Medical professionals are lamenting a "dismal" level of interest among the public in receiving COVID-19 booster shots, many of which are going unused.
"Anecdotally, it sounds like a lot of people are still not aware that the bivalent boosters are available," Angela Rasmussen, a Georgetown University expert on viruses, told The Wall Street Journal. "If they are, many don't seem to understand the importance of getting boosted at all — with bivalent or original recipe — and there is a decided lack of urgency in communications about it."
Rupali Limaye, associate professor at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, added that the response to the latest booster shot targeting subvariants of the Omicron strain "has been pretty dismal."
The federal government ordered more than 170 million doses of the new booster shot, but just 10% of Americans over the age of 5 have received it, or about 31 million people, according to the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
"The administration, I think, is faced with a challenge. They have been trying to convey that things are getting better, and they are trying to convey that you should get your updated booster," said Jen Kates of the Kaiser Family Foundation. "It is hard to create that urgency."
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