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[Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

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Formix
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by Formix »

Has anyone seen any good data yet on if you can transmit the virus after you've gotten the vaccine? In my case, I'm almost entirely WFH, but post-vaccine, I could see management pressuring me for getting back to the office. But since we've had 20+ staff members test positive, I'd rather not bring it home even if I'm 95% sure of being immune.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by disarm »

Unfortunately, that data doesn't exist yet. It's difficult to collect meaningful data that answers that question without vaccinating a large number of people, having those individuals in contact with both infected and healthy people, and closely monitoring the unvaccinated for infection. It's a more challenging study to execute than just looking at infection rates and symptom severity in individuals after vaccination.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by Lorini »

Formix wrote: Wed Dec 30, 2020 7:38 am Has anyone seen any good data yet on if you can transmit the virus after you've gotten the vaccine? In my case, I'm almost entirely WFH, but post-vaccine, I could see management pressuring me for getting back to the office. But since we've had 20+ staff members test positive, I'd rather not bring it home even if I'm 95% sure of being immune.
Wearing a mask around those in the office should help a lot with that, which is why the experts are telling people that even though they are vaccinated, they should still wear a mask if not at home until the magical herd immunity is accomplished.

For me, I'll wear a mask outside my home for the rest of my life. Screw getting sick from anything infectious, from colds on up.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by jztemple2 »

Lorini wrote: Wed Dec 30, 2020 12:42 pm For me, I'll wear a mask outside my home for the rest of my life. Screw getting sick from anything infectious, from colds on up.
If you have the right mask you'll never mind wearing it :D

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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by dbt1949 »

Went to the store today. Of the five customers me and another woman wore masks and three older guys who did not.
And people wonder why we have the highest covid rate in the state.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by Daehawk »

Half the people in town today had no mask. Its this state county and town though...full of arseholes. The worst stop was a return at Lowes. Not enough employees. People piled up to the doors and people coming into the store between those of us in line...most maskless.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by Blackhawk »

One thing 2020 and anti-maskers have helped me achieve is the control not to punch random assholes in grocery stores.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by Isgrimnur »

CNN
Legendary talk show host and former CNN interviewer Larry King has Covid-19, according to a source close to the family.

King, 87, has been hospitalized at Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles for more than a week, the source said. Due to protocols at the hospital, King's three sons have been unable to visit him, according to the source.

King, who has Type 2 diabetes, has confronted a series of medical issues over the years, including several heart attacks and quintuple bypass surgery in 1987. In 2017, King revealed he had been diagnosed with lung cancer and successfully underwent surgery to treat it. He also underwent a procedure in 2019 to address angina.

His own medical issues inspired him to start the Larry King Cardiac Foundation, a non-profit aimed at helping those without health insurance afford medical care.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by dbt1949 »

Got my covid check/deposit today. ;)
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by Paingod »

dbt1949 wrote: Sun Jan 03, 2021 5:15 pmGot my covid check/deposit today. ;)
If I didn't know that was about money, I would have assumed they checked you out and stuffed you with COVID.

I know we have the vaccines running now, but it still feels very much like we're still ramping up and nowhere near "out of the woods". Too many people seemed to have heard "vaccine" and thought everything was fine.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by Jeff V »

Paingod wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 9:32 am I know we have the vaccines running now, but it still feels very much like we're still ramping up and nowhere near "out of the woods". Too many people seemed to have heard "vaccine" and thought everything was fine.
10 years. We are on a pace to achieve "herd immunity" in 10 years. It's going to be some dark age yet to come.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by Defiant »

Jeff V wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 10:43 am
Paingod wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 9:32 am I know we have the vaccines running now, but it still feels very much like we're still ramping up and nowhere near "out of the woods". Too many people seemed to have heard "vaccine" and thought everything was fine.
10 years. We are on a pace to achieve "herd immunity" in 10 years. It's going to be some dark age yet to come.
Actually, it looks to me like there were some reporting delays (It bumped up more than a million after New Years), and I'd estimate it would be around 4 years at the current pace.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by Jeff V »

