CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 04/09/2021

CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 04/09/2021

 VACCINES AVAIABLE IN MARSHALL:

COVID 19 vaccine appointments are available at our office by going to https://mhchd.org/ to schedule an appointment. We currently have doses of the Janssen (J&J) single dose COVID 19 available. If you need assistance scheduling please contact us at 903-938-8338. 

Jennifer Hancock, RN, BSN  

Executive Director – Marshall-Harrison County Health District

(J. Harris: Counts are stable locally but are going up in Tyler and LA areas.)

Find COVID-19 Vaccines Near You

(J. Harris: The CDC Vaccine Finder)

FROM HOPKINS CITATIONS TODAY:

US Vaccination

The US has distributed nearly 230 million doses of SARS-CoV-2 vaccine and administered nearly 175 million doses. The US is currently administering 2.8 million doses per day*, including 1.3 million people fully vaccinated.

A total of 112 million individuals have received at least 1 dose of the vaccine, equivalent to approximately one-third of the entire US population and 43% of all adults. Of those, 66.2 million (20% of the total population; 26% of adults) are fully vaccinated. Among adults aged 65 years and older, 77% have received at least 1 dose, and 58% are fully vaccinated.

In terms of full vaccination, 32.8 million individuals have received the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, 28.5 million have received the Moderna vaccine, and 4.9 million have received the J&J-Janssen vaccine.

As a virus variant sweeps Europe, a look at lessons for the rest of the world.

“…The variant, known as B.1.1.7, is not only more contagious than the virus’s initial form, but is also deadlier… outbreaks have since ballooned, and B.1.1.7 has crowded out other versions of the virus, becoming dominant in more than a dozen European countries…lawmakers in continental Europe were slow to react…“People underestimated it, instead of saying we should learn from what’s happening in the U.K.”

(J. Harris: There are several other timely short summaries at this site. Remember, our vaccines are superior to the AstraZeneka Vaccine that they use in Europe — and are much safer.)

In Mississippi, 73,000 Vaccine Slots and Few Takers

(J. Harris: Unfortunately, these same problems are apparent in parts of East Texas. If I was still practicing medicine, I likely would ask any patient who declined Covid vaccination, without a sound medical reason, to find another doctor…. Yes, in nonemergency situations and with a decent interval of time provided, a doctor may ethically dismiss a patient. A few times when I suggested that this action might need to be taken, patient compliance improved. Now, I honestly do not know how to convince hesitant people to take the vaccine. All I can do is try to avoid the unvaccinated, carless, and ignorant.)

China’s response to COVID-19: a chance for collaboration

How has China managed to control COVID-19? And is the global scientific community in a position to benefit from China’s experiences?

According to the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, China’s strategy was built on active case finding and case management with identification and quarantine of close contacts, as well as risk-based lifting of restrictions. Chinese authorities aim to test each suspected case and all close contacts of those infected…pooled testing approach coordinated by the government with the cooperation of residents enabled 10·9 million people—almost the entire population of [Qingdao] city—to be tested within 5 days.

LAST BUT NOT LEASED:

CARLESS WORKERS NOT WEARING MASKS!

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The Future of Everything


Imagine an exchange that’s open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You can buy and sell everything from stocks to cryptocurrency to art. Trades happen almost instantly, without the need for middlemen or gatekeepers. Profits can turn to losses in the wink of an eye. 

A blockchain-based exchange is less far-fetched than ever. This week, the WSJ’s Paul Vigna reports on a number of pilot programs and other experiments investigating how to create digitized markets that can keep up with changing times. 💵The article is part of our latest issue, which looks at what’s ahead for money and finance. Elsewhere, we round up innovative credit-card rewards headed to your wallet, as well as four investments about to go mainstream. We question the speed of stimulus payments, meet the next generation of financial chatbots, dig into the European Union’s roll out of sustainability reporting metrics and look at the potential role of satellite networks in high-frequency trading.

Last but not least, we examine how connected devices are learning to buy and sell goods and services. 📰Read the full report here or in today’s paper. Or keep scrolling. 👇And, as always, send me your thoughts, questions and predictions by hitting “reply” to this email.


