Black and Indigenous people are being hit hardest by delta, with 2.4 and 1.8x the hospitalization rate of whites in the US, respectively.

These figures actually understate the inequalities because populations of color are younger than the white population.
Screenshot from CDC's COVIDnet gis.cdc.gov/grasp/covidnet…
COVID-net only covers 10 states, and some states that are being hit particularly hard right now like Florida are excluded
14 states*
Something really bad is happening in California

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More from @jfeldman_epi

22 Jun
1/ I'm gonna use this to lay out a messy, preliminary version of an argument here. The question I'm trying to answer:

Why did US public health experts generally not push for the kinds of broad shutdowns that our counterparts advocated in many other countries?
2/ The answer is manifold, but I want to focus on one particular aspect here.
3/ Shutdowns are big, blunt instruments of the sort US scientists are socialized to eschew in favor of lightweight, targeted, local intervention. We're told to be pragmatic, that only micro-interventions will actually get adopted bc they’re palatable to politicians and the public
Read 21 tweets
5 Apr
The unstated US pandemic strategy:
- Strongly disfavor policies that interfere with business
- Favor individual behavior change
- Tolerate an unlimited number of deaths
- Intervene more strongly to avoid exceeding ICU capacity (sometimes)
- Rely nearly exclusively on vaccination
Most social distancing in the US has been voluntary. In Jan 2021, you could've eaten indoors in 46 states.

Social distancing has been about individuals choosing to avoid risk to themselves and others. This is far less effective than govt policy and not everyone has a choice
Despite the lax government response, we see a weird type of 'inventing a guy to get mad about' response, wherein people (mainly elites) are upset about social distancing and still want to blame government for doing *too much*.
Read 5 tweets
19 Mar
On Jan 21, Biden signed an executive order stating OSHA would issue an emergency covid regulation by March 15 "if such standards are determined to be necessary". Guess that's not happening.
Apparently they've opted instead to focus inspections on the highest-risk covid sites. But that leaves the vast majority of workplaces unprotected. And without a regulation, it's easier to fight citations under the less specific "general duty clause" osha.gov/enforcement/di…
Can a worker who refuses unsafe conditions then collect unemployment? Biden promised this, but details are still unclear (please let me know if you know something I don't) archive.is/M9RUT
Read 9 tweets
18 Mar
What accounts for racial and economic inequality in covid-19 deaths?

Is it due to differences in health care access? Co-morbidities?

I think the evidence points to differences in exposure as the main cause of inequalities. Some evidence:
There's no nationally representative surveys of SARS-CoV-2 infection by race. But there's evidence from smaller areas.

In RI, Black people were 5x more likely & Latinx people 9x more likely, to have antibodies vs whites (Large confidence intervals though) ajph.aphapublications.org/doi/abs/10.210…
Another random sample in 2 Georgia counties. Black people had 17x the seroprevalence of white people cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/6…
Read 5 tweets
16 Mar
The magnitude of inequality in covid deaths is almost unbelievable. It's not something we see with other major fatal disease.

The age-standardized death rate for college-educated whites is roughly a tenth of what Black, Latinx, and indigenous men are experiencing.
When we see the response of politicians and public health opinionators that we shan't be too cautious or too pessimistic, it's important to realize that these people are largely living in a parallel universe with a different pandemic that really isn't nearly as deadly
* Sorry, that should be a tenth of what Black, Latinx, and indigenous men WITH A HS DEGREE OR LESS are experiencing.
Read 4 tweets
14 Mar
Okay this study is getting a lot of attention, here's a quick critical review. The tl;dr is that the study does not really provide evidence that 3ft is 'just as good' as 6ft. I'll focus on two points.
First, the "3ft" schools may have 6+ ft of distancing (many have low in-person attendance). The study uses policies, not actual conditions.

The authors identify this limitation. But they don't note that the effect of the limitation would be to understate potential risks of 3ft.
Second, the interpretation of results. The confidence interval for students is IRR: 0.62, 1.33. This roughly means students in "3ft" schools might have anywhere between a 38% lower risk and 33% higher risk, than in 6ft schools
Read 6 tweets

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