VOLUME 116, ISSUE 5, P1225-1226
Richard S. Legro, M.D.
This Inkling was conceived while pondering the future of reproductive medicine after the COVID-19 pandemic. Just a few months ago, multiple vaccines were being distributed, cases were falling, mask mandates fading, and the world, or at least the United States, was opening up with expanded travel and increased unmasked mass events. Like Noah’s flood, which ended after 40 days and nights, and World War II, which for the United States ended after less than 4 years, there appeared to be a clear end to this pandemic in sight. Even the mother of all viral pandemics, the 1918 Spanish Flu pandemic ended after three waves in 1919. We are now entering the fourth or fifth wave (depending on who is counting) of the COVID-19 pandemic with rising rates and mortality, new and more contagious variants, concerns about diminished vaccine efficacy, reinstated mask mandates, and talks regarding the need for booster doses. Furthermore, there is no end in sight, with doubts about ever achieving herd immunity because of a constantly mutating virus and a large portion of the world refusing the vaccine or lacking access to it.