My elected representative has contracted COVID, presumably while congress was under siege on Wednesday.

This didn't need to happen. It required years of lies and failures and selfishness to get to this point.
If I ever again complain that I have to work with personalities, remind me of this.…
Rep. Jayapal received her first dose of the vaccine on Jan 4th — too recently for it to have conferred protection on Jan 6th.

Meanwhile, her smugly anti-mask colleagues on video:

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More from @CT_Bergstrom

5 Jan
Somehow @NYMag isn't using *this* line from the start of the second paragraph of Nicholson Baker's piece for their clickbait pull quotes.

"there is no direct evidence for an experimental mishap"
Meanwhile the story about scientists almost universally denying the possibility of lab release because of "political toxicity" doesn't match my recollections at all. After a conversation with colleagues last April, for example, I posted this.
Little by way of compelling new evidence has come to light, and my perspective remains largely unchanged. It's not engineered; it's most likely natural; and we can't rule out lab escape from captive animals, basic culture, or even gain-of-function studies.
Read 5 tweets
4 Jan
This again? What could they possibly be trying to distract us from?
To be clear, my point is not that this is or is not likely to be "alien technology". My point is that it is very old news.

Here, from Nov 2018:
And I confess I've forgotten what mess this was in response to—it was 2020 after all— but the whole "hey look, aliens!" thing is getting tired.
Read 4 tweets
2 Jan
In a thread yesterday, I lapsed into the unhelpful shorthand of "one-dose" vs. "two-dose" plans for vaccine rollout.

*Everyone* I know wants to vaccinate every willing American twice.

So I'd suggest as better terms "breadth-first" vs. "depth-first."

The original plans were depth-first: vaccinate people in the highest risk tiers twice, and move on down the line.

The breadth-first idea is if one dose is better than half as good as two, we could slow the pandemic by getting get vaccines into as many people as possible first.
So with breadth first approaches, we would try for broad single-dose coverage and then circle back around, so to speak, for second doses. This might be e.g. 12 weeks after the first dose.

I lean depth-first, but I'm not certain which is the right approach and it's gnawing at me.
Read 9 tweets
1 Jan
For a host of reasons I have been very skeptical of switching vaccination protocols midstream to a single vaccination approach with later followup. @Bob_Wachter is a very thoughtful doctor and public health leader with greater expertise than mine; his thoughts are worth reading.
And a counterpoint from the very thoughtful medical ethicist @AlexJohnLondon.

I'd like to also suggest this thread from a leading immunologist and important voice throughout the pandemic, Dr. Iwasaki @VirusesImmunity.

Read 20 tweets
28 Dec 20
Last week, 1.5 million doses of the COVID vaccine were administered. Given that people require two doses, it would over eight years to vaccinate the US population at this rate.

6.8 million doses were delivered—at this rate, it would two years to deliver enough for the whole US.

We're also desperately short of the promise to administer 20 millions doses in December. Of course I don't actually think it's going to take 8 years to vaccinate the entire US population. Hopefully in the next weeks we will greatly ramp up our capacity to administer vaccinations.
Read 8 tweets
26 Dec 20
Ten days ago, the @RockefellerFdn released a white paper on how we could reopen all US schools over the next new months with aggressive government investment in frequent proactive COVID testing and more.

I think it's an important report. Some highlights:…
A central aspect of the proposal is that we take advantage of testing options in the pipeline, aggressively scaling up capacity and using this to test students and teachers alike.

The aim is to test students at least weekly. Teachers, twice weekly.
The first step in the plan is to reopen all elementary schools by February 1. These are a logical place to start. The need for in-person schooling is arguably greatest, the susceptibility of children <10 is likely lowest, and class structure limits within-school outbreak sizes.
Read 33 tweets

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