Wednesday CoronaBuzz, July 21, 2021: 30 pointers to updates, useful stuff, research news, and more.

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Wednesday CoronaBuzz, July 21, 2021: 30 pointers to updates, useful stuff, research news, and more.

Hi. I was really hoping I was done with this, but Delta is here to stay and I find myself compelled once again to rake information into piles and send it out with this newsletter.

A couple of changes. I am no longer posting these items to Twitter. Frankly my mental health is tattered enough that I don’t care to put additional stress on it in the form of Twitter replies. You can get an RSS feed of CoronaBuzz items at https://rbfirehose.com/tag/coronavirus/feed/ .

Also, they’re not going to be daily. Maybe two or three times a week. When I gather at least 30 items I’ll send it out.

Still love you, still worried about you, still desperately hoping you got vaccinated.

UPDATES

South Florida Sun-Sentinel: New COVID cases nearly double in Florida — the worst in the nation. “A new White House report shows Florida — one of the earliest states to abandon COVID-19 precautions — leads the country with 21.4% of all new COVID cases as of July 14. Just four states, including Florida, accounted for more than 40% of the nation’s new cases this past week. Officials fear vaccination gaps and the highly transmissible Delta variant will lead to even more cases in the near future.”

Daily Beast: U.S. Hits Highest Number of Daily New Coronavirus Cases in the World Again: Nearly 80,000. “The United States recorded 79,310 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, according to Johns Hopkins University. The number is the highest in the world, exceeding recorded totals from Indonesia (54,000), the United Kingdom (51,949), and Brazil (45,591), and doubling that of India (38,079). ”

BBC: Canada’s vaccination rate overtakes US. “Canada has overtaken the US in second dose vaccination rates, after months of lagging behind its southern neighbour. As of 16 July, 48.45% of Canadians are fully vaccinated against Covid-19, compared with 48.05% of Americans.”

AP: India’s pandemic death toll could be in the millions. “India’s excess deaths during the pandemic could be a staggering 10 times the official COVID-19 toll, likely making it modern India’s worst human tragedy, according to the most comprehensive research yet on the ravages of the virus in the South Asian country. Most experts believe India’s official toll of more than 414,000 dead is a vast undercount, but the government has dismissed those concerns as exaggerated and misleading.”

MISINFORMATION / FACT-CHECKING

New York Times: ‘Anti-Sex’ Beds in the Olympic Village? A Social Media Theory Is Soon Debunked. “The coronavirus has forced a number of social distancing measures at the Summer Games, but the recyclable cardboard beds provided by organizers are not one of them.”

SOCIETAL IMPACT

The Guardian: The era of Covid ambivalence: what do we do as normalcy returns but Delta surges?. “For many, the exhilaration of long-overdue hugs is offset by the anxiety of interaction. Optimism bumps against grief. Gratitude, tempered by the sobering rise of the highly contagious Delta variant of the Covid-19 virus (and frustration with the vaccine hesitation that has enabled its rapid spread in the US). As spring turned to summer, new uncertainties took the place of others. Hope keeps pace with pain. A new phase of the pandemic is upon us: the dual reality.”

ABC News: Nearly 120,000 children in US have lost a primary caregiver to COVID-19: Internal CDC data. “An estimated 119,000 children across the country have lost a primary caregiver due to COVID-19 associated death, and more than 140,000 children experienced the death of a primary or secondary caregiver, defined as co-residing grandparents or kin, according to data in an internal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention document obtained exclusively by ABC News.”

ACTIVISM / PROTESTS

CNET: French anti-vax protesters condemned for using Nazi icon. “Over 100,000 French citizens protested new restrictions on the unvaccinated. Some wore yellow stars, comparing the new laws to Nazi treatmeant of Jews.”

HEALTH CARE / HEALTH CARE PROVIDERS

BBC: Covid: Global healthcare workers missing out on jabs. “Health and care workers are being ‘left behind’ in efforts to vaccinate the world against Covid-19, nursing leaders say. There were promises they would be among the first to be jabbed. But the International Council of Nurses (ICN), which represents 27 million professionals, says tens of millions have not even had one dose.”

INSTITUTIONS

BUSINESS / CORPORATIONS

CNBC: Nearly 3,000 guests, crew disembark cruise in Singapore after positive Covid case left them confined in cabins. “Nearly 3,000 passengers and crew are disembarking a Dream Cruises ship on Wednesday after being confined in their cabins when a passenger tested positive for Covid-19.”

BBC: Nike trainer output at key factory hit by Covid outbreak. “Production at some of Nike’s largest plants in Vietnam has been disrupted as Covid has spread through factories. The company refused to comment on whether store supplies would see shortages as a result of the outbreak. About half of Nike’s shoes were manufactured in Vietnam in the last financial year, so this will mean challenges for its supply chain.”

TechCrunch: Amazon is now selling its own COVID-19 test kits for $39.99 in the U.S.. “Amazon announced this morning it would begin to sell its own brand of COVID-19 at-home tests to Amazon shoppers in the U.S. The test retails for $39.99 on the Amazon.com website and is available to any U.S. customer without a prescription.”

WORLD / FEDERAL GOVERNMENT

CBS News: Biden accuses social media platforms of “killing people” with spread of COVID misinformation. “President Biden leveled an extraordinary charge against Facebook and other social media platforms on Friday, claiming they are ‘killing people’ by allowing coronavirus misinformation to spread. The accusation comes as health officials are voicing concern over rising cases of the virus and stalling vaccination rates.”

