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Coronavirus updates August 1, 2021

missy

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Florida has become the new epicenter of the U.S. pandemic as it recorded its highest one-day increase of Covid-19 cases since the start of the outbreak. Cases in Australia’s hotspot of Sydney matched an all-time high while parts of Queensland state entered a second day of lockdown.

The Biden administration has monitored the delta variant for weeks but appeared surprised by the extent of its spread, according to a senior White House official. Progressive members of the Congress renewed their calls to extend a national eviction moratorium that is set to expire Saturday at midnight.

Thousands in France protested again over a coronavirus pass, with some clashing with police. The U.K. is preparing to ease travel bans for visitors passing through airports in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and more.

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Malaysia Upbeat on Vaccine Target (4:18 p.m. HK)​

Malaysia’s government is optimistic of achieving its target of fully vaccinating 50% of the nation’s adult population by Aug. 31, Bernama reported on Sunday, citing Science Minister Khairy Jamaluddin.

About 29% of the adult population had completed both doses of the vaccine so far, and 59% have received one dose, the state news agency cited him as saying.




Meantime, the number of daily Covid vaccinations has surpassed a record 500,000 for six straight days, Bernama reported, citing Health Minister Adham Baba.

Uber’s U.K. Vaccine Incentives (4:06 p.m. HK)​

Several food and travel companies in the U.K. will start giving incentives and offering discounts to urge Britons to get vaccinated, according to the Department of Health and Social Care.

Uber Technologies Inc. will send users a vaccine reminder and give lower rates for young adults who get the shot. Bolt, another ride-share company, is offering free ride credits to vaccine centers, and Deliveroo Plc and Pizza Pilgrims are also aiding the drive.

Over 600,000 people were vaccinated at walk-in clinics last weekend and more sites have been made available this week, the department said.

Support for N.Z.’s Ardern Slips Amid Virus (3:57 p.m. HK)​

Support for New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern’s Labour Party has slipped by almost 10 percentage points amid increasing scrutiny of the government’s response to the coronavirus, according to a poll by Newshub-Reid Research.

Labour’s support fell to 43% compared with a May survey, while New Zealand National Party’s backing rose to almost 29% and ACT Party’s increased to about 11%, Newshub-Reid found. Ardern was still preferred Prime Minister by a large margin.

The research was conducted July 22 to 29 and had a margin of error of 3.3%, according to Newshub-Reid.

Ho Chi Minh City Curbs (2:24 p.m. HK)​

Vietnam authorities extended the stay-at-home order covering most of the nation’s southern region, including the commercial hub of Ho Chi Minh City, for two weeks.



The extension is directed at 19 localities and is part of the government’s aggressive anti-virus measures to contain the nation’s worst coronavirus outbreak, which began in late April.

The country reported a total 150,060 virus cases and 1,306 deaths as of Saturday, with 97% of infections recorded from late April, according to the health ministry. Ho Chi Minh City accounts for about 63% of infections in the current outbreak.

Philippines Budget Secretary Catches Covid (11:15 a.m. HK)​

Philippines Budget Secretary Wendel Avisado will be on two-week’s medical leave from Aug. 2 after being hospitalized with Covid-19, according to a statement Saturday night. Undersecretary Tina Rose Marie Canda will be the officer-in-charge during the period.

Meanwhile, Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire told a forum that initial estimates from experts suggest the nation’s daily cases could climb to 18,000-30,000 by September, even with a two-week lockdown this month. The Philippines reported more than 8,000 cases each on July 30 and July 31, which were the most in two months.

Sydney Reports Record Number of Cases (9:20 a.m. HK)​



Sydney reported a record-matching 239 new local cases of Covid-19 over the 24 hours to 8 p.m. Saturday as the delta-strain outbreak continues to spread in Australia’s biggest city.

New South Wales state Premier Gladys Berejiklian said there were some signs that the virus is mostly being contained to parts of the city with the strictest curbs. The entire Sydney region is in lockdown until Aug. 28.

There were nine new locally acquired cases in Queensland, which on Saturday imposed a snap lockdown on its most populous region of the southeast, the state’s chief health officer, Jeannette Young, said at a briefing. Victoria state reported four new local cases while in New Zealand there were no new cases in the community, according to health authorities.

Infections in Vaccinated Hospital Workers (7:45 a.m. HK)​

Two major San Francisco hospitals are reporting hundreds of cases and high rates of Covid-19 among vaccinated workers, but only two hospitalizations.



The University of California, San Francisco Medical Center said it had 183 employees, many in clinical areas, test positive over the last month, and 153 had been vaccinated. Only two of the vaccinated cases required hospitalization, the hospital said in a statement.

Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital reported that about 50 staff members were infected in July -- as many as 80% of them vaccinated, the New York Times reported, quoting the hospital’s chief medical officer. No one was hospitalized, the newspaper reported.

Florida Breaks Daily Case Record (5:00 p.m. NY)​

Florida reported 21,683 new cases on Friday, breaking a daily record for the entire pandemic, according to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The state’s previous one-day record, according to the CDC data, was more than 19,100 in early January. The third most populous state, Florida now accounts for about one in five new virus infections in the entire U.S.

English Deaths Undercounted: Telegraph (4:45 p.m. NY)​

The death toll from Covid in care homes in England was probably about 4,000 higher than reported, the Sunday Telegraph said citing unidentified care providers.

The official count of 39,017 covered elderly people who died between April 10, 2020, and March 31 this year.

Care providers say thousands more probably died before April 10 because the industry watchdog had earlier signed off on a government policy that allowed Covid-positive patients to be discharged from hospitals into care homes, the newspaper reported. Testing wasn’t required for asymptomatic patients.

U.K. Set to Exempt Pass-Through Visitors (4:35 p.m. NY)​

U.K. officials are close to an agreement to allow travelers to pass through airports in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Istanbul, Doha and Bahrain, without having to quarantine in a hotel when they arrive, the Telegraph reported Saturday.



The move will make it cheaper and easier for business travelers and families to reunite with relatives in Australia, New Zealand and the Middle East who often have to pass through these transit hubs.

Anti-Vax App Tests Rules (3 p.m. NY)​

A new social media app called “Unjected,” designed for the unvaccinated, is testing Google and Apple Inc.’s policies concerning the spread of misinformation about Covid-19 vaccines.

Apple removed the app from its App Store after being contacted by Bloomberg News. Unjected, when told by Google Play that its social feed contains misinformation, removed the section to get back in compliance with the app store.

California Positive Rate Near Six-Month High (2:45 p.m. NY)​

California’s test positivity rate rose to 6.4%, the most since early February.

Hospitalizations climbed to the highest since early March. Still, availability of intensive-care unit beds remains at almost twice the level of mid-January, when several counties in the state were running out of ICU beds as cases peaked.

