Dr. Mandy Cohen – the new Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – said she expects the COVID vaccine to become an annual inoculation like the flu shot.
Spectrum News asked Cohen if the country is at a point where Americans should get one COVID shot each year.
Cohen responded, “We’re just on the precipice of that, so I don’t want to get ahead of where our scientists are here and doing that evaluation work, but yes, we anticipate that COVID will become similar to flu shots, where it is going to be you get your annual flu shot and you get your annual COVID shot.”
“That’s where we’re going to,” she continued, and added, “We’re not quite there yet.”
The CDC director said an official guidance from the U.S. health agency regarding an annual COVID shot should arrive in early or mid-September.
Cohen – the previous secretary of health and human services in North Carolina – said she expects a new COVID booster by the fall.
The topic of trust in public health agencies plummeting during the COVID-19 pandemic was broached during the interview. In March, a Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health survey found that approximately a quarter of Americans have little-to-no trust in the CDC for health information.
Cohen – a Democrat – told Spectrum News, “While we saw trust go down in lots of institutions, we actually saw trust increase in North Carolina. We measured trust in the Department of Health and Human Services and saw that increase.”
She added, “We still had respectful disagreement, but at least we’re having a respectful conversation about how to approach hard, hard topics.”
When asked if the CDC could have done things differently during the COVID-19 pandemic, she replied, “There were some early places where the CDC didn’t perform and execute in the way they needed to.”
Cohen also said she is concerned about distrust regarding vaccines.
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