December 2, 2020

Maybe

Today the US passed 100,000 hospitalizations for COVID-19, the highest total yet and a big jump over the past month. On November 2, 48,000 people were hospitalized. The number is surely going to climb. The biggest concern is that now the surge is so widespread, there is no depth elsewhere to send support, like the extra support New York City received during its springtime surge. Doctors and nurses traveled from other parts of the country to help. Now those workers are home, facing a deluge of their own, with little back up available, and little support for them.

It didn’t have to be this way, it really didn’t. Most people know what to do, but many still protest and claim to doubt the pandemic is real. This puts everyone in their community in danger, but especially the health care workers, who will care for them when they get sick. This graphic from the New York Times illustrates that the science is settled of masking and how it works. There should be no debate. But still there is the county in Virginia that voted to be “free” and will not follow their governor’s reasonable safety measures.

How can that happen? Some think it is because the effects of COVID-19 are not visible, no one sees the ICU’s, the sick people, the bodies, people only see the empty ER’s and empty regular hospital rooms. Historians often say that the tide of public approval toward the Viet Nam war turned when the Television news programs had the death counts and showed the bodies coming home. But the body counts had a down side too, because the deaths became numbers and not real people, and numbed some people to the numbers of dead. When people are actually affected by the illness themselves or of a family member, they do realize the dangers, sometimes. Dis-information is rampant and hard to fight against.

Maybe if we tell people their teeth will fall out, they will finally believe COVID-19 is real. Although warning about hair loss hasn’t helped either. Sigh.

The CDC today loosened up recommendations for isolation after COVID-19 exposure to 10 days, down from 14. It can be reduced further to 7 days if you can get tested. But they still want people to stay home and avoid travel over the holidays. This will help get people back to work after exposures.

Wash your hands, cover your nose, keep safe six, and remember vaccines are coming.

And finally, my caveat is that this is my experience and my opinions, which are subject to change as more information is available, and not related to the organization I work for. Thanks for reading.

https://covidtracking.com/data/national/hospitalization

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/10/30/science/wear-mask-covid-particles-ul.html

https://www.seattletimes.com/nation-world/nation/rural-virginia-county-officials-pass-resolution-rejecting-tyranny-of-governors-coronavirus-restrictions/

https://theconversation.com/death-by-numbers-how-vietnam-war-and-coronavirus-changed-the-way-we-mourn-137675

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/26/health/covid-teeth-falling-out.html

https://www.medpagetoday.com/infectiousdisease/covid19/89938

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/12/02/health/coronavirus-quarantine-period.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/more/scientific-brief-options-to-reduce-quarantine.html

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/travel-during-covid19.html