Politics, Science, and Other Assorted Musings

I love helping people understand issues and look at them from a different perspective. In this blog, I hope I can offer you some new insights—bridging the gap between basic science and your medicine chest—as I am still a practicing physician, as well as having had broad clinical research experience. I'm interested in developing new medicines and treatments, as well as caring for patients—and explaining these topics for you.

As medicine has evolved, so have my interests. I have also become increasingly interested in health disparities, social justice issues, and ethics. I invite you to join me as we explore a variety of territories. I hope that reading these posts will encourage you to learn, engage, and above all, work for the forces of good.

If there are topics you'd like to see me cover, please let me know—I welcome your input as to what you would like us to discuss in this column.

Coronavirus - COVID19

Please note that I will be posting Coronavirus Tidbits of news here. You can sign up for updates by clicking the box at the right and subscribe to Covid, Politics, and Science. All Covid posts will go here, and I will upload back issues as I have time. Please share w friends. Thanks!

I’m going to have a reference file here for articles I have found particularly worthwhile, and will update this here as we learn new information. Click on the COVID-19 Resources, below, to expand that.

If you see something terrific, please share. We’re all in this together.

Coronavirus Tidbits #33 4-12-20

By Judy Stone | April 14, 2020 | 0 Comments

Quick links News     Diagnostics     Drugs    Devices    Epidemiology/Infection control     Tips     Politics    Feel good du jour     Comic relief     Perspective/Poem     Bits of beauty Announcements: First, there is now a Resources Page here for the most commonly asked questions I’m getting. Tidbits will likely be a bit shorter and a little less frequent for the next little bit. I have been immersed in it and I need to spend a little more time on self-care, which for me means seeing the spring flowers emerge and digging in the dirt. Pesach is always a bit rough anyway, so I will turn to more nature. Happy to continue to answer your questions/concerns as best I can, so don’t be shy about that. News  Urgent: Contact Congress to Save the Post Office As I wrote yesterday, Trump and Mnuchin refuse emergency aid for the USPS. See more here or at Resistbot. Trump has long wanted to privatize the Post Office, apparently to hurt his perceived enemy, Jeff Bezos/Amazon, and to enrich his cronies. One other, more nefarious reason, it to stymie states efforts to expand voting by mail. Killing the Post Office will particularly…

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Coronavirus Tidbits #32 4/11/20

By Judy Stone | April 12, 2020 | 0 Comments

Quick links News     Diagnostics     Drugs    Devices    Epidemiology/Infection control     Tips     Politics    Feel good du jour     Comic relief     Perspective/Poem     Bits of beauty Announcements: First, there is now a Resources Page here for the most commonly asked questions I’m getting. Tidbits will likely be a bit shorter and a little less frequent for the next little bit. I have been immersed in it and I need to spend a little more time on self-care, which for me means seeing the spring flowers emerge and digging in the dirt. Pesach is always a bit rough anyway, so I will turn to more nature. Happy to continue to answer your questions/concerns as best I can, so don’t be shy about that. News  Urgent Volunteer Opportunity: NIH begins study to quantify undetected cases of coronavirus infection to determine how many adults in the United States without a confirmed history of infection with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), have antibodies to the virus. The presence of antibodies in the blood indicates a prior infection. Just requires you to obtain and mail a pin-prick of blood in a kit they will…

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Coronavirus Tidbits #31 4- 9/10-20

By Judy Stone | April 10, 2020 | 0 Comments

Quick links News     Diagnostics     Drugs    Devices    Epidemiology/Infection control     Tips     Politics    Feel good du jour     Comic relief     Perspective/Poem     Bits of beauty Announcements: First, there is now a Resources Page here for the most commonly asked questions I’m getting. Tidbits will likely be a bit shorter and a little less frequent for the next little bit. I have been immersed in it and I need to spend a little more time on self-care, which for me means seeing the spring flowers emerge and digging in the dirt. Pesach is always a bit rough anyway, so I will turn to more nature. Happy to continue to answer your questions/concerns as best I can, so don’t be shy about that. News  Criminally negligent: Vice President Pence says WH officials are looking at whether healthcare workers can wear reusable cloth gowns and will have a recommendation soon. He said: They may have to “recycle gowns” to make sure U.S. has the supplies they need. ~ ~ ~ Highly recommend this article in Stat. Dr. Eric Topol: “The American public doesn’t know that a large portion of this catastrophe was preventable, if not…