 

🚀 The Future of Everything Festival takes place online May 11-13. Together, we’ll look around the corner at the ideas triggering seismic shifts in how we live, work and play. You’ll collaborate with entrepreneurs, artists, athletes, scientists and thinkers so that you can plan for what’s next with informed projections—not predictions. The Wall Street Journal will deliver all of this and more, so join us and experience the future as it takes shape. Register here for your 3-Day Pass (complimentary for WSJ members).


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CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 03/30/2021

J. Harris: Concerning the above charts: The first one, I piece together from several sources, almost daily, with some reports lagging a day or two. It takes me about an hour a day to put it together.

The second chart was in the Marshall News Messenger today and gives WEEKLY stats including fatalities.

The third chart is from the NYT and is a piece of a chart made to order for me. It arrives before the sun comes up daily and requires no effort on my part to assimilate the information — and it is accompanied by up-to-date, edited medical and Covid information in a readable form. You DO NOT HAVE TO BE A SUBSCRIBER to receive it by email or to make your own daily list of places that you’d like to see including virtually anywhere in the world.  Were you to read this magnificent WORK, you could know ‘most everything that is going on in the Covid world ( and could localize your areas of interest as well). The Times does a great job with this constantly updated feature. I don’t know what to call it: a “work” or  a “UNIT.” There are many dashboards, including some very good ones provided by The Texas Department of Health and Johns Hopkins, and from Oregon. However, in my opinion, this is the most useful Covid information that I receive, and these NYT folks are the only ones emailing me a personalized copy. Free. And, oh, you don’t see editorials.

From the NYT: More Good Vaccine News 

The Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines are very effective in real-world conditions at preventing infections, the C.D.C. reported.

https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/70/wr/mm7013e3.htm?

A NEW “SUB-UNIT” VACCINE FROM CHINA

Safety and immunogenicity of a recombinant tandem-repeat dimeric RBD-based protein subunit vaccine (ZF2001) against COVID-19 in adults: two randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled, phase 1 and 2 trials

“…Although several COVID-19 vaccines have been developed so far, they will not be sufficient to meet the global demand. Development of a wider range of vaccines, with different mechanisms of action, could help control the spread of SARS-CoV-2 globally. We developed a protein subunit vaccine against COVID-19 using a dimeric form of the receptor-binding domain (RBD) of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein as the antigen.

:…  The [new] vaccine candidate, ZF2001, is a protein subunit vaccine that has advanced into phase 3 development. 

“Compared with other vaccine candidates in clinical trials targeting mainly the whole virus or the S protein, ZF2001 targets the receptor-binding domain (RBD) of the SARS-CoV-2 S protein. 

(J. Harris: The vaccine uses less antigenic material but  has been found to stimulate antibody production and provide protection with tolerable side effects in a vaccine that might lend itself to mass production “cheaply”. It does not require extensive refrigeration. It is involved in  large trials in China at this time.)

Routine asymptomatic testing strategies for airline travel during the COVID-19 pandemic: a simulation study

Routine asymptomatic testing for SARS-CoV-2 before travel can be an effective strategy to reduce passenger risk of infection during travel, although abbreviated quarantine with post-travel testing is probably needed to reduce population-level transmission due to importation of infection when travelling from a high to low incidence setting.

FROM HOPKINS CITATIONS

1. What it Will take to Vaccinate the World Against COVID-19 (Nature) A special report outlines the challenges — from unleashing the power of mRNA vaccines, to the battle for temporary intellectual-property relief. Within just a few months, pharmaceutical firms have produced hundreds of millions of doses of COVID-19 vaccine. But the world needs billions — and as fast as possible. Companies say they could make enough vaccines to immunize most of the world’s population by the end of 2021. But this doesn’t take into account political delays in distribution, such as countries imposing export controls — or that the overwhelming majority of doses are going to wealthier countries.

2. Wastewater monitoring outperforms case numbers as a tool to track COVID-19 incidence dynamics when test positivity rates are high

Incidence dynamics estimated based on wastewater data were found to better track the timing and shape of the reference infection peak compared to estimates based on confirmed cases. In contrast, case confirmations provided a better estimate of the subsequent decline in infections. Under a regime of high-test positivity rates, WBE thus provides critical information that is complementary to clinical data to monitor the pandemic trajectory.

