Coronavirus & Monkeypox Tidbits #211 9/18/22

Announcements:

First, there is now a Resources Page here for the most commonly asked questions I'm getting.

Happy to continue to answer your questions/concerns as best I can, so don't be shy about that.

New post:

How To Reduce Your Child’s Risk Of The Enterovirus Infection (EV-D68) That Is Causing Paralysis

https://www.forbes.com/sites/judystone/2022/09/14/how-to-reduce-your-childs-risk-of-the-enterovirus-infection-that-is-causing-paralysis/?sh=75d1bc896cc5

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Asymptomatic Infections Drive Many Epidemics, Including Monkeypox, Polio, and COVID

https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/980118

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Election volunteer opportunities:

NOPE Neighbors: https://www.nopeneighbors.org/volunteer

Power the Vote https://www.powerthevote.org//. I'm a fellow volunteer.
Are you interested in voter protection research? Battleground states including Arizona, Michigan and Texas need help. Volunteers would work with the voter protection program directly on research tasks. Examples include: (i) calling elections offices to get information about certain election plans, so that programs know where and when to send volunteers; (ii) calling elections offices to follow up on public records requests for needed information (such as data on ballot rejections); and (iii) reviewing elections websites to ensure information is accurate and up to date. This volunteer commitment is variable and flexible, but will require an ability to make calls during election offices' business hours. Volunteers will need to be comfortable inputting information into basic spreadsheets.
**If you are interested in joining a research team, please email volunteer@powerthevote.org.** We will be in touch with more detailed information as soon as we can.

If you like calling and talking to voters, Power the Vote is assembling weekly volunteer opportunities. These are remote opportunities that you can do from home! Click on this link to find out more: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1v3IQa3qeJMuLaa2MW0ObAoXltpLUyoKu0L7xhd-98zE/edit

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Why we must help GOTV and fight voter suppression:

News 

Covid:

Global COVID-19 cases fall 28%; deaths drop 22%

New COVID-19 cases worldwide fell 28% last week—marking a fifth straight week of declining cases—and COVID-related deaths dropped 22% from the previous week, the World Health Organization (WHO) said in its weekly update today.

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...we know from prior work that long covid risk seems to increase with initial symptom severity,

Link to paper: https://academic.oup.com/ofid/advance-article/doi/10.1093/ofid/ofac464/6696170?login=false

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New report details global COVID-19 response failures, calls for improved multilateral cooperation

by Lancet

Failures of global cooperation and inequality between countries

The COVID-19 response has shown several aspects of international cooperation at its best: public-private partnerships to develop multiple vaccines in record time; actions of high-income countries to financially support households and businesses; and emergency financing from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank.

But the events of the past two years have also exposed multiple failures of global cooperation. Costly delays by WHO to declare a "public health emergency of international concern" and to recognize the airborne transmission of SARS-CoV-2 coincided with national governments' failure to cooperate and coordinate on travel protocols, testing strategies, commodity supply chains, data reporting systems, and other vital international policies to suppress the pandemic. The lack of cooperation among governments for the financing and distribution of key health commodities—including vaccines, personal protective equipment, and resources for vaccine development and production in low-income countries—has come at dire costs.

Pre-COVID-19 rankings of country preparedness for pandemics, such as the 2019 Global Health Security Index, ranking the U.S. and many European countries among the strongest for their epidemic response capabilities, turned out to be poor predictors of the actual outcomes of the pandemic.

Lancet Commission paper https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(22)01585-9/fulltext

https://medicalxpress.com/news/2022-09-global-covid-response-failures-multilateral.html

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Leftover residues of the virus might be causing long COVID, new study says

The research study published in Clinical Infectious Diseases journal has found that the spike protein of the virus remains in the blood of long COVID people up to a year after the infection. In support of its claim on long COVID, the study has also found that this spike protein is not found in people who have fully recovered from COVID.

The researchers have come to a conclusion that these leftover residues of the virus could be hampering the immune system causing complications like blood clots and inflammation, which subsequently leads to several complications causing long COVID.

