CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 09/20/2021

NYT This Morning

Covid Vaccine Prompts Strong Immune Response in Younger Children, Pfizer Says

They Shunned Covid Vaccines but Embraced Antibody Treatment

”…“It’s clogging up resources, it’s hard to give, and a vaccine is $20 and could prevent almost all of that,” said Dr. Christian Ramers…an infectious disease specialist . Pushing antibodies while playing down vaccines, he said, was “like investing in car insurance without investing in brakes.”

FROM HOPKINS:

1.  SARS-like Viruses May Jump From Animals to People Hundreds of Thousands of Times a Year (Science) Only two new coronaviruses have spread globally the past 2 decades: SARS-CoV, which caused an outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) in 2003, and SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. But that may just be the tip of the iceberg of undetected infections with related viruses emerging from bats, a new paper claims. In a preprint published yesterday researchers estimate that an average of 400,000 people are likely infected with SARS-related coronaviruses every year, in spillovers that never grow into detectable outbreaks.

2.  The Fight to Manufacture COVID Vaccines in Lower-income Countries (Nature) Vaccines against COVID-19 are not reaching many people in the global south, despite donations from wealthy nations. Less than 1% of people in low-income countries are fully vaccinated, and just 10% are in lower-middle-income countries, compared with more than half in high-income countries. Many researchers say the best way to ensure equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines is to enable countries in the global south to make their own. “Charity is good, but we can’t rely on charity alone,” says Peter Singer, an adviser to the director-general of the World Health Organization (WHO).

NOTICE THAT HARRISON COUNTY HAS THE HIGHEST DEATH RATE CURRENTLY OF THE LISTED COUNTIES BELOW:

AND LAST BUT NOT LEAST:

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Opinion: Dear Close Friend

 

By George Smith  — September 19, 2021

A close friend, one I’d trust with my life, is a Trump supporter. We pledged to not talk politics and he broke the pledge in a typical Trumpuppet fashion, lamenting our ”senile” president, the immigrant problem, the price of gas and how the country is doomed. Then he started in on

As an off-the-wall rant, it was a good one; this friend is an excellent writer.

I didn’t have to respond but did so after he foisted “.your liberal party” upon my head.

My screed at 5 a.m.:

Wow! You are worked up.

Please remember this: I am not a Democrat. I am an independent.

I vote for (but mainly against, since real change is impossible without true campaign finance reform and, in my opinion, term limits) a candidate on issues. I voted for Reagan and both Bushes…once. At the time, I liked them better than the Democratic candidates.

I’m concerned that Republicans care more about big business, tax breaks for the wealthy, high drug prices, the success of military equipment manufacturers, and throwing up scare tactics about antifa and BLM than they are about the ordinary citizen.

GOPers, like all militia groups, scream about personal freedom — “My body, my choice!” Is a popular theme right now — but demand that women and girls do not have that same right when it comes to personal health care in consultation with their doctor and their god.

Your comment about Democrats and education was, really, beneath you and I took it as a statement made out of exasperation and mental anguish.

Two areas — national security and education — should be the primary concerns of this country. As a teacher and a one-time history major, I rever the historical truisms of this world and our nation — ALL of the stories, not just those that are pleasant and sanitized.

Due to greed and a belief that the white race was superior to all others, early settlers and would-be land barons, with the help of the military (after “buying” Manhattan in the worst/best land deal in history) took the whole of the U.S. from Native Americans. Of course they paid Spain for the Louisiana Purchase and Alaska from Russia (both “dream” real estate deals), after those countries stole it from various tribes and indigenous folk.

Slavery, abhorrent treatment of Native Americans (who, themselves, were immigrants) and the history of immigrant-bashing are part of the nation’s historical fabric.

It is impossible to unweave the cloth and create a new narrative without presenting a phony and superfluous picture of the past.

History is history. Trying to change it to fit a certain political philosophy, ease guilty consciences or just to assure that sensitive feelings are spared is NOT history.

