‘Amazing summer,’ KDHE Secretary Dr. Norman among other medical professionals who feel encouraged by more vaccinations

Coronavirus in Kansas

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The state’s top doctor says with the way vaccinations are going — Kansas could be on pace for an amazing summer. Already, Dr. Lee Norman says Kansas is on pace to have even teenagers beginning to be vaccinated by the end of spring.

Dr. Garold Minns, Sedgwick County health officer, says the success of the vaccine depends on the number of people who take one of the three vaccines.

“The big question that remains to be seen is how many people will hold out and decide they are not going to get it right now, and if that is too large a percentage, it may delay us from getting to what we call herd immunity where the virus kind of peters out,” Minns said.

Dr. Minns says the more people start getting the vaccines, the fewer the restrictions will be in Sedgwick County, which he said has already been rolling back.

“Assuming the numbers stay down, and they do not start increasing, I think we will be able to gradually lift the restrictions in the near future, this month even,” Minns said.

Dr. Minns says restrictions played a role in decreasing COVID cases. Now, with the vaccine in circulation, Doctor Lee Norman says it’s a three-tier attack.

“We are going to give 23,400 doses this week, we are handling it as the third weapon in the arsenal against the COVID virus,” Dr. Norman said.

Dr. Minns says as soon as they can get the new Johnson & Johnson vaccine, the county can quickly put it to use.

“If they can get the manufacturing process wrapped up we can give them, at least here in Sedgwick County, we can give them,” he said.

Norman believes that vaccines for all Kansans could become a reality sooner than later.

“I am hoping by late spring we can pretty much go through the phases with all the over 16 or over 18-year-old and have a relatively amazing summer,” he said.

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