Tulane Outbreak – August 24, 2021

Featured Headlines

The Coronavirus Is Here Forever. This Is How We Live With It. – The Atlantic

We can’t avoid the virus for the rest of our lives, but we can minimize its impact. In the 1980s, doctors at an English hospital deliberately tried to infect 15 volunteers with a coronavirus. COVID-19 did not yet exist—what interested those doctors was a coronavirus in the same family called 229E, which causes the common cold. 229E is both ubiquitous and obscure. Most of us have had it, probably first as children, but the resulting colds were so mild as to be unremarkable. And indeed, of the 15 adult volunteers who got 229E misted up their nose, only 10 became infected, and of those, only eight actually developed cold symptoms.

China Hits Zero Covid Cases With a Month of Draconian Curbs – Bloomberg

It’s been just over a month, and China has once again squelched Covid-19, bringing its local cases down to zero. It was more difficult this time, even though the leaders of the world’s most populous nation used the same playbook they followed to quell more than 30 previous flare-ups. The arrival of the more infectious delta variant has raised the stakes, as the pathogen refines its ability to escape curbs and flout vaccination. It’s unclear how long the victory will last.

Hawaii governor says ‘now is not the time’ for tourists to visit while covid-19 crushes hospitals – Washington Post

Hawaii Gov. David Ige on Monday pleaded with tourists from around the world not to visit the islands through at least the end of October, as the state grapples with an influx of coronavirus cases from residents and vacationers who’ve brought the virus with them.

National Guard will be deployed across Kentucky to help overwhelmed hospitals – CNN

Kentucky hospital officials high-fived one another during a news conference Monday as they learned multiple National Guard teams would be deployed to hospitals across the state dealing with rising Covid-19 cases and hospital staffing shortages.

Passenger dies of COVID-19 amid outbreak on Carnival cruise ship – CNBC

A 77-year-old woman has died from COVID-19 after testing positive while sailing on a Carnival cruise to Belize, marking the first reported death since cruises restarted in the Caribbean and United States.NBC News was working to confirm the identity of the woman, who died on Aug. 14. The New York Times reported she was a great-grandmother from Oklahoma.

Mississippi Is Pleading With People To Stop Using A Livestock Drug To Treat COVID-19 – NPR

In a state with the nation’s second lowest rate of vaccination against the coronavirus, a jump in the number of calls to poison control prompted an alert Friday from the Mississippi State Department of Health about ingesting the drug ivermectin. The department said that at least 70% of recent calls to the state poison control center were related to people who ingested a version of the drug that is formulated to treat parasites in cows and horses.

We know how to keep kids safe from Covid-19 in school. Now we need to do it – STAT

I live with someone who hasn’t been vaccinated against Covid-19. He’s my first-grader. Like all of his classmates and anyone under 12 years old, Davi can’t yet get one of the authorized vaccines. But as schools return to full-time in-person learning, they are doing so in the face of a rapidly rising fourth wave of the pandemic that is affecting mainly unvaccinated people. And because the prevailing Delta variant is so highly infectious, more young children are being diagnosed with Covid-19 than in the previous waves.

Local COVID Cases Are At Levels Not Seen Since April – NPR

Coronavirus case rates and hospitalizations in the D.C. region have continued to worsen in recent weeks, rising to levels not seen since last spring just days before some area school systems return to in-person classes for the new academic year.

Covid Optimists See U.S. Nearing Delta Peak, But Risks Abound – Bloomberg

Covid-19 cases are falling in many of the original delta-variant hot spots in the U.S. That means the rest of the country could soon follow, dodging the mass hospitalizations and surging deaths seen recently in Florida and the Deep South.

Caught in the Crossfire Over Covid’s Origins – New York Times

Alina Chan suggested last year that the coronavirus was “pre-adapted” to humans. Critical reaction was swift and harsh.

Vaccine Headlines

Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine gets full FDA approval, potentially persuading the hesitant to get a shot – Washington Post

Federal regulators on Monday granted full approval to the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine — a milestone that could help increase inoculation rates and spark a wave of vaccine mandates by employers and universities amid a surge of new cases and hospitalizations fueled by the ferocious delta variant.

Why Pfizer’s FDA Approval Matters And What It Means For Vaccine Mandates – NPR

The Food and Drug Administration has given its full approval of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, calling it a “key achievement for public health.” The two-dose vaccine is now fully approved for people ages 16 and older. For those who are ages 12 to 15 and for those who are immunocompromised and need a booster shot, the vaccine is still available under an FDA emergency use authorization.

For some singles, finding out a potential love interest isn’t vaccinated can stop romance cold – Washington Post

It seemed like a match … until it absolutely wasn’t. Recently, I’d stumbled across a dating-app unicorn: an effortlessly flirty chat with a man of an appropriate age that went beyond “Well, hello, Queen!” or “Yes, that is my dog in my profile.” We’d both recently moved from Florida to Baltimore. He, or at least whoever was in his photos, wore a jaunty hat and bore a striking resemblance to Wanya Morris of legendary R&B group Boyz II Men. Within a few minutes, we were trading snippets of ourselves singing ’90s ballads.