If we do not actively and persistently acknowledge the mistakes of our ancestors, how on God’s green earth can we ever learn from them?

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PO Box 721

Scottsville TX 75688

CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 09/18/2021

BREAKING NEWS An F.D.A. panel recommended a Pfizer Covid booster for those 65 or older or at high risk, after earlier voting not to recommend it for younger people.

 Protection of BNT162b2 Vaccine Booster Against Covid-19 in Israel (NEJM) At least 12 days after the booster dose, the rate of confirmed infection was lower in the booster group than in the nonbooster group by a factor of 11.3 (95% confidence interval [CI], 10.4 to 12.3); the rate of severe illness was lower by a factor of 19.5 (95% CI, 12.9 to 29.5). In a secondary analysis, the rate of confirmed infection at least 12 days after vaccination was lower than the rate after 4 to 6 days by a factor of 5.4 (95% CI, 4.8 to 6.1).

(J. Harris: This is one of a series of reports from Israel regarding a 3rd. v

Pfizer vaccination shot. If you are >65 or are fragile, take a third shot. I did.)

CONGRATULATION MISD STAFF AND SCHOOL BOARD AND STUDENTS:

MISD SCHOOLS CONTINUE TO CONTROL COVID CASES

STATE CASES ARE ALSO DIMINISHING

HOPKINS CITATIONS:

1. Safety and Efficacy of the BNT162b2 mRNA Covid-19 Vaccine Through 6 Months (NEJM) BNT162b2 continued to be safe and have an acceptable adverse-event profile. Few participants had adverse events leading to withdrawal from the trial. Vaccine efficacy against Covid-19 was 91.3% (95% confidence interval [CI], 89.0 to 93.2) through 6 months of follow-up among the participants without evidence of previous SARS-CoV-2 infection who could be evaluated. There was a gradual decline in vaccine efficacy.

2. Parenting a Child Under 12 in the Age of Delta: ‘It’s Like a Fire Alarm Every Day’ (Washington Post) With a vaccine for children ages 5 to 11 unlikely to be approved for at least a few more months, parents of young children are weighing a dizzying array of variables every day as they try to navigate the risks of covid against the mental health and physical consequences of social isolation and their own livelihood.

FROM NEJM A HISTORICAL LOOK AT MASKS

Mask Wars

EAST TEXAS AREA COMPARISONS (NYT):

AND LAST BUT NOT LEASED:

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Opinion: A Limited Rant

By George Smith  — September 18, 2021

This is not a rant against women. It is a rant against certain women, prominent GOP shrews, a gaggle of ill-tempered, nagging and argumentative politicians whose sole purpose seems to be to promote the Donald Trump Irrational Theory of MAGA.

(Note to readers: The adjectives used above are the clinical definition of a shrew. Blame Funk and Wagnall’s, not me.)

Shrew 1: Nikki Haley, former governor of South Carolina and ambassador to the U.N. and, at one time, a possible future presidential contender.

Haley, before she opted to be a kiss-hiney suck-up to Trump, stood alone on the distaff side of rational Republican politicians. She was dynamic, engaging, charming, a politician/chameleon that fit the mold of one bound for future greatness within her party.

As an astute minority politician, Haley, whose full name is Nimrata “Nikki”  Randhawa Haley, the GOP offered her a place in history. That place is assured, now that her name will always be associated with the only president to be impeached twice.

Now, Haley’s stock has tumbled, as she has to hold the female-side of the GOP banner with two other Trumpettes.

Shrew 2: introducing the Queen of Snark; Majorie Taylor Green. Green, who represents Georgia’s 14th District, is a slash-and-burn politician, a born-again Trumpuppet who is interested in only two things, how many times can she be in the headlines or on TV and how much hell she has to raise to be interviewed on Fox News or  NewsMax.

Green is so annoying and disliked on The Hill that she was removed from committees by House leaders.

