Ezra Klein speaks volumes on vaccinations

• Another terrific column from Ezra Klein, writing in the NYT: “What if the Unvaccinated Can’t Be Persuaded?”  I particularly liked this line:

Over and over again throughout this pandemic, the same pattern has played out: We haven’t done enough to suppress the virus when we still could, so we have had to impose far more draconian lockdowns and grieve far more death, once we have lost control. For this reason among many, I urge those who object to vaccination passports as an unprecedented stricture on liberty to widen their tragic imagination.

Highly recommended…

2021-08-03T15:21:40-05:00July 29th, 2021|HomeRecommended|

Blog Well Done – youcanknowthings.com

• Kristen Panthagani PhD (now completing her MD) has put together a nicely done blog. “You Can Know Things,” that serves as an explainer and fact checker, mostly for things COVID.  Check it out here.  Well done, Kristen!

Two nice examples:

Pandemic Contradictions  and this animated graphic of US Covid related deaths and vaccinations:

2021-08-03T15:22:15-05:00July 24th, 2021|HomeRecommended|

Good information on the delta variant

• Another excellent Morning item from David Leonhardt in the NYT.  He discusses virulence (severity) and contagiousness of the delta variant and does a very good job of it.  The quick summary:  it’s a lot more contagious, but probably not much (or any) more virulent. This comports with the usual evolutionary selection pressures operant in a massive pandemic – the mutant virus that spreads more easily (is more contagious) can reproduce more efficiently by infecting many more hosts. But if it kills too many hosts too quickly (more virulent) it won’t be able to reproduce and spread as efficiently.  The biggest issue for delta is that it is so contagious it will likely keep a huge portion of the world’s unvaccinated population infected for many months, and even if not more virulent, big numbers of infection mean more severely ill folks and deaths.  And of course a large pool of infected individuals provides ample opportunity for more mutations to arise that might be more contagious still,  more virulent, or escape vaccine induced immunity.

2021-07-15T17:31:40-05:00July 15th, 2021|HomeRecommended|

Consensus Statement Supporting Mandatory Healthcare Worker Covid Vaccination

I applaud the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America (SHEA), the Society for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine (AMDA), The Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC), the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA), the HIV Medicine Association (HIVMA), the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society (PIDS), and the Society of Infectious Diseases Pharmacists (SIDP) for producing their consensus statement recommending that:

“COVID-19 vaccination should be a condition of employment for all healthcare personnel. Exemptions from this policy apply to those with medical contraindications to all COVID-19 vaccines available in the United States and other exemptions as specified by federal or state law…

Prior experience and current information suggest that a sufficient vaccination rate is unlikely to be achieved without making COVID-19 vaccination a condition of employment.

The statement is consistent with federal law and regulations.”

The panel conducted an eight-week review of evidence on the three vaccines authorized for use in the United States, vaccination rates, and employment law to develop the statement.

Primum non nocere.  I believe that we in health care have a moral obligation to do all we reasonably can to protect our patients and fellow workers.


2021-07-14T10:16:58-05:00July 14th, 2021|Home, Musings|

More Trumpian Idiocy

Kara Swisher has an excellent opinion piece in the NY Times where she discusses DJT’s very lame lawsuit against Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube.  An excerpt:

“Since then, Mr. Trump has been casting around for a replacement: first via a lame blog that sputtered out and then by dribbling out rumors that he was building his own social network. As that has turned out to be complicated, his latest scheme — and it is a scheme, all right — is to file a class-action lawsuit with himself as lead plaintiff, alleging that Facebook, Twitter and YouTube have violated his First Amendment rights.

As if.

It’s clear that Mr. Trump’s ability to communicate the way he likes — loud, unfettered — has been hindered by his exile, even if his most pernicious lies about election fraud have managed to crawl, like misinformation slime mold, into a large part of the body politic. And part of me thinks he actually had gotten addicted, like a lot of us, to erupting at any time, day or night, with whatever message popped into his manic mind.”

Similar misappropriation of the 1st Amendment is perfectly encapsulated by this comic from Randall Munroe’s excellent XKCD:

2021-07-09T09:24:48-05:00July 9th, 2021|Home, Musings|

Lincoln’s wisdom

It seems a good time to reflect on some of Lincoln’s words at Gettysburg:

“-that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion — that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain — that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom — and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”

Of, by and for the people – not just the privileged few.

2021-07-04T11:30:07-05:00July 4th, 2021|Home, Musings|

On Donald Rumsfeld

I thought these sentences, written by George Packer in The Atlantic, pretty much said it all about Rumsfeld:

“Wherever the United States government contemplated a wrong turn, Rumsfeld was there first with his hard smile — squinting, mocking the cautious, shoving his country deeper into a hole. His fatal judgment was equaled only by his absolute self-assurance. He lacked the courage to doubt himself. He lacked the wisdom to change his mind.”


2021-07-02T16:34:32-05:00July 2nd, 2021|Home, Musings|
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