Citing data obtained from the vaccines.gov service, which is powered by the same team behind VaccineFinder, CNN said Thursday the uptick in interest was most noticeable on May 13. Of course, that’s the same day that Dr. Rochelle Walensky—director of the CDC—announced loosened mask advice for those who are fully vaccinated.
Initially, the site’s traffic was on par with previous days, with visits to the site starting to drop off around noon. A couple hours later, however, Walensky made her masks-focused announcement, resulting in a spike just after 2 p.m. ET. The number of visitors continue to climb until peaking around 4 p.m. ET, which was around the same time that President Biden made mention (on Twitter and in a White House briefing) of the updated mask guidance for fully vaccinated Americans.
In fact, not long after Biden’s mentions, the vaccines.gov site bagged its second highest peak since launching, recording more than 40,0000 visitors. The highest peak, meanwhile, occurred in early May after a publicity campaign and saw the site recording “slightly more” visitors than this latest spike.
Medical experts cited in Thursday’s report agree this proves that, for some, incentives are important. While many people may have been inspired to get a vaccine because it simply makes sense to do so and no further push is required, others weren’t compelled to make securing a vaccine appointment a priority until they were more explicitly informed of the social benefits of being fully vaccinated, specifically with regards to a slightly more relaxed approach to mask-wearing and related social distancing measures.
All that to say, please get a vaccine if you haven’t already done so.