December 24, 2022 2 min read 2 Comments
Photo courtesy Choice in Aging. Debbie Toth with a client, a sports fan it turns out.
*Geezer Jock is not here to nag and be your nanny. Still, I feel a duty to write about Covid when there is some news. If you want to read this take, it's up to you, which is the American way. Get the shot, don't get the shot.
By Ray Glier
There was a herculean drive nationwide that led to 94 percent of Americans over 65 getting the initial Covid vaccine. The federal government led the push in 2021.
And 2022, headed into 2023?
Debbie Toth, chief executive of the California non-profit, Choice In Aging, said the crusade against Covid has faltered because of a lack of public awareness. The CDC here in Atlanta says just 36 percent of people over 65 have received the updated vaccine that beats back the Omicron variant.
Toth is a mix of anger and despair at the lack of willpower of the federal government to get more people vaccinated. Are people making a choice not to get vaccinated? Some are, sure, but Toth doesn't believe that's the over-riding reason.
“It's sad, but we are not prioritizing the people who are dying from it, and it's all ageism, it all comes back to ageism,” Toth said. “It's just not a prioritized population.”
The CDC, which is two miles from Geezer Jock headquarters, has data that says 90 percent of deaths from Covid are now people over 70.
Toth insists the feds deserve some scorn.
Many others do not want the federal government blasting messages. They do not want billboards begging for people to get the vaccine.
Toth, however, feels the federal government should believe in the medicine.
“The federal government isn't doing with bivalent (updated booster) what they did with the initial round of the vaccine,” Toth said. “And the bivalent is specific to Omicron, that variant that's happening now.
“There's no uptake because there's no funding going into it. There's not clear messaging around it. There's a breakdown in prioritizing the people who are dying from this pandemic.”
Toth said if there was an effort to publicize the impact of Omicron and the vaccine against it fewer people would die.
“People don't know what (bivalent) is. They don't know why we need to get it. We don't understand the importance of it,” Toth said. “They're not being bombarded by it the same way they were about the first round of vaccines."
Geezer Jock understands free choice. If you don’t want the vaccine, fine, go about your life. Mandates are unpopular for many people.
But get educated. I dread being incapacitated by Covid and missing even ONE day of exercise and sweat, let alone eight weeks. I felt crummy after one of the boosters, but that was eight-nine hours of crumminess. I can live with that…literally and figuratively.
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