Defiant wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 11:06 am
Jeff V wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 10:43 am
Paingod wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 9:32 am I know we have the vaccines running now, but it still feels very much like we're still ramping up and nowhere near "out of the woods". Too many people seemed to have heard "vaccine" and thought everything was fine.
10 years. We are on a pace to achieve "herd immunity" in 10 years. It's going to be some dark age yet to come.
Actually, it looks to me like there were some reporting delays (It bumped up more than a million after New Years), and I'd estimate it would be around 4 years at the current pace.
Currently the number of people who are willing to get the vaccine is pretty far below 80%. Until those dunces die off, I don't see how we're going to get there in 4 years.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by Anonymous Bosch »

It strikes me that coverage of the newer, more rapidly-spread variant of COVID-19 has largely been woefully downplayed. The following article from The Atlantic does a far better job than most of clarifying the legitimate dangers it represents, and putting them into perspective:

The Mutated Virus Is a Ticking Time Bomb
TheAtlantic.com wrote:A new variant of the coronavirus is spreading across the globe. It was first identified in the United Kingdom, where it is rapidly spreading, and has been found in multiple countries. Viruses mutate all the time, often with no impact, but this one appears to be more transmissible than other variants—meaning it spreads more easily. Barely one day after officials announced that America’s first case of the variant had been found in the United States, in a Colorado man with no history of travel, an additional case was found in California.

There are still many unknowns, but much concern has focused on whether this new variant would throw off vaccine efficacy or cause more severe disease—with some degree of relief after an initial study indicated that it did not do either. And while we need more data to feel truly reassured, many scientists believe that this variant will not decrease vaccine efficacy much, if at all. Health officials have started emphasizing the lack of evidence for more severe disease.

All good and no cause for alarm, right? Wrong.

A more transmissible variant of COVID-19 is a potential catastrophe in and of itself. If anything, given the stage in the pandemic we are at, a more transmissible variant is in some ways much more dangerous than a more severe variant. That’s because higher transmissibility subjects us to a more contagious virus spreading with exponential growth, whereas the risk from increased severity would have increased in a linear manner, affecting only those infected.

Increased transmissibility can wreak havoc in a very, very short time—especially when we already have uncontrolled spread in much of the United States. The short-term implications of all this are significant, and worthy of attention, even as we await more clarity from data. In fact, we should act quickly especially as we await more clarity—lack of data and the threat of even faster exponential growth argue for more urgency of action. If and when more reassuring data come in, relaxing restrictions will be easier than undoing the damage done by not having reacted in time.

To understand the difference between exponential and linear risks, consider an example put forth by Adam Kucharski, a professor at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine who focuses on mathematical analyses of infectious-disease outbreaks. Kucharski compares a 50 percent increase in virus lethality to a 50 percent increase in virus transmissibility. Take a virus reproduction rate of about 1.1 and an infection fatality risk of 0.8 percent and imagine 10,000 active infections—a plausible scenario for many European cities, as Kucharski notes. As things stand, with those numbers, we’d expect 129 deaths in a month. If the fatality rate increased by 50 percent, that would lead to 193 deaths. In contrast, a 50 percent increase in transmissibility would lead to a whopping 978 deaths in just one month—assuming, in both scenarios, a six-day infection-generation time.

Transmissibility increases can quickly—very quickly—expand the baseline: Each new infected person potentially infects many more people. Severity increases affect only the infected person. That infection is certainly tragic, and this new variant’s lack of increase in severity or lethality thankfully means that the variant is not a bigger threat to the individual who may get infected. It is, however, a bigger threat to society because it can dramatically change the number of infected people. To put it another way, a small percentage of a very big number can easily be much, much bigger than a big percentage of a small number.

I dismissed the news initially because viruses mutate all the time and there have been too many baseless “mutant-ninja virus” doomsaying headlines this year. The exaggerated, clickbaity alarmism makes it harder to discern real threats from sensationalism. Given the constant reality of mutation, genomic variants should be considered innocent until proved guilty. Even an increase in the proportion of cases attributable to a particular variant is not definitive proof of an evolutionary advantage.

However, as data on the new variant roll in, there is cause for real concern. Trevor Bedford, a scientist at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and a board member for the Covid Tracking Project at The Atlantic, points out that infections from the new variant are increasing very rapidly among the population in the U.K. Bedford also notes that this new variant seems to have a higher secondary-attack rate—meaning the number of people subsequently infected by a known case—compared with “regular” COVID-19. Finally, the new variant seems to result in higher viral loads (though this is harder to be sure about as viral loads can be affected by sampling bias and timing). As Kucharski told me, all of this does not rule out other explanations. This increased transmission could be due to chance or founder effects—meaning one variant just happened to get somewhere before the other variants and then got “lucky”; it was early, rather than more transmissible. It could be due to changed behavior among people—quarantine fatigue, less masking—leading to more rapid spread. However, given the current evidence, along with the specifics of the mutation, it’s getting harder to assume that those other explanations are more likely than the simple proposition that this is truly a more transmissible variant.
Suffice to say, if this boils down to a footrace of bureaucratic efficiency (in terms of vaccine dispersal) vs. nature, our odds currently seem… less than ideal, to put it mildly.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

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LA Times
An employee working the Christmas shift at Kaiser Permanente San Jose Medical Center has died after falling ill with COVID-19. The worker was one of at least 43 staff members who tested positive for the coronavirus in recent days, an outbreak possibly linked to a staff member who wore an inflatable holiday costume to lift spirits.

The staff member who appeared briefly in the emergency department Christmas Day wore an air-powered, holiday-themed costume, according to a hospital executive. KNTV-TV, the San Jose NBC station that first reported the outbreak, reported that the costume was an inflatable Christmas tree.

Inflatable costumes are typically battery-powered and use a fan to keep the costume puffed up. But such a fan can also cause virus particles to travel much farther in a room.

KNTV-TV reported that the person who died was a woman who worked as a registration clerk in the emergency department.
...
It was not immediately clear whether the person wearing the costume later tested positive for the coronavirus.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by dbt1949 »

How are the virus mutations going to affect the vaccines?
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by Paingod »

Suggesting limited impact at this time; the vaccine should still be helpful and not rendered moot.

My boss, the CFO, wandered into the office last Wednesday and informed folks that his adult son - staying with him over Christmas break - tested Positive the day before... then realized he probably shouldn't have been in the office and left.

I'm glad I was out for the week, but not all of my co-workers were. I'm just hoping he kept his distance like he always does. He's out for the next two weeks to see if he comes back positive.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by LordMortis »

Lorini wrote: Wed Dec 30, 2020 12:42 pm Wearing a mask around those in the office should help a lot with that, which is why the experts are telling people that even though they are vaccinated, they should still wear a mask if not at home until the magical herd immunity is accomplished.

For me, I'll wear a mask outside my home for the rest of my life. Screw getting sick from anything infectious, from colds on up.
I will still isolate after I am vaccinated until the people I would unisolate with are vaccinated or if they are generally healthy and accept the idea that I may be carrier. Those are essentially the people who already have broken isolation and are comfortable with their rise levels. I am generally a loner but I am beyond stir crazy after 10 months of isolation.

I don't think mask wearing is something that bodes well for me for long stretches. I'm fortunate that my work only requires me to be in positions where I need to be masked for brief periods.

I can easily imagine, however, shopping with a mask for several years to come. I'd say I can imagine refraining for eating in restaurants but I already never ate in restaurants.