White House Caught Off Guard by Delta (2:00 p.m. NY)​

White House officials have monitored the delta variant for weeks but were surprised by the extent of its spread, according to a senior White House official.

The surge prompted an urgent warning on the renter eviction ban, the reimposition of a masking recommendation and President Joe Biden’s repeated pleas for Americans to get vaccinated.


N.Y. New Infections Top 3,000 (12:35 p.m. NY)​

New York state’s new infections rose above 3,000, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced, the first time since early May that it’s hit that level. New infections have more than quadrupled in the last month but remain far below the daily peak of almost 20,000 in mid-January.



The positive test rate reached 2.6%, up from a low of 0.3% in mid-June but below the current national average of 7.8%. Deaths remain low, with five reported on Saturday.

U.S. Cases Jump, Driven By Florida (11:38 a.m. NY)​


The overall U.S. weekly case tally was more than five times that of a month ago and the highest since mid-February, data released on Friday showed.

Florida made up about 1 in 5 of the U.S.’s total weekly cases of 544,569, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University and Bloomberg. Florida, which releases its virus data weekly, reported 110,477 cases on Friday.

Hospital admissions, while well below the peak of the last surge in January, increased more than 46% in a week. Fatalities rose more than 33%, according to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Vietnam Stay-Home Extension (10:08 a.m. NY)​

Vietnam authorities extended the stay-at-home order covering most of the nation’s southern region including the commercial hub of Ho Chi Minh City for two weeks.

The existing order for Ho Chi Minh City ends Aug. 1. The extension is directed at 19 localities and is part of the government’s aggressive anti-virus measures to contain the nation’s worst coronavirus outbreak that began in late April.

Cases Climb in Central Chinese City (10:01 a.m. NY)​

The number of Covid-19 cases keeps rising in the city of Zhengzhou in central China, which recently suffered a deadly flood.

The city found 11 confirmed cases and 16 asymptomatic infections by Friday evening, local health officials said at a press briefing Saturday night, according a report by the state broadcaster CCTV.

Colleges Bring Back Masks (9:46 a.m. NY)​

Yale and Cornell are reinstating requirements that all individuals wear masks in most indoor campus spaces, joining other colleges in efforts to combat the fast-spreading delta variant.

Third Weekend of Protests in France (8:32 a.m. NY)​

Thousands of people protested against France’s special virus pass with marches through Paris and other cities on Saturday as well as sporadic clashes with riot police, the AP reported.



French lawmakers passed a bill requiring the pass in most places as of Aug. 9. In the past 24 hours, France reported 23,471 new coronavirus cases and 43 deaths.


China Vaccine Study (6:08 a.m. NY)​

China is studying if it’s necessary to give booster vaccines to vulnerable groups such as the elderly, people with underlying diseases and those who work in high-risk areas.

There isn’t enough evidence yet to suggest that a third shot is needed for everyone, Wang Huaqing, chief immunologist at the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, said at a press briefing Saturday.

— With assistance by Brett Miller, Clarissa Batino, Xuan Quynh Nguyen, Mai Ngoc Chau, Ian Fisher, Megan Durisin, and Ravil Shirodkar
 

missy

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Effectiveness of Covid-19 Vaccines against the B.1.617.2 (Delta) Variant.​




Conclusions

Only modest differences in vaccine effectiveness were noted with the delta variant as compared with the alpha variant after the receipt of two vaccine doses. Absolute differences in vaccine effectiveness were more marked after the receipt of the first dose. This finding would support efforts to maximize vaccine uptake with two doses among vulnerable populations. (Funded by Public Health England).

Overall, we found high levels of vaccine effectiveness against symptomatic disease with the delta variant after the receipt of two doses.
 

MRBXXXFVVS1

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At this rate, if most of these cases are among unvaccinated people, we might have herd immunity soon since all unvaccinated people will catch COVID... Sigh...
 

Matata

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Lambda variant shows resistance to vaccine in lab experiments. Great, just effing great :((

 

Arcadian

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A niece lost a very good friend today to Covid related illness. These are kids y'all (well they're 30 and under, which in my book is still kids)

That should not be happening.

here's the thing with Florida; People complain about florida having lots of instances of virus, but then, come vacation to Florida.

its kinda lose lose. The ONLY good is that while there's people getting the virus, many are not dying. The bad is that this is their souvenir that they carry home with them.
 

wildcat03

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A niece lost a very good friend today to Covid related illness. These are kids y'all (well they're 30 and under, which in my book is still kids)

That should not be happening.

here's the thing with Florida; People complain about florida having lots of instances of virus, but then, come vacation to Florida.

its kinda lose lose. The ONLY good is that while there's people getting the virus, many are not dying. The bad is that this is their souvenir that they carry home with them.

I'm not sure the people complaining about Florida are the same ones going there...there are plenty of COVID deniers in all states, unfortunately.
 

Arcadian

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I'm not sure the people complaining about Florida are the same ones going there...there are plenty of COVID deniers in all states, unfortunately.
I wish it wasn't true but I've heard it first hand which is messed up!

I asked "why are you here if you're bothered by it?" They said they had plans so they "had to come". No they didn't, they could have just stayed home.

Florida is a lot weirder than some of you guys think...
 

Matata

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I asked "why are you here if you're bothered by it?" They said they had plans so they "had to come". No they didn't, they could have just stayed home.

Your governor has done a *iss poor job during the pandemic. There are measures that could be taken to stop people from coming in or at least bringing the virus with them such as requiring a negative test or proof of vaccination upon arrival and a mandatory 10-day quarantine or setting up quarantine zones. Instead he threatens to pull funding from schools if they institute mask mandates.
 

missy

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The booster question​

As the Delta variant continues to spread — and breakthrough infections are occurring among vaccinated people — momentum is building in some rich countries for giving additional doses of a Covid-19 vaccine to some fully vaccinated people.​
Germany, following Israel’s example, said this week that it would start offering booster shots to some higher-risk citizens. France, Russia and Hungary are doing the same. Britain has already purchased 60 million extra Pfizer vaccine doses in case vulnerable people need a third shot this fall.​
At the same time, billions of people around the world continue to wait for their first dose.​
Do we need booster shots? Here are some answers, with help from The Times’s Apoorva Mandavilli, who has been covering the pandemic.​

