I wish you a nice weekend. 


Your Second Vaccine Dose Is Crucial

”With new variants in the mix that are more contagious and likely deadlier, being fully vaccinated is even more essential. Although the vast majority of people who start vaccination get both doses, 8% of people who have received their first dose hadn’t yet received their second, according to data released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).”

Gleyber Torres tests positive for COVID, is Yankees’ eighth ‘breakthrough’ case

”The Yankees added that all eight individuals who tested positive, including Torres, are vaccinated and, thus, are considered “breakthrough” positives. Third base coach Phil Nevin, first base coach Reggie Willits and pitching coach Matt Blake are among the seven members of the traveling party who tested positive, and manager Aaron Boone said Wednesday that six of the seven non-players were asymptomatic. ” 

(J. Harris: Torres is said also to have had Covid earlier as well as having been vaccinated — something doesn’t add up. Surely this Yankee situation will be studied in depth? For instance, which vaccine were the Yankees using?)

Finally, good news: 6 stats showing pandemic progress in US


”The good news we all need — after more than a year of difficult news, it appears that the U.S. pandemic may be turning a corner….Here are six stats revealing progress made:

1. Nationwide, new COVID-19 cases have fallen to the lowest levels since September, with about 38,000 new infections reported each day, reports The New York Times.

2. Michigan and New York, two states that have seen recent COVID-19 surges, each reported at least a 40 percent drop in new cases over the last two weeks, according to the Times.

3. Nearly half of Americans — 46.4 percent — have received at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose, while 35.4 percent of the population is fully vaccinated, reports the CDC.

4. The CDC’s vaccine advisory panel voted May 12 to recommend using Pfizer and BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine in children as young as 12. CDC Director Rochelle Walensky, MD, released a statement saying she has adopted the panel’s recommendation, making it an official CDC recommendation.

5. The national COVID-19 test positivity rate in the U.S. is 3.6 percent, according to a seven-day average from Baltimore-based Johns Hopkins University. “It was 15 percent in January,” White House COVID-19 adviser Andy Slavitt tweeted May 12. “This is an all-time low for the pandemic. This news is nothing but good.”

6. The nation is reporting an average of 600 COVID-19 deaths each day, the lowest average in 10 months, according to The Associated Press.

Vaccinated Americans now may go without masks in most places, the C.D.C. said.

(J. Harris: Good NYT summary article that is readable. I intend to remain cautious and when unmasked, will avoid crowds of people that I do no know as well as crowded indoor places — see Yankees article above.)

High and Rising Working-Age Mortality in the US

”The recent increase in mortality among working-age adults shows no signs of receding. Obesity rates are unrelenting, drug- and alcohol-related deaths and suicide rates, already high among working-age adults, increased during the COVID-19 pandemic,8 and the latter has made socioeconomically and racially marginalized groups even more vulnerable. This report discusses the need to revitalize communities that have experienced rising premature mortality by addressing the economic and social strains that made those communities vulnerable in the first place and to dismantle structural racism and discriminatory policies of exclusion that negatively affect communities of color. Although more research is needed to understand causal mechanisms, not acting to address mortality among working-age adults threatens the future well-being of families and communities.”

Hopkins cited:

1. One of the World’s Best Covid-19 Success Stories is Inching Closer to a Lockdown (Quartz) Taiwan is a global leader in shutting down Covid-19, and successfully flattened the curve well before most countries even understood the damage the coronavirus could cause. Now, with new clusters of untraceable infections recorded in the island’s biggest cities, the threat of Taiwan’s first-ever lockdown looms large.

(J. Harris: Unfortunately, the citizens rarely got vaccinated. They had access to the AstraZeneka vaccines, and, in addition, they were trying to develop a vaccine of their own. This whole unfortunate saga will turn into a commercial in favor of vaccinations — unless a proposed shutdown works now. However, the population will still be vulnerable for the next invasion or mutant. Vaccines work!)

2. BNT162b2-Elicited Neutralization against New SARS-CoV-2 Spike Variants (NEJM) Because these data show that the newly emerged B.1.526, B.1.429, and B.1.1.7+E484K variants remain susceptible to an important vaccine-elicited immune effector (neutralizing antibody), they confirm the importance of mass immunization with current, highly effective, authorized vaccines as a central strategy to end the Covid-19 pandemic. 

DEFINITELY NOT FUNNY: THE REASON MY LIGHTS WENT OUT WEDNESDAY. Thank you SWEPCO for restoring power in less than 12 hours!

 AND REMEMBER: Whatever you do, always give 100% unless you’re donating blood.


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