Here in the UK the vaccine programme is well underway and it is making a palpable difference to front line workers already.
Our hospitals are currently totally swamped with cases, but unlike the first wave most frontline NHS staff have now been vaccinated. So while those carers are still facing harrowing situations on a daily basis, they no longer face the fear of catching it themselves, or of bringing it home to loved ones. It is still early days. But we can hope that, even if the case rate doesn’t fall dramatically, vaccinating the most vulnerable first will quickly reduce the number of severe cases needing hospitalisation.
Hospital cases are still currently rising, but my feeling is that the fear is no longer as severe.
(Caveat - I speak from experience of my own family members who work in hospitals. Because of the Pfizer vaccine needing super cold freezers, and once thawed having a short self life, some hospitals have been able to vaccinate some frontline staff rather than allowing doses to go to waste. Not all regions have got as far with this yet, and experiences will vary considerably with each setting. But progress IS being made.)