CDC PRESS RELEASES:

1. First Mobile Vaccination Units in US to Open in Maryland The nation’s first federally operated mobile COVID-19 vaccination units will soon roll through eastern Maryland. The two mobile sites will provide access to COVID-19 vaccinations for thousands of Marylanders who live in remote or otherwise underserved areas in eight eastern Maryland counties. Targeted to people who are socially vulnerable or live in remote areas, appointments will be booked through the health department in the county of residence. (FEMA, 3/29/2021)

2. Connecticut First State to Open COVID-19 Vaccine Mobile Unit In the ongoing effort to bring the COVID vaccine to communities and people in socially vulnerable areas, Connecticut will open the country’s first Mobile Vaccination Unit (MVU) on March 29, 2021 at the Beardsley Zoo in Bridgeport, Connecticut. The MVU will travel throughout Connecticut for 60 days to reach populations in 17 communities. Destinations were targeted based on the CDC’s Social Vulnerability Index, US Census Bureau’s Community Resilience Estimates, low vaccine coverage, metrics and other barriers to vaccine access. The MVU will be used to complement ongoing efforts of local public health departments, health care providers, pharmacies, community and faith-based organizations, employers, private sector vaccinators and other federal resources. (FEMA, 3/26/2021)

Amazon gets FDA authorization for COVID-19 test kit

LAST BUT NOT LEASED:

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CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 03/22/2021

NYT DAILY CHART:

TX WEEKLY ALLOCATIONV

Vaccinations aplenty in Gregg, Smith, Bowie, with a few in Harrison.

TYLER VACCINATION SIGN UP

CDC Releases Guidelines for People Vaccinated for COVID-19

A U.S. trial found AstraZeneca’s vaccine was 79 percent effective with no serious side effects. The company will seek emergency F.D.A. authorization.

“The coronavirus vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford provided strong protection against Covid-19 in a large clinical trial in the United States, completely preventing the worst outcomes from the disease while causing no serious side effects, according to results announced on Monday.

“The trial, involving more than 32,000 participants, was the largest test of its kind for the shot. The vaccine was 79 percent effective overall in preventing symptomatic infections, higher than observed in previous clinical trials. The trial also showed that the vaccine offered strong protection for older people, who had not been as well-represented in earlier studies.

industry analysts said the results were better than expected, a heartening turn for a shot whose low cost and simple storage requirements have made it the workhorse of the drive to vaccinate the world.

HOPKINS CITED:

1. Five Reasons why COVID Herd Immunity is Probably Impossible (Nature) As COVID-19 vaccination rates pick up around the world, people have reasonably begun to ask: how much longer will this pandemic last? It’s an issue surrounded with uncertainties. But the once-popular idea that enough people will eventually gain immunity to SARS-CoV-2 to block most transmission — a ‘herd-immunity threshold’ — is starting to look unlikely.

2. COVID-19 in Primary and Secondary School Settings During the First Semester of School Reopening Florida, August–December 2020 (MMWR) COVID-19 school-related disease incidence among Florida students was correlated with community incidence in the counties observed and was highest in smaller counties, districts without mask requirements, and those that reopened earliest after closure in March 2020. Incidence increased with the proportion of students receiving in-person instruction. Fewer than 1% of registered students were identified as having school-related COVID-19.

3. More than 4 in 10 Health-care Workers have not Been Vaccinated, Post-KFF Poll Finds (Washington Post) Health-care workers were the first group in the United States to be offered coronavirus vaccinations. But three months into the effort, many remain unconvinced, unreached and unprotected. The lingering obstacles to vaccinating health-care workers foreshadows the challenge the United States will face as it expands the pool of people eligible and attempts to get the vast majority of the U.S. population vaccinated. According to a Washington Post-Kaiser Family Foundation poll, barely half of front-line health-care workers (52 percent) said they had received at least their first vaccine dose at the time they were surveyed. More than 1 in 3 said they were not confident vaccines were sufficiently tested for safety and effectiveness.

Cuba Approves Second Homegrown COVID Vaccine for Late Phase Trials (Reuters) Cuba’s drug regulatory authority on Thursday approved a second COVID-19 vaccine candidate for late-stage clinical trials as the country races to secure a homegrown shot to quell its worst outbreak since the start of the pandemic and sell abroad. This month, Cuba started late-phase trials of its most advanced experimental vaccine, named Soberana (Sovereignty) 2, reflecting national pride in its relative self-reliance in areas like healthcare despite the decades-old U.S. trade embargo.