Greene has promoted numerous far-right, white supremacist, and antisemitic conspiracy theories including the white genocide conspiracy theory, anything in QAnon sites, and Pizzagate, as well as other disproven conspiracy theories such as false mass shootings, the Clinton body count, and those related to 9/11.

In other words, she’s a nut.

Shrew 3: Lauren Opal Boebert is a businesswoman and gun-rights activist, now serving as the U.S. Representative for Colorado’s 3rd congressional district.

When deciding to run for Congress, she thought it might be good if she had a high school diploma, so she got her GED.

Boebert owns Shooters Grill, a restaurant in Rifle, Colorado, where staff members are encouraged to openly carry firearms.

If that does not tell you all you need to know, Boebert was a leader in trying to get Antifa, a non-organization railing against fascism, as a terrorist organization.

A QAnon advocate, Boebert, to quote an opinion piece in a national newspaper, is “caught in a cacophony of crazy.”

These are the leaders of the women’s’ movement in the Republican Party.

Too bad. So sad.

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PO Box 721

Scottsville TX 75688

CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 09/17/2021

FROM NYT: (J. Harris: Here’s why to wear your mask in unavoidable crowds even if you are vaccinated):

From Hopkins:

1. SARS-CoV-2/INFLUENZA VACCINES With research ongoing into the necessity of SARS-CoV-2 vaccine booster doses, at least 2 pharmaceutical companies are banking on the need for annual shots, similar to influenza vaccinations, and working on combining the 2 vaccines. Moderna on September 9 said it is developing a single shot containing a booster dose for its SARS-CoV-2 vaccine and an experimental flu vaccine. The company said it eventually hopes to add vaccines for other respiratory diseases, including respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), into a single annual shot. On September 8, Novavax announced it has begun a Phase 1/2 clinical trial testing a combination vaccine using the company’s vaccine candidates for seasonal influenza and SARS-CoV-2. Both vaccines have been tested in Phase 3 trials, but neither has received regulatory authorization or approval. Combination vaccines have several potential benefits, including lowering the number of shots needed annually, improving vaccine coverage rates, and reducing costs for healthcare facilities and individuals.

 2. Study of Up to 40,000 People Will Probe Mysteries of Long Covid (Science) Weeks or months after their coronavirus infection clears, many people diagnosed with COVID-19 still have debilitating symptoms such as fatigue, foggy thinking, and headaches. Today, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) announced a nearly $470 million grant to enroll up to 40,000 adults and children newly and previously infected with SARS-CoV-2 in a study that will probe the causes of these postinfection effects, dubbed Long Covid, and look for clues to treatments and prevention.

3. GOOD NEWS: Global COVID-19 Cases Show Substantial Drop (CIDRAP) For the first time in more than 2 months, weekly global COVID-19 cases dropped substantially, as cases decline in recent hot spots, including India and Japan, the World Health Organization (WHO) said yesterday in its latest update.

FROM LANCET

Uncoupling vaccination from politics: a call to action

FROM THE WASHINGTON POST:

Biden Meets With Business Leaders on Vaccine Mandates (Washington Post) President Biden met with business leaders from Disney, Microsoft, Walgreens and other large companies Wednesday to discuss coronavirus vaccine mandates as the private sector grapples with his administration’s efforts to compel medium and large companies to make the shots mandatory for their workers or require weekly testing.

PART  OF A NOTE FROM A READER WHOSE EXTENDED FAMILY HAS BEEN  INTERSPERSED WITH COVID HESITANCY WHILE  PLAGUED WITH  COVID INFECTIONS:

”…I do not like dictators and bullies, but if they put me in charge, I would make everybody get vaccinated, unless they had a doctor’s excuse that stated a medical reason for not taking it. . If they are going to act like children who can’t take care of themselves and in addition  put the whole family and larger  human population at danger, then they need to be treated like children and someone needs to make them behave before they kill themselves and take a lot of us with them. Of course no one wants to put me in charge, not even my own kids.  It is really unbelievable what is happening and the society as a whole will continue to suffer physically, emotionally, and economically. We really are messing with mother nature (God Creation) and we are not doing so well right now.  I think the virus is mutating faster than  we can beg, pay, or force folks to get vaccinated…”