I used to think I would hold off on inoculation until more people went through it but I'm ready. If it turns out we screw the pooch when comes to understanding m-RNA vaccination, then I guess, that's that because like everyone else, I am so done with this. I'm too old to give a year away to this and then and then another year away to that and another year to this other.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

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dbt1949 wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 2:25 pm How are the virus mutations going to affect the vaccines?
Precipitously, unless vaccine distribution gets stepped up in a serious hurry in response. To quote from The Atlantic article above:
TheAtlantic.com wrote:Imagine it this way: There is a tsunami heading our way, and we are ferrying people to a high point. Everyone we transport up to the top is safe, but even better, they can also help other people get to safety (the exponential desirable effect of the vaccine). The reverse is also true, however: Everyone we leave behind also pulls down more people (the exponential unwanted effect of increased transmissibility). And the whole process is very sensitive to when we start; it’s much easier in the beginning but gets nearly impossible as the wave grows higher and gets closer. With this variant, at least in the United States, we are likely at the beginning, or near the beginning.

All this means that the speed of the vaccine rollout is of enormous importance. There are already worrisome indicators of slow rollout. Vaccination of a broad population, not vaccines in and of themselves, saves lives, and epidemics are fought with logistics and infrastructure. We should put every bit of energy, funding, and relentlessness into vaccinating as many people as possible as quickly as possible.

Meanwhile, the United States was reportedly planning to hold back half the vaccine it has in freezers as a hedge against supply-chain issues, and some states may be slowed down by murky prioritization plans. Scott Gottlieb—the former FDA chief and a current board member of Pfizer—has argued that the U.S. should also go ahead with vaccinating as many people as possible right now and trust that the supply chain will be there for the booster. Researchers in Canada—where some provinces decided to vaccinate now as much as possible without holding half in reserve, and will administer the booster with future supplies—estimate that this type of front-loading can help “avert between 34 and 42 per cent more symptomatic coronavirus infections, compared with a strategy of keeping half the shipments in reserve.” (Note that this strategy, which is different from the one the United Kingdom just announced it will adopt in prioritizing the first dose, does not even necessarily involve explicitly changing booster timing protocols in order to maximize vaccination now; it just means not waiting to get shots into arms when the vaccines are currently available.) These were already important conversations to have, but given the threat posed by this new variant, they are even more urgent.
And to quote UCSF's chairman of the Department of Medicine:
@Bob_Wachter wrote:U.S. is now considering idea of a single vaccination shot, delaying shot #2 until months later. Last wk, I thought that was a bad idea – the trials that found 95% efficacy were 2 shots; why add extra complexity & a new curveball. But facts on the ground demand a rethink. (1/7)

The two main changes are the slower-than-expected vaccine rollout and the new variant virus being found in the U.S. Both demand that we turbocharge the process of getting a large chunk of the population at least partly protected. (2/7)

Here's my back-of-the-envelope math:
- Single shot seems to be about 80% protective after a month
- 2nd shot adds some efficacy (up to 95% protective), and maybe (tho not yet proven) some durability.
- New variant is here, and undoubtedly far more widespread than we know. (3/7)

- Variant is ~55% more infectious than old one. Even though it's not more deadly, this means that if we engage in same behaviors, many more will get Covid & thus far more will die. UK shows that once here, it spreads fast.
- We seem incapable of changing behavior very much. (4/7)

- As has been widely reported, the roll-out is going far slower than we hoped.
- According to most vaccine experts, delaying shot #2 by a few months is unlikely to materially diminish the ultimate effectiveness of two shots (critical point; we should be testing to be sure). (5/7)

Taken together, if we have vaccine doses to distribute in Jan-Apr, it seems increasingly evident that a strategy of getting as many people (particularly high-risk) their first shot ASAP will save far more lives than sticking with the two shot plan. (6/7)

Far better to have 100M people who are 80% protected than 50M people who are 95% protected, particularly as we are facing a foe that is getting smarter and nastier. Or at least it seems that way to me. You? (7/7)
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by stessier »

Anonymous Bosch wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 2:49 pm
dbt1949 wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 2:25 pm How are the virus mutations going to affect the vaccines?
Precipitously, unless vaccine distribution gets stepped up in a serious hurry in response. To quote from The Atlantic article above:
I don't think that is what he meant.

From what I've been told, there is no indication these other strains lack the spike the vaccines target, so they should still work on it.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by Anonymous Bosch »

stessier wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 3:27 pm
Anonymous Bosch wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 2:49 pm
dbt1949 wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 2:25 pm How are the virus mutations going to affect the vaccines?
Precipitously, unless vaccine distribution gets stepped up in a serious hurry in response. To quote from The Atlantic article above:
I don't think that is what he meant.

From what I've been told, there is no indication these other strains lack the spike the vaccines target, so they should still work on it.
Yes, but that misses the forest for the trees.

As the article above observed, "Vaccination of a broad population, not vaccines in and of themselves, saves lives, and epidemics are fought with logistics and infrastructure." And that's precisely where we're currently crashing and burning, in terms of the speed of vaccine rollouts. And with a more rapidly-spread mutation working its way across the US, there's a decent likelihood that it's likely to go from bad to worse
"Good intentions will always be pleaded for every assumption of authority. It is hardly too strong to say that the Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions. There are men in all ages who mean to govern well, but they mean to govern. They promise to be good masters, but they mean to be masters." -- Daniel Webster
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by stessier »

Anonymous Bosch wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 3:58 pm
stessier wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 3:27 pm
Anonymous Bosch wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 2:49 pm
dbt1949 wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 2:25 pm How are the virus mutations going to affect the vaccines?
Precipitously, unless vaccine distribution gets stepped up in a serious hurry in response. To quote from The Atlantic article above:
I don't think that is what he meant.

From what I've been told, there is no indication these other strains lack the spike the vaccines target, so they should still work on it.
Yes, but that misses the forest for the trees.

As the article above observed, "Vaccination of a broad population, not vaccines in and of themselves, saves lives, and epidemics are fought with logistics and infrastructure." And that's precisely where we're currently crashing and burning, in terms of the speed of vaccine rollouts. And with a more rapidly-spread mutation working its way across the US, there's a decent likelihood that it's likely to go from bad to worse
Okay, but having a vaccine that works that you aren't rolling out fast enough is much better than not having a vaccine at all.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by Anonymous Bosch »

stessier wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 4:02 pm Okay, but having a vaccine that works that you aren't rolling out fast enough is much better than not having a vaccine at all.
True, and that's certainly something to be grateful for. But it's crucial we remain aware of just how dangerous threats with exponential dynamics can become -- especially if we fail to act as early and decisively as possible in terms of rolling out those (thankfully) effective vaccines ASAP.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by soulbringer »

Got my vaccine this am. As a Covid RN, I was one of the first asked. Had to delay about 2 weeks since my support system was out of town and if I had a reaction, I really needed someone available to handle my dogs. After 12 hours or so No issues post first shot. I did ask for the Konami Contra Chip for the extra lives. So far I can only hear the thoughts of other Pfizer vaccine recipients but Imagine as 5G rolls out more, I will hear the Moderna and Astra Zeneca folks too. PS. Bill Gates got some crazy thoughts. You all need this vaccine asap.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by RMC »

soulbringer wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 8:33 pm Got my vaccine this am. As a Covid RN, I was one of the first asked. Had to delay about 2 weeks since my support system was out of town and if I had a reaction, I really needed someone available to handle my dogs. After 12 hours or so No issues post first shot. I did ask for the Konami Contra Chip for the extra lives. So far I can only hear the thoughts of other Pfizer vaccine recipients but Imagine as 5G rolls out more, I will hear the Moderna and Astra Zeneca folks too. PS. Bill Gates got some crazy thoughts. You all need this vaccine asap.
I have the Moderna vaccine here, so hopefully we will be compatible soon.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by Anonymous Bosch »

Scott Gottlieb's suggestion in the WSJ to speed up vaccine distribution seems like a sensible place to start, all the moreso with the particular threats posed by the more transmissible variants of the virus:
WSJ.com wrote:The federal government built a Covid vaccine delivery scheme to track every dose shipped to the states. Information like location and travel history is available in a software platform developed for “Operation Warp Speed” called Tiberius, so that public-health officials can make sure the limited supply is allotted carefully and fairly.

These are important goals, but central control comes with a trade off: it slows down the process of getting shots into arms. Poor local and state planning hasn’t helped. Neither has the trickle of funds the feds have provided to stand up vaccination sites. Add it all up and you have the explanation for the sluggish pace of immunization. Fewer than 5 million shots have been delivered so far, versus the 20 million promised. Here’s what’s needed to turn things around.

First, the government needs to ship more inventory. Right now, the feds are holding back up to 55% of doses. The idea is to make sure there is supply to give everyone a second dose, within three weeks for Pfizer and four weeks for Moderna.

Sticking to the dose schedule is essential, but supply is expanding and the production processes are proven. Some of the future supply can be given as second doses in those being vaccinated today. The very small possibility that a production SNAFU could delay second shots seems a reasonable risk to take.

Second, the distribution system needs improvement. Standing up vaccination sites and encouraging people to go get the shot is expensive and takes time. The best option may be to rely more on private industry. National pharmacy chains like CVS and Walgreens have an agreement with the federal government to provide vaccines to long-term care facilities. The government should expand this program to help vaccinate all Americans.

The major pharmacy chains combined can deliver up to 100 million vaccines a month. The plan had been to allow large retailers to start offering the shot when it was ready for the general public, perhaps later in the spring. Why not get started now? Public-health agencies can focus their resources on providing access to harder-to-reach communities and patients who might be homebound.

Another reality: The demand for vaccines may not align with those who are eligible. Essential workers may stand to benefit a lot, but what if there’s more demand among those over 65? If stockpiles continue to build, eligibility should be expanded. We can move quickly through the prescribed phases of the vaccination program as inventories build and start offering it to the general public based on age, which can be lowered from 75 to 65 and so on. Society has a responsibility to help the most vulnerable, and the collective good depends on maximizing the number of vaccinations. These two goals don’t need to be in conflict.

New variants of the virus that appear more contagious increase the urgency to deploy the vaccine as fast as possible. A vaccine that’s sitting on a shelf for weeks, waiting for its perfect recipient, doesn’t help snuff out the pandemic.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by Lorini »

I absolutely agree with this:
Another reality: The demand for vaccines may not align with those who are eligible. Essential workers may stand to benefit a lot, but what if there’s more demand among those over 65? If stockpiles continue to build, eligibility should be expanded.
We need to keep the conga line moving. There's plenty of people who want the vaccine right now (like me!!). I would prefer a priority system when we can do it, but the main thing is to get people vaccinated. No, people should not be able to pay their way into a vaccine but if something is hanging up one part of the population, move on to the next until the hang up can be resolved.

Right now in the US the vaccination process is awful. Gotta get better, a lot better.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

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Altho I want the shot I would rather die (and probably will) than wait in line for hours to get the shot.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

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If I had the opportunity, I'd drive across the state to wait in line to put my name on a list to wait in line.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by coopasonic »

I'd prefer to never interact with another human face to face ever again but apparently that's not in the cards. On the other hand, it has been a few years since I've seen the doctor so I am not really on anyone's list to get vaccinated. Maybe I should schedule that annual 3-5 year check-up...
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

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When I was in the army (during the uncivil war) we got paid once a month, in cash. We had to wait in line alphabetical and my name starts with T.
Not counting all the lines I had to stand in for the army's pleasure. Me and millions of other GIs all swore we'd never wait in a line again.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by RMC »

dbt1949 wrote: Tue Jan 05, 2021 2:23 pm When I was in the army (during the uncivil war) we got paid once a month, in cash. We had to wait in line alphabetical and my name starts with T.
Not counting all the lines I had to stand in for the army's pleasure. Me and millions of other GIs all swore we'd never wait in a line again.
In the early 90's we got paid in cash as well.. Changed in like 93 to direct deposit.. But yeah, wait in line to cash your check and they would hit us for haircuts and shaving. God, even almost 30 years later I still hate thinking about that BS.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by Lorini »

Blackhawk wrote: Tue Jan 05, 2021 1:52 pm If I had the opportunity, I'd drive across the state to wait in line to put my name on a list to wait in line.
Me as well. Happily. Fuck Covid.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by gbasden »

Blackhawk wrote: Tue Jan 05, 2021 1:52 pm If I had the opportunity, I'd drive across the state to wait in line to put my name on a list to wait in line.
+1000
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

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Viral mutations may cause another ‘very, very bad’ COVID-19 wave, scientists warn
sciencemag.org wrote:For COVID-19 researchers, the new year brings a strong sense of déjà vu. As in early 2020, the world is anxiously watching a virus spread in one country and trying to parse the risk for everyone else. This time it is not a completely new threat, but a rapidly spreading variant of SARS-CoV-2. In southeastern England, where the B.1.1.7 variant first caught scientists’ attention last month, it has quickly replaced other variants, and it may be the harbinger of a new, particularly perilous phase of the pandemic.

“One concern is that B.1.1.7 will now become the dominant global variant with its higher transmission and it will drive another very, very bad wave,” says Jeremy Farrar, an infectious disease expert who heads the Wellcome Trust. Whereas the pandemic’s trajectory in 2020 was fairly predictable, “I think we’re going into an unpredictable phase now,” as a result the virus’ evolution, Farrar says.

The concern has led some countries to speed up vaccine authorizations or discuss dosing regimens that may protect more people rapidly. But as the new variant surfaces in multiple countries, many scientists are calling for governments to strengthen existing control measures as well. U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced tough new restrictions on 4 January, including closing schools and asking people not to leave their homes unless strictly necessary. But other countries have hesitated. “I do feel like we are in another situation right now where a lot of Europe is kind of sitting and looking,” says virologist Emma Hodcroft of the University of Basel. “I really hope that this time we can recognize that this is our early alarm bell, and this is our chance to get ahead of this variant.”

In announcing the U.K. restrictions, Johnson said the new variant is between 50% and 70% more transmissible. But researchers have been careful to point out uncertainties. Cases have soared in the United Kingdom over the past month, but the rise occurred while different parts of the country had different levels of restrictions and amid changes in people’s behavior and regional infection rates in the run-up to Christmas—“a complex scenario” that makes it hard to pinpoint the effect of the new variant, says evolutionary biologist Oliver Pybus of the University of Oxford.

Yet evidence has rapidly increased that B.1.1.7’s many mutations, including eight in the crucial spike protein, do enhance spread. “We’re relying on multiple streams of imperfect evidence, but pretty much all that evidence is pointing in the same direction now,” says Adam Kucharski, a modeler at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. For instance, an analysis by Public Health England showed about 15% of the contacts of people infected with B.1.1.7 in England went on to test positive themselves, compared with 10% of contacts of those infected with other variants.

If other countries that have detected B.1.1.7 also see it surge, it will be “the strongest evidence we will have,” Pybus says. In Ireland, where infections have risen rapidly as well, the variant now accounts for a quarter of sequenced cases. And data from Denmark, which leads the European Union in the sequencing of SARS-CoV-2, aren’t reassuring either. Routine surveillance there has picked up the variant dozens of times; its frequency went from 0.2% of sequenced genomes in early December to 2.3% 3 weeks later. “We have had what looks like a poster child example of exponential growth these last 4 weeks in Denmark,” says genomicist Mads Albertsen of Aalborg University. The numbers are still too low to draw strong conclusions, Albertsen cautions, but if the trend continues it will be a clear sign that many countries may face the same problems as the United Kingdom. “We should start preparing ourselves for the fact that this is happening elsewhere,” Hodcroft says.

