The United States will likely record 400,000 deaths from the coronavirus this week. This as a more contagious variant makes its way across the country. Daily COVID-19 hospitalizations averaged more than 100,000 this month.
"We're having to treat people in the hallways and also in the ambulances," said Dr. Deepak Aggarwal, who works at Northeast Georgia Medical Center.
Health experts see the vaccine as their best hope to get ahead of the pandemic. It's off to a slow start, however, as fewer than half of the 31 million doses distributed have been administered.
President-Elect Joe Biden vows to turn things around and vaccinate roughly one-third of the country by the end of April. His incoming CDC director, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, said Sunday she thinks that goal can and will be realized.
"We are confident that we have enough vaccine for the100 million doses over the next 100 days. That is what the president-elect has promised. It will be a hefty lift but we have it in us to do that," she said.
Some high-profile Christian leaders have either gotten the coronavirus vaccine already or announced plans to get it...and at the same time are encouraging the faithful to follow suit.
Dallas megachurch pastor Dr. Robert Jeffress told CBN News he got his first Moderna shot last week. He said the vaccines are a gift from God.
"We shouldn't be surprised that God uses science many times to accomplish his purpose," he said, adding that many of our most renowned scientists from the past were also devout Christians.
Jeffress admonished Christians who have prayed for an end to the COVID-19 pandemic yet plan to refuse the vaccine.
"To me, it's like calling 9-1-1 when your house is on fire and then refusing to allow the firemen into your home. It makes no sense whatsoever."
A new survey conducted by the Christian humanitarian organization World Vision shows people of faith are strongly influenced by their leaders to either get the vaccine or refuse it.
Margaret Schuler, senior vice president of World Vision's International Programs told CBN News, "Part of our plan is to engage with faith leaders around vaccine rollout."
She said pastors who are opposed to the vaccine are invited to contact World Vision to discuss their concerns.
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