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Monday, December 14, 2020

Vax populi?

Let's hope these prove effective and safe in the field, worldwide. I'll be getting my vax as soon as it's available. We probably won't know about immunological efficacy until mid-2021 at best, given the massive scale of the logistics.

Until sufficient vax data accrue, the only "easy" and practical ongoing public countermeasures will be those of masks, social distance observance, and thorough hand-washing.
And rational mutual good will and patience, in a fractious time of increasing lack of them here in the U.S.
…The strength of a democratic society rests on its citizens’ ability to express their views and debate their merits. In the face of scientific uncertainty, economic pain, and conflicting values, it’s understandable that we disagree. But it’s also true that we know a lot about how the virus works, and that some views are beyond reasonable debate. Their persistence reflects a triumph of tribalism and the cowardice of those elected officials who have misused their influence, failing to protect the people they serve…

As a physician, I recognize that I’m also part of a tribe—one that celebrates science, authority, expertise. It’s easy for me to empathize with the suffering I see—hospitals full, patients dying, health-care workers overwhelmed—and harder to grasp the suffering I don’t: job loss, social disintegration, rising crime. By belittling or dismissing such concerns, instead of engaging and explaining, we divide the country further and compound the challenges of bringing the pandemic to heel. The Biden Presidency is an opportunity to reset how we talk about the virus, not just at the federal level but also in statehouses, hospitals, and public-health departments across the country. Biden has said, repeatedly, that he hopes to unify Americans. Almost certainly, this will require listening and responding to the concerns of the millions of people who see and experience the pandemic from a skeptical perspective…

…rarely, if ever, have so many lives depended so directly on the project of persuasion, empathy, and understanding. Faced with the prospect of the deadliest winter in modern U.S. history, we must not give up on that project. We cannot stop talking to one another.
There were 2.9 million new US Covid-19 cases reported (JHU) across the first 14 days of December. About 1.9% of those people will die. We could easily suffer more than a total of 500,000 deaths before too long, given the current and likely trajectory.
The images of the first people to receive the covid-19 vaccine promise the end of this particular nightmare. But it’s likely that hundreds of thousands more will die in the United States before the pandemic is over. The return to life without social distancing and isolation, the end to our loneliness, could proceed with unnecessary slowness because the Trump Administration did not secure as many doses of the vaccine as it could have. We have come to expect this President to fail Americans, catastrophically, and we have become accustomed to understanding these failures through two traits of his Administration: cruelty and militant incompetence. But there is a third one, characteristic of many, if not all, autocracies: indifference…"Masha Gessen
What was on my mind a year ago here?
America Is Running Out of Nurses
Travelling nurses have been moving from one hot spot to another. What happens when the hot spots keep multiplying?
More from Dr. Khullar.
Click the book cover image.



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