The lack of evidence—so far—that the new variant makes people sicker is little consolation. Increased transmissibility of a virus is much more treacherous than increased pathogenicity because its effects grow exponentially, Kucharski says. “If you have something that kills 1% of people but a huge number of people get it, that’s going to result in more deaths than something that a small number of people get but it kills 2% of them.”
And in related news…

COVID-19 vaccines may not work as well against South African variant, experts worry
livescience.com wrote:A coronavirus variant identified in South Africa may not be as vulnerable to COVID-19 vaccines as other strains, some scientists say.

Studies are now underway to find out if that's actually the case.

If the variant, known as 501.V2, is resistant to available vaccines, the shots could be tweaked to boost their effectiveness — adjustments tht would take about six weeks to make, vaccine developers told Reuters. These developers included BioNTech CEO Dr. Uğur Şahin and John Bell, Regius Professor of Medicine at the University of Oxford, who are currently running experiments with both 501.V2 and the new coronavirus variant identified in the U.K., named B.1.1.7.

These experiments are so-called neutralizing assays — experiments in which they incubate the viruses with antibodies and human cells, to see if the antibodies prevent infection, The Associated Press (AP) reported. They are running the tests with blood from vaccinated people and those who caught the virus and developed antibodies naturally, Dr. Richard Lessells, an infectious diseases expert who is working on South Africa's genomic studies of 501.V2, told the AP.

In general, it's not surprising that variants like 501.V2 and B.1.1.7 have emerged; all viruses pick up mutations as they make copies of themselves, and the novel coronavirus called SARS-CoV-2 is no exception. However, while the two recently identified variants share a few similar mutations, and 501.V2 "has a number additional mutations ... which are concerning," Simon Clarke, an associate professor in cellular microbiology at the University of Reading, told Reuters.

Specifically, the variant found in South Africa has more mutations in its spike protein — which sticks out from the virus's surface and is used to invade human cells — than B.1.1.7 does, Lawrence Young, a virologist and professor of molecular oncology at Warwick University, told Reuters. Most available vaccines train the immune system to recognize this spike protein. If the spike protein accumulates too many mutations, it may become unrecognizable to the immune system, allowing the virus to avoid detection in the body; this is the potential concern with the new variant 501.V2, Young said.
"Good intentions will always be pleaded for every assumption of authority. It is hardly too strong to say that the Constitution was made to guard the people against the dangers of good intentions. There are men in all ages who mean to govern well, but they mean to govern. They promise to be good masters, but they mean to be masters." -- Daniel Webster
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by Lorini »

There's nothing that can be done at least here except get more people the virus. That should improve quite a bit in about 2 weeks and one day or shortly thereafter.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by Paingod »

Soo ... with COVID mutating at least twice (enough to be noticed) in a year, does this mean we're likely looking at something that will never be contained?

Like the whole world turns red and Madagascar laughs at everyone because they closed their ports in the first two months?
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

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Saw where a guy...maybe a doctor....got COVID just the other day. He got his vaccine around Dec 16 or so. So it had plenty of time to work. Un nerving
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by coopasonic »

Daehawk wrote: Wed Jan 06, 2021 12:52 pm Saw where a guy...maybe a doctor....got COVID just the other day. He got his vaccine around Dec 16 or so. So it had plenty of time to work. Un nerving
95% effective is not 100% effective.
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Re: [Health] The Infectious Diseases Thread

Post by RMC »

coopasonic wrote: Wed Jan 06, 2021 1:29 pm
Daehawk wrote: Wed Jan 06, 2021 12:52 pm Saw where a guy...maybe a doctor....got COVID just the other day. He got his vaccine around Dec 16 or so. So it had plenty of time to work. Un nerving
95% effective is not 100% effective.
And it's not 95% effective until after the booster I think, which is 28 days after the vaccine. So <shrug> he might of not had the booster yet either.
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