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Coronavirus Tidbits #30 4-8-20

By Judy Stone | April 9, 2020 | 0 Comments

Quick links News     Diagnostics     Drugs    Devices    Epidemiology/Infection control     Tips     Politics    Feel good du jour     Comic relief     Perspective/Poem     Bits of beauty Announcements: First, there is now a Resources Page here for the most commonly asked questions I’m getting. Tidbits will likely be a bit shorter and a little less frequent for the next little bit. I have been immersed in it and I need to spend a little more time on self-care, which for me means seeing the spring flowers emerge and digging in the dirt. Pesach is always a bit rough anyway, so I will turn to more nature. Happy to continue to answer your questions/concerns as best I can, so don’t be shy about that. News  Hospitals say feds are seizing masks and other coronavirus supplies without a word What are they doing with them? Is Jared selling them?  https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2020-04-07/hospitals-washington-seize-coronavirus-supplies ~ ~ ~ A Nurse Bought Protective Supplies for Her Colleagues Using GoFundMe. The Hospital Suspended Her. Another example, this from ProPublica, of healthcare workers not being provided adequate PPE and being punished for using their own “unauthorized” supplies or speaking out about the dangerous conditions…

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Coronavirus Tidbits #29 4-7-20

By Judy Stone | April 8, 2020 | 0 Comments

Quick links News     Diagnostics     Drugs    Devices    Epidemiology/Infection control     Tips     Politics    Feel good du jour     Comic relief     Perspective/Poem     Bits of beauty Announcements: First, there is now a Resources Page here for the most commonly asked questions I’m getting. Tidbits will likely be a bit shorter and a little less frequent for the next little bit. I have been immersed in it and I need to spend a little more time on self-care, which for me means seeing the spring flowers emerge and digging in the dirt. Pesach is always a bit rough anyway, so I will turn to more nature. Happy to continue to answer your questions/concerns as best I can, so don’t be shy about that. News:  Trump removes inspector general who was to oversee $2 trillion stimulus spending Today, it was Glenn Fine, a career official who has served Republican and Democratic presidents. He is eliminating any attempt at oversight. “On Friday, the president notified Congress that he was removing Michael Atkinson as the inspector general of the intelligence community — a decision that Trump acknowledged was in response to Atkinson’s having alerted lawmakers to the…

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Coronavirus Tidbits # 28 4-4 to 4-6-20

By Judy Stone | April 7, 2020 | 0 Comments

Quick links News     Diagnostics     Drugs    Devices    Epidemiology/Infection control     Tips     Politics    Feel good du jour     Comic relief     Perspective/Poem     Bits of beauty Announcements: First, there is now a Resources Page here for the most commonly asked questions I’m getting. Tidbits will likely be a bit shorter and a little less frequent for the next little bit. The technical aspects of learning this are wearing… I have been immersed in preparing it and reading about coronavirus, and I need to spend a little more time on self-care, which for me means seeing the spring flowers emerge and digging in the dirt. Pesach is always a bit rough anyway, so I will turn to more nature. Happy to continue to answer your questions/concerns as best I can, so don’t be shy about that. News  I had an interview for #Baltimore @JewishTimes:  Infectious Disease Specialist Answers Common Questions About #COVID19 https://jewishtimes.com/…/specialist-answers-covi…/covid-19/ The key message is later in the interview, where I shared with host Carolyn Conte how I learned from my family how unexpected kindnesses helped save some of their lives. If people could help each other like that under such desperate…

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Coronavirus Tidbits # 27 4-2 to 4-3-20