Seroprevalence and immune durability of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in Wuhan, China

Sustained neutralising antibodies in the Wuhan population suggest durable protection against SARS-CoV-2

AND ON  AND PERSONNEL NOTE:

Recently, I’ve had to limit my Norweigan Housekeeper’s television schedule. She has been getting some bad Vaccine information from some guy on Fox. His name is Tucker Frederickson, or something like that…. wait, I believe his name is Forrest Tucker. Anyway, she’s not allowed to watch his show anymore. We know who’s the captain of this ship!

LAST BUT NOT LEASED:

DID YOU KNOW:

Stewardesses is the longest word  typed with only the left hand.

And ‘lollipop’  is the longest word typed   with your right hand.  

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We Do Not Have Time to Worry About China

We Do Not Have Time to Worry About China

By Ron Munden — 3/15/2021

Last week a wrote an article titled, “United States on the Verge of Losing Its Technological Superiority”

The article focused exclusively on Eric Schmidt, former CEO of Google, interview  by  Fareed Zakaria.  Mr. Schmidt is the chairman of the National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence.  This blue ribbon committee, composed of 15 people, was tasked to do an assessment of the role of AI in the future and the United States position in the field.

As I aways do I posted a lead to the article on facebook along with the link.  As expected very few people clicked on the link.  Based on 15 years of experience, I was not surprised.  “Tits” alway out sell “science” – particularly in Texas.

What was surprising is none of the posts linked to the article were related to science.  Hell – they weren’t even related to tits.  Every one of the posts was a political statement; none addressed anything discussed in the article.

When I wrote the article I was careful to focus exclusively on science and engineering.

This really valids a concern that I believe Mr.  Schmidt has.  He stressed the urgent need to move now if the US has any hope of winning this race with China — politics will ensure that the US comes out on the losing end.

Unfortunately, there is other evidence that politics will lose the technology competition with China.  Look at how the US handled COVID-19.

The United States has had more deaths from C-19 and more cases of C-19 than any other country in the world.  I believe the major reason for this is that we made addressing C-19 a political issue not a science issue. 15 years ago who would have thought wearing a mask would be considered a political statement.  Government entities lined up against each other based on their political leaning.

We could have done much better fighting C-19 if we had  been driven by science and politics had stayed on the sidelines.

Sure over 500,000 people in this country are dead from C-19 but that is small potatoes compared to what is at stake in the AI competition with China.  In my opinion this competition is even more important than addressing climate change.I say this because based on all I read the results AI competition will be determined in the 10 to 20 year timeframe.  The critical dipping point of addressing climate change is in the 40 to 50 year range.  After that point we will be on a downhill slope that can’t be reversed.

If the US loses the race to remain the technology  superpower in the world and China replaces us,  they will be the dominant economic powerhouse within 30 years and able to dictate how nations like the US address climate change.  So China policy, not US policy, will dictate the approach for addressing climate change in the critical stage.

This country is in a high stakes game and we are not in a position to win the war.  A country in the middle of a civil war is not positioned well to win a foreign war at the same time.  So I believe the winner of the AI competition has already been decided.

CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 03/04/2021

CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 03/04/2021

HOPKINS CITED:

1. Genomic Evidence of In-Flight Transmission of SARS-CoV-2 Despite Predeparture Testing Since the first wave of coronavirus disease in March 2020, citizens and permanent residents returning to New Zealand have been required to undergo managed isolation and quarantine (MIQ) for 14 days and mandatory testing for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). As of October 20, 2020, of 62,698 arrivals, testing of persons in MIQ had identified 215 cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Among 86 passengers on a flight from Dubai, United Arab Emirates, that arrived in New Zealand on September 29, test results were positive for 7 persons in MIQ. These passengers originated from 5 different countries before a layover in Dubai; 5 had negative predeparture SARS-CoV-2 test results. To assess possible points of infection, we analyzed information about their journeys, disease progression, and virus genomic data. All 7 SARS-CoV-2 genomes were genetically identical, except for a single mutation in 1 sample. Despite predeparture testing, multiple instances of in-flight SARS-CoV-2 transmission are likely. (CDC EID, March 2021)

2. Antibody Responses 8 Months after Asymptomatic or Mild SARS-CoV-2 Infection Waning humoral immunity in coronavirus disease patients has raised concern over usefulness of serologic testing. Researchers investigated antibody responses of 58 persons 8 months after asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic infection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. For 3 of 4 immunoassays used, seropositivity rates were high (69.0%–91.4%). (CDC EID, March 2021)

(J. Harris: This likely means that the antibody tests that were positive 8 months later, likely correlates with at least some retained immunity).