AND HERE’S A WELL-WRITTEN REPLY FROM MY FAVORITE TWIT GOVERNOR THAT MAKES SOME GOOD POINTS THAT ARE NEVERTHELESS IMPOSSIBLE TO JUSTIFY IN A CROWD OF TODAY’S AMERICANS: (SEE ATTACHED BELOW). OF COURSE, SHE WANTS TO BE PRESIDENT OF THE US SOMEDAY.

AND LAST BUT NOT LEASED:

Why does golfer carry an extra pair of Sox?  In case he gets a hole in one…(from a former mayor who still loves Marshall)

from a former County Judge who still has a sense of humor.

SOUTH DEKODA WILL SUE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT

CLICK HERE TO READ THE COMPLETE STORY

ANDROID USERS CHICK HERE TO READ THE COMPLETE STORY

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Opinion: Negotiate Drug Prices

By George Smith  — September 16, 2021

Any elected official who is AGAINST a movement to allow Medicare to negotiate with drug companies to reduce the exorbitant cost of medication  deserves nothing less than to be ousted in the next election.

Without putting too fine a brush to it, they are bought and paid for by big company campaign contributions.

Think! Why are folks buying needed medications in Mexico and Canada? They are cheaper because these countries created a system that does not make drug companies accountable for exorbitant pricing.

The U.S. encourages high drug costs by allowing full-bore access to elected officials by big pharmaceutical lobbyists who “buy” influence via campaign cash.

And we keep electing these yahoos over and over. Term limits would go a long way to help move “honesty” back in politics.

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PO Box 721

Scottsville TX 75688

CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 09/16/2021

FROM HOPKINS CITATIONS:

1. NEWS

Report: 20 Years After 9/11, America Still Not Fully Prepared for Public Health Emergencies A new report from Trust for America’s Health (TFAH) has found that 20 years after the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, America is not fully prepared for public health emergencies. The report, 2021 Ready or Not: Protecting the Public’s Health from Diseases, Disasters and Bioterrorism, found that while the country is better prepared than it was in 2001, there is an urgent need for federal, state and local policymakers to prioritize the nation’s health security — something illuminated by the COVID-19 pandemic. The report recommended that federal, state and local government bolster public health infrastructure investments to build the necessary workforce and systems that have otherwise been neglected, as well as federal investment in modernizing the public health data systems. (Homeland Preparedness News, 9/8/2021)

2. Using Wastewater Surveillance Data to Support the COVID-19 Response — United States, 2020–2021 Wastewater surveillance measures community infection trends. The accuracy of this surveillance approach is independent of health care–seeking behavior, health care access, or testing capacity. The National Wastewater Surveillance System (NWSS) is a 43-jurisdiction, CDC-coordinated system for SARS-CoV-2 wastewater surveillance. Wastewater surveillance data have been used to deploy clinical testing resources, investigate possible irregularities in traditional surveillance, refine health messaging, and forecast clinical resource needs. NWSS provides community-level surveillance data that complement traditional surveillance and facilitate earlier, focused health department intervention and support in communities experiencing increasing trends in wastewater SARS-CoV-2 concentrations. Community-level wastewater surveillance data can be leveraged for rapid assessment of emerging threats and preparedness for future pandemics. (CDC MMWR, 9/10/2021)

3. PRESS RELEASE

DHS to Increase Civil Penalties for Violations of the Federal Face Mask Requirement The Department of Homeland Security’s Transportation Security Administration (TSA) will increase the range of civil penalties that may be imposed on individuals who violate the federal mask mandate at airports, on commercial aircraft, and in various modes of surface transportation, including passenger railroads, intercity bus services, and other public transportation. The federal mask mandate for transportation, which was implemented by TSA on February 2, 2021, will remain in effect until January 18, 2022. The new range of penalties, which take effect Friday, September 10, 2021, will be $500-$1000 for first offenders and $1000-$3000 for second offenders. (DHS, 9/9/2021)

