A ‘terrible’ month of Covid-19 is ahead, says the doctor, but preventive measures will still be key
A ‘terrible’ month of Covid-19 is ahead, says the doctor, but preventive measures will still be key

A ‘terrible’ month of Covid-19 is ahead, says the doctor, but preventive measures will still be key

“I do not buy the idea that we will all get Omicron, and therefore I just give up trying. I think that is wrong,” Dr. Robert Wachter, president of the Department of Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, told CNN’s Erin Burnett on Wednesday.

It’s likely that “the next month will be awful,” he said. But that does not mean everyone has to assume they will catch the virus, he said, noting the pattern of Omicron infections in the UK and South Africa.

The prognosis could mean an average of 3,526 Covid-19 deaths per day, up from a current average of 1,251 each day, based on data from Johns Hopkins University.

To date, Covid-19 has killed at least 832,148 people and infected about 57.8 million in the United States, according to JHU’s database.
Health facilities climbing to deal with staff shortages as hospital admissions for Covid-19 are increasing for both adults and children.

In the Kansas City metro area, hospitals are postponing certain surgeries because of employees who are sick with Covid-19, according to more than a dozen doctors at a news conference Wednesday.

“This is without a doubt the hardest wave that the medical community has been exposed to since the pandemic began in 2020,” according to Dr. Steven Stites, Chief Physician at the University of Kansas Health System.

Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly signed a state of emergency on Thursday to address some of the shortage of health care workers and restrictions caused by the increase.

Frontline workers across other industriessuch as education, retail and food services, also face an increased risk of exposure where employees infected with Covid-19 need time to recover.

In Massachusetts, senior administrators from Boston Public Schools stepped into classrooms on Wednesday to help fill hundreds of teachers who have called out.

“Some of our schools find that more than a quarter of staff are absent due to positive Covid tests or other problems,” said Boston Mayor Michelle Wu.

In Chicago, about 340,000 students will miss another school day on Thursday due to a showdown between the administration and the teachers’ union on personal learning.
The best way to keep jobs secure is to encourage mask wearing and vaccinations, said Arthur Caplan, director of medical ethics at the NYU Grossman School of Medicine.
That the safety of others is also critical and well-documented in our society, Caplan said CNN’s Anderson Cooper on Wednesday

“We have restricted passive smoking, if you will, in public spaces due to passive smoking,” he said. “You can lose your ability to drive if you engage in risky behavior. So we do not live in a society that just says, ‘freedom means I can do what I want’ or ‘freedom means that I have choices without any responsibility or responsibility. ‘ When you hurt others, our mothers, endanger others, you have to take some responsibility. “

A health care professional at UMass Memorial Medical Center is caring for a Covid-19 intensive care patient in Worcester, Massachusetts.

Boosters approved for those up to 12 years of age

Access to boosters has been expanded to more children when the CDC on Wednesday updated its recommendations for the Pfizer / BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine booster to include children as young as 12, at least five months after completing the primary vaccine series.

The decision follows the US Food and Drug Administration’s previous extension of the emergency use license for the booster.

“It is vital that we protect our children and teens from COVID-19 infection and the complications of serious illness,” said CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky in a statement.

The CDC recommends Pfizer / BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine boosters for children as young as 12 years old

More than 72 million people are fully vaccinated and boosted against Covid-19 according to CDC data. That’s less than half of the nearly 180 million people eligible to receive their booster shots and about one-fifth of the total U.S. population.

At least 67.5 million people aged 5 and up have not received their first dose of the vaccine according to the latest CDC data.

No vaccine is currently approved in the United States for children under 5 years of age, but ongoing studies may produce data for analysis in the first half of 2022, said NIAID Director Dr. Anthony Fauci Wednesday.

The CDC will hold an independent briefing

The CDC will also hold a telecom briefing on Friday to provide updates on the pandemic. Walensky is scheduled to speak during this briefing.

It’s been months since the CDC held a briefing like this. The agency usually attends joint briefings with White House or National Institutes of Health officials, such as Fauci. Its last independent Covid-19 briefing was on July 27, 2021.

But the CDC has faced renewed criticism in recent weeks over confusion surrounding its testing and isolation guidelines for people testing positive for Covid-19.

In late December it shortened the recommended times that people should isolate when they have tested positive for the virus from 10 days to five days, if they have no symptoms – and if they wear a mask around others for at least five more days.

This week, the agency updated this guide after criticism from external medical experts, saying that if people have access to a Covid-19 test and want to take it, the best approach is to use a quick test towards the end of their five days isolation period.

Expert: If you have symptoms, suppose you have Covid

A new preprint study involving a small group of patients published Wednesday found that it can take several days for people infected with the Omicron variant to test positive for Covid-19 with a rapid antigen test after also being tested positive with a PCR test, raising concerns about the reliability of rapid tests to detect Omicron Covid-19 cases when infections are still early.

Researchers found on the day before and the day immediately after a positive PCR result that rapid antigen tests were all negative, even though 28 of the 30 people in the study had enough virus in their body to transmit it to others.

On average, the time from a first positive PCR test to a first positive rapid antigen test was 3 days, the study found.

Union supporters go out on a limb at Buffalo Starbucks, citing health problems

“The political implication is that rapid antigen testing may not be as suitable for the purpose of routine workplace screening to prevent asymptomatic spread of Omicron compared to previous variants, given the shorter time from exposure to infectiousness and lower infectious doses sufficient for transmission, “wrote the authors. The results are considered preliminary and have yet to be peer-reviewed.

People who experience Covid-19 symptoms should behave as if they are positive, said epidemiologist Dr. Michael Mina Thursday.

“The important thing is when you feel symptoms, suppose you are positive at this point, especially with Omicron, which is so prevalent,” Mina said in an interview with eMed, where he is head of science. “Suppose you are positive, suppose you are contagious, and wait a day or two before taking that test, for it may take a day before the test becomes positive. It may be two days.”

For people with access to quick testsThe FDA stated that tests should be used as approved after several health experts on social media suggested that quick tests may be more accurate if the throat is dried instead of nasal passages.

“The FDA has noted safety concerns regarding self-collection of throat swabs, as they are more complicated than nose swabs – and if used incorrectly, they can cause harm to the patient,” an FDA spokesman said in a statement Wednesday. “The CDC recommends that throat swabs be collected by a trained health care provider.”

CNN’s Katherine Dillinger, Michael Nedelman, Virginia Langmaid, Naomi Thomas, Deidre McPhillips, John Bonifield, Jamie Gumbrecht, Michelle Watson, Paradise Afshar, and Sylvia Walker contributed to this report.

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