HEALTH

Intermountain doctors voice frustration with unvaccinated as COVID-19 cases rise

Jul 13, 2021, 2:07 PM | Updated: 2:43 pm

SALT LAKE CITY — Doctors are concerned with the recent rise in COVID-19 cases and the rise in virus-related hospitalizations primarily linked to Utah’s unvaccinated population. 

From an Intermountain Healthcare news conference Tuesday morning, infectious disease physician Dr. Eddie Stennehjem said around 95% of sick people going to hospitals are unvaccinated. 

“The vast majority of the patients being admitted are in the unvaccinated population,” said Dr. Stennehjem. “From a caregiver’s standpoint, that’s just really disappointing because these are preventable hospitalizations.” 

Doctors say COVID-19 variant spreading to unvaccinated 

KSL NewsRadio asked Dr. Stennehjem if he and other doctors are worried people have returned to “normal” life and perhaps messaging about the vaccines, COVID variants, booster shots, and other news is lost on them. He response: our current behaviors are allowing the Delta variant to spread through unvaccinated people. 

“What has happened, not just in Utah but across the U.S., is a shift from public health to individual risk reduction strategies,” Dr. Stennehjem explained. “If you get vaccinated, you don’t necessarily need to follow strict public health precautions, but it’s your choice.” 

However, Dr. Stennehjem cautions that people who decide to skip the shot are the ones at the highest risk for disease or death. 

You can watch the full Intermountain Healthcare COVID-19 community update below. 

 

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