No one knows for sure when or how the pandemic will officially “end.”
The answer to that question depends on your definition of victory, whether you’re after a smallpox-style eradication or simply “bringing COVID-19 in line with other diseases humans have learned to coexist with,” as we do with seasonal flu. But one thing’s for sure: Widespread vaccinations offer our best shot to finally bring this awful pandemic to heel.
Hospitals and health care institutions have a crucial role to play in this struggle to get as many shots into arms as possible, though misinformation, skepticism, mistrust and inequalities remain major barriers to overcome—especially in communities of color. As NPR quotes Dr. Lisa Cooper, director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Equity: