaccines at some point in our lives.

2. It is untrue for unvaccinated folks to think that their decision not to get vaccinated only affects themselves.

Their decisions negatively affect others as follows:

a. An unvaccinated person catches and spreads COVID-19 to others more often than a vaccinated person does;

b. Because roughly 50 percent of the U.S. population is unvaccinated, it has allowed the virus to last and circulate longer. This allows the virus more chances to mutate, and a mutated virus can be less affected by the vaccine;

c. Unvaccinated people are more likely to be hospitalized, including being admitted to emergency rooms, which has caused care to be delayed to those needing emergency care.

I’ll give you a couple examples of the harmful effects on others.

First, Chief Gina Sweat with the Memphis Fire Department stated yesterday that emergency calls due to COVID-19 are up significantly. Through the first 11 days of August roughly 5,200 emergency calls have come through 911 averaging 469 calls a day. That’s a 23 percent increase over the same time period from last year.

At times, we run out of ambulances. She concluded, “If you call for an ambulance, we may not have one.”

Second—recently, a friend’s mother’s blood pressure shot up, and she had severe pain in her back and a nose bleed. She was taken to a Shelby County hospital emergency room. She was there for 12 hours and never saw a doctor. She laid on a bench in a hallway near the pharmacy.

After a couple tests, she was diagnosed with a compression fracture in her vertebrae and was given a pain reliever. Her blood pressure dropped dramatically, and she was released.

Imagine, a 90-year old woman had to lay in pain on a bench in a hallway for 12 hours—all because unvaccinated COVID-19 patients had overwhelmed the E.R.

This is not an isolated case. Other individuals have waited for over 24 hours in local emergency rooms.

To those who remain unvaccinated, you are harming others. You’re allowing the virus to more easily spread and mutate risking the lives and livelihoods of many people, including your family and friends. To see vaccine locations and hours of operation, go here.

Love thy neighbor. Get vaccinated!

Thank you for your service: On a related note, firefighters, paramedics, and police officers have been heavily strained during the pandemic. When you see them, please recognize their sacrifices by greeting them with “Thank you for you service” like we do with those in the military.

They are every day heroes.

Enjoy your weekend!


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