The question of immunity​

Scientists aren’t in agreement about whether we need boosters.​
For now, the U.S. isn’t following those countries’ leads. Instead it’s saying that for people who are fully vaccinated, an additional dose is not necessary. Not yet, anyway.​
Most studies indicate that immunity from mRNA vaccines, like Pfizer’s and Moderna’s, is long-lasting. Recent data from Israel suggested a decline in efficacy of the Pfizer vaccine against infection after a few months. “I would go tomorrow to get the third shot,” Dr. Gary Simon, a George Washington University infectious disease expert, told The Atlantic last week.​
But the effectiveness of preventing serious illness remained extremely high, according to the data.​
Preventing infections isn’t the primary aim of the vaccines, Apoorva explains, even though they protect against that as well. “They were designed to prevent hospitalization and death,” she says, “and they’re doing that very well.”​
At the moment, Apoorva told me, the only people who seem to need extra shots are those who are immunocompromised. In the U.S., that is 3 to 5 percent of the population, some of whom will not produce a strong immune response from a vaccine.​
“They’re not fully protected right now,” Apoorva says. A third shot could offer them the immunity most people get from two shots.​
A lot of scientists believe that shots should first go to unvaccinated people in poor countries — including health care workers and older people — rather than giving boosters to people who are unlikely to get very sick. Sending shots abroad has humanitarian benefits, Apoorva explains, but also scientific ones: If fewer people around the globe get the virus, it makes it harder for new variants to evolve.​

What the U.S. is doing​

The government, too, isn’t entirely sure about the issue.​
Last month, Dr. Anthony Fauci said people didn’t need boosters yet, given that more than 90 percent of people being hospitalized with Covid were unvaccinated.​
mail
By The New York Times | Sources: Governments and health agencies; U.S. Census Bureau​
But Biden administration officials increasingly think some vulnerable populations (such as people 65 and over and people with compromised immune systems) will probably need extra doses.​
The administration has already bought enough vaccine to deliver third doses of Pfizer and Moderna if needed, The Times’s Sharon LaFraniere has reported. It has also sent almost 112 million shots to other countries.​

A push toward boosters​

Pfizer, which is a for-profit company, has been making its own case for booster shots. Last month, the company reported that the power of its two-dose vaccine wanes slightly over time, but continues to offer lasting protection against serious disease. “It’s in their interest to say third doses are required,” Apoorva says.​
It’s also more profitable to sell vaccine doses to countries like the U.S., which pay more money for the shots than poorer countries could. Pfizer and Moderna both recently increased the price of their vaccines in new contracts with the E.U.​
There’s also some anecdotal evidence of people getting third shots in the U.S., even though the government doesn’t recommend it at the moment. (One San Francisco hospital is offering a supplemental shot to residents who got the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine.)​
“I see it on social media all the time: people saying, ‘I was worried so I just went to the CVS and got a third dose,’” Apoorva told me. But, she added, right now there’s no need — so far the “evidence tells us it is not necessary.”​
 

missy

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New York City to Require Proof of Vaccination for Indoor Dining and Gyms​

Mayor Bill de Blasio said the tough restrictions were necessary to encourage New Yorkers to get vaccinated and curtail a third wave of coronavirus cases.


By Emma G. Fitzsimmons
Aug. 3, 2021
New York City will become the first U.S. city to require proof of vaccination for a variety of activities for workers and customers — indoor dining, gyms and movie theaters — a move intended to put pressure on people to get vaccinated, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Tuesday.
The restrictions, similar to mandates issued in France and Italy last month, represent the most aggressive response to lagging vaccination rates in the United States, and they come as the number of virus cases surge across the country. Mr. de Blasio said he hoped that other cities would implement similar measures.
“This is a miraculous place literally full of wonders,” Mr. de Blasio said. “If you’re vaccinated, all that’s going to open up to you. But if you’re unvaccinated, unfortunately you will not be able to participate in many things.”
The vaccine requirement marks a new chapter in the fight against the coronavirus in a city that was once the epicenter of the pandemic and where more than 33,000 people have died from the virus. With the spread of the more contagious Delta variant, the average number of daily cases has jumped to more than 1,300, roughly six times the number in June.
Vaccine mandates are accelerating across the country, as both municipalities and private businesses have adopted them. On Tuesday, Tyson Foods told its 120,000 workers in offices, slaughterhouses and poultry plants across the country that they would need to be vaccinated by Nov. 1 as a “condition of employment.” And Microsoft, which employs roughly 100,000 people in the United States, said it would require proof of vaccination for all employees, vendors and guests to gain access to its offices.
President Biden said on Tuesday that he believed other cities should follow New York City’s lead in requiring proof of vaccination for restaurants and gyms.
“You have to give proof that you’ve been vaccinated or you can’t come in,” Mr. Biden told reporters.
An even bigger push toward mandates could happen by the end of the month. The Food and Drug Administration has sped up its timetable for approving Pfizer-BioNTech’s vaccine, possibly by September. The three vaccines currently in use in the United States have been administered under an emergency authorization.
Mr. de Blasio’s announcement came a day after he declined to set an indoor mask mandate even as more cities and at least one state did so. He has instead prioritized vaccination, requiring city workers to get vaccinated or routinely tested, and incentivizing vaccines for the public with an offer of $100 cash. Mr. de Blasio hopes that limiting many of the city’s most popular social activities to only vaccinated people may provide an even bigger incentive.
The final list of types of businesses included in this new mandate was still being finalized, but museums are likely to also be included, according to a city official.
City officials said that inspectors from the health department and other agencies would enforce the new rules, which would require workers and patrons to have received at least one dose of a vaccine, and that restaurants could face fines. The logistics of monitoring the city’s 25,000 restaurants and bars could be challenging — and contentious.

Joseph Borelli, a city councilman from Staten Island, said that the rules would crush small businesses and that he was considering filing a lawsuit. He said a vaccine mandate would prevent many Black and Latino residents from eating at restaurants because vaccination rates are lower in those communities.
“I believe this is the spark that will get a lot of people very angry about the city’s response,” he said. “This is going to create two separate classes of people.”
The measures in France prompted millions of people to book vaccine appointments and also sparked a series of huge protests. In New York, Broadway recently set its own requirement that theatergoers must be vaccinated and wear masks in order to attend performances.
Mr. de Blasio, a Democrat in his final year in office, said he had consulted with officials from the Biden administration about the mandate and believed it would hold up in court. The rules will start on Aug. 16 and enforcement will begin in mid-September, when schools are expected to reopen and more workers could return to offices in Manhattan.
Business groups in New York said that the mandate would be another hurdle for the hospitality industry, which was hit particularly hard during the pandemic.
“These new mandates are a burden that will be placed on hospitality staff that is already stretched thin, and this will only get worse,” said Melissa Fleischut, the president of the New York State Restaurant Association. “Government is still making things harder on our industry. We can’t take it much longer.”
But Andrew Rigie, executive director of the NYC Hospitality Alliance, said the new restrictions “may prove an essential move to protecting public health and ensuring that New York City does not revert to restrictions and shut down orders.”
The Coronavirus Outbreak ›

