COVID-19 Milestone: In the United States, the Number of People Fully Vaccinated Is Now Larger Than the Number of Reported Cases

As of this morning, researchers at Johns Hopkins University are reporting 29,048,819 reported cases of COVID-19 in the United States since the pandemic began. (The New York Times has a similar number on their COVID-19 website.) According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of fully vaccinated people in the United States is at a little over 32 million as of today. This is significant because well over 90% of the United States population should receive at least one dose of the vaccine by September, taking the country as a whole well into herd immunity territory. (One dose matters now that the Janssen/Johnson&Johnson vaccine has received Emergency Use Authorization.) It is also significant because, as long as the pace of vaccination outpaces the rate of new infection, the epidemic in the United States should slow down and begin to reverse.

Book Review: “Viruses and Vaccines: Smallpox to COVID-19” by Eric Grannis

All in all, this is a good book if you want to breeze through about 95 pages of information that is delivered clearly and in bite-size chunks. The images and graphics really help the story move along and be understandable. The language can be technical, but it is so only where it has to be. For the rest of the book, the language is not too technical and — again — makes the book understandable. Not only that, but the research is sound. Mr. Grannis received help Princeton Professor Martin H. Wühr to ensure its accuracy.

Book Review: “Lady Mary Wortley Montagu Crushes Smallpox” by Drew Conrad

The book by Mr. Conrad synthesizes the whole story of how Lady Mary influenced the advancement of medical science into a short story that is worth reading. Children will appreciate the brevity of the story while their parents will appreciate the historical and scientific lesson being taught to their children. The language is not complicated; Mr. Conrad does not get into the weeds of immunology or virology, nor does he get too complicated into the politics of the time and how few would be willing to follow the medical practices of “barbarians” in Asia Minor. This is okay as those topics are better explored in high school or early college.