3.Suspected Recurrent SARS-CoV-2 Infections Among Residents of a Skilled Nursing Facility During a Second COVID-19 Outbreak — Kentucky, July–November 2020 Five residents of a skilled nursing facility received positive SARS-CoV-2 nucleic acid test results in two separate COVID-19 outbreaks separated by 3 months. Residents received at least four negative test results between the two outbreaks, s. Severity of disease in the five residents during the second outbreak was worse than that during the first outbreak and included one death. (CDC MMWR, 2/26/2021)

(J. Harris: So were these repeated infections due to relapse or to a new virus, perhaps with mutations? Time will tell. You know it is being evaluated. Keep wearing your masks)._

Rapid Tests Aren’t Useful if You Can’t Access Them

The Surprising Key to Combatting Vaccine Refusal

In lifting coronavirus restrictions, Gov. Greg Abbott heeds the call of his GOP critics

(J. Harris: Were I to read only one publication for local and Texas Covid information, I would read The Texas Tribune. It is generally corrected from a medical standpoint and has the best basic charts and stats for us non-mathematicians who don’t understand stats very well and can’t even spell ‘statistics’. The ‘New York Times” would be my second choice for the high spot type of world-wide Covid reading.)

Why Opening Windows Is a Key to Reopening Schools

Colleges That Require Virus-Screening Tech Struggle to Say Whether It Works

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CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 03/02/2021

FIRST VACCINE SHOTS ARE AVAILABLE AT CIVIC CENTER TOMORROW. MANY APPOINTMENTS AVAILABLE FOR THE 1A AND 1B FOLKS.

“The Marshall Harrison County Health District has been notified of an allocation of 400 doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine for this week from the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS). A community COVID-19 vaccination clinic will be held on Wednesday, March 3, 2021, BY APPOINTMENT ONLY.

HOW TO REGISTER: Pre-registration is REQUIRED online at https://www.signupgenius.com/go/70A0B4AAFA622A2FB6-harrison4 to secure a vaccination appointment. ⁠You can also go https://mhchd.org/ and click on the Sign Up button.

(J. Harris: Apparently the 2nd Shot Moderna Clinic will coincide with this new event as already scheduled)

HOPKINS CITED:

1. Johnson & Johnson Has Planned Trials of Its Vaccine That Will Include Infants (New York Times) Johnson & Johnson plans to test its coronavirus vaccine in infants and even in newborns, as well as in pregnant women and in people who have compromised immune systems. The bold plan for expanded clinical trials met with the approval of Dr. Ofer Levy, director of the Precision Vaccines Program at Harvard’s Boston Children’s Hospital and a member of the Food and Drug Administration advisory committee that reviewed the company’s vaccine data.

2. Estimating Risk of Mechanical Ventilation and In-hospital Mortality Among Adult COVID-19 Patients Admitted to Mass General Brigham: The VICE and DICE Scores (EClinical Medicine) We found four factors to be independently predictive for mechanical ventilation requirement (diabetes mellitus, SpO2:FiO2 ratio, C-reactive protein, and lactate dehydrogenase), and 10 factors to be predictors of in-hospital mortality (age, male sex, coronary artery disease, diabetes mellitus, chronic statin use, SpO2:FiO2 ratio, body mass index, neutrophil to lymphocyte ratio, platelet count, and procalcitonin). Using these factors, we constructed the VICE and DICE risk scores, which performed with C-statistics of 0.84 and 0.91, respectively.

Could our immune system be why COVID-19 is so deadly?

“…Cytokine storms are not unique to SARS-CoV-2 infection; they can be found in most of the critical human coronaviruses and influenza. A subtype outbreaks of the past two decades.

“Cytokines are small proteins that tightly regulate our immune system and how our body reacts to internal or external stress, such as cancer, inflammation, or infection. Cytokines act as conductors, orchestrating our immune response when infected with viruses. One of their roles is to cause inflammation, which is part of the healing process of many infections and injuries

“…Respiratory viruses all activate antiviral responses in the body but there are differences in how each virus attempts to evade the attention of the immune system. The most common strategy is to confuse, or specifically attack, crucial immune response mechanisms—such as the release of cytokines….the researchers’ analysis found specific immune mechanisms that make SARS-CoV-2 uniquely dangerous….”

(J.Harris: These folks are evaluating the various types of “Storm” and developing a data bank or Map to enhance future studies and classifications. I include this material since it presents a good explanation of Cytokinetics.)

Late info:  

There are a lot of openings for tomorrow!

The Marshall Harrison County Health District has been notified of an allocation of 400 doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine for this week from the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS). A community COVID-19 vaccination clinic will be held on Wednesday, March 3, 2021, BY APPOINTMENT ONLY.

HOW TO REGISTER: Pre-registration is REQUIRED online at https://www.signupgenius.com/go/70A0B4AAFA622A2FB6-harrison4 to secure a vaccination appointment. ⁠You can also go https://mhchd.org/ and click on the Sign Up button.

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CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 02/17/2021

HELLO

J. Harris: Some of the numbers remain slow to be tabulated, but Texas Department of  Health Services does a nice, accurate job. Sometimes I transcribe it incorrectly and I have real trouble keeping up with the date. 

TEXAS COVID=BEST SITE OF ALL

States ranked by COVID-19 test positivity rates: Feb. 15

1st South Africa variant reinfection case confirmed; UK variant likely deadlier, scientists say — 6 COVID-19 updates

(J. Harris: Several short, crisp Becker Hospital selections. I don’t know who does their Covid work, but they do a first rate job. Not infrequently, I pass along their selections which save me considerable time.)

Hopkins Selection:

1. How ‘Killer’ T Cells Could Boost COVID Immunity in Face of New Variants (Nature) Concerns about coronavirus variants that might be partially resistant to antibody defences have spurred renewed interest in other immune responses that protect against viruses. In particular, scientists are hopeful that T cells — a group of immune cells that can target and destroy virus-infected cells — could provide some immunity to COVID-19, even if antibodies become less effective at fighting the disease. Researchers are now picking apart the available data, looking for signs that T cells could help to maintain lasting immunity.

2. Researchers Propose that Humidity from Masks May Lessen Severity of COVID-19 (NIH) The study, led by researchers in the NIH’s National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), found that face masks substantially increase the humidity in the air that the mask-wearer breathes in. This higher level of humidity in inhaled air, the researchers suggest, could help explain why wearing masks has been linked to lower disease severity in people infected with SARS-CoV-2, because hydration of the respiratory tract is known to benefit the immune system.

3. Researchers Propose That Humidity from Masks May Lessen Severity of COVID-19 Masks help protect the people wearing them from getting or spreading SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, but now researchers from the National Institutes of Health have added evidence for yet another potential benefit for wearers: The humidity created inside the mask may help combat respiratory diseases such as COVID-19. The study, led by researchers in the NIH’s National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), found that face masks substantially increase the humidity in the air that the mask-wearer breathes in. This higher level of humidity in inhaled air, the researchers suggest, could help explain why wearing masks has been linked to lower disease severity in people infected with SARS-CoV-2, because hydration of the respiratory tract is known to benefit the immune system. (NIH, 2/12/2021)

A lone infection may have changed the course of the pandemic

““We can’t afford to keep giving the virus more and more chances to mutate to new, stable configurations,…keeping the current restrictions until we really get transmission down is very, very important.”

(J. Harris: Readable, seems valid, interesting.)

TOM ALLIN sent me the following WEATHER HISTORY:

on record for the ArkLaTex

By Jeff Castle | February 13, 2016 at 2:28 AM CST – Updated July 25 at 5:00 AM

A chill is coming for the weekend after seeing well above average temperatures the last couple of days.  50s on Saturday may feel chilly after we almost hit 80 on Thursday, but that’s nothing compared to what the ArkLaTex was dealing with at this time 117 years ago.

In what became known as the ‘Great Arctic Outbreak’ of February 1899, many locations in the south plummeted to levels that haven’t been seen since.

The ArkLaTex was included in the record cold.  On February 12th 1899, the mercury fell to 5 below zero in Shreveport…the coldest temperature ever recorded in the city!  This was part of a 5 day stretch of record cold that hasn’t been matched since.

The cold snap began in earnest on the 9th when after starting at 17 in the morning in Shreveport, the high temperature didn’t even get above freezing.  What followed was multiple days of record cold for both low and high temperatures.  It wasn’t until 5 days later on Valentine’s Day that we climbed back above freezing.  And then in typical ArkLaTex fashion it was in the 70s just 1 week later.

The record low temperature for the entire state of Louisiana was also set during this cold snap.  Minden fell to -16 degrees on the morning of the 13th.

Weather data from that far back is hard to come by, but here are a few reports of the lowest temperatures from other locations around the ArkLaTex during the record setting cold.

-6  Mansfield, LA

-14 Plain Dealing, LA

-6  Robeline, LA

-15 Ruston, LA

-8  Stamps, AR

-9  Marshall, TX

This little snippet from the February 16, 1899 edition of the Bossier Banner kind of says it all about how people in Plain Dealing were handling the cold.

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CORONAVIRUS INFO PROVIDED BY DR. JIM HARRIS – 02/04/2021

Harleton ISD to switch elementary school to virtual only.  

HARLETON — Harleton ISD officials announced late Wednesday the district’s elementary school will switch to virtual learning only, beginning Friday and running through next Thursday, due to a large number of students out on COVID-19 quarantine. (J. Harris: The Harrison County school systems Covid counts since about 1/22/21 have not been released to the public.)

HOPKINS SUGGESTIONS:

1. Safety and Efficacy of an rAd26 and rAd5 Vector-based Heterologous Prime-boost COVID-19 vaccine: an interim analysis of a randomized controlled phase 3 trial in Russia (The Lancet) A heterologous recombinant adenovirus (rAd)-based vaccine, Gam-COVID-Vac (Sputnik V), showed a good safety profile and induced strong humoral and cellular immune responses in participants in phase 1/2 clinical trials. Here, we report preliminary results on the efficacy and safety of Gam-COVID-Vac from the interim analysis of this phase 3 trial.

KFF COVID-19 Vaccine Monitor: January 2021

(J. Harris: Kaiser polls extensive evaluation of the characteristics of various groups of US residents regarding willingness to take Covid Vaccines and why or why not.)

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WHERE TO GET VACCINATIONS

SOME OLD, SOME NEW

1/22/2021

1.     CHRISTUS IN MARSHALL WILL NOT LIKELY HAVE MORE VACCINATIONS UNTIL A BIG HUB IS ESTABLISHED IN MARSHALL IN ANOTHER FACILITY (LIKE THE CIVIC CENTER?). THIS WILL HAPPEN WHEN SUPPLIES OF VACCINE ARE  AVAILABLE. NO NEED TO CALL THEM. CHRISTUS LONGVIEW IS IN THE SAME SITUATION. WATCH THE PAPERS AND THE NET.

2.     VACCINATION SITES IN HARRISON COUNTY, TX VACCINATION SITES IN HARRISON COUNTY, TX:                

SUPER 1 PHARMACY ON HWY 59      — 903 938 3096                                                          

HALLSVILLE BROOKSHIRE PHARMACY   — 903 668 1409

3.     MARSHALL/HARRISON COUNTY HEALTH DEPT (BEST VACCINE SITE IN MARSHALL AT THIS TIME)

https://mhchd.org/

(and click on the sign up for a COVID 19 Vaccine link) THE INTERNET IS BETTER THAN CALLING OVER AND OVER UNTIL THEY ANSWER. SIGN UP. THEY GET VACCINE SHIPMENTS PERIODICALLY, SO DOES GREGG COUNTY.