"Active viral reservoirs could cause PASC or post-acute sequelae of COVID-19 symptoms, but circulating spike may also give rise to symptoms. Similar to bacterial superantigens, SARS-CoV-2 spike contains structural motifs that skew the T cell receptor repertoire, possibly accounting for the hyperinflammatory response observed in severe COVID-19 and MIS-C patients," the study says.

https://academic.oup.com/cid/advance-article/doi/10.1093/cid/ciac722/6686531?

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/life-style/health-fitness/health-news/coronavirus-leftover-residues-of-the-virus-might-be-causing-long-covid-new-study-says/photostory/94147795.cms?picid=94147928

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40% of COVID pneumonia patients still had lung problems at 1 year

A pair of new studies describe long-COVID findings, one from Spain showing that nearly 40% of bilateral pneumonia patients had impaired lung diffusion 1 year after hospitalization, and the other from England demonstrating that double-vaccinated adults were 41% less likely than their unvaccinated peers to report symptoms 3 months or more after infection.

https://www.cidrap.umn.edu/news-perspective/2022/09/40-covid-pneumonia-patients-still-had-lung-problems-1-year

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Twice-daily nasal irrigation reduces COVID-related illness, death

by Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University SEPTEMBER 13, 2022

Starting twice daily flushing of the mucus-lined nasal cavity with a mild saline solution soon after testing positive for COVID-19 can significantly reduce hospitalization and death, investigators report.

They say the technique that can be used at home by mixing a half teaspoon each of salt and baking soda in a cup of boiled or distilled water then putting it into a sinus rinse bottle is a safe, effective and inexpensive way to reduce the risk of severe illness and death from coronavirus infection that could have a vital public health impact.

"What we say in the emergency room and surgery is the solution to pollution is dilution," says Dr. Amy Baxter, emergency medicine physician at the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University and corresponding author of the study in Ear, Nose & Throat Journal.

"By giving extra hydration to your sinuses, it makes them function better.

If you have a contaminant, the more you flush it out, the better you are able to get rid of dirt, viruses and anything else," says Baxter.

"We found an 8.5-fold reduction in hospitalizations and no fatalities compared to our controls," says senior author Dr. Richard Schwartz, chair of the MCG Department of Emergency Medicine. "Both of those are pretty significant endpoints."

The study appears to be the largest, prospective clinical trial of its kind and the older, high-risk population they studied—many of whom had preexisting conditions like obesity and hypertension—may benefit most from the easy, inexpensive practice, the investigators say.

https://medicalxpress.com/news/2022-09-twice-daily-nasal-irrigation-covid-related-illness.html

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More at https://www.cidrap.umn.edu/news-perspective/2022/09/possible-69-higher-risk-alzheimers-older-covid-survivors

Monkeypox:

Walensky also said the disease is still largely seen in networks of men who have sex with men (MSM), a message echoed by the World Health Organization (WHO) today in a report on global outbreak trends.

To date, 22 people have died worldwide during this outbreak, the WHO said, but there is no evidence of sustained spread outside MSM communities.

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11,000 Americans have been vaccinated with Jynneos in the past several weeks as part of a pilot vaccination pop-up program at large LGBTQA+ gatherings, including Southern Decadence in New Orleans and Charlotte Pride.

new cases have declined in the United States by 50% since the first week of August.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported 144 more monkeypox cases yesterday, raising the US total to 22,774.

Of new cases reported last week, of which almost all were seen in men who have sex with men (MSM), Black men accounted for 38% cases, Latino men for 25%, and White men for 26%.

But Black men account for only 12% of those who've received a first dose of the monkeypox vaccine, and Latino men make up 21% of first-time vaccine recipients, the White House response team said.

https://www.cidrap.umn.edu/news-perspective/2022/09/white-house-focuses-monkeypox-research

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Monkeypox in Patient Immunized with ACAM2000 Smallpox Vaccine 8 yrs ago

We pose major questions regarding the efficacy of ACAM2000 vaccine amidst ongoing shortages of the JYNNEOS (https://www.bavarian-nordic.comExternal Link) 2-dose monkeypox vaccine.

https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/eid/article/28/11/22-1215_article?