FROM LETTER TO EDITOR NYT TODAY:

”I have finally learned that the deep pain and anger I have been dealing with — by being surrounded by many who don’t mask and many who aren’t vaccinated — really comes from the feeling of belonging to a community that doesn’t care about me, my family or others. A community should be a group of people who work together to make a safe and nice place to live. My community is currently the biggest threat to my family, and that is sad. How and when I will get over this, I’m unsure.”

— Celeste Huggins, Idaho Falls, Idaho

Marion County says they won’t enforce COVID-19 vaccine mandates

(J. Harris: Could this be another example of inspired East Texas political leadership? Notice on the chart below that Marion County currently leads East Texas in Covid cases as a percentage of the population. It’s unfortunate that the powers that be don’t understand much about mandated health needs in a Public Health Crisis. Over the last year, Marion County has gladly shared its unused vaccine with surrounding counties and schools.  Of course, all the old doctors and valued health messengers for Marion County are long dead and gone. Too bad. In some places, trusted health, political, and religious  leaders get a lot done by working together.)

FROM NYT 16 SEPT:

AND LAST BUT NOT LEASED”

Married men live longer than single men, but married men are a lot more willing to die.

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CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 09/15/2021

CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 09/15/2021

DAILY CASES/100,000 POPULATION. EAST TEXAS LOOKS SICKLY(NYT)

(J. Harris: As the counts creep up in SD, I hope all those nice bikers who went to Sturgis in mid Aug. got home alright. )

HARRISON COUNTY VACCINATIONS REMAIN INFREQUENT (NYT):

FROM HOPKINS CITED ARTICLES:

1. Investigation of an Outbreak of COVID-19 in a French Nursing Home With Most Residents Vaccinated (JAMA Network Open) We report an outbreak of COVID-19 in a French nursing home where most residents had been fully vaccinated with the BNT162b2 vaccine. This cohort study’s findings suggest that an outbreak of COVID-19 can occur among fully vaccinated NH residents. The study found evidence of transmission among vaccinated residents, but few individuals who were infected developed severe disease and 1 patient, who was unvaccinated, died. Moreover, these outcomes occurred in a setting in which approximately 30% of staff members were vaccinated.

2. ENGLAND VACCINE PASSPORTS England has abandoned its previously announced plan to implement a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine passport program by the end of this month that would have required people to show proof of vaccination to enter the country’s nightclubs and certain other crowded venues, UK Health Secretary Sajid Javid told the BBC on September 12. The announcement was made following opposition from some members of Parliament as well as representatives of the hospitality industry, who said such a program would create a burden for businesses and infringe on residents’ rights. Speaking on the Andrew Marr Show, Secretary Javid said the government decided against the passports after “properly” looking at the issue and determining other factors could help keep COVID-19 incidence down, including high vaccine uptake, testing, surveillance, and treatments…

3. COVID-19 IN GORILLAS Several western lowland gorillas at Zoo Atlanta have tested positive for the Delta variant of SARS-CoV-2 after employees of the zoo noticed some members of the gorilla population exhibiting symptoms such as coughing, nasal discharge, decreased appetite, and decreased activity. A total of 20 gorillas live in 4 troops at the zoo, and officials said that 18 of them were experiencing varying degrees of symptoms. Sam Rivera, Senior Director of Animal Health for Zoo Atlanta, said the gorillas are receiving the best care possible and that at-risk members of the population are being treated with monoclonal antibodies. The gorillas will be provided with the Zoetis SARS-CoV-2 vaccine specifically designed for animals when they recover. Zoo Atlanta also announced plans to vaccinate their Bornean orangutan, Sumatran orangutan, African lion, and clouded leopard populations. 

