PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams is asking Americans to be patient, follow the guidance by local health officials and continue taking precautions to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
Right now, he says it's our behaviors that make the most difference when it comes to limiting the spread of the virus.
A vaccine is on the way, but it won't be ready for wide-scale distribution for months.
Adams is urging Americans to limit contact, especially indoors with people outside your household, continue to wear a face covering and keep distance from others.
He calls the virus "unforgiving" because while one person may have no symptoms, they can still pass it onto someone else who could wind up in the ICU.
Right now, hospitals across the country, including here in the Delaware Valley, are becoming overwhelmed.
"My colleagues are dog tired, and we need you to hang on just a little bit longer because we've got vaccines coming, but we want as many people to be alive to get them as possible, and a lot of that's going to depend on your behavior," said Adams.
He also urges everyone if you haven't gotten a flu shot yet to please do so. It can help prevent complications from the flu.
Last year, hundreds of thousands of people were hospitalized due to the flu. If that happens this year, hospitals may not have enough space or staff to take care of everyone.
As for the vaccine against coronavirus, health officials will be meeting tomorrow at the White House to discuss the public's confidence in a vaccine.
We need enough people to get vaccinated in order to end the pandemic. Experts say it will take about 70% of the population.
Surgeon General urges Americans to be patient, vigilant with COVID-19 precautions