South Florida Hospital News
Sunday April 11, 2021
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April 2021 - Volume 17 - Issue 10
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Physicians Ready to Assist with Next Phase of Push Toward COVID-19 Herd Immunity

Physicians have been waiting anxiously as the state and federal governments have rolled out their efforts to vaccinate the population. It appears we may be reaching a tipping point where we can no longer have this trusted and eager army of medical professionals waiting on the sidelines.

The ugly scenes from Miami Beach during Spring Break were an unfortunate reminder that the only long-term solution to awaken our community from the COVID-19 nightmare is to reach herd immunity. Our businesses, workers, and neighbors continue to be at risk of exposure from this mindless few as they attempt to restore services and operations.
 
In mid-March, we also saw a decreased demand for vaccination at the publicly operated vaccination sites. The decreased traffic rightfully led local leaders, including Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava, to call for expanding eligibility at those sites to younger populations.
 
The decreased demand for vaccine is a signal that the most challenging phase of our hunt for herd immunity is upon us. Health care leaders have been engaged in community conversations with leaders within minority and underserved communities. The message we have received is clear. This uneasy population needs reassurance of the safety and efficacy of the vaccine. And, often, it is their physician, a trusted member of their community, who is the best to deliver that important message of reassurance.
The Dade County Medical Association has been encouraging its physician members to register on Florida Shots to be COVID-19 vaccinators. We know thousands of physicians across our community and throughout the state have registered and stand ready to perform the important task of encouragement and vaccination.  
 
With new vaccines that are easier to store and deliver, it’s time to let physicians care for their communities.
 

Fraser Cobbe, Executive Director, Dade County Medical Association, can be reached at fcobbe@miamimed.com.

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