October COVID-19 Column
A- The FDA and the CDC have announced that certain groups of people are at higher risk for serious COVID-19 infection. They announced that one can get an extra dose of the Pfizer vaccine as a “booster”. We have to ask who in this world is eligible for the extra dose? First of all, a booster is an extra dose of vaccine giving an extra-protection against COVID-19. The extra dose is especially important for th elderly and the people with a weak immune system with diseases like Diabetes, Cancer, Obesity etc to help them face the new variants.
You can’t receive the Pfizer vaccine booster dose if you have taken the Moderna or the Johnson and Johnson but you can get a Pfizer booster if you have received the Pfizer vaccine already. Soon all the Companies should have a booster shot disponible for everybody. The Booster shot for Pfizer can be available at pharmacies free of charge as well. Someone may think that because they did not take the vaccine, they can go ahead and take the booster. This is not recommended.
According to the FDA, the Pfizer booster is one full dose of the Pfizer vaccine but can be different for other vaccine whenever they become available. Those booster shots are destined to immunocompromised individuals or individual at risk unable to build up the proper level of immunity following the 2 previous doses administered.
We do not know if these doses may need to be repeated on a yearly basis like any Flu shot by example. We are still learning about COVID-19. It is important to member that everybody react differently when receiving a vaccine. Arm soreness, body aches or other side effects. Again, the vaccine is very safe and you will benefit in taking it even with the mild side effects.
B- A new strain of COVID-19 was discovered in Kentucky after being reported in Japan a month ago. This strain was discovered in members of one Japanese family. None in this family has ever travelled out of Japan. Residents at a nursing home tested positive for it while more than 50% of the residents and staff received the two doses of vaccination. Question about reduced protective immunity was risen. More than 10,000 infected cases have been discovered. Many scientists are concerned about this mutation. But the fourth wave of COVID-19 pandemic appears to be cooling off while we are observing a 3- months total case the first time down in numbers of infected. Some state that the pandemic could end at the end of the year
C- Still the USA leads the world in number of COVID-19 cases. In our schools, many teachers have given their resignation and ask for their retirements all across the country. The school system has to face the increase number of vacancies while the children are getting ready to return to school. In Los Angeles by example, there is more than 500 vacancies. In Houston, they are seeing as much with 300 hundred. The smaller districts are also showing deficiencies. Students may not have perman.ent teachers. Other schools are ready to adopt virtual learning to compensate while administrators and teachers are even working more to handle school activities. Psychologists have to handle so many with emotional problems. A teacher shortage is already predicted and the school system will have to deal with.
D- People who do not get vaccinated will certainly immunize themselves naturally because the Delta variant is so contagious. Moderna is developing a booster shot as well. In the world heaty nations almost 80% of their population have already received the vaccination, or at least one dose. Many rich countries are wasting excess of vaccination without distributing to the poor nations.
E- American Samoa reported their first case of COVID-19 and soon the passenger was quarantined and isolated. This case was discovered among travelers already quarantined in provenance of the American Samoa Islands. Although that American Samoa recommend all travelers to be vaccinated and quarantined upon arrival. The resident contracted the virus during the traverse because he was vaccinated and tested negative for COVID-19 prior to boarding the flight. All the other 217 people were tested and quarantined as well. All flights in provenance of other territories have been suspended to protect the suzerainty. 500$ of the population is vaccinated.
F- A nationwide study just found that the Moderna vaccine is more effective in preventing COVID-19hospitalizations the two other vaccines Pfizer and J and J. After 120 days, it was found that the Moderna vaccine provided 92% effectiveness against hospitalization whereas the Pfizer vaccine’s effectiveness was found to be 77%. They believe that the difference between the two vaccines may be due to the contain of mRNA which is higher in the Moderna.
G- The US Customs and Border Patrol has sized more than 6000 fake COVID-19 vaccination cards especially from China. Since the month of May, these cards have been intercepted in many states like Texas, Maryland, Missouri, New-York etc. threatening the economy of the country. Buying those cards are illegal and violate federal laws and regulations.
H- By December 15, 2021 the US Army set a deadline for all active-duty soldiers to get vaccinated against COVID-10 but it is extended for the reserves and the National Guard until June 30, 2022. Anybody unvaccinated will be then counseled by their superiors and could face non administrative or non-judicial punishment included discharged or relieved of duties. There are 485,000 active-duty servicemen in the Army, 189,500 in the Reserve and 336,000 national guards to fall under these rules.
I- In the United States, at least 26 states can say that 50% of their inhabitants are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 but only three states can claim having two-third of their population vaccinated. These states are Connecticut, Massachusetts and Vermont. 54% of the US population is vaccinated and 74% of people aged 12 and older have received at least one dose. Colorado has the lowest COVID-19 cases rate maybe because 75% of its population have received at least one dose as reported by CNN. Unvaccinated people were 11 times more likely to die from the disease when the Delta strain was found to be the dominant strain.
J- In the world, there are more than 230.42 million of cases while 4.72 million deaths were recorded. In the United States 42.62 million cases of COVID-19 and more than 682,460 deaths recorded.
Maxime Coles MD