Latest Updates

Aug. 4, 2021, 6:40 a.m. ET

The rules are effectively the first government-enforced vaccine requirement for private workers in New York City. Last week, Mr. de Blasio issued a mandate requiring all 300,000 city employees to be vaccinated or face weekly virus testing.
Some restaurant workers applauded the new mandate.
Camila Rinaldi, a former line cook at Marta in Manhattan who will start as sous chef at Great Jones Distillery in September, was relieved and wished it had been done sooner.
“This is about public health,” she said, “so if you are entitled to not have the vaccine, and I am entitled to have the vaccine, I am also entitled to not want to be around you because I am taking care of myself and taking care of the whole community.”
Nicole Ponseca, the owner of Jeepney in the East Village of Manhattan, felt caught between her concern for the health of her staff and the idea of infringing on people’s rights.
“I want to do the right thing and say we need to be vaxed,” she said. “I am also sensitive to people’s personal choice and what they want to do with their bodies.”
Roughly two-thirds of adults in the city are fully vaccinated, according to city data, although pockets of the city have lower rates.
Mr. de Blasio’s new initiative, called the Key to NYC Pass, will require people to show proof of vaccination using the city’s new digital app, the state’s Excelsior app or a paper card.
“Not everyone is going to agree with this — I understand that,” Mr. de Blasio said. “But for so many people, this is going to be a lifesaving act. We are putting a mandate in place that is going to guarantee a much higher level of vaccination in this city. And that is the key to protecting people, and the key to our recovery.”

Understand the State of Vaccine Mandates in the U.S.​

U.S. Representative Adriano Espaillat and James Sanders Jr., a state senator, were among Black and Latino leaders who praised the new measures. Mr. Sanders represents Southeast Queens, a part of the city that had one of the highest rates of death from Covid-19 in the first wave of the virus, and that now has one of the highest proportions of unvaccinated people in the city.
“You have the right to your body, of course, but you do not have the right to kill other people,” Mr. Sanders said at the mayor’s briefing. “A strong stance needs to be taken.”
New Yorkers will be able to continue to dine outdoors without showing proof of vaccination. Mr. de Blasio said that city officials were discussing details like whether children younger than 12 years old, who cannot be vaccinated yet, can dine indoors at restaurants or visit a movie theater.
The new mandate will certainly cause debate among residents in a city where millions remain unvaccinated.
Josh Richardson, 30, a building maintenance worker from Brooklyn who was unvaccinated, said he opposed the new rule.
“You’re forcing people to get something they don’t want,” said Mr. Richardson. “That’s not fair to the people.”
Rachel Wyatt, 58, a teacher at a public high school who lives in Brooklyn, said she supported the idea.
“As a vaccinated person it has been so discouraging” to see the pandemic continuing because of the high number of unvaccinated people, she said.
Health experts welcomed the new restrictions while pushing Mr. de Blasio to move more quickly on mandates and masking requirements. Dr. Wafaa El-Sadr, an epidemiology professor at Columbia University, said it was a good policy and should start immediately.
“There are existing ways to show you’re vaccinated, so why wait at this point?” she said.
Gabriel Stulman implemented a vaccine requirement at his West Village restaurants in June — with hardly any pushback from customers.
“The reality is that it didn’t ruffle many feathers,” he said.
Mr. Stulman said that most of his customers believe in the vaccine.
“For anybody who is not vaccinated, I still got a seat for you, you can still eat here,” he said. “Outside.”
"
 

missy

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By Tara Parker-Pope
Aug. 3, 2021
阅读简体中文版閱讀繁體中文版
For the vaccinated, it was supposed to be a worry-free, “hot vax” summer of socializing and fun. But the rise of the highly infectious Delta variant has spoiled those plans.
While the vaccines remain remarkably protective against Covid-19, especially against serious illness, headlines about breakthrough infections and new recommendations that vaccinated people should sometimes wear masks have left many people confused and worried.
While new research shows vaccinated people can become infected and carry high levels of the coronavirus, it’s important to remember that those cases are rare, and it’s primarily the unvaccinated who get infected and spread the virus.
“If you’re vaccinated, you’ve done the most important thing for you and your family and friends to keep everyone safe,” Gregg Gonsalves, assistant professor of epidemiology at the Yale School of Public Health, said. “There’s substantially more freedom for people who are vaccinated, but the idea that everything is the same as the summer of 2019 is not the case.”
As long as large numbers of people remain unvaccinated, vaccinated people will be exposed to the Delta variant. Parents have the added worry that children under 12 probably won’t be eligible for vaccination until well into the fall. As a result, every vaccinated person should consider a safety checklist to help minimize the risk of becoming infected and spreading the virus to others.
  • Am I sure the people I’m with are vaccinated? Are they symptom-free?
  • What are the vaccination and case count rates in my community?
  • What is my risk, and the risk of those around me, for complications of Covid-19?
We asked the experts 10 questions about how vaccinated people should adjust their lives and behaviors during the Delta surge. Here are their answers.

New Guidance for the Vaccinated​

If I’m vaccinated, why do I need to worry about Delta?​

No vaccine offers 100 percent protection. Think of vaccine antibodies like a sea wall designed to protect a town from a storm surge, says Erin Bromage, a comparative immunologist and biology professor at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth. Most of the time, the wall stands up to the pounding waves, but a hurricane might be forceful enough to allow some water to get through. Compared with earlier forms of the virus, Delta is like a viral hurricane; it’s far more infectious and presents a bigger challenge to even a vaccinated immune system.
“Vaccinations give you that extra protection you wouldn’t normally have,” Dr. Bromage said. “But when you hit a big challenge, like getting near an unvaccinated person who has a high viral load, that wall is not always going to hold.”
The good news is the current crop of vaccines available in the United States are doing a remarkable job of protecting people from serious illness, hospitalization and death. More than 97 percent of those hospitalized with Covid-19 are unvaccinated. And new data from Singapore shows that even when vaccinated patients are hospitalized with Delta breakthrough infections, they are far less likely to need supplemental oxygen, and they clear the virus faster compared with unvaccinated patients.

What’s the real risk of a breakthrough infection after vaccination?​

Breakthrough infections make headlines, but they remain uncommon. Although the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stopped tracking all breakthrough cases in May, about half of all states report at least some data on breakthrough events. The Kaiser Family Foundation recently analyzed much of the state-reported data and found that breakthrough cases, hospitalizations and deaths are extremely rare events among those who are fully vaccinated against Covid-19. The rate of breakthrough cases reported among those fully vaccinated is “well below 1 percent in all reporting states, ranging from 0.01 percent in Connecticut to 0.29 percent in Alaska,” according to the Kaiser analysis.

Understand the Delta Variant​


But many breakthrough infections are probably never reported because people who are infected don’t have symptoms or have mild symptoms that end before the person even thinks about being tested.
“Breakthrough infections are pretty rare, but unless we have a population-based sample we don’t know the level of rarity,” said Dr. Asaf Bitton, executive director of Ariadne Labs at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in Boston. “A lot of people with mild scratchy throat for a couple days may have had them, but we don’t know. It’s not a failure of the vaccine that we’re having breakthrough cases. It’s been estimated that we’ve staved off 100,000 to 200,000 deaths since the vaccine campaign started.”
What is clear is that the risk of a breakthrough infection increases the more opportunities you give Delta to challenge the wall of protection conferred by your vaccine. Big crowded events — like a July 4 celebration in Provincetown, Mass., or the packed Lollapalooza concert in Chicago — pose a much greater risk that a vaccinated person will cross paths with an infected person carrying a high viral load.
“The more people you put yourself in contact with, the more risk you have, but it also depends on the local climate of risk,” Dr. Gonsalves said. “Soon we’ll probably see a Lollapalooza outbreak. All these people crushed together is an ideal situation for the spread of Delta.”

When should I wear a mask?​

The C.D.C. has a color-coded map of Covid-19 outbreaks in the United States. Blue and yellow zones show relatively low levels of infections, while orange and red zones indicate areas where cases in the past week were above 50 cases per 100,000 people. The agency advises people to wear masks if they live in an orange or red zone — which now accounts for about 80 percent of the counties in the United States.
Infection numbers remain relatively low in much of the Northeast and Upper Midwest, while Delta has caused huge spikes in cases in Missouri, Arkansas, Louisiana and Florida.
The problem with the map is that case counts are changing rapidly and may surge in your local community before the map has changed colors. Even if you’re certain you’re living in a highly vaccinated community with very low case counts, it makes sense to consider the case counts and vaccination rates in nearby communities as well, because people — and viruses — cross state and county boundaries all the time.

Most experts agree that you don’t need to wear a mask outdoors if you’re not in a crowd and have plenty of distance (at least six feet) from people whose vaccination status isn’t known. It’s still risky to attend a packed outdoor concert, but if you do, wear a mask.
“I would still suggest wearing a mask if you are indoors with people whose vaccination status you don’t know, especially if you will be within a few feet of them for any amount of time, or if you will be in the room for a long period of time with those people,” said J. Alex Huffman, an aerosol scientist and associate professor of chemistry and biochemistry at the University of Denver. “I don’t wear a mask indoors in all situations now, because I’m fully vaccinated, but I put my N95 mask on whenever I go into indoor public spaces.”

Should I upgrade my mask?​

You will get the most protection from a high-quality medical mask like an N95 or a KN95, although you want to be sure you have the real thing. A KF94 is a high-quality medical mask made in Korea, where counterfeits are less likely. If you don’t have a medical mask, you still get strong protection from double masking with a simple surgical mask under a cloth mask. A mask with an exhale valve should never be worn, since it allows plumes of viral particles to escape, and counterfeit masks may have faulty valves that let germs in.
You may want to pick your mask based on the setting. A cloth mask may be adequate for a quick trip into an empty convenience store in an area with high vaccination rates. But a higher-quality mask makes sense during air travel or in a crowded grocery store, especially in communities where vaccination rates are low and case counts are high. Masks with straps or ties around the back of the head seal more tightly than masks with ear loops.
“All the mitigation efforts we used before need to be better to hold off the Delta variant, and this includes masks,” Dr. Huffman said. “I strongly encourage people to upgrade their mask to something with high filter quality and something that fits tightly to their face. The No. 1 factor, in my opinion, is to make sure the mask is sealed well all around the edges — over the nose bridge, by the cheeks and under the chin. So any mask that fits tightly is better than almost any loosefitting mask.”

What’s the risk of hanging out with my vaccinated friends and family?​

Vaccinated people are at very low risk when they spend time, unmasked, with their vaccinated friends and family members. “I don’t think mask-wearing is critical,” Dr. Huffman said. “If you are indoors with a small number of people you know are vaccinated, wearing a mask is low on my list of worries.”
But some circumstances might require extra precautions. While it’s unusual for a vaccinated person to spread the virus to another vaccinated person, it’s theoretically possible. A vaccinated friend who is going to crowded bars, packed concerts or traveling to a Covid hot spot is a bigger risk than someone who avoids crowds and spends most of their time with vaccinated people.
With the Delta variant spreading, Dr. Bitton suggests an “outdoor first” strategy, particularly for families with unvaccinated children or family members at high risk. If you can take your event outside to a backyard or patio this summer and minimize your time indoors, you lower your risk.
Spending time with smaller groups of vaccinated friends has less risk than attending a big party, even if you believe everyone at the party is vaccinated. If you’re indoors, open the windows to improve ventilation. If someone in the group is at very high risk because of age or because they are immunocompromised, it’s reasonable to ask even vaccinated people to be tested before a visit. A simple rapid home test can even be offered to guests to be sure everyone is Covid-free.

Can I still dine at restaurants?​

The answer depends on local conditions, your tolerance for risk and the personal health of those around you. Risk is lowest in communities with high vaccination rates and very low case counts. A restaurant meal in Vermont, where two-thirds of the population is vaccinated, poses less risk than an indoor meal in Alabama or Mississippi, where just one-third of the residents are vaccinated.
Parents of unvaccinated children and people with compromised immune systems, who studies show may get less protection from vaccines, may want to order takeout or dine outdoors as an added precaution.

Is it safe to travel? Should I skip the peanuts and water and keep my mask on?​

Airplanes are typically well ventilated and not a major source of outbreaks, but taking precautions is still a good idea. The potential for exposure to an infected person may be even higher in the terminal, sitting in airport restaurants and bars, or going through the security line. In airplanes, air is refreshed roughly every two to three minutes — a higher rate than in grocery stores and other indoor spaces. While airlines still require passengers to wear masks, people are allowed to remove them to drink water or eat.
To prevent air from circulating to everyone throughout the cabin, airplane ventilation systems keep airflow contained to a few rows. As a result, an infected passenger poses most risk to those sitting in the seats in the immediate area.
Most experts say that they use a high-quality medical mask, like an N95 or KF94, when they fly. If you don’t have one, double masking is advised. For a vaccinated person, the risk of removing a mask briefly to eat or drink during a flight is low, but it’s better to keep it on as much as possible. The C.D.C. says it’s best for unvaccinated people, including children, to avoid flying.
Dr. Bromage said he recently traveled by air and took his mask off briefly to drink a beverage, but kept it on for most of the flight. He said he would be more comfortable removing his mask to eat if he knew the people next to him were vaccinated. He said he would be more concerned if the person next to him didn’t seem to care about Covid precautions or wore the mask under the nose. “If you’ve got a random person next to you, especially a chatty person, I’d keep the mask on,” he said.

How safe are buses, subways and trains for vaccinated people?​

Most buses, trains and subways still require everyone to wear a mask, which lowers risk. While vaccinated people are well protected, the risk of viral exposure increases the longer the ride and the more crowded the train car or bus. For many people, riding public transit is essential for getting to work or school, and wearing a well-fitted medical mask or double mask is recommended. When public transit is optional, the decision about whether to ride should factor in local vaccination rates and whether case counts are rising.

Can I hug and visit older relatives? What about unvaccinated children?​

While it’s generally considered safe for vaccinated people to hug and spend time together unmasked, parents of unvaccinated children have more risks to consider, particularly when visiting older relatives. In communities with low case counts and high vaccination rates, it’s generally considered safe for unvaccinated children from a single household to spend time with vaccinated grandparents. But as the Delta variant spreads and children return to school, the risks of close contact also increase for older or immune-compromised people who are more vulnerable to complications from Covid-19, even if they’re vaccinated.
When families plan a visit to a high-risk relative, it’s a good idea to minimize other exposures, avoiding restaurant dining or working out at the gym in the week leading up to the visit. Even though the risk of a vaccinated person spreading Covid-19 remains low, vaccinated grandparents should also reduce their personal exposure when they spend time with unvaccinated children.
“I have not been masking up indoors with my octogenarian parents at this point, because I am still very careful in the way I wear masks in public settings,” Dr. Huffman, the aerosol scientist, said. “But if I had more interactions that increased my overall risk of exposure, I would strongly consider masking up when indoors with vulnerable individuals.”
Rapid home tests are an added precaution when visiting grandparents or an immune-compromised family member. Take a test a few days before the visit as well as the day of the visit.
Home tests are “a wonderful option for people with a little more anxiety right now in regards to the virus,” Dr. Bromage said. “What we’re doing is buying those, and each and everyone tests before they come together — literally right before we’re together. When everyone is clear, you can enjoy that time together.”

How do I know if I have the Delta variant?​

If you’re diagnosed in the U.S. with Covid-19, the odds are overwhelming that you have the Delta variant. The C.D.C. now estimates that Delta accounts for more than 82 percent of cases in the United States. The Delta variant has become dominant in other countries as well. In late July the World Health Organization said Delta accounted for 75 percent or more of the cases in many countries, including Australia, Bangladesh, Botswana, China, Denmark, India, Indonesia, Israel, Portugal, Russia, Singapore, South Africa and the U.K.
That said, standard Covid tests won’t tell you if your infection was caused by the Delta variant or another variant of the virus. While health departments may use genomic sequencing to identify levels of different variants in a community, this information typically isn’t shared with individuals. You still need to isolate and seek medical advice if you have low blood oxygen levels, have trouble breathing or have other worrisome symptoms.

"
 

missy

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Covid Live Updates: Known Global Toll Reaches 200 Million Virus Infections
The W.H.O. calls for a moratorium on vaccine boosters. The Delta variant has reached nearly half China’s regions. In the U.S., Pfizer’s vaccine could gain full approval by early September.

The World Health Organization called on Wednesday for a moratorium on coronavirus vaccine booster shots until the end of September, so that vaccine supplies can be focused on helping all countries vaccinate at least 10 percent of their populations. The agency made its appeal to the world’s wealthiest nations to address the wide disparities in vaccination rates around the world.

“I understand the concern of all governments to protect their people from the Delta variant,” Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director general of the W.H.O., said in a briefing. “But we cannot — and we should not — accept countries that have already used most of the global supply of vaccines using even more of it, while the world’s most vulnerable people remain unprotected.”

With the debate over booster shots heating up, the call highlighted a moral and scientific case long pressed by humanitarian groups: With the staggering gaps in vaccination rates around the world and cases surging as the Delta variant spreads, vaccine doses should be given first to vulnerable people in poorer nations. Fully vaccinated people are protected against the worst outcomes of Covid-19 caused by the Delta variant.

W.H.O. officials went to pains to distinguish between booster shots used to shore up immunity in vaccinated populations, for which the science is not yet clear, and additional doses that may be needed by the immunocompromised to develop immunity in the first place. Officials said they objected to boosters, not to additional doses for some subgroups.

Of more than four billion vaccine doses in total that have been administered around the world, more than 80 percent have been used in high- and upper-middle-income countries, which account for less than half of the world’s population, Dr. Tedros said.

“We need an urgent reversal, from the majority of vaccines going to high-income countries to the majority going to low-income countries,” he said.

Scientists have not reached a consensus on whether booster shots are needed to boost immunity in fully vaccinated people. Still, with worries mounting about continuing pandemic waves and future lockdowns, an increasing number of countries, like Germany, Israel and France, are preparing to offer booster doses to segments of their populations, or have already started administering them. Russia has made additional shots available to anyone six months after inoculation, and Hungary is offering them four months post-vaccination.

Studies have indicated that the immunity generated by the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines is long-lasting, and researchers are still working to understand recent Israeli data suggesting that the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine declined in effectiveness months after inoculation. Pfizer has begun making a case for booster shots in the United States as well, and if third shots are cleared for the general population, the boosters would potentially represent a multi-billion-dollar business for Pfizer.

Asked about the W.H.O.’s call on Wednesday afternoon, Jen Psaki, the White House press secretary, said at a news conference, “We feel that it’s a false choice, and that we can do both.”

“We will have enough supply to ensure, if the F.D.A. decides that boosters are recommended for a portion of the population, to provide those as well,” Ms. Psaki added, noting efforts by the administration to send vaccine doses to other countries.

Deaths from Covid-19 have surged in African nations in recent months, while many health workers and elderly or vulnerable people in the region have remained entirely unprotected. Doctors Without Borders said recently that it would be “unconscionable” to give booster doses in richer nations before people in poorer ones get their first doses.

Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, the top infectious disease expert in the United States and an adviser to Mr. Biden, said on Tuesday that in some cases, it takes more than the usual number of shots to completely vaccinate immunocompromised people.

“Giving them an additional shot is almost not considered a booster, it’s considered part of what their original regimen should have been,” Dr. Fauci said in an interview with the Center for Strategic and International Studies. Many such patients, and “maybe most of them, have not gotten an adequate immune response to begin with,” he said.

That point was echoed by Dr. Bruce Aylward, a senior W.H.O. adviser, who said at Wednesday’s briefing that for people like solid organ transplant patients, a third dose would be part of “their primary series” of treatment and not a booster.

The W.H.O.’s appeal largely put the onus of fixing the world’s vaccine gaps on the world’s wealthiest nations, saying that the leadership of Group of 20 countries would determine the course of the pandemic. Dr. Tedros asked health ministers of those countries, who are meeting ahead of a planned summit in October, to make “concrete commitments” to reach the organization’s global vaccination target.

Vaccine producers, he said, should give priority to supplying Covax, a U.N.- backed alliance that was supposed to ensure that poorer countries’ health workers and vulnerable residents were all inoculated.

But the program has struggled to acquire enough doses, and is half a billion short of its targets. Supplies have dried up from some of the manufacturers it was most relying on, leaving a number of its recipient countries nearly or entirely out of vaccines in recent months.

Wealthier nations have a clear incentive to fill vaccination gaps in a continuing crisis that has gripped every corner of the world: the longer the virus rampages, the more dangerous it can become, as new variants emerge that may endanger progress even in even largely vaccinated nations.

The pandemic will not end “unless the whole world gets out of it together,” Dr. Aylward said. “With the huge disparity in vaccination coverage, we are simply not going to achieve that.”

— Isabella Kwai, Benjamin Mueller, Daniel E. Slotnik and Adeel Hassan

 

Lookinagain

Brilliant_Rock
Premium
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1,885
Our government aren't very serious about Covid...


Florida seems to have more cases than that in one day and they aren't from people crossing over the southern border.

 

Lookinagain

Brilliant_Rock
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Messages
1,885
So we need to add 7000 more to our total?

That is just a non-answer. You are always pointing to infected people crossing the border as being a big issue, but never seem to mention what is going on in places like Florida, where what you are complaining about doesn't really seem to be the issue, at least not from people crossing over the border you are referring to. I just don't understand why you focus on the southern border as a huge Covid problem when we have so many of our own problems created right here.
 

BMI

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Apr 17, 2014
Messages
211
@missy
Can I just take a minute to thank you for all the time you've freely given to collate some very pertinent and relevant information on/to this forum? I feel the need to personally extend a thank you. It's a wonderful resource you're compiling.
I really appreciate it.
Thank you!

@missy . I was thinking this exact same thing earlier today. And I greatly appreciate that you try to find sources/info with as little bias/hype as possible. You have my sincere thanks as well!
 

missy

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jun 8, 2008
Messages
47,544
@missy
Can I just take a minute to thank you for all the time you've freely given to collate some very pertinent and relevant information on/to this forum? I feel the need to personally extend a thank you. It's a wonderful resource you're compiling.
I really appreciate it.
Thank you!

Thank you @ItsMainelyYou.❤️
I want to bury my head in the sand but I know the best thing we can all do is arm ourselves with as much information as possible.

@missy . I was thinking this exact same thing earlier today. And I greatly appreciate that you try to find sources/info with as little bias/hype as possible. You have my sincere thanks as well!

Thank you @BMI!
 

missy

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Infectious Disease>COVID-19 Vaccine

Fauci Predicts 'Turnaround' in U.S. Pandemic Curve​

— NIAID Director also dishes on NIH's Antiviral Program for Pandemics​

by Shannon Firth, Washington Correspondent, MedPage Today August 4, 2021




Anthony Fauci, MD, chief medical advisor to President Biden, said he anticipates a "turnaround" in the pandemic and a trajectory that mirrors the experience of the U.K., but warned that cases here haven't peaked yet.

During an interview hosted by the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) on Tuesday, the NIAID director also plugged the launch of the NIH's Antiviral Program for Pandemics, and described his vision of an antiviral that would fight COVID-19.



New Antiviral Program

"I want a pill that blocks a specific viral function," Fauci said. "I want to give it once a day, if possible, I want it to be low in toxicity, and I want it to have very minimal drug-drug interactions."

"Give me that, and I'll be really happy," Fauci told webinar host and interviewer J. Stephen Morrison, senior vice president at CSIS and director of its Global Health Policy Center.

Manufacturing would need to be "scaleable," Fauci stressed, to ensure that low- and middle-income countries would have access to any new therapy, and he underscored the need to factor in variants.

"When you have variants, you've got to be ready," he said, noting that it's unlikely it will be as simple as "one pathogen and one drug that's the knock-out home-run drug. You always have to be ready to continue to develop alternatives that could keep up with the variants."



Asked whether a $3.2 billion program will be enough to incentivize drugmakers, Fauci hinted that he anticipates more funding down the line.

"Nothing convinces the source of resources to give more resources than success," he said. "If we come up with success, I think we'll get more."

Pandemic 2.0

Switching gears, Morrison noted that the current phase of the pandemic has stirred up anxieties once more, but also increased the pressure on Americans to get vaccinated against COVID-19 and to begin wearing masks again.

Asked whether he was hopeful that the U.S. could narrow the gap on vaccination and begin to curb the pandemic's spread, Fauci shared his predictions, with the caveat that he can't guarantee they will be right: "Since an acceleration of vaccines doesn't give a result until several weeks after, we are already on a trajectory that looks strikingly similar to the sharp incline that the U.K. saw," he said.



Average daily cases of COVID-19 ranged from 12,000 to 15,000 in the U.S. a little over a month ago, but now surpass 70,000, he noted. "We are going to be between 100,000 and 200,000 cases before this thing starts to turn around."

A lot depends on people's willingness to act quickly and get their shot, Fauci said, noting that 93 million eligible people remain unvaccinated.

Three states account for roughly 40% of the infections in the country, with Florida alone seeing 20% of new COVID cases nationwide, but Fauci said he's hopeful that even in those hotspots, things are changing.

"Where you're seeing a lot of infection, the rate of vaccination as an average is better than the rest of the country," he said. "That's telling us that the states that are suffering most from the increase are starting to realize that you've got to get vaccinated if you want to get out of this."



Fauci praised Republican governors and a member of Congress for their work in promoting vaccination. Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R) is "out beating the bushes, asking people to get vaccinated," he said. Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.) is telling people, "'Go out and get vaccinated,'" added Fauci, and we even have Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R), "who doesn't want to have mask mandates, going out, saying people should wind up getting vaccinated."

"I think we're going to see a turnaround," Fauci said.

Another "game changer," he said, would be when the COVID-19 vaccines switch from emergency use authorization to a standard approval.

Fauci said he believes that as soon as FDA grants full approval, "those people who are hesitant to get vaccinated because they perceive the emergency use authorization as not being proof enough that it's safe and effective -- even though we have ample, ample evidence that it's highly effective and highly safe -- I think you're going to see more people get vaccinated."



Standard approval would likely lead to the implementation of more local vaccination mandates as well, he said.

"You're not going to see a central mandate coming from the federal government, but you're going to see more universities, colleges, places of business -- once they get the cover of an officially approved vaccine -- they're going to start mandating vaccines. So, we're going to see an increase in vaccines, and that's going to be the solution to the problem."
 

