J. Harris: Look at the above chart and notice that Harrison County has recorded 9.12 new cases/1000 person county population in the last two weeks. This rate of new disease is higher than the rate in Harris County (Houston) over the last two weeks. Harrison County has an true and documented epidemic. We have Covid patients in our local hospital as well as in LGV, Tyler, and other cities. PLAY IT SAFE, PLEASE.  Sign up for your vaccination now, especially those over 65. How many folks do you know who have died with Covid recently? The list grows. 

Brazilian researchers find a Chinese vaccine once hailed as a triumph is far less effective than thought.

Officials at the Butantan Institute in São Paulo said a trial conducted in Brazil showed that the CoronaVac vaccine, manufactured by Beijing-based Sinovac, had an efficacy rate of just over 50 percent. That rate was far lower than the 78 percent efficacy rate announced last week.

When to Quarantine

Updated quarantine requirements.

Large NCAA athletes study

J. Harris: a good, short read.

As the New C.D.C. Chief, I’ll Tell You the Truth

By Rochelle P. Walensky MD

Dr. Walensky has been nominated by President-elect Biden to be the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

On Jan. 20, I will begin leading the C.D.C., which was founded in 1946 to meet precisely the kinds of challenges posed by this pandemic. I agreed to serve as C.D.C. director because I believe in the agency’s mission and commitment to knowledge, statistics and guidance. I will do so by leading with facts, science and integrity — and being accountable for them, as the C.D.C. has done since its founding 75 years ago.

J. Harris: Good. 

When will smell, taste come back? 5 COVID-19 questions answered

J. Harris: Good short article.

“…The average time of olfactory dysfunction reported by patients was 21.6 days, according to the study in the Journal of Internal Medicine. Nearly a quarter of the 2,581 COVID-19 patients studied didn’t regain smell and taste within 60 days of infection.”  


1. Assessment of Day-7 Postexposure Testing of Asymptomatic Contacts of COVID-19 Patients to Evaluate Early Release from Quarantine — Vermont, May–November 2020 On May 8, 2020, the Vermont Department of Health (VDH) issued a Health Update* recommending shortening the duration of quarantine for persons exposed to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Exposed persons who were in quarantine could be tested by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) on or after quarantine day 7. Those who had remained asymptomatic throughout quarantine and who received a negative SARS-CoV-2 PCR test result on or after day 7 could end quarantine. This policy was based on a report suggesting that symptom onset occurs within this time frame in approximately three-quarters of COVID-19 cases (1) and on consultation of the Vermont Health Commissioner with the US Surgeon General. VDH implemented this policy to minimize restrictions on state residents, recognizing that some reduction could occur in the prevention benefit of quarantine to contain the spread of SARS-CoV-2. (CDC MMWR, 1/7/2021)

2. FDA Issues Alert Regarding SARS-CoV-2 Viral Mutation to Health Care Providers and Clinical Laboratory Staff The US Food and Drug Administration is alerting clinical laboratory staff and health care providers that the FDA is monitoring the potential impact of viral mutations, including an emerging variant from the United Kingdom known as the B.1.1.7 variant, on authorized SARS-CoV-2 molecular tests, and that false negative results can occur with any molecular test for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 if a mutation occurs in the part of the virus’s genome assessed by that test. The FDA is taking additional actions to ensure authorized tests remain accurate by working with test developers and conducting ongoing data analysis to evaluate all currently authorized molecular tests. The FDA believes the risk that these mutations will impact overall testing accuracy is low. (FDA, 1/8/2021)


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