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Covid 47: Waving Invisibly


Zorral
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Finally caught it. My son, who is in daycare, infected myself, my wife, and both my parents a couple of weeks ago. Everyone but my son was vaxxed and all are fine now. The vax had just been approved for my son and we hadn’t been able to get it before he caught it.

My parents, in their early 60s, definitely had it the worst. They were both laid up for a solid week. My mom narrowly skirted pneumonia. For my wife and I it was basically a 36 hour sickness with a couple of mild symptoms that lingered about a week. I was suspicious of Covid from the start because I felt exactly like I felt after getting the second shot of vaccine. Almost went to work, but that similarity made me call in and glad I did. My son had a fever for about 5 minutes and then was completely normal. Most difficult part for me was chasing an 18 month old around the house while we were sick. And you can’t leave the house.

The weirdest thing was losing smell and taste for a few days. This actually happened like 3 or 4 days in when most of the other symptoms were gone. I was eating an arugula salad when I first noticed it. It was like how I’d imagine eating a plate of leaves from the back yard would feel. I’ve never experienced anything like that before. After a couple of days I could distinguish broad flavors, ie this is sweet, or salty, or bitter but no refinement on those themes. Best thing to eat when I couldn’t taste anything was ice cream, worst were salad and chicken. 

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5 hours ago, Corvinus85 said:

So after all, his instinct of not attending Comic-Con in the first place was correct. But I'm sure some people convinced him to go. I wish him a speedy recovery.

Did he say he didn't want to attend?  I think he just cancelled his signings because that would bring him into direct contact with much more people.  I don't think he ever said he wanted to skip the panel.

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Biden Administration Plans to Offer Updated Booster Shots in September
With reformulated shots from Pfizer and Moderna on the horizon, the F.D.A. has decided that Americans under 50 should wait to receive second boosters.

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/07/28/us/politics/covid-booster-shots.html

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WASHINGTON — The Biden administration now expects to begin a Covid-19 booster campaign with retooled vaccines in September because Pfizer and Moderna have promised that they can deliver doses by then, according to people familiar with the deliberations.

With updated formulations apparently close at hand, federal officials have decided against expanding eligibility for second boosters of the existing vaccines this summer. The new versions are expected to perform better against the now-dominant Omicron subvariant BA.5, although the data available so far is still preliminary.

At this point, only Americans over 50 and those over 12 with certain immune deficiencies have been eligible for second booster doses. Although some federal officials pressed to bolster the protection of younger Americans now, officials agreed on the goal of strengthening everyone’s immunity in the fall with what is hoped to be a more effective booster, ahead of a possible winter surge of the virus. ....

 

Of course the current surge isn't a surge because, evidently, between now and the new boosters, 'rona's over and done with or something something something.

 

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5 hours ago, Zorral said:

Of course the current surge isn't a surge because, evidently, between now and the new boosters, 'rona's over and done with or something something something.

In fairness, I too would be a lot more concerned about the next winter surge (and given that winter normally is more challenging medically) than any summer surge.  And thus, I see the logic in holding off on offering under 50s a booster now, waiting till it is really needed next winter.  It was never likely that enough under 50s would accept a booster now and take another one in 3 months.

Lets hope the vaccine variant is much better at stopping transmission (although I imagine we aren't getting close to the original results of 95% effectiveness).

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6 hours ago, Zorral said:

Biden Administration Plans to Offer Updated Booster Shots in September
With reformulated shots from Pfizer and Moderna on the horizon, the F.D.A. has decided that Americans under 50 should wait to receive second boosters.

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/07/28/us/politics/covid-booster-shots.html

Of course the current surge isn't a surge because, evidently, between now and the new boosters, 'rona's over and done with or something something something.

 

Utter BS. They've had repeat bias during this crisis against medium to late 40's people. I mean I was trying to get my first shot and they gave my 22-year old nephew it a week before me. I was furious.

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Honestly if you look at the numbers it's reasonably sound decision. The vaccines aren't doing much to stop transmission of BA.4/5 at this point, antigenically they're very distinct from the ancestoral virus, so it's all about protection from severe disease. Above 50, and especially above 65 there's a very clear reduction in severity. Severe disease in the below 50 cohort becomes far less likely and gains far more marginal, so weighing that unclear increase in protection vs factors like chance of adverse reaction to the vaccine, and reduction in compliance with yet another shot in just a few months becomes an issue.

6 hours ago, Padraig said:

Lets hope the vaccine variant is much better at stopping transmission (although I imagine we aren't getting close to the original results of 95% effectiveness).

