Tulane Outbreak – December 31, 2021

Featured Headlines

Columbia University researchers estimate infections could top out during the week of Jan. 9 – Washington Post

The rapid surge of omicron infections in the United States may be relatively brief, measured in weeks rather than months, according to infectious-disease experts who have been astonished by the speed of the coronavirus variant’s spread — and who are hoping this wave ebbs just as quickly.

NY COVID Cases Shatter All-Time Daily Record With 74K Positives – NBC NY

New York state smashed its single-day COVID case record for the 2nd straight day Thursday, reporting 74,207 positives, an 11% increase over Wednesday’s staggering numbers as hospitalizations rise

An early Omicron cluster in the U.S. suggests the variant has a shorter incubation period. – NYT

On Dec. 2, the Nebraska Public Health Laboratory identified the Omicron variant as the cause in all six people, who ranged in age from 11 to 48. A study of the group released on Tuesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggested that Omicron may have a shorter incubation period than previous variants: about 72 hours.

National Guard Activated in Several States to Assist with COVID Surge:









New Hampshire



Shortened CDC COVID isolation guide draws sharply mixed reviews – CIDRAP

Facing an onslaught of Omicron variant activity amid holiday gatherings and travel, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) yesterday updated its COVID-19 guidance yesterday, halving the isolation and quarantine period for people with or exposed to the coronavirus.

As At-Home Tests Surge, Doubts Rise About Accuracy of Public Covid Counts – NYT

Most of the results of rapid tests are not reported. That’s magnifying questions about how best to measure the spread of the virus.

Fauci on What COVID Could Look Like One Year From Now – The Atlantic

A conversation with the nation’s top infectious-disease doctor as the U.S. braces for another surge. It was bad enough that the Omicron variant shattered hopes of a normal holiday season, or at least what passes for normal in year two of the pandemic. Now it feels like we’re fated to live with COVID-19 in perpetuity, forever worried that when one variant fades, another will quickly take its place, that we’ll never, once and for all, throw out our face masks. Anthony Fauci is more upbeat. No, we won’t wipe out the coronavirus, but we will reach a point where it’s tamed, he told me in an interview yesterday. Enough people will reach a level of immunity so that trip cancellations, wild stock-market swings, and self-tests won’t dominate our daily lives the way they do now, he believes.

Which Groups Are The Most Vulnerable To Breakthrough Covid-19 Infection? – Forbes

Breakthrough infections are uncommon in the general population. It is defined as Covid-19 infection after an individual has completed all required doses of a vaccine with a typical 14-day lag period.

First they ran short of PPE, then ventilators. Now, the shortage is hospital staff. – Washington Post

Absences are through the roof: Hospitals face a depleted, exhausted workforce amid omicron surge.

U.S. Airlines Cancel Over 1,000 Flights on Day Before New Year’s Eve – Bloomberg

Cancelled flights leave stranded travelers at several airports across the U.S.

Airline cancellations are already piling up in the U.S., with 1,125 flights scrubbed as rising coronavirus cases hobbled staffing. Winter storms meanwhile threatened to further disrupt travel over New Year’s weekend.

Florida among top 5 states contributing to spike in pediatric COVID-19 hospitalizations – NBC Florida Local News

In the last four weeks, the average number of children hospitalized with COVID-19 in the U.S. jumped 52 %, from 1,270 on Nov. 29 to 1,933 on Sunday, according to an NBC News analysis of Department of Health and Human Services data.

Mexico says it will allow cruise ships with Covid outbreaks to dock -NYT

The Latin American nation is among the few in the world to have imposed no restrictions or testing requirements for travelers.

The C.D.C. tells travelers to avoid cruises, regardless of vaccination – NYT

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Thursday raised its Covid-19 warning level for cruise ships to 4, the highest, and issued a blunt warning: “Avoid cruise travel regardless of vaccination status.”

The omicron surge could be the worst public health challenge of our lifetimes – Washington Post Opinion

The current omicron surge represents one of the greatest public health challenges not only of the pandemic but also of our lifetime. To deal with the surge over the next six to eight weeks, policymakers need to plan for the impact of what could be 1 million cases a day of new infections in the United States.

Remind me, what’s the difference between isolation and quarantine? – NPR

According to the CDC, isolation refers to what you should do when you suspect or confirm that you have COVID-19 even if you don’t have symptoms.

India enters 2022 with restrictions, fearing another deadly virus surge. – NYT

India had enjoyed a relative coronavirus lull for months, a welcome reprieve from the devastation of the springtime second wave that left hundreds of thousands dead. But as the New Year approached, a sudden rise in cases dimmed any hopes of celebrations.

Russia Faces Lost Decade After Its Deadliest Month of Pandemic – Bloomberg

November was Russia’s deadliest month of the Covid-19 pandemic, deepening a demographic crisis that President Vladimir Putin says is a threat to the country’s future. There were a record 85,527 deaths associated with the virus last month, according to data released by the Federal Statistics Service late Thursday. That was a 16% increase over the previous month, and raised total fatalities linked to Covid-19 in Russia to more than 625,000 since the start of the pandemic.

U.K., With Surging Cases, Is on ‘War Footing’ Against Virus – NYT

With cases surging and straining health care and other services, Britain’s challenges foreshadow the impact of the Omicron variant in other countries.

Italy reports new record 126,888 coronavirus cases on Thursday, 156 deaths – Reuters

Italy reported 126,888 COVID-19 related cases on Thursday, against 98,030 the day before, the health ministry said, while the number of deaths rose to 156 from 148.

Vaccine Headlines

Israel approves a 4th dose of Covid vaccine for those with compromised immune systems – NBC News

Israel on Thursday approved a fourth dose of Covid vaccine for people with weakened immune systems, moving ahead of much of the world in taking a little-studied step to try to protect its most vulnerable against the fast-spreading Omicron variant.

FDA Reportedly Plans To Authorize Boosters For 12- To 15-Year-Olds – Forbes

The Food and Drug Administration plans to authorize booster shots of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine for 12- to 15-year-olds, the New York Times reported Thursday, citing anonymous sources familiar with the decision, as a surge in cases fueled by the omicron variant continues to increase nationally.

Clinical Considerations

How Do We Treat Long COVID? – MedPageToday

Millions of Americans are experiencing chronic, lingering, and debilitating symptoms months after recovering from COVID-19. The symptoms of so-called long COVID range from breathing problems to memory impairment, making it difficult for clinicians to pinpoint the syndrome and who may be at highest risk.

Official Reporting for December 31, 2021

World Health Organization

Weekly Epi Update December 28th (latest release)

New Cases: 1,351,175

Confirmed Cases: 281,808,270

Deaths: 5,411,759

Johns Hopkins

Confirmed Cases: 286,776,211
Deaths: 5,432,684

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Total cases: 53,795,407 (+486,428 New Cases)
Total deaths: 820,355 (+1,539 New Deaths)

Science and Tech

None Today

Psychological and Sociological Impact

None Today

Published Research

None Today

Misinformation, Disinformation, and Conspiracy Theories

Feds Go After Company Selling Fake ‘Nano Silver’ COVID Cure – MedPageToday

Company co-run by psychiatrist once falsely marketed product as Ebola treatment as well

A federal judge ordered Natural Solutions Foundation to stop selling “nano silver,” a product peddled by the New Jersey company as a treatment and potential cure for COVID-19, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced on Tuesday.

Coping with COVID

Should Pluto be a planet again? The debate rages on – NBC News

A group of researchers say Pluto was unfairly maligned by a decision to relegate it to “dwarf planet” status — and that we should consider our solar system to have more than 150 planets.




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