THE MARSHALL NUMBER IS 903-938-8338

4.    TEXAS VACCINATION INFORMATION EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW RE VAC. IN TX           COVID-19 Vaccine Information TEXAS 

5.     SOME LONGVIEW DRUG STORE NUMBERS:       

BROOKSHIRES ON GILMER RD. LONGVIEW 903-297-6963, SUPER ONE ON HWY.80 LONGVIEW 903-753-1964, SUPER ONE ON HIGH ST. LONGVIEW 903-234-2785, AND BROOKSHIRES IN WHITEOAK, 200 W.US80, 903-297-2785, LOUIS MORGAN #4 IN LONGVIEW 110 JOHNSTON ST. 903-730-6580

6.    TRY SHREVEPORT, LA. THEY SOMETIME HAVE VACCINE.

SEE KSLA.ORG TO GET A LIST OF NUMBERS

7.     TWO HUB VACCINE SOURCES IN TYLER: 

NORTHEAST TEXAS PUBLIC HEALTH DISTRICT WILL BE DISTRIBUTING VACCINE TO ANYONE WHO QUALIFIES REGARDLESS OF COUNTY OF RESIDENCE. NET HEALTH CEO GEORGE ROBERTS SAID THE HEALTH DISTRICT WILL BE HOSTING VACCINE DRIVE-THRU CLINICS AT HARVEY CONVENTION CENTER IN TYLER EVERY WEEK BASED ON AN APPOINTMENT AND WAITING LIST SYSTEM.

TO BECOME A PART OF THE WAITING LIST, VISIT nethealthcovid19.org.

THE NEXT DRIVE IN EVENT WILL BE SOON.  THOSE ON THE WAITING LIST BE THE FIRST CALLED ON AN APPOINTMENT. GET ON THE WAITING LIST

THE SECOND HUB IN TYLER IS UT HEALTH SCIENCE CENTER AT TYLER: I DON’T KNOW WHEN THIS HUB WILL START DISTRIBUTING VACCINE.

THE TEXAS DEPARTMENT OF STATE HEALTH SERVICES SAID THAT THIS WEEK MOST COVID-19 VACCINES WILL BE DISTRIBUTED TO LARGE SITES AROUND THE STATE TO VACCINATE MORE THAN 100,000 PEOPLE. THE GOAL IS TO PROVIDE MORE PEOPLE WITH THE VACCINE AND AN EASIER WAY TO SIGN UP FOR AN APPOINTMENT. ALL PHASE 1A AND 1B INDIVIDUALS ARE ELIGIBLE TO RECEIVE A VACCINE AT THESE HUBS, NO MATTER WHERE THEY LIVE.

PHASE 1A INCLUDES FRONT-LINE HEALTH CARE WORKERS AND RESIDENTS AT LONG-TERM CARE FACILITIES, WHILE PHASE 1B INCLUDES PEOPLE OVER 65 OR WITH A CHRONIC MEDICAL CONDITION THAT PUTS THEM AT INCREASED RISK FOR SEVERE ILLNESS FROM COVID‑19.

PEOPLE SHOULD NOT SHOW UP TO A HUB IF THEY DON’T HAVE AN APPOINTMENT. PROVIDERS ARE FOCUSING ON VACCINATING AREAS AND POPULATIONS HARDEST HIT BY COVID‑19, DSHS SAID. 

ACCORDING TO THE STATE, VACCINE SUPPLIES ARE LIMITED BUT MORE SUPPLY IS COMING EVERY WEEK. 

FOR WEEK FIVE OF THE VACCINE ALLOCATION, NET HEALTH AND UT HEALTH SCIENCE CENTER AT TYLER EACH RECEIVED 1,500 DOSES OF THE VACCINE. 

APPOINTMENTS ARE FULL AT UT HEALTH SCIENCE CENTER AT TYLER, BUT UT HEALTH EAST TEXAS SAID THAT OFFICIALS WILL PUBLICIZE THE NEXT APPOINTMENT AVAILABILITY THROUGH THE MEDIA. APPOINTMENTS HAVE BEGUN, AND PEOPLE USED AN ONLINE LINK TO SIGN UP FOR THESE APPOINTMENTS AS WELL. 

I WOULD GUESS THAT THERE ARE DRUG STORES IN TYLER OFFERING VACCINE????

IF YOU KNOW OF FRIENDS OR RELATIVE OR ACQUAINTANCES WHO MIGHT HAVE TROUBLE FIGURING OUT HOW TO SIGN UP FOR VACCINATION,  PLEASE TRY AND HELP THEM.

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