Doctor explains third doses vs. booster shots
LEBANON — As the contagious COVID-19 Delta variant leads to infection and hospitalization rates not seen since last winter, Dartmouth-Hitchcock has released a new COVID-19 update video hosted by Michael S. Calderwood, MD, MPH, chief quality officer at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center.
The video discusses the Delta variant and how it’s impacting hospitalizations; explains the difference between a third dose of mRNA COVID-19 vaccines for immunocompromised and booster shots; offers recommendations for fall travel and public gatherings; and explains why the anti-parasitic drug irvermectin is not an approved treatment for COVID-19.
“We have seen an increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in the community, as well as an increase in hospitalizations,” Calderwood said. “The state of New Hampshire is now averaging 300 new cases per day, up from an average of about 20 in June, and we have seen the number of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 in New Hampshire rise to 125 on Aug. 23, up from a low of 13 in July.
“Based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates, 99 percent of these infections are due to the Delta variant,” Calderwood said.
In addition, nearly 99 percent of those being hospitalized in New Hampshire are individuals who are not fully vaccinated. Looking out one month, modeling suggests that the state of New Hampshire will reach hospitalization levels similar to the peak in January 2021, with similar increases expected in Vermont.”
Dartmouth-Hitchcock continues to emphasize that not only are the COVID-19 vaccines safe and highly effective but that increased vaccination rates are the only way to end the pandemic once and for all.
“There is a great deal of fear-based misinformation on the safety of the vaccines and not enough emphasis on science-based evidence of protection the vaccines have offered to the billions of people around the world who have been vaccinated,” Calderwood said. “With the Food and Drug Administration approval of the Pfizer vaccine and the Moderna vaccine in the process for approval, we hope that will help people decide to get vaccinated.”
Go to tinyurl.com/2uv9vtya to watch the video.