Our survey shows some optimism about the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, but concern about Paxlovid rebound. Former President Donald Trump’s job performance on COVID-19 was rated low while the World Health Organization and Pfizer were rated high.
First of six parts
Our August 2022 issue features the results of our annual pharmacy survey. This year, we had more than 950 respondents, thanks, in part, to our colleagues at Pharmacy Times® who shared the survey with their readers. We collected responses in late June and early July.
Our first flight of questions concerned the COVID-19 pandemic, which continues to an A-1 topic in healthcare in the United States and around the world, more than two years after the pandemic started in early 2020.
But a sizable majority of the respondents to our survey think we have rounded the bend of the pandemic. Almost two-thirds (62%) indicated that they believe the worst of the pandemic is over, and a similar proportion (61%) said they think herd immunity can be achieved.
When asked about more specific issues, a sizable minority either mildly or strongly agree that Paxlovid rebound is a major concern, although the mildly agreeing group was much larger than the strongly agreeing one (33% vs. 13%). A small majority (53%) mildly or strongly agree that Congress needs to appropriate additional COVID-19 funding.
A sizable minority (42%) mildly or strongly disagree with the statement that “vaccination rates have about peaked and there is little that can be done to improve them. However, one-third (32%) agreed with that statement and small percentage (8%) strongly agree with that fatalistic view.
We also asked the respondents to rate the performance of leaders and organizations in dealing with the pandemic. Almost half (48%) of the respondents rated former President Donald Trump’s COVID-19 performance as poor (24%) or very poor (20%). President Joe Biden’s marks were better: 13% rated his performance on COVID-19 as very poor and 22% rated it as poor. Anthony Fauci, M.D., received the highest marks with half of the respondents rating his performance as good (31%) or very good (19%), although Rochelle Walensky, M.D., wasn’t far behind with the proportion of good (30%) and very good 16%) raters just a notch lower. That is somewhat surprisingly because the Walensky and the CDC have been criticized for issuing prevention guidelines that are not consistent with scientific evidence.
Also somewhat surprising is the high approval rating for the World Health Organization (WHO)Half(50%) of the respondents rated its performance during the pandemic as good (27%) or very good (23%). The combined “good” and “very good” rankings of vaccine makers, Pfizer (48%) and Moderna (43%), and the FDA (47%) were a bit lower but in the same ballpark.