Israel finds COVID-19 vaccine booster significantly lowers infection risk – Reuters

A third dose of Pfizer (PFE.N)’s COVID-19 vaccine has significantly improved protection from infection and serious illness among people aged 60 and older in Israel compared with those who received two shots, findings published by the Health Ministry showed on Sunday.

It’s Pronounced Koe-mir’-na-tee. How The Pfizer-BioNTech Vaccine’s Name Came To Be – NPR

Say it with me: Koe-mir’-na-tee. Comirnaty, as it’s known, is the official, brand name for Pfizer and BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine. The Food and Drug Administration this week gave full approval to the vaccine for people 16 and older.

Clinical Considerations

Pregnant, Unvaccinated and Intubated: Case Surge Alarms Doctors – Bloomberg

More young and healthy pregnant people are ending up hospitalized on ventilators, delivering babies prematurely and sometimes dying from Covid-19 during the delta-fueled spike in cases.

Don’t Use Pfizer’s COVID Vax Off-Label in Kids, Experts Warn – MedPageToday

For those under 12, dosing being studied is far lower, and data not yet available. Pfizer anticipates a readout for the trial in kids ages 5 to 11 “sometime in September,” with data on kids ages 2 to 5 “soon after that,” followed by a safety and immunogenicity readout in kids ages 6 months to under 2 years “sometime in October/November.”

Vaccine Effect or Functional Neurological Disorder? – MedPageToday

COVID-19 vaccination can be one of a number of events that may trigger functional neurological disorder (FND), experts said. Two cases of young women manifesting FND after COVID-19 vaccination were reported by Alfonso Fasano, MD, PhD, of the University of Toronto, and Antonio Daniele, MD, PhD, of Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore in Rome, in a letter to the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry.

Official Reporting for August 24, 2021

World Health Organization

Weekly Epi Update August 23, 2021 (latest release)

New Cases: 441,677

Confirmed Cases: 211,730,035

Deaths: 4,430,697

Johns Hopkins

Confirmed Cases: 212,802,557
Deaths: 4,446,164

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Total cases: 37,768,911 (+43,222 New Cases)
Total deaths: 626,833 (+164 New Deaths)

Science and Tech

AstraZeneca Says Antibody Combo Can Prevent COVID – MedPageToday

A cocktail of long-acting antibodies administered intramuscularly as COVID-19 prevention cut the risk of developing symptomatic disease in a high-risk unvaccinated patient population, AstraZeneca announced on Friday.

A lucky few seem ‘resistant’ to Covid-19. Scientists want to know why – STAT

Her husband collapsed just before reaching the top of the stairs in their small one-bedroom house in São Paulo, Brazil. Frantic, Thais Andrade grabbed the portable pulse oximeter she had purchased after hearing that a low oxygen reading could be the first sign of the novel coronavirus. He had severe COVID, her bloodwork came up negative. She’s one of a lucky few “resistant” to the virus that has killed more than 4 million people. But how? That’s the mystery researchers around the world have set out to unravel.

The Vaccinated Are Worried and Scientists Don’t Have Answers – Bloomberg

Anecdotes tell us what the data can’t: Vaccinated people appear to be getting the coronavirus at a surprisingly high rate. But exactly how often isn’t clear, nor is it certain how likely they are to spread the virus to others.

Multinational study investigates 3 new treatments – MedNewsToday

“The treatment with the most evidence for a mortality benefit in COVID-19 continues to be steroids, specifically dexamethasone.” “Tocilizumab, an immune modulator directed toward the interleukin-6 receptor, was shown to have a mortality benefit in the RECOVERY trial and to decrease the time patients required organ support in critically ill patients in the REMAP-CAP trial.”

Psychological and Sociological Impact

Parents Are Not Okay – The Atlantic

It was two weeks, originally. Who couldn’t do two weeks with the kids at home? Two weeks to bend the curve. It was simple.Then it was two months—because nothing bent—and, well, we did two weeks and that went okay, so two months would be doable, right? Right? And then it was summer, and kids are always home in the summer, so how was that different? Sure, we can’t go anywhere, but we’ll just do a little more TV, a little more iPad, a little more of everything we’re already doing. Besides, school is just around the corner and finally they’ll go back.

Published Research

Characteristics and Outcomes of Women With COVID-19 Giving Birth at US Academic Centers During the COVID-19 Pandemic – JAMA

Functional disorders after COVID-19 vaccine fuel vaccination hesitancy – BMJ

Misinformation, Disinformation, and Conspiracy Theories

A group of moms on Facebook built an island of good-faith vaccine debate in a sea of misinformation – Washington Post

As social media giants struggle to crack down on false claims about covid, ordinary users are finding ways to reach vaccine skeptics — and win them over.

Coping with COVID

In case you are not current on TikTok trends… here is the latest

The Milk Crate Challenge on TikTok Has Already Left Multiple People Injured – Distractify

And the ER Docs say…

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