By Judy Stone | April 4, 2020 | 0 Comments

Quick links News     Diagnostics     Drugs     Epidemiology/Infection control     Tips     Politics    Feel good du jour     Comic relief     Perspective/Poem     Bits of beauty  Note: Tidbits will be abbreviated for a bit while I try to catch up and deal w technical issues. Also need to take a bit more breaks. I’ve moved people from my emails to this automated mailing when I have a new issue. Please refer people to this site: https://www.drjudystone.com/politics-science-and-other-assorted-musings/ My web designer is working to put that signup on each post as well, to make it easier for folks to sign up. Please continue to send questions, great resources, or nice things that are happening. Thx. News: CDC now advises people to wear a mask in public to help slow spread of Coronavirus from asymptomatic people. Setting a bad example yet again, and asked why he won’t wear a covering, Trump said: “I just don’t want to wear one myself…I’m feeling good…I just don’t want to…somehow sitting in the Oval Office…the great Resolute Desk…I think wearing a face mask as I greet presidents…dictators…I dunno, I don’t see it.” ~ ~ ~ Americans are underestimating how long coronavirus disruptions will last, health experts say https://t.co/VL50YikQeC?amp=1 via @statnews ~ ~ ~ Capt….

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Staying Safe: Bone Marrow Transplant Survivor Tells You How

By Judy Stone | April 3, 2020 | 0 Comments

I had no immune system for months after my bone marrow transplant. Here’s how I avoided viral illness, and how you can, too. It’s easier than you think. writes AM Carter  This is by far and away the best post I’ve read on how to stay safe. I urge you to check it out here. Her major advice: “Constant, thorough hand washing and hand sanitizing. Constant, thorough cleaning and sanitizing of surfaces that I touched. Completely avoiding primary vectors of transmission. Clean the things you touch.   Avoid People, and the things people touch. Upon returning home from any excursion, I wipe down my keys, phone, credit card (if I used it), car door handle, car steering wheel, garage door handles and front door handles.”   Carter specifically address concerns about food that were heightened by the otherwise very good PSA on handling Groceries: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sjDuwc9KBps “Porous surfaces just aren’t significant vectors for coronavirus. There’s an extremely low likelihood of picking up any meaningful quantity of active virus from cardboard, clothes, paper, grocery store produce, grocery bags, etc. I rinse my produce with warm water, just a basic rinse to remove debris and chemical residues, like I’ve always done. I don’t…

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Staying Safe: Bleach and Gloves

By Judy Stone | April 3, 2020 | 0 Comments

COVID-19 Protection Strategy: BLEACH and GLOVES from Dr. Robin Bissell https://www.facebook.com/groups/DrBandG/ COVID-19 transmission was once thought to be primarily caused by infected persons with symptoms and airborne transmission. We now realize that a significant form of transmission of COVID-19 occurs by this path: An infected person who may have no symptoms is shedding the virus and they touch their face They touch a surface (like a doorknob or a credit card machine). The virus survives 3 days. A non-infected person touches the same surface and later they touch their face The virus enters the body through the eyes, nose or mouth The newly infected person may develop no symptoms, mild symptoms or severe symptoms. In all cases, they will be shedding COVID-19 virus for days before symptoms occur, and for weeks after the infection has symptomatically improved. This explains why this is a Stealth Virus that is spreading so fast. The GOOD News is that you can PROTECT YOURSELF!! Using inexpensive and easy to find supplies, you can stop this sneaky, stealthy, BAD BUG. Not everyone, especially those still working outside the house, will be able to do ALL these things. Please share work arounds or variations you are creating….

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Coronavirus Resources for Community Support

By Judy Stone | April 3, 2020 | 0 Comments

This page will have be “live” with real-time updates as I learn of them. If you have other ones of national or regional interest I should add, please let me know via comments. Thanks. From AARP and Town Hall Project of MoveOn.org (an interesting partnership, the new Odd Couple) Everywhere we look, people are working together—city by city and block by block—to develop teams and resources to meet the needs of our most vulnerable loved ones and face this pandemic together. These are mutual aid networks. Small groups of neighbors asking for and offering help. Click here to find a mutual aid network near you. This will take you to a map of local groups that’s been compiled by Town Hall Project and AARP (which is not a MoveOn project, but we think it’s an incredible resource many of us will want to plug into). You might need help right now, or maybe you can deliver groceries, pick up prescriptions, offer translation services, provide tutoring support, or just be virtual company for someone struggling with self-quarantine. We know there are a million ways (not an exaggeration) that individuals are helping each other and communities are creating mutual support. The map keeps growing, and you…

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