More than two-thirds (68%) of the respondents to the survey expressed confidence that the COVID-19 is "behind us." An overwhelming majority (80%), though, indicated that annual COVID-19 vaccination will be needed for the foreseeable future.
Most every measure of the COVID-19 pandemic is trending downward, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The CDC tracker this morning shows 1,052 deaths on weekly basis and an average of 1,511 daily hospitalization admissions.
Although the 2023 Annual Managed Healthcare Executive Pharmacy Survey was conducted Feb. 14-28, just over two-thirds (68%) of the approximately 300 respondents indicated then they were confident or very confident that the COVID-19 “was behind us.” Just 9% indicated that they were not confident that was not so.
Whether the methods used to count COVID-19 deaths are undercounting or overcounting the deaths from the disease has become an active controversy. In her column in the Washington Post, Leana Wen, M.D., M.Sc., a professor George Washington’s Milken Institute School of Public Health has argued that deaths being overcounted. Others have argued that the problem is undercounting.
Respondents to the Pharmacy Survey were solidly in the overcounting camp, with two-thirds (67%) indicated that they believed that deaths from COVID-19 were being overcounted. Nonetheless, a large majority (80%) said they believe annual COVID-19 vaccines will be needed for the foreseeable future.
The respondents were spread fairly evenly across the various sectors of the U.S. healthcare industry, with 20% self-identifying as working for hospitals, 22% for physician practices, 19% for pharmacy benefit managers, 16% for payer organizations, 13% for drug and device manufacturers and the rest in a variety of sectors.