COVID Update: What did President Biden announce today and why.
The story. Follow if interested here. 1/
President Biden’s announcement today that federal workforces and on-site contractors must demonstrate that they are not infectious is as much about ensuring safe workplaces as it is driving up vaccinations. 2/
The federal workforce, over 2 million civilians, serves the public. And his commitment to keep them safe while they do that is one of his commitments as a leader. 3/
COVID Update: Is there evidence of the vaccine’s immunity waning? What does new data showing lower efficacy in Israel mean? 1/
Several weeks ago reports started coming out of Israel, the first country to drive widespread vaccination, that the vaccines were showing lower efficacy against moderate symptomatic COVID. (Against severe COVID, the vaccine is still highly protective with a slight dropoff.) 2/
A more recent study made public late last week showed lower efficacy still among the same group at 39% and severe COVID at closer to 90%, also a drop, though more modest. 3/
COVID Update July 10, 2021: 2021 will be the year of the Unvaccinated Pandemic.
Vaccinated or not, there are implications for all of us. 1/
The most tragic toll will be in the countries that have not done mass vaccinations yet.
India, Australia, Bangladesh, E Asia, Africa— places that dodged COVID in 2020 and either couldn’t afford or didn’t make an effort to procure vaccines will pay the highest toll. 2/
In the US, we were racing against Alpha & largely beat it. But imagine if we had not. A new study from Yale points to 100s of thousands of lives saved & millions of hospitalizations by having vaccines beat alpha. 3/
NEW: The CDC issues guidance on masking in K-12 schools for the Fall.
Vaccinated children do not need to wear masks; unvaccinated kids should per the guidance.
I know this raises questions & is a hot topic so I will hit a few points. 1/
It helps to begin with what CDC guidance is and what it isn’t. It provides the best recommendation based on the science but allows states, schools & individuals in some cases to weigh other factors. 2/
For example, CDC doesn’t set out to address the question of how to tell who’s vaccinated & who isn’t. Or other factors like school ventilation & desk configuration— all of which the speak about as “layers” of protection. 3/
COVID Update 7/4/21: Today is the day early in the Biden Administration where the president hoped Americans would be able to gather in small groups again after 18 months.
The odds did not seem good back then & many were skeptical but we were motivated by what we couldn’t see. 1/
It’s almost hard to remember what a shit show (sorry) it was 6 months ago. No vaccines in inventory, no appointments, bizarre rules to qualify, not enough places or vaccinators. And only 40% said they would take a shot if they could get one. 2/
When we got there, the public had been told 100 million would be vaccinated by the end of January. No one trusted a thing they heard.
I was asked to speak to the public on a regular basis. Biden had one expectation. Tell people the truth, whether the news was good or bad. 3/
I want to talk about the Biden’s $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill & what it means.
Some will say this bill represents “only 2/3” of the American Jobs Act proposals. Yes it reflect compromise.
What do we get in exchange for that compromise? So much.
1-This is the first infrastructure bill in years. It has always theoretically been of interest to both parties but no one could get it done. 2- This is a show of strength for a functional democracy when we badly need it. 3- There is more that can be done as needed.
This is the most significant investment in green technology in history:
-A national electric of 500,000 vehicle charging stations including rural communities
-largest federal investment in public transit & passenger rail in history
I want to reflect on a simple conversation I overheard. It reminds me that this last period of time has been so hard for so many. And we are still on edge because the crisis was so unexpected & the diminishment of risk feels so uncertain and so many people are still at risk.
This week @askdrfitz asked a man (Richard) at federal vaccination center what he planned to do now that he was vaccinated for an upcoming @inthebubblepod.
Richard has worked in food services his whole life. He thought before answering her & said maybe he would find a way to go part time.
When asked why he said “You know I have some deferred dreams.”
COVID Update January 14: My last nightly thread for a while.
What I want to say is it’s not time for despair. It’s time to fix things and move our country forward. 1/
There was a point in time in this pandemic when we didn’t know up from down.
There was a time when people in charge were describing up as down. 2/
We’ve seen the worst of the worst. We’ve been through hell and we’re not done. We’ve lost things that can’t be regained. We alternate between fear, anger, loss of hope, and occasional real glimpses of life.