Updated: November 20, 2020 05:16 PM
Created: November 20, 2020 04:05 PM
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.- During its annual meeting Friday, the Greater Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce held a virtual panel discussion that focused on the fight against COVID-19 and a path toward economic recovery.
The message was clear, getting back to "normal" is not imminent.
"It’s going to be further away than any of us want, and I’m fearful of is further away than what we anticipate," said Neil Bradley of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
With two COVID-19 vaccines, from Pfizer and Moderna, getting closer to approval, Bradley said people shouldn't let their guard down.
"We have a real risk that infects a lot of people, that we cause a lot of illnesses, and we cause a lot of unnecessary deaths,” he said.
Medical experts, however, cautioned that the vaccines, which show a 95% effectiveness, are encouraging.
"The flu shot by comparison is about 40%-60% effective, and then childhood vaccines like MMR, chicken pox, those are in the 80%-90%, so we’re at really high efficacy rates based on the data that’s been released," said Michael Ybarra who is with the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America.
Ybarra said returning to normal will also be dependent on how many people elect to get the vaccine.
"That really does depend on how many people get vaccinated, how quickly folks are willing to get vaccinated and what kind of combination those public health measures are we willing to keep," Ybarra said.
Copyright 2020 - KOB-TV LLC, A Hubbard Broadcasting Company