Dear TVD Friends,
Another remarkable week of world news, but as a father and director of Team TVD, there is one that stands out to me. Let me ask you to simply Google these six words:
Text me when you get home.
Change is very long overdue.
On to another public health issue – COVID vaccine. Also much in the news, and we have been following closely. As noted last week, there is a whole new tier of Californians now vaccine eligible, those with selected chronic medical conditions, but it appears that vaccine availability continues to be a big challenge for this group. We expect this to change, hopefully considerably, over the next few weeks.
But better news is The Village Doctor’s ability to offer Moderna “Dose #2’s” to those of our patients who received Dose #1 three weeks ago. If this is you, you should have received a directed email last night including a link to our vaccine scheduling app, “Appointlet”. If you had Dose #1 with us ~3 weeks ago and did NOT receive such an email, please call the office at 650-851-4747 and ask to speak to Dana Sanderson.
If you have a qualifying “chronic medical condition”, and this new tier applies to you, we will email you directly the moment we confirm vaccine allocation for you. In the meantime, you should explore getting your COVID vaccine through the usual (and more challenging) sources – please see our FAQ, How Do I Get My COVID-19 Vaccine. Again, please note the update regarding Blue Shield and the State’s new “My Turn” website designed to facilitate COVID vaccine for all Californians.
And again, on to everyone who has worked so very hard to keep our vaccine program rolling (including our colleagues at San Mateo County), THANK YOU!
On to our newsletter! I’m perhaps most excited about our Good News feature on Erik Arvidsson and his terrific accomplishment last week as part of the US Ski Team. Yes, US Ski Team! And this a local Woodsider who I’ve known since before TVD, since he was just a little. Good on ya’, Erik!!
Continue reading for news on why COVID cases are dropping across the country, and what that might bode for our future. Speaking of the future, read also about some creative ways to have a safe stay at-home summer vacation with your family. Step back to today with an update on home testing for coronavirus before enjoying our Hope & Grace section: I love this piece about Yo-Yo Ma bringing along his cello and playing “Ave Maria” during his 15 minute post vaccine observation period. Simply great.
On that uplifting note, I leave you in continued health and community spirit,
Eric Weiss, MD, March 18, 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.
Woodside native, Erik Arvidsson made his mark on the FIS Ski World Cup on March 6, 2021. He finished 8th, to lead two Americans into the top 10 in Saalbach, Austria’s downhill. Coming in fresh off his second Europa Cup downhill victory, Arvidsson got his first World Cup points, first top 20, first top 15, and first top 10 all in one day! Watch his incredible run here!
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recently given the green light to four COVID-19 rapid tests that deliver results in real time at home, including two that will be sold over the counter without a doctor’s prescription.
Until now, most kits had to be mailed back to labs and the costs were close to $100 or more. The new at-home coronavirus tests are less expensive, and deliver results on the spot. Even though vaccination has started, public health experts say at-home tests are an important tool for helping slow the virus over the next few months until most Americans have the opportunity to get the vaccine… Read more
Prerana Sangani, MD, March 17, 2021
With the group of those eligible for vaccine increasing in size and Biden’s plan to expand eligibility to all adults by May 1st, there are many reasons for hope that we will be able to get back to at least somewhat of a more ‘normal’ summer. While everyone may become eligible for a vaccine by May 1st, it is likely it will take some time to provide everyone with a vaccine, with vaccinations extending into the summer for many. Interim public health recommendations released by the CDC on March 8th, 2021 highlight things fully vaccinated people can now do safely, including visit with other fully vaccinated people indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing and visit with unvaccinated people from a single household who are low risk for severe COVID-19 disease indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing… Read more
Jennifer Abrams, MD, March 17, 2021
The short answer is that we don’t know for sure. Experts have a range of explanations for the reasons that coronavirus cases have been dropping in the late-winter of 2021.
- Social distancing measures
Dr. Elizabeth Beatriz, an epidemiologist at the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, told Healthline that she attributes it to continued safety precautions like mask wearing, physical distancing, and not attending as many gatherings with others.
Specifically, Americans are now required to wear masks while traveling, and the CDC has also recently published studies demonstrating the increased effectiveness of double masking.
The first U.S. vaccinations began in December 2020, and accelerated in a big way in the ensuing months. As a result, many people in the highest-risk groups have now been vaccinated, particularly in spaces like nursing homes and assisted-living facilities where many of the fastest-spreading outbreaks have traditionally taken place. This has likely contributed to the drop in cases that has been happening more recently.
Jackie Phillips, MD, March 17, 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
Yo-Yo Ma gives surprise performance after receiving COVID-19 Vaccine
World-renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma gave an impromptu concert in the waiting area of a Massachusetts vaccination site after getting his second COVID-19 dose. During the 15 minute waiting period that follows each dose, he performed “Ave Maria” and Bach’s “Cello Suite No. 1” on the cello he brought with him.
Watch his performance here!
12-Year-Old Prodigy accepted in college, with plans to work at NASA
Alena Wicker, of Arizona, has already completed high school at 12 years old through at-home schooling. She has now been accepted into Arizona State University and plans to major in astronomical and planetary sciences and chemistry. She hopes to one day build rovers for NASA like the one sent to Mars in the Perseverance mission.
Learn more about her incredible story here
NY Teen Working Hard to Spread a Message of Unity
A 17-year-old, Bobby Reuter, is working hard at making wooden American flags that he wants to send to every member of Congress. He is doing so to spread a message of unity after the Jan. 6th insurrection on the Capitol. He is also sending handwritten letters to each member, explaining his mission and determination toward helping work toward unity. Reuter said. “I think things like freedom, justice, equality are so important. I think if we have a symbol of that, it shouldn’t be forgotten.”
Read more here
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…