Coronavirus Tidbits #95 11/15/20

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.

News 

~ ~ ~

~ ~ ~

Excellent thread from Ed Yong. Start here:

~ ~ ~

After many childhood vaccinations got put on hold at the start of the pandemic, global measles cases are expected to spike in the coming years. (Vox)

Diagnostics:

still an incredible, negligent lack of accurate rapid testing.

Drugs:

~ ~ ~

Small study--COVID-19 survival among elderly patients could be improved by arthritis drug baricitinib

The research team say the findings are being followed up with large-scale clinical trials.

https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2020-11/icl-csa111320.php

~ ~ ~

Gates Foundation adds $70 million more funding for COVID vaccines for poor thru COVAX and GAVI

An extra $50 million will go to the COVAX Advance Market Commitment (AMC) led by the GAVI vaccine alliance, the foundation said, and another $20 million to the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) which is co-funding development of several COVID-19 vaccine candidates.

https://www.swissinfo.ch/eng/gates-foundation-adds--70-million-more-funding-for-covid-vaccines-for-poor/46157008

~ ~ ~

Time to Discuss Potentially Unpleasant Side Effects of COVID Shots? Scientists Say Yes.

By JoNel Aleccia and Liz Szabo NOVEMBER 12, 2020 Kaiser Family Foundation

Drugmaker Pfizer is expected to seek federal permission to release its COVID-19 vaccine by the end of November, a move that holds promise for quelling the pandemic, but also sets up a tight time frame for making sure consumers understand what it will mean to actually get the shots.

This vaccine, and likely most others, will require two doses to work, injections that must be given weeks apart, company protocols show. Scientists anticipate the shots will cause enervating flu-like side effects — including sore arms, muscle aches and fever — that could last days and temporarily sideline some people from work or school. And even if a vaccine proves 90% effective, the rate Pfizer touted for its product, 1 in 10 recipients would still be vulnerable. That means, at least in the short term, as population-level immunity grows, people can’t stop social distancing and throw away their masks.

Left out so far in the push to develop vaccines with unprecedented speed has been a large-scale plan to communicate effectively about those issues in advance, said Dr. Saad Omer, director of the Yale Institute for Global Health.

https://khn.org/news/article/time-to-discuss-potentially-unpleasant-side-effects-of-covid-shots-scientists-say-yes/

Devices:

I hope then President Biden will invoke the Defense Production Act on Day 1 for testing supplies, PPE, masks...Feels so good to say "President Biden"

~ ~ ~

Report: Half of Gowns Fail to Meet Safety Standards

— ECRI names brands that fell short in testing in "Gown Testing Summary" spreadsheet with a partial list of the models it tested (25 of 34)

ECRI's report on gowns follows a similar analysis it released in September that looked at KN95 masks from China and found that 70% did not meet minimum standards.

 

Epidemiology/Infection control:

~ ~ ~

~ ~ ~

N. Dakota Governor oks Nurses to Work While COVID-Positive -- but won't declare a statewide mask mandate 

https://www.medpagetoday.com/infectiousdisease/covid19/89637?

~ ~ ~

Should nursing students fill the gaps in patient care?

A Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security report published in June noted that concepts in public health emergency response and disease surveillance and containment strategies are "frequently absent" from nursing education. It also stated that graduates "enter the profession already lacking critical knowledge to keep themselves and their patients safe."

https://www.medpagetoday.com/nursing/nursing/89626?

~ ~ ~

image.png

~ ~ ~

Tips, general reading for public:

StayAtHome

Wash your hands.

Rinse and repeat.

Thinking About a Holiday Gathering? Look at This Troubling Map First

https://www.wired.com/story/thinking-about-a-holiday-gathering-look-at-this-map/

~ ~ ~

Useful Thanksgiving planning suggestions from Dr. Tara Smith (@aetiology)

If you're determined to have a larger gathering, today is the day for everyone attending to start quarantining if possible. Have groceries delivered, stay home and avoid others not in your household if you can. This will reduce your chance of exposure between now and Tday. /3

If you can't quarantine, you can still minimize other exposures. You might be needed at work, but can avoid bars, restaurants, and seeing other friends for the time being. Decrease your bubble as much as possible to keep your Tday guests safer. /4

If you and other attendees can get tested prior to gathering, that could also give additional peace of mind, but keep in mind that any exposures that occur after taking the test can still leave you at risk of infection. A negative test with later exposures isn't a guarantee. /5

During the meal, the CDC has put out some guidelines to minimize transmission while you're gathered together: cdc.gov/coronavirus/20 Keys: masks, ventilation, distance, hand hygiene and not sharing utensils. Keep it short. /6

Our hospitals and medical personnel are at their limits, and we're not willing to chance getting sick and maybe needing hospitalization amidst all of this. We're all hoping for reduced transmission and a vaccine in 2021 so we can have a more normal celebration next year. /fin

I suspect it will be the same for Christmas. Anticipate another spike in cases from Thanksgiving gatherings, which will leave already-overwhelmed hospitals even worse right around Christmas.

~ ~ ~

Politics:

Whew! State GOP lawmakers in Arizona, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin have all said they would not intervene in the selection of electors, who ultimately cast the votes that secure a candidate’s victory.

~ ~ ~

~ ~ ~

~ ~ ~

And lo and behold, the dinner was cancelled.

~ ~ ~

Shalala loses — and other 2020 election results that will have big implications for health and science

https://www.statnews.com/2020/11/03/2020-results-health-science-policy/

~ ~ ~

~ ~ ~

~ ~ ~

~ ~ ~

Feel good du jour:

Grandson of Nazi who took over Jewish store tracks down owner's descendants to apologize - CNN

~ ~ ~

Why this Virginia man spent days making an Alzheimer’s ‘busy box’ for a stranger
https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/2020/11/12/alzheimers-busy-box-virginia/

~ ~ ~

Comic relief:

image.png

~ ~ ~

~ ~ ~

Perspective/Poem

~ ~ ~

~ ~ ~

https://twitter.com/kittiebabiee/status/1326713223106727937?s=20

~ ~ ~

Bits of beauty:

Share this post:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *