Dear TVD Friends,
Again, another busy week in COVID world. The recent surge peak is (for now) behind us. Case counts, test positivity rates, and hospitalizations, while still higher than the peaks of last summer, are coming down. Keep up the good work (eg: don’t let your guard down yet). Can you let your guard down if you’ve been immunized? Not really (yet). Read Dr. Sangani’s piece, “I’ve Had My COVID Vaccine, Now What?” below. We learn more hopeful news about this on a daily basis, and then there are those pesky COVID variants out there. Also cause for hope, there is slowly but surely more vaccine and a more organized immunization system out there. You can read about the issues which hampered the US vaccine program over the past many months below, “Why is the US COVID Vaccine Rollout Going so Poorly”. Things are fortunately looking quite a bit better, with better leadership from up on high, and more clear, evidence based direction from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). There is also a lot of news in the COVID testing space (note we haven’t been talking about, or stressing about, this as much of late). We continue to work hard on keeping our two popular FAQ’s up-to-date: How Can I Get Tested for COVID-19 and How Do I Get My COVID-19 Vaccine, We continue to work with our friends at Evera regarding PCR quality home testing for COVID. Speaking of COVID testing, there are also two exciting new Bay Area companies launching single-use PCR technology for “point of care” use: Visby Medical and Lucira Health.
Lastly, let us remember that it is Valentine’s Day in just a few days! If there was ever a year to show your love and appreciation to your loved ones, this is it. Don’t forget!
Eric Weiss, MD, February 10, 2021
NOTE: CV🦠News is a labor of love. If you enjoy reading this, please share widely! Was this forwarded to you by a friend? Please subscribe here.
The Mounted Patrol Foundation and the Woodside-area Horse Owners Association (WHOA!) are pleased to announce a new scholarship, the $10,000 Woodside-area Equestrian Merit Scholarship Award, jointly sponsored by the organizations for a local high school senior with a demonstrated involvement in equestrian activities as well as academic achievement and community service.
The application deadline is May 7, 2021. Click this link to learn more!
If you are a member of the population that has been vaccinated, there are a few important reminders about vaccine protection and what that means. As more of the US population becomes vaccinated, there are benefits for everyone, but also some caveats.
Just because you have been vaccinated, that does not reduce your social responsibilities. You should continue to wear a mask and practice social distancing. You would not want to engage in activities where you could acquire the novel coronavirus and then transmit it to another person. Being around other people who are fully vaccinated is likely safer than before, but even other vaccinated people can pass it to you… Read more
Prerana Sangani, MD, February 10, 2021
The rate of vaccine administration across the US has increased since January 20th when President Biden first committed to 100 million vaccines in 100 days. According to the CDC’s COVID vaccine data tracker, as of February 7th, 59.3 million doses have been delivered and 42.4 doses have been administered. 9.5 million people have received their 2nd dose. The average number of new doses administered was 1.3 million per day this past week. On February 2nd, President Biden announced additional steps his administration is taking to increase vaccine supply and administration capacity to states. Distribution of 10.5 million doses per week to states, tribes and territories has been promised, up 22% since January 20th. Starting on February 11th, select pharmacies across the country will begin administering vaccine through the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program for COVID-19 Vaccination. Finally, FEMA will retroactively fully reimburse states for FEMA-eligible services – including masks, gloves, emergency feeding actions, sheltering at risk populations and mobilization of the National Guard – backdating to the beginning of the pandemic in January 2020, an estimated to cost of $3-5 billion. This is considered a small share of the resources that states will need to fight this pandemic – including resources for testing, genomic sequencing, and mass vaccination centers. Biden is requesting $350 billion from Congress to fully support states’ needs to contain the pandemic and vaccinate their populations… Read more
Jennifer Abrams, MD, February 8, 2021
No. According to the CDC:
None of the authorized and recommended COVID-19 vaccines or COVID-19 vaccines currently in development in the United States contain the live virus that causes COVID-19. This means that a COVID-19 vaccine cannot make you sick with COVID-19… Read more
Sky Pittson, MD, February 9, 2021
This is a complicated question, as there are many different factors that have contributed to problems with the COVID-19 vaccine roll-out in the United States.
Indeed, it’s worth stepping back to acknowledge how immense and complex a challenge it is to not just create an effective vaccine in less than a year, but to physically vaccinate 300 million Americans at a time when more than 20,000 people are dying every week. As “Science” editor-in-chief Holden Thorp put it on the PBS NewsHour: “[300 million Americans means] 600 million vaccine doses. That’s 600 million hypodermic needles. That’s 600 million appointments to go get your vaccine.”
With that being said, here are a few of the big reasons why the roll-out has not been as smooth as desired… Read more
Jennifer Abrams, MD, February 9, 2021
HOPE AND GRACE
If you have made it this far, time for a reward, something to lighten your day, and acknowledge the human spirit. Find some escape, or perhaps even inspiration, in this ever-growing collection of works and perspectives gathered from around the world. Please contact me directly if you have come across something that has lifted your heart today. Dr. Eric Weiss
Cheerleaders raise moral amidst pandemic
A group of teenage cheerleaders from Bloomfield, New Jersey have made it their personal mission to spread positivity to those looking for a bright spot during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The girls have started Project CheerUP!, where they make videos with happy messages to boost morale. Their “Cheergrams” have become popular nationwide, and are now being requested for birthdays, healthcare workers, COVID patients, and anyone who needs a little extra cheer.
49ers send healthcare worker to Super Bowl LV
Loyal 49ers fan, and Bay Area native, Dennis Ochoa was one of four vaccinated health care workers chosen by the 49ers to attend Super Bowl LV this past weekend.
“We all know that without our healthcare workers, none of our stadiums would be able to have fans in it. So, we are incredibly grateful for all the sacrifices they’ve made,” said 49ers Director of Community Relations Stacy McCorkle.
Raymond James Stadium allowed 25,000 fans with approximately 7,500 of those being vaccinated health care workers, who were given a free ticket. Ochoa attended the 49ers win over the Bucs in 2019, before his father passed. When asked what this Superbowl would mean to his father he said, “Go out there and enjoy. Wear our Niner gear, wear our Niner red. Represent the real Bay. Just be safe, be all smiles and cross it off the bucket list.”
Man reunited with his dog who saved his life
Brian Myers, 59, was recently released from a rehab facility after suffering a stroke on January 16. When he collapsed on his bedroom floor, his German shepherd Sadie lept into action, rescuing him. She jumped off the bed, and helped pull Brian out of the corner where he was stuck. She got him down the stairs to his cousin, who was able to get him medical attention.
Myers adopted Sadie after he was warned she had issues from her previous owner. However, he valued her intelligence and fierce loyalty. Brian gave Sadie a second chance, and Sadie returned the favor. Watch their emotional reunion below.
Again, CV🦠News is a labor of love. If you enjoy reading this, please share widely! Was this forwarded to you by a friend? Please subscribe here.
Yours, in health and resilience,
Eric and the TVD MD team…