CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 5/17/2022

DON’T FORGET TO VOTE.

FROM THE NYT:

1. How Often Can You Be Infected With the Coronavirus?

”…“If we manage it the way that we manage it now, then most people will get infected with it at least a couple of times a year,” said Kristian Andersen, a virologist at the Scripps Research Institute in San Diego. “I would be very surprised if that’s not how it’s going to play out.”…Still, the good news is that most people who are reinfected with new versions of Omicron will not become seriously ill. At least at the moment, the virus has not hit upon a way to fully sidestep the immune system….To keep up with the evolving virus, other experts said, the Covid vaccines should be updated more quickly, even more quickly than flu vaccines are each year. Even an imperfect match to a new form of the coronavirus will still broaden immunity and offer some protection, they said…”

(J. Harris: This is a good, short article. )

2. ”We may never bookend the first Covid death with the last, but I long for the day we no longer need to chart them daily.”

FROM STAT NEWS:

1. FDA rejects antidepressant seen as possible Covid-19 treatment

FROM WEBB MD:

Smell, Taste Loss Less Likely With Newer COVID Variants

”…Rates of smell and taste loss were 17% for Omicron, compared with 44% for Delta and 50% for Alpha, the investigators found…”

FROM JAMA:

1. Association of Prior BNT162b2 COVID-19 Vaccination With Symptomatic SARS-CoV-2 Infection in Children and Adolescents During Omicron Predominance

”…Among children and adolescents, estimated VE for 2 doses of BNT162b2 against symptomatic infection was modest and decreased rapidly. Among adolescents, the estimated effectiveness increased after a booster dose…” 

2. Protecting Children Against Omicron (AN EDITORIAL)

”…Prior to emergence of the Omicron SARS-CoV-2 variant, and at the time of the issuance of the Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) for the BNT162b2 (Pfizer-BioNTech) COVID-19 vaccine, the efficacy of 2 doses of the 30-µg vaccine in adolescents 12 to 15 years of age and of the 10-µg dose in children 5 to 11 years of age were 100% (95% CI, 75.3%-100%) and 90.7% (95% CI, 67.7%-98.3%), respectively.1,2 However, 2 studies published in this issue of JAMA demonstrate that the estimated vaccine effectiveness among children and adolescents with Omicron is considerably lower than in the initial studies, and protection wanes rapidly, especially with the novel SARS-CoV-2 variants.3,4…Although these 2 studies found relatively short time periods to waning of vaccine effectiveness, hope is on the horizon. As SARS-CoV-2 infections increase in children, hybrid immunity, a combination of immunity induced by vaccine and natural infection, will likely provide additional protection against future infections....The encouraging message should be that although vaccine protection for children and adolescents was lower in the Omicron era than with previous variants and that such protection wanes rapidly, vaccine effectiveness against hospitalization remains high and booster doses confer additional protection.

FROM BECKERS: 

1. Retired baby boomers are flocking to rural areas, boosting hospital demand

”…Retired people are moving to rural areas in search of natural beauty and a slower pace of life, boosting desperate local economies and bringing demand for services, including healthcare, reported The Wall Street Journal May 8. [I COULDN’T OPEN]…At 162 rural spots in the U.S., the population increased faster than the national average, bucking the trend that plagues most rural locations of population decline. Drawn in by natural attractions such as mountains and lakes, more retired people are settling down in areas such as Sevier County, Tenn., that saw a 13 percent increase in population over the past decade. …The influx of retirees brings a boost to the local economies of these sleepy towns. More residents means more consumers for local business, increased school services and a boosted workforce. In Sevier County, a new high school recently opened and a 79-bed hospital opened. 

Can You Use Expired Covid Tests?

”…Expired tests have this problem:…The probability of a false negative result (the test says I don’t have a Covid-19 infection when I do) is higher with an expired test, according to Jared Auclair, director of the Biopharmaceutical Analysis Training Lab at Northeastern….Expired Covid-19 tests are more likely to be inaccurate. Covid-19 tests that are expired should go into the trash.”

DO CATS CARRY AND SPREAD COVID. WHAT TO DO?

(J. Harris: I know of several families who have school age children and house cats and seem to suffer from recurrent bouts of Covid.)

SARS-CoV-2 in animals

(J. Harris: From the American Veterinary Medical Association [AVMA]: Seems to be good information if somewhat less concerned than I about potential Covid spread from the pet cat.) 

DOES THE COVID-19 OMICRON VARIANT SPREAD AFFECT PETS?

(J. Harris: From Texas A&M–the answer is YES.)

AND ON A LITTER SUBJECT:

(READ IT ALOUD)

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