Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast: COVID-19 vaccination rates stalling, the delta variant rising

Summer and fall are going to be a dangerous time for people in the U.S. who have not been vaccinated for COVID-19, according to Dr. Gregory Poland, an infectious diseases expert and head of Mayo Clinic’s Vaccine Research Group.

“I really think this exponential rise in the number of sequences that are delta must be taken seriously,” says Dr. Poland. “We are seeing a surge again, in hospitalizations in the UK, because of the delta variant in people who have not been vaccinated or who only got one dose of vaccine. This is a really critical message for the public to hear because in the U.S. we are stalled in vaccination rates.”

In this Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Poland talks more about a possible COVID-19 surge and being emotionally ready for the pandemic to be over. He also answers listener questions about COVID-19 reinfection, the latest on antiviral development for COVID-19, and the latest news about COVID-19 vaccines affecting menstrual cycles and sperm quality.


For the safety of its patients, staff and visitors, Mayo Clinic has strict masking policies in place. Anyone shown without a mask was recorded prior to COVID-19 or recorded in an area not designated for patient care, where social distancing and other safety protocols were followed.

Dr. Poland has served as a consultant for Merck & Co. Inc., Medicago Inc., GlaxoSmithKline plc, Sanofi Pasteur, Emergent BioSolutions Inc., Dynavax Technologies Corp., Genentech Inc., Eli Lilly and Co., Janssen Pharmaceuticals Inc., Kentucky BioProcessing Inc. and Genevant Sciences Corp. Honoraria: Elsevier.

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