Tulane Outbreak – October 8, 2021

Featured Headlines

Timing Is Everything for Merck’s COVID Pill – The Atlantic

The drug, molnupiravir, is named after Thor’s hammer, Mjölnir. But its power depends on reaching the right people, in the right time frame.

Doctors are bracing for potential ‘twindemic’ of flu and covid-19 spikes – Washington Post

Health officials are urging Americans to get their flu shots, warning the flu season that didn’t materialize when most of society was shut down last year, could come roaring back and strain hospitals in the months ahead.

Merck’s Covid Pill Faces Risk that Virus Could Outsmart It – Bloomberg

Merck & Co.’s experimental pill for Covid-19 should be accompanied by other treatments as soon as they’re available to cut the risk of drug resistance that would limit its effectiveness, Wellcome foundation director Jeremy Farrar said.

Successful Multimodal Covid Control In Summer Camps – Forbes

A new CDC report demonstrates how using multiple Covid-19 prevention strategies at nine US overnight summer camps was highly effective in preventing transmission of Covid-19, even in the wake of the Delta variant. Amongst 7,173 campers and staff members at nine overnight camps between June and August 2021, there were only nine laboratory-confirmed cases and no secondary infections detected. This is in striking contrast to many other summer camps, that used few mitigations and experienced rapid outbreaks.

Key coronavirus updates from around the world – Washington Post

Japan’s new prime minister used his first policy speech Friday to promise better pandemic management and a stronger economy. Fumio Kishida, who is due to face national elections this month, pledged to “devote my body and soul to overcome the national crisis.” More coverage at the link.

Drug Use a Factor in COVID Breakthrough Infections – MedPageToday

Fully vaccinated individuals with substance use disorders were more likely to have breakthrough COVID-19 infections than those without such disorders, researchers found.

WHO finalizes official definition of ‘long covid’ – Washington Post

The World Health Organization this week has settled on an official case definition of the post-coronavirus symptoms known commonly as long covid.

They Had the Vaccines and a Plan to Reopen. Instead They Got Cold Feet. – NYT

Singapore’s experience offers lessons for other countries that want to reduce pandemic restrictions but have yet to deal with widespread infections.

Delta variant has 235% higher risk of ICU admission than original virus – MedNewsToday

A Canadian study has found a link between the new variants of SARS-CoV-2, particularly the Delta variant, and an increased risk of severe disease and death.

Vaccine Headlines

Dr Fauci talks about Boosters and Merck Pill – Bloomberg Video

Pfizer officially asks the FDA to authorize its COVID vaccine for kids aged 5-11 – NPR

Pfizer and BioNTech are officially asking the Biden administration to authorize the use of their COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 5 to 11. Pfizer tweeted on Thursday that the companies had submitted their formal request for Emergency Use Authorization of the vaccine to the Food and Drug Administration.

Covid-19 booster shots now surpassing initial vaccination doses by nearly half – NBC News

An average of nearly 400,000 people per day have received booster shots in the previous seven days, double from the week before.

Moderna plans African vaccine plant as drugmakers urged to help poorest – Reuters

Moderna plans to invest up to $500 million to build a factory in Africa to make up to 500 million doses of mRNA vaccines each year, including its COVID-19 shot, as pressure grows on the pharmaceutical industry to manufacture drugs on the continent.

Heart risks rare after Pfizer Covid vaccination, study finds – NBC News

Cases of myocarditis were usually mild, and they occurred mostly in young males three to five days after the second dose, according to researchers in Israel.

Clinical Considerations

Israeli Data Favor Higher Estimates of Post-Vax Myocarditis – MedPgeToday

The incidence of myocarditis after receipt of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 mRNA vaccine was several times higher in two reports from Israel compared with some estimates, but remained low through the late spring of this year.

Why the Delta Variant Is Giving More Children Covid – Bloomberg

Covid-19 cases among children are surging across the world amid delta-fueled outbreaks, spurring hospitalizations and raising concern about the risk of severe illness and persistent “long hauler” symptoms. It’s also prompted questions about the safety of schools.

‘Covid toes’ may be caused by a powerful immune response, a new study finds. – NY Times

Shortly after the pandemic erupted last year, doctors were baffled by a surge of patients, mostly teenagers and young adults, who came in complaining of chilblains — painful lesions on their toes, and sometimes also on their fingers.






Heart Damage Plagues Covid Survivors a Year After Infection, Study Shows – Bloomberg

Heart damage from Covid-19 extends well beyond the disease’s initial stages, according to a study that found even people who were never sick enough to need hospitalization are in danger of developing heart failure and deadly blood clots a year later.

Official Reporting for October 8, 2021

World Health Organization

Weekly Epi Update October 5th (latest release)

New Cases: 448,770

Confirmed Cases: 236,132,082

Deaths: 4,822,472

Johns Hopkins

Confirmed Cases: 236,940,594
Deaths: 4,837,772

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Total cases: 43,997,504 (+102,805 New Cases)
Total deaths: 707,065 (+1,850 New Deaths)

Science and Tech

OPINION: I Study Pathogens and Pregnancy. Here’s What I Know About Covid-19 – NYT

Rapid at-home Covid tests are about to become much more widely available, the F.D.A. says – NYT

Rapid at-home Covid-19 testing is about to become much more widely available in the United States, the Food and Drug Administration says, following authorization of a mass-produced testing kit.

Psychological and Sociological Impact

More than 120,000 American Kids Lost a Parent or Other Caregiver During the COVID-19 Pandemic – Time

The number of U.S. children orphaned during the COVID-19 pandemic may be larger than previously estimated, and the toll has been far greater among Black and Hispanic Americans, a new study suggests.

America Is Running Out of Everything – The Atlantic

The global supply chain is slowing down at the very moment when Americans are demanding that it go into overdrive.

What do all these stories of vaccine denial deaths do to our sense of empathy? – Washington Post

After Alexis Haug got the last raspy-voiced call from her unvaccinated, covid-stricken 51-year-old father, after he was intubated, after she had driven eight hours, alone, to Jasper, Ala., to say her final goodbye to him in the hospital, after she had him cremated and split his ashes with her stepmother and three distraught sisters — that was when she found out what people were saying about him on the Internet.

Published Research

Evaluation of the relative virulence of novel SARS-CoV-2 variants: a retrospective cohort study in Ontario, Canada – Canadian Medical Journal

One-year Risks and Burdens of Incident Cardiovascular Disease in COVID-19: Cardiovascular Manifestations of Long COVID – Nature

Misinformation, Disinformation, and Conspiracy Theories

Ivermectin: How false science created a Covid ‘miracle’ drug – BBC

Ivermectin has been called a Covid “miracle” drug, championed by vaccine opponents, and recommended by health authorities in some countries. But the BBC can reveal there are serious errors in a number of key studies that the drug’s promoters rely on.

Coping with COVID


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