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Polio:

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Other:

Democratic Republic of the Congo: Measles cases top 100,000 in the first eight months of 2022

From the beginning of the year and through August 28, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has reported 100,044 suspected measles cases, of which 4,652 cases were confirmed.

63 percent of lab confirmed measles cases have less than 5 years old, and only 36 percent with a history of vaccination.

In addition, 1,294 measles related deaths have been reported (1.3% case fatality rate).

http://outbreaknewstoday.com/democratic-republic-of-the-congo-measles-cases-top-100000-in-the-first-eight-months-of-2022/

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Diagnostics:

still an incredible, negligent last of testing.

Drugs and Vaccines:

Efficacy of monovalent COVID-19 booster began waning by 3 or 4 months

South African researchers report waning monovalent (single-strain) COVID-19 vaccine booster effectiveness against the Omicron subvariants, with estimated efficacy falling to 50% against the BA.1/BA.2 and 47% against BA.4/BA.5 as early as 3 or 4 months after vaccination.

In the study, published yesterday in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM), the research team estimated the effectiveness of two and three doses of the monovalent Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine against COVID-19 hospitalization among 32,883 patients hospitalized for any cause and tested for COVID-19 from Nov 15, 2021, to Jun 24, 2022.

Sep 14 NEJM research letter

https://www.cidrap.umn.edu/news-perspective/2022/09/covid-19-scan-sep-15-2022

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WHO strongly advises against antibody treatments for COVID-19 patients

The antibody drugs sotrovimab and casirivimab-imdevimab are not recommended for patients with COVID-19, says a WHO Guideline Development Group of international experts in The BMJ today.

These drugs work by binding to the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein, neutralizing the virus's ability to infect cells.

Today's strong recommendation replaces previous conditional recommendations for their use and is based on emerging evidence from laboratory studies that these drugs are not likely to work against currently circulating variants, such as omicron.

In the same guideline update, WHO makes a conditional recommendation for the use of the antiviral drug remdesivir in patients with severe COVID-19, and a conditional recommendation against its use in patients with critical COVID-19.

https://medicalxpress.com/news/2022-09-strongly-antibody-treatments-covid-patients.html

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It's complicated: Covid vaccine program raises concern about potential errors

Here’s an added challenge to increasing uptake of Covid vaccines: keeping all the different doses straight. Patient safety is paramount but confidence in the public health benefits of vaccination could also take a hit from any errors. As STAT’s Helen Branswell notes, the current Covid vaccine schedule seems tailor-made to trip up people delivering the doses. Before getting into the many colors of caps topping vials, there are multiple vaccines administered in different volumes, some after dilution but many not, and with intervals between doses ranging from three weeks to at least five months.

“This immunization schedule is among the most complex that I've personally had to deal with, and it is constantly changing,” Grace Lee of Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital in Palo Alto, Calif., told Helen. The CDC says it has developed strategies to minimize the risk. Read more. at STAT.

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Devices:

Epidemiology/Infection control:

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Tips, general reading for public:

Ventilate.

Mask.

Vax.

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Politics:

Covid:

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Congress:

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TFG/Jan 6

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https://twitter.icom/bizmoneysource/status/1570080090251198464?s=20&t=IQ-hiOYpAt9ityDtsrIZpQ

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Al Franken:

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Biden:

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9/11:

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Abortion/Reproduction/Graham/Rape:

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Greed:

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Guns:

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LGBTQ:

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Quarterbacks:

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Prisons:

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Racism:

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Florida/DeSantis/Immigration/Martha's Vineyard:

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Kentucky:

Michigan:

Mississippi:

Nebraska/Fracking

Pennsylvania:

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Texas:

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Virginia:

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UK

Feel good du jour:

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Comic relief:

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Perspective/Poem

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Bits of beauty:

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