Daisys and Diamonds

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The booster question​

As the Delta variant continues to spread — and breakthrough infections are occurring among vaccinated people — momentum is building in some rich countries for giving additional doses of a Covid-19 vaccine to some fully vaccinated people.​
Germany, following Israel’s example, said this week that it would start offering booster shots to some higher-risk citizens. France, Russia and Hungary are doing the same. Britain has already purchased 60 million extra Pfizer vaccine doses in case vulnerable people need a third shot this fall.​
At the same time, billions of people around the world continue to wait for their first dose.​
Do we need booster shots? Here are some answers, with help from The Times’s Apoorva Mandavilli, who has been covering the pandemic.​

The question of immunity​

Scientists aren’t in agreement about whether we need boosters.​
For now, the U.S. isn’t following those countries’ leads. Instead it’s saying that for people who are fully vaccinated, an additional dose is not necessary. Not yet, anyway.​
Most studies indicate that immunity from mRNA vaccines, like Pfizer’s and Moderna’s, is long-lasting. Recent data from Israel suggested a decline in efficacy of the Pfizer vaccine against infection after a few months. “I would go tomorrow to get the third shot,” Dr. Gary Simon, a George Washington University infectious disease expert, told The Atlantic last week.​
But the effectiveness of preventing serious illness remained extremely high, according to the data.​
Preventing infections isn’t the primary aim of the vaccines, Apoorva explains, even though they protect against that as well. “They were designed to prevent hospitalization and death,” she says, “and they’re doing that very well.”​
At the moment, Apoorva told me, the only people who seem to need extra shots are those who are immunocompromised. In the U.S., that is 3 to 5 percent of the population, some of whom will not produce a strong immune response from a vaccine.​
“They’re not fully protected right now,” Apoorva says. A third shot could offer them the immunity most people get from two shots.​
A lot of scientists believe that shots should first go to unvaccinated people in poor countries — including health care workers and older people — rather than giving boosters to people who are unlikely to get very sick. Sending shots abroad has humanitarian benefits, Apoorva explains, but also scientific ones: If fewer people around the globe get the virus, it makes it harder for new variants to evolve.​

What the U.S. is doing​

The government, too, isn’t entirely sure about the issue.​
Last month, Dr. Anthony Fauci said people didn’t need boosters yet, given that more than 90 percent of people being hospitalized with Covid were unvaccinated.​
mail
By The New York Times | Sources: Governments and health agencies; U.S. Census Bureau​
But Biden administration officials increasingly think some vulnerable populations (such as people 65 and over and people with compromised immune systems) will probably need extra doses.​
The administration has already bought enough vaccine to deliver third doses of Pfizer and Moderna if needed, The Times’s Sharon LaFraniere has reported. It has also sent almost 112 million shots to other countries.​

A push toward boosters​

Pfizer, which is a for-profit company, has been making its own case for booster shots. Last month, the company reported that the power of its two-dose vaccine wanes slightly over time, but continues to offer lasting protection against serious disease. “It’s in their interest to say third doses are required,” Apoorva says.​
It’s also more profitable to sell vaccine doses to countries like the U.S., which pay more money for the shots than poorer countries could. Pfizer and Moderna both recently increased the price of their vaccines in new contracts with the E.U.​
There’s also some anecdotal evidence of people getting third shots in the U.S., even though the government doesn’t recommend it at the moment. (One San Francisco hospital is offering a supplemental shot to residents who got the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine.)​
“I see it on social media all the time: people saying, ‘I was worried so I just went to the CVS and got a third dose,’” Apoorva told me. But, she added, right now there’s no need — so far the “evidence tells us it is not necessary.”​

Im.glad they are doing boosters to give vaunarable people better immunity
But can some one hurry up with my first doze
its only by pure luck we are not in a similar situation to our Australian neighbours
 

ItsMainelyYou

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
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Messages
1,912
Unfortunate developments.:cry:
snip:
“In our previous iteration of the pandemic, it was more they’re positive but they’re not sick or minimally sick,” Ford said of the pandemic’s changing impact on children. “This is different. ... There’s a much higher percentage of pediatric patients becoming infected and symptomatic.”

The number of patients presenting at Memorial Health and Joe DiMaggio Children’s emergency rooms with COVID also has exploded, Ford said, from 23 in June to 240 in July, a nearly 1,000% increase.
 

missy

Super_Ideal_Rock
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“ Vaccine mandates for kids: the next fight
Michael Joseph Smith, a pediatric infectious disease specialist at Duke University, worries that laissez-faire attitudes about vaccinating children could prolong the pandemic and even cost lives.

The more transmissible delta variant has led to an increase in cases among children, and anecdotally it appears to be making them sicker—and more quickly—than previous strains. With the school season fast approaching, only 43% of those 12 to 17 have received their first dose.

That’s led the White House to call upon schools, community organizers, and even the Gen Z pop star Olivia Rodrigo to double down on pitching the vaccine’s benefits before the school year starts. Those 12 to 17 account for 7.5% of the U.S. population, and with younger kids in the picture, it’s more than a quarter.

Beyond vaccinating kids to protect them against the troublesome consequences of the virus—such as hospitalization, long Covid or an inflammatory condition known as MIS-C—the pediatric immunization campaign is critical to reaching the goal of herd immunity, estimated at protection for at least 70% of the population. (That number could be higher as variants continue to emerge.)


Pop star Olivia Rodrigo at a White House news briefing on vaccinations.
Photographer: Oliver Contreras/Bloomberg
As an investigator at one of the sites testing the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine in kids, Smith is part of the effort to expand the shot to children under 12. Initial data are expected as early as September, and U.S. health officials expect kids of all ages to be eligible to get vaccinated within the first quarter of 2022. Efforts to encourage immunization will be even trickier when it comes to boosting coverage among the youngest.

As a result, educators will have a debate on their hands: whether to implement mandates requiring Covid vaccinations, as they routinely do for measles, polio, and other diseases, or—because of politics—to let parents decide. Many are likely to chose the former when the shot is finally granted a full approval instead of an emergency-use authorization. All 50 states require children to be immunized against chickenpox, measles, polio, and whooping cough to attend school. Those mandates persist even though they’ve been so successful that the risk of contracting some of the illnesses they cover is now almost nonexistent: The last known U.S. case of polio, for example, dates to 1979.

As the school year nears, public support for a mandate is growing. But a stark partisan gap remains, with Democrats’ support for a mandate doubling that of Republicans, and those vehemently opposed are rallying. Until mandates are put in place, U.S. middle and high schools will have to rely on local officials, health providers and grassroots organizations to win over parents, one shot at a time.—Riley Ray Griffin
 
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