CBS News: Biden nets positive marks for handling pandemic, but vaccine resistance, Delta concern remains – CBS News poll. “Six months into President Biden’s administration, Americans are less apprehensive about the year than they were at the start of it. They think the battle against the pandemic is going somewhat well, though that’s tempered now by concern about the Delta variant. Most say their finances are okay, and most parents think the tax credit will help. On the personal front, Biden gets positive marks, particularly for his handling of the pandemic and how he handles himself. But issues clearly loom.”

INDIVIDUALS / BANDS / GROUPS

BBC: Twitter suspends Marjorie Taylor Greene over ‘misleading’ Covid posts. “Twitter has temporarily suspended Republican lawmaker Marjorie Taylor Greene for posting ‘misleading’ information about coronavirus. The social media giant said her account would be in ‘read-only mode’ for 12 hours.”

Reuters: Australia to deport Britain’s Katie Hopkins after quarantine breach. “Australia will deport controversial British commentator Katie Hopkins after she admitted breaching the country’s quarantine rules, Australia’s minister for home affairs said on Monday.”

SPORTS

AP: Yanks, Rockies deal with COVID surges after All-Star break. ” For the first time in months, COVID-19 is creating chaos around Major League Baseball. The Yankees and Rockies are dealing with coronavirus outbreaks sidelining a total of 10 players and two coaches, including New York slugger Aaron Judge and Colorado manager Bud Black, as baseball attempts to resume play following its All-Star break.”

Washington Post: Two athletes in Olympic Village test positive for coronavirus, the first instances of athlete infections there. “Two athletes residing in the Olympic Village tested positive for the coronavirus, officials said Sunday, the first instances of athlete infections inside the Village, underscoring growing fears about the spread of the virus during the Games that are set to begin in five days.”

New York Times: Kara Eaker, U.S. women’s gymnastics alternate, tests positive for Covid days before Tokyo Olympics. “Kara Eaker, an alternate on the U.S. women’s gymnastics team, tested positive for the coronavirus just days before the Tokyo Olympics were set to begin, officials said Monday.”

K-12 EDUCATION

CNN: American Academy of Pediatrics recommends masks in schools for everyone over 2, regardless of vaccinations. “The American Academy of Pediatrics released new Covid-19 guidance for schools on Monday that supports in-person learning and recommends universal masking in school of everyone over the age of 2, regardless of vaccination status — a stricter position than that taken this month by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”

HEALTH

NBC News: ‘Horrific’: 2 unvaccinated Covid patients require lung transplant, partial lung removal. “The families of two unvaccinated men who underwent major lung surgery after they contracted the coronavirus are encouraging others to get the shots and re-evaluating their own vaccine hesitancy.”

ABC News: As COVID-19 surges again, what experts say about the millions of unvaccinated. “As Americans start packing bars and live venues once again in the age of mass COVID-19 vaccination — with many abandoning masks and social distancing measures — a concerning reality check is taking place.”

Washington Post: In this summer of covid freedom, disease experts warn: ‘The world needs a reality check’. “Coronavirus infections are surging in places with low vaccination rates. SARS-CoV-2 is continuing to mutate. Researchers have confirmed the delta variant is far more transmissible than earlier strains. Although the vaccines remain remarkably effective, the virus has bountiful opportunities to find new ways to evade immunity. Most of the world remains unvaccinated. And so the end of the pandemic remains somewhere over the horizon.”

ABC News: Statistics show the stark risks of not getting vaccinated against COVID-19. “A stark case in point: During June, every person who died of COVID-19 in Maryland was unvaccinated, according to a spokesperson for the governor’s office. There were 130 people who died of COVID-19 in Maryland in June, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”

RESEARCH

New York Times: One Dose of J.&J. Vaccine Is Ineffective Against Delta, Study Suggests. “The new study has not yet been peer reviewed nor published in a scientific journal, and relied on laboratory experiments. But it is consistent with observations that a single dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine — which has a similar architecture to the J.&J. vaccine — shows only about 33 percent efficacy against symptomatic disease caused by the Delta variant.”

OUTBREAKS

New York Times: In Undervaccinated Arkansas, Covid Upends Life All Over Again. “While much of the nation tiptoes toward normalcy, the coronavirus is again swamping hospitals in places like Mountain Home, in a rural county where fewer than one-third of residents are vaccinated.”

CRIME / SECURITY / LEGAL

Slate: Inside the Weird, Thriving World of Fake Vaccine Cards. “First, people cheated to receive a COVID vaccine shot. Now, they cheat to not get one. As some venues, businesses, workplaces, and gatherings of all kinds ask for vaccination proof, people who wish to avoid the shot are turning to the black market to buy vaccination documents.”

BBC: Covid-19: Ireland’s top medical officers targeted by abusive calls. “Two of Ireland’s most senior public health officials have received abusive phone calls, which government ministers described as sickening and ‘appalling’. Chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan and his deputy Dr Ronan Glynn were reportedly targeted on Friday night.”

OPINION

New York Times: Dolly Parton Tried. But Tennessee Is Squandering a Miracle.. “The politicization of public discourse around immunization is not unique to Tennessee. The question isn’t why Tennessee is so out of step with science. The question is why politics has anything to do with health policy at all.”

New York Times: How to Reach the Unvaccinated. “On the one hand, there is clearly a hard core of vaccine resistance, based around tribal right-wing identity, that’s being nourished by both online conspiracy theories and the bad arguments and arguers that some Fox News hosts and right-wing personalities have elevated. On the other hand, the ranks of the unvaccinated are much larger than the audience for any vaccine-skeptical information source and far more varied than the stereotype of Trump voters drinking up QAnon-style conspiracies.”

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