"COVID-19 Lockdown Exit Analysis" 18th Oct 2021
CDC data: Unvaccinated 11 times more likely to die from COVID-19 than fully vaccinated - Unvaccinated people have an 11 times higher risk of dying from COVID-19 than fully vaccinated people, according to new data posted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The data run through August and are from 16 health departments representing about 30 percent of the U.S. population, the CDC said. In addition, the data show that unvaccinated people have a six times higher chance of testing positive for COVID-19 than fully vaccinated people do.
Will New Covid Treatments Be as Elusive for Poor Countries as Vaccines? - Nearly a year after the first Covid-19 vaccination campaigns began, the vast majority of the shots have gone to people in wealthy nations, with no clear path toward resolving the disparity. News this month that an antiviral medication had proved effective against the coronavirus in a large clinical trial has brought new hope of a turning point in the pandemic: a not-too-distant future when a simple pill could keep infected people from dying or falling severely ill. The drug, molnupiravir, made by Merck, is easy to distribute and can be taken at home. The trial results showed it halved the risk of hospitalization and death among high-risk people early in their infections.
New fungus stalks Covid-recovered - After mucormycosis (black fungus), another fungal infection has been detected in four Covid-recovered patients in Pune in the last three months, raising concerns among the health fraternity. Prabhakar* (66) complained of mild fever and severe lower back pain a month after recovering from COVID-19. He was initially treated conservatively with muscle relaxants and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs without relief. An MRI scan revealed severe infection-led bone damage to the spinal disc spaces called spondylodiscitis. A bone biopsy and culture grew aspergillus species — a type of mold (fungus).
Expert panel recommends approving Covaxin for kids - The central drug regulator’s expert panel has recommended granting marketing authorisation with certain conditions to Bharat Biotech's Covaxin for restricted emergency use in children and adolescents in the age group of 2 to 18 years old.
Horse race marks Sydney's emergence from long COVID-19 lockdown - Thousands of Sydney residents flocked to a prominent horse race on Saturday, as Australia's biggest city emerges from a strict COVID-19 lockdown and the nation begins to live with the coronavirus through extensive vaccination. Up to 10,000 fully vaccinated spectators can now attend races such as The Everest in Sydney, Australia's richest turf horse race, and the country's most famous, Melbourne Cup Day, on Nov. 2. New South Wales state, of which Sydney is the capital, reached its target of 80% of people fully vaccinated on Saturday, well ahead of the rest of Australia.
New Zealand vaccinates 2.5% of its people in a day in drive to live with COVID-19 - New Zealand vaccinated at least 2.5% of its people on Saturday as the government tries to accelerate inoculations and live with COVID-19, preliminary health ministry data showed. Through an array of strategies, gimmicks and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's encouragement through the day, 124,669 shots were administered by late in the day in a country of 4.9 million. 'We set a target for ourselves, Aotearoa, you've done it, but let's keep going,' Ardern said, using a Maori name for New Zealand at a vaccination site, according to the Newshub news service. 'Let's go for 150 [thousand]. Let's go big or go home.'
Fourteen U.S. state attorneys general press Facebook on vaccine disinformation - The attorneys general of 14 U.S. states sent a letter to Facebook Inc (FB.O) Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg asking if the top disseminators of vaccine disinformation on the platform received special treatment from the company. The line of inquiry was generated after Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen used internal documents to disclose that the social media platform has built a system that exempts high-profile users from some or all of its rules. In the letter, which was sent on Wednesday, the 14 Democratic attorneys general said they are 'extremely concerned' with recent reports that Facebook maintained lists of members who have received special treatment, and want to know if the 'Disinformation Dozen' were part of those lists.
They Resisted Getting Vaccinated. Here’s Why They Changed Their Minds - Mandates have prompted a surge in vaccinations among those who had held out. Some report feeling relief; others, anguish and resentment. The uptick in vaccinations has contributed, experts say, to a flattening of the virus curve in New York City, where the numbers of new infections and hospitalizations have been falling — a trend across the United States as well. Yet with winter approaching, public health experts are watching closely for yet another rise in infections. New York’s vaccination rate is higher than that of the country as a whole, with two out of every three residents fully inoculated. Still, about one million adult New Yorkers have not gotten at least one vaccine dose.
Kingdom 'ready' for reopening - Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha on Thursday urged the public, businesses and government to cooperate in preparing for the country's reopening to fully vaccinated tourists next month. The Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) has also eased additional virus curbs, including shortening nighttime curfew hours starting on Saturday
Studies show that mask-wearing reduces Covid-19 outbreaks in schools - New studies by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) show that US counties with masking policies in place in their schools have a lower risk of Covid-19 outbreaks compared to counties that do not have masking policies. The United States-based research assessed the impact of masking in schools on new Covid-19 cases in learners from kindergarten to grade 12 across the country. The CDC examined the difference between paediatric Covid-19 case rates in schools with and without school mask requirements. The researchers used data from 1 July to 4 September 2021. The researchers developed inclusion criteria that the schools had to meet to be part of the study. This included a valid school start date in districts with known school mask requirements, a uniform mask requirement for all learners and at least three weeks with seven full days of case data after the beginning of the school year.
Italy Implements Tough Covid-19 Mandate for Workers, Prompting Protests - In one of the toughest anti-Covid-19 regimes in the Western world, Italy now requires all private and public sector workers to have a so-called green pass. The policy has kicked in amid unresolved questions on how it will be enforced and whether Italy will have enough testing kits to meet the expected surge in demand by millions of unvaccinated people who want to guarantee access to their workplace.
The new requirement positions Italy, where 85% of people over the age of 12 have received at least one shot, as a test case for how hard Western countries can push their populations to get vaccinated.
Brazil pandemic probe to recommend Bolsonaro face 11 criminal charges, senator says - A Brazilian Senate probe into the government's handling of the COVID-19 pandemic will recommend in its final report due next week that President Jair Bolsonaro face 11 criminal charges, the senator leading the inquiry said on Friday, though it remains highly unlikely that he will face a trial on any such charges.