AND LAST BUT NOT LEASED:

A woman worries about the future until she gets a husband.

A man never worries about the future until he gets a wife.

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CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 09/14/2021

CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 09/14/2021

(J. Harris: FREE PFIZER VACCINE AT ETBU PROVIDED BY THE SCHOOL AND WALMART TODAY AND TOMORROW!

EASY ACCESS TO ROGERS SPIRITUAL LIFE CENTER OFF N. GROVE ON THE SOUTH END OF THE CAMPUS.  BRING YOUR VACCINATION CARD. IF YOU ARE “IMMUNOCOMPROMISED” AND HAVE BEEN 7 OR 8 MONTHS SINCE YOUR SECOND PFIZER INJECTION, ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS FILL OUT A SHORT, IMPERSONAL FORM THAT SIMPLY STATES THAT YOU ARE IMMUNOCOMPROMISED. NO QUESTIONS ASKED. NO IMMIGRATION  QUESTIONS.)

31 IS THE BUILDING. JUST OFF N. GROVE WHICH IS THE STREET TO THE RIGHT OF BUILDING 31. PARK ACROSS THE STREET. MINIMAL WALK. (www.ETBU.edu/clinic)

“…Please remember that ETBU’s second free on-campus COVID vaccination clinic in conjunction with Walmart takes place on-campus this week in Rogers Spiritual Life Center. Stop by on Tuesday, September 14 and Wednesday, September 15 from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. to receive either your first or second dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccination. Booster shots are available for those who are immunocompromised. To receive your second dose, you must present your vaccination card to confirm it has been at least 21 days since your first dose. For more information, visit www.ETBU.edu/clinic. This clinic is open to the public, so please share with your friends and family in the area.

FROM BECKER:

1.  Heart patient dies after being turned down from 43 ICUs amid COVID-19 surge

(J. Harris: Would vaccine mandates prevent this kind of crowding?)

FROM HOPKINS:

1. Interim Estimates of COVID-19 Vaccine Effectiveness Against COVID-19–Associated Emergency Department or Urgent Care Clinic Encounters and Hospitalizations Among Adults During SARS-CoV-2 B.1.617.2 (Delta) Variant Predominance — Nine States, June–August 2021 In this multistate interim analysis of 32,867 medical encounters among adults of all ages during June–August 2021, when the Delta variant was predominant in the United States, VE of all three authorized COVID-19 vaccines combined remained high against hospitalization (86%) and ED/UC encounters (82%). These overall VE estimates were similar to those during the months before Delta became predominant. However, VE against COVID-19 hospitalization among adults aged ≥75 years was significantly lower than that among adults aged <75 years, which had not been observed previously from this data source. This moderate decline should be interpreted with caution and might be related to changes in SARS-CoV-2, waning of vaccine-induced immunity with increased time since vaccination, or a combination of factors. Differences in VE between the two mRNA vaccines, which had not been observed previously in the VISION Network, are consistent with another recent finding. (CDC MMWR, 9/10/2021)

(J. Harris: Does this mean that folks over 75 are automatically “immunocompromised” because of their age?)

2. Israel Is Preparing for Possible Fourth Covid Vaccine Dose (Bloomberg) Israel is making preparations to ensure it has sufficient vaccine supply in case a fourth round of Covid-19 shots is needed, the country’s top health official said on Sunday. “We don’t know when it will happen; I hope very much that it won’t be within six months, like this time, and that the third dose will last for longer,” Health Ministry Director General Nachman Ash said in an interview with Radio 103FM.