There's a good chance of that. There are a few studies now showing 3 shots+omicron infection is really quite protective (94% according to a recent, large Danish study) against symptomatic BA.5 infection. Likely that'll carry over to an mRNA boost containing the omicron spike.

Of course another emergence from a long term reservior could completely screw everything up.

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"President Joe Biden tested positive for Covid-19 again Saturday morning, per a letter from presidential physician Dr. Kevin O'Connor, in what is likely a "rebound" Covid-19 positivity that the doctor noted is "observed in a small percentage of patients treated with Paxlovid." ...."

https://www.cnn.com/2022/07/30/politics/joe-biden-covid-19-positive/index.html

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We’ve still avoided any COVID infection, mostly because we still don’t dine indoors and we wear a mask in any public indoor setting.  I don’t wear a mask during my two days in the office each week, but all employees have to test negative prior to coming into the office so it has been a reasonable risk.

We’re not eligible yet for second boosters but hopefully the new Omicron-targeted boosters will be available this fall.  But if they still don’t reduce transmission much then we’ll continue our quasi isolation.  Probably the greatest risk will be when our son starts back at high school in September.  

We definitely need more data on long COVID risk from the Omicron variants. That’s a big part of the risk calculus now and it’s pretty fuzzy still since most of the studies so far effectively covered the aftermath of Delta.

Edited by Iskaral Pust
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I was thinking about getting my second booster now-ish (I am over 50), but maybe I'll wait until the re-formulated vaccine comes out. My son is getting married in 7 days, getting boosted now probably won't really change my risk within that timeframe, except for the very small risk of a side effect laying me low. The best thing for me to do is avoid exposure to the greatest extent possible until I can on the plane to fly to the wedding destination.

Looking at stats for this part of the world, it looks like New Zealand might overtake Australia in deaths/million soon. We had out highest ever deaths reported in a single day on 30 July of 67. Indeed the last 4 days have been higher than the previous highest ever of 35 deaths reported on 29 March 2022. Though according to Worldometer Australia also had its highest ever deaths reported on 29 July, though per million it was lower than each of our most recent 4 days, though we passed Australia in worst death day back when that previous high of 35 in one day was set. With this latest day of 67 Deaths we've now had a worse death day than the US's worst single day. Translating 67 to a US equivalent is about 4,380, the US's worst day was 4,351 way back in January 2021.

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An Austrian doctors who was vocal online against anti-vaxxers/anti-maskers killed herself this week. She received death threats on a regular basis and the police did not really do anything and just suggested that she should keep her opinion to herself (the police has always supported anti-measure people as much as legally possible here and their union was very clear that they will enforce COVID rules as little as possible) and the doctors association just suggested that she should stfu and that someone else could take over her practice if the need arises anyway.

They got their wishes I guess. :(

Edited by Luzifer's right hand
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Considering how few people are getting themselves vaxed, double vaxxed, boosted and boosted again -- there is absolutly no reason for you not to be getting vaxed.

At this point I could see why one would just not bother, since the new vaccines for the later variants will be coming out in mid-September, hopefully.  That's the stated goal anyway.

 

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Flying/treveling despite being positive for Covid:

https://slate.com/human-interest/2022/08/covid-test-travel-positive-negative-stories.html

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.... “I had a negative COVID test, but I also knew there was a significant likelihood that I had been infected and therefore might be contagious anyway,” he said. “I also thought, ‘Well, I had better get back into the country while I have this negative test, because otherwise I could be stuck in Amsterdam for God knows how long.’ ”

“It turns out, I flew back to the U.S., and the next day tested positive.”

Meanwhile, his girlfriend recovered in Amsterdam, but was still testing positive. She tried to obtain a certificate of recovery, a doctor-approved statement affirming she was safe to fly. But when she ran into problems with that, she decided to just use fake results to get back to the U.S.

“It was absolutely no problem,” Brian said. “In retrospect, I wish we had done that from the very start.” ....

 

 

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5 hours ago, Zorral said:

Interestingly, unless I was misinformed by friends which is possible, I know of someone who came back to NZ (where they live) having tested positive in The Netherlands. If I am correct it would mean that there is an acceptance there will be COVID +ve people on flights (hence everyone must wear a mask), and at least for some countries people will not be stuck overseas to ride out their infection but will be allowed home to home isolate on their return.

And on a related note, the Pacific island country of Nauru (Pop ~1,500) opened its border to non-citizen international arrivals for the first time since the pandemic began earlier this year. Despite a requirement for every traveller to be vaxxed and (supervised) RAT tested within 24hrs prior to departure, the very first flight had a couple of COVID +ve people on it, and for the first time since the pandemic began Nauru has had community spread.

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