MFA and COVID19 Update – June 27, 2021

Jun 28, 2021 | PDA Blog

By Dr. Bill Honigman, PDA Healthcare Human Rights, Coordinator – Progressive Democrats of America

This week worldwide reported new cases of #COVID19 rose by another 2.6 million.  That’s about 130,000 more cases than last week’s rise.  And although global deaths are now approaching a 4 million total overall COVID death toll, the overall global death rate due to COVID19 has again thankfully decreased at least slightly from last week.

The Delta variant of the COVID19 virus, is now considered the most significant global determinant for immediate outcomes in the pandemic, and vaccines especially to the economically depressed countries of the global southern hemisphere, can’t come quickly enough.

Meanwhile here in the US, with the Delta variant a significant determinant as well, results of mass vaccination can’t be disputed. 

According to the AP on Thursday,

“Nearly all COVID-19 deaths in the U.S. now are in people who weren’t vaccinated, a staggering demonstration of how effective the shots have been and an indication that deaths per day — now down to under 300 — could be practically zero if everyone eligible got the vaccine. Breakthrough infections in fully vaccinated people accounted for fewer than 1200 of more than 853,000 COVID-19 hospitalizations. That’s about 0.1%.”

And Dhruv Khullar, M.D., M.P.P., a contributing writer at The New Yorker, a practicing physician and an assistant professor at Weill Cornell Medical College, wrote this week,

“Delta drives an even wider wedge between vaccinated and unvaccinated people. They have already been living in separate worlds, facing vastly different risks of illness and death; now, their risk levels will diverge further…People who’ve been fully vaccinated can, by and large, feel confident in the immunity that they’ve received. But those who remain susceptible should understand that, for them, this is probably the most dangerous moment of the pandemic.”

Still the significance of the US total COVID19 death toll of 603,513 lost souls to date, according to the Harvard University Daily Metrics tracker, combined with the approximately 40% of those lives lost that would have been spared, according to the distinguished Lancet Commission report published just this last February, if we had had a #SinglePayer expanded and improved #MedicareForAll (MFA) system in place to deal with this national and international public health crisis – that significance is not lost on these pages.

That’s some 241,405 mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, sons, daughters, aunts, uncles, cousins, beloved friends, coworkers and fellow community members, victims of COVID19 who would still be alive today if we could summon the political will to overcome the untoward influence of commercial interests that keep Healthcare in America all about profits and not about patients.

The struggle for #HealthcareJustice continues as does those for all recognized existential threats of climate, racism, poverty, war, and political corruption, with the COVID19 pandemic as just the latest driver in this need for intersectional awareness-raising, that confronts us with the fierce urgency of now.

So, what are the lessons we’ve already learned from the COVID19 pandemic, that can be applied to further move the political will toward the MFA solution that we advocates know will solve so many problems that have cost us all so much in lost lives and human suffering?  

How does this episode in our history fit into the ongoing struggle and fight for equity and quality of life that have gone on for decades or even centuries preceding us?  

And how can we harness the collective consciousness and frustration that is our shared experience at this moment in time, to seize the moment and drive the discussion to those meaningful outcomes that will shift the political influence away from the interests of big money and toward the interests of we the people?

Clearly, the answers to these questions can’t come quickly enough.


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