The COVID pandemic is over, did we get it right?

For many of you it’s felt like the pandemic has been over for a while, but none the less we wanted to use today to ask some of you your thoughts looking back.
Published: May. 11, 2023 at 5:58 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - For many of you, it’s felt like the pandemic has been over for a while, but none the less, we wanted to use today to ask some of you your thoughts looking back on everything and if we could have done things better.

“I think it’s a joke, I mean I got the vaccine when they said that we should get it, and I’ve just occurred a lot of health problems since then,” said local Steve Cadarette.

“I didn’t get the shot, while it was mandatory, I did wear the mask but as soon as it wasn’t mandatory, I stopped wearing it,” added another local, Arthur Guice Jr.

For the most part, we got mixed responses when we asked if folks would get vaccinated and wear a mask again through another pandemic down the road.

“Oh yes sir, I would be prepared,” said local Bobbie Joseph.

“I went through the pandemic just like everybody else, I chose to trust in the Lord. I didn’t get the shot. He kept me safe, and he kept me healthy the whole time,” added local Ryan Reech.

Same thing when we asked if they would do things differently if another pandemic came through.

“No sir, I would not,” Cadarette said firmly.

“I was worried about myself, my finances, my business, my money was scarce. Get rid of all those needs and focus on the virtue,” Reech explained.

“I think there’s a temptation now that the pandemic is less of a disruptive factor than it was before, to just move on and I feel that personally in my life as well. But we need to be thinking hard about what we’ve been through and how we can prepare ourselves best in the future,” said Dr. Joseph Kanter with the state’s Department of Health.

“Do you think we’re in a better position for another one moving forward?” asked WAFB’s Chris Rosato.

“We have a disease surveillance network now that simply didn’t exist before the pandemic, we have a wide network of wastewater surveillance. We can test for a disease without ever having a patient come into an exam room or take a test. we have a stronger emergency response infrastructure going into this pandemic than many states that were doing things on the fly,” Dr. Kanter explained.

Most we spoke with today said their trust in the medical field has dwindled.

“Parts of the pandemic were contentious and on top of that it was confusing, fast-moving, scary, traumatic, and on top of that you had some entities that sought to exploit that,” said Dr. Kanter in response.

At a press conference today, we wanted to ask the governor, looking back, if he would have done anything differently. But, he refused to take our question.

LDH wants to emphasize that even though the pandemic is over, COVID is still very much still a thing and wants to remind folks to stay safe and keep that in mind.

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