DuBOIS — Dr. Shaun Sheehan, medical director of Emergency Services and COVID-19 Task Force leader for Penn Highlands Healthcare, discussed the messenger RNA vaccine, which is currently being developed and is reportedly 90 percent effective.

“That’s great news,” said Sheehan. “And due to the change in manufacturing of this type of messenger RNA vaccine, the production time is often decreased as compared to older ways of breeding vaccines.”

He said PHH remains in contact with the Pennsylvania Department of Health and will follow the distribution guidelines for the vaccine once they are finalized and distributed.

Sheehan said he doesn’t have a delivery date guarantee on when those vaccines may be arriving in the area.

On another topic relating to the topic of the coronavirus, Sheehan noted some important facts to point out recently that the Centers for Disease Control now reports that mask wearing protects the mask wearer as well as others.

“What we do know is the higher amount of people wearing masks the less community transmission there is,” said Sheehan. “As a result, less hospitalization and less deaths occur. I do want to emphasize that everyone should wear masks correctly. We often see masks being worn below the nose, below the chin, around ears. Please wear them over your mouth and nose.”

As some governors across the country are implementing lockdowns in an effort to stop the spread of the coronavirus, Sheehan said there have been several studies by large institutions that show that complete lockdowns resulted in very little mitigation of the spread of coronavirus and, unfortunately, caused a high economic impact.

“So, let’s not get to the point of lockdowns,” said Sheehan. “Let’s wear masks, wash our hands, social distance, and not gather in large groups, and we can take care of this.”

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