3. Exposure Notification: Benefits and Challenges of Smartphone Applications to Augment Contact Tracing If you were near a person who later tests positive for an infectious disease, an exposure notification app can let you know. These apps allow for more rapid and broader contact tracing—ideally helping to slow disease spread. About half of the US states had their own COVID-19 exposure notification apps as of June 2021. A national app wasn’t available. GAO found 5 challenges related to exposure notification apps, such as privacy concerns and a dearth of evidence showing that the apps are effective. To address challenges, GAO identified 4 policy options, e.g., collaborating on a national strategy for these apps. (GAO, 9/9/2021)

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CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 09/11/2021

HELLO,

FROM BECKERS SELECTIONS:

1. Mu unlikely to replace delta as a dominant variant, virologists say

“…The delta coronavirus variant, which accounts for 99 percent of U.S. COVID-19 cases, will likely maintain its dominance over new variants such as mu (B.1.621) and lambda (C.37), virologists told The Wall Street Journal… they expect delta to outcompete these strains because of its high transmissibility. In short, other variants can’t spread to susceptible people as fast as delta can, which gives it a leg up…This means that new case surges will likely be driven by delta and its sub-variants, not a new virus lineage…At present, delta accounts for about 88 percent of new cases globally… on its current trajectory, delta would achieve fixation as the dominant strain worldwide within about a year of its emergence… In contrast, seasonal flu strains typically take two to five years to achieve fixation…”

2. New York health system to halt maternity care after staff resign over vaccine mandate

NYT SUMMARY

Breaking News: Unvaccinated Americans are 11 times more likely to die of Covid, the C.D.C. reported, among other data showing vaccines’ protection from severe cases.

GOOD SUMMARY OF PRESIDENT BIDDEN’S NEW COVID PLANS:

US COVID-19 RESPONSE In a speech delivered on September 9 from the White House, US President Joe Biden laid out a 6-pronged COVID-19 pandemic action plan, including new federal vaccine requirements for about two-thirds of the nation’s federal and private workforce, in an effort to stem the surge caused by the Delta variant and jumpstart economic recovery. President Biden excoriated unvaccinated individuals, saying “our patience is running thin” and blaming them for harming fellow Americans. He also pushed back against the politicization of the pandemic, promising to use the power of the federal government to take on state elected officials who are “undermining” the implementation of vaccination requirements, mask mandates, and other preventive measures.

Under the new plan, all private sector companies employing more than 100 people will be required to mandate vaccination or conduct weekly testing, affecting about 80 million people. Workers at healthcare facilities that receive Medicare or Medicaid funding, about 17 million people, also will have to be vaccinated, extending an earlier requirement for workers at nursing homes to include facilities such as hospitals, home-health agencies, and dialysis centers. President Biden also is requiring all executive branch employees and federal contractors to be fully vaccinated, with no testing option, covering several million more workers. Additionally, employees of Head Start programs and schools run by the Department of Defense and Bureau of Indian Education, about 300,000 people, will be required to be vaccinated.

President Biden announced several other pieces of the plan, including a doubling of fines for travelers who refuse to wear masks in transit stations or on airplanes or trains. The government also is working with manufacturers and large retailers, including Walmart, Amazon, and Kroger, to lower the cost of at-home SARS-CoV-2 tests and distribute the tests to easily accessible sites such as shelters and food banks. The Department of Defense plans to send more teams into hard-hit areas, and the federal government will increase shipments of monoclonal antibody treatments and offer new support to small businesses

FROM HOPKINS CITATIONS:

1. COVID-19 Vaccines Don’t Raise Miscarriage Risk, 3 Studies Show (CIDRAP) Pregnant women who received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine were not at higher risk for miscarriage than their unvaccinated counterparts, according to a trio of new US studies.

2. Los Angeles Mandates Student Vaccinations in Nation’s Second-largest School District (Washington Post) The Los Angeles school board on Thursday agreed to require coronavirus vaccinations for students ages 12 and up in the city’s public school system, with board members arguing that it is the best way to protect students and keep schools open for in-person learning. Los Angeles is by far the largest school district in the country to take this step as experts and officials across the country worry the surging and highly contagious delta variant could upend yet another school year. Already, many school districts mandate vaccination for school faculty and staff members, and in California the requirement is statewide.

AND FINALLY:

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