Hi there my beautiful lovelies! Hope you guys are doing well and staying safe. Today, I will talk to you about the lessons I have learned from the pandemic.
Mask is Good
Before the pandemic, I think we looked at masks as something that only the healthcare professional and sick people wore. However, what the pandemic taught us is that masks can also be a sign of being caring. Wearing a mask not only protects us but those surrounding up.
Masks are a case in point. They are a key COVID-19 prevention strategy because they provide a barrier that can keep respiratory droplets from spreading. Mask-wearing became more common across East Asia after the 2003 SARS outbreak in that part of the world. “There are many East Asian cultures where the practice is still that if you have a cold or a runny nose, you put on a mask,” according to Manisha Juthani, MD, a Yale Medicine infectious diseases specialist.
While there are still problems for which you need to see a doctor in person, the pandemic introduced a new urgency to what had been a gradual switchover to platforms like Zoom for remote patient visits. Telehealth has been particularly helpful for my mom. She is severely immunocompromised with many conditions. She has been hospitalized a few times over the past year due to worsening of simple infections. Hence, a virtual appointment is a form of protection for her, removing exposure to other patients.
Vaccine is Powerful
One thing that we have learned from the pandemic is how important vaccine is. After the initial surge in vaccination, the number of new cases and death due to COVID decreased dramatically, showing the effectiveness of the vaccine. However, after the decline of vaccination, and the surge of the delta variant, cases of hospitalization, and death from COVID spike dramatically. The current spike is adversely affected the unvaccinated. Unvaccinated are 11 times more likely to become sick from COVID.
Collaboration is Key
Before touting the success of the COVID vaccine let us talk about why the vaccine worked. It is because this time we saw unprecedented collaboration in the scientific community. Instead of working in silos, the scientific community around the world came together and use the weight of the talent pool to come up with a vaccine that is over 90% effective.
My dear lovelies, usually, I would like to describe research as 6 blind scientists touching various parts of an elephant and coming up with different conclusions. The success of any translational research program lies in the elimination of silos segregating scientists, doctors, and industry professionals from each other. Imagine there where no red tape hindering collaboration and was instead incentivized much life can be saved for breakthrough research.
Racial Inequalities Are Real
What this pandemic has shown us is that everyone is not treated equally, especially in a pandemic. Racial and ethnic minority groups especially have had disproportionately higher rates of hospitalization for COVID-19 than non-Hispanic white people in every age group, and many other groups faced higher levels of risk or stress. These groups ranged from working mothers who also have primary responsibility for children, to people who have essential jobs, to those who live in rural areas where there is less access to health care. If we want to be the most successful and powerful nation in the world, we have to address this issue of inequalities.
We Need To Take Mental Health Seriously
A behavioral neurologist and neuropsychiatrist believe the number of mental health disorders that were on the rise before the pandemic is surging as people grapple with such matters as juggling work and childcare, job loss, isolation, and losing a loved one to COVID-19.
According to the CDC, the percentage of adults who reported symptoms of anxiety or depression in the past 7 days increased from 36.4 to 41.5 % from August 2020 to February 2021. Other reports show that having COVID-19 may contribute, too, with its lingering or long COVID symptoms, which can include “foggy mind,” anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
My dear lovelies! I would love to know what you have learned from the pandemic. I look forward to your feedback.
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Hi there my beautiful lovelies! I hope you all are doing well and staying safe. As a public health person, I constantly try my best to keep me updated about the latest research and findings in public health. That’s why when I saw the latest article by researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital on COVID-19 and children, I was really concerned.
The article, “Pediatric SARS-CoV-2: Clinical Presentation, Infectivity, and Immune Responses” has been published in the Journal of Pediatrics. The study looked at 192 children between the age of 0 to 22, with an average age of 10.2 years. This is the most comprehensive study of COVID-19 pediatric patients to date. In this study, 49 children tested positive for COVID-19, and an additional 18 children had late-onset, COVID-19-related illness. The infected children were shown to have a significantly higher level of virus in their airways than hospitalized adults in ICUs for COVID-19 treatment, according to Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and Mass General Hospital for Children (MGHfC).
Transmissibility or risk of contagion is greater with a high viral load. And even when children exhibit symptoms typical of COVID-19, like fever, runny nose and cough, they often overlap with common childhood illnesses, including influenza and the common cold. One of the interesting finding from the study is that half of the children with COVID did not have fever. Hence, contact less temperature check as a mean of screening children in school may not be effective.According to the lead author of the study:
“… the viral loads of these hospitalized patients are significantly lower than a ‘healthy child’ who is walking around with a high SARS-CoV-2 viral load.”
My dear lovelies, the reason I am mentioning this study is due the current debate about the reopening of schools, daycare centers and other locations with a high density of children and close interaction with teachers and staff members. According to Alessio Fasano, director of the Mucosal Immunology and Biology Research Center at MGH and senior author of the manuscript. “During this COVID-19 pandemic, we have mainly screened symptomatic subjects, so we have reached the erroneous conclusion that the vast majority of people infected are adults. However, our results show that kids are not protected against this virus. We should not discount children as potential spreaders for this virus.”
Children has higher level of viral load, meaning they are more contagious, regardless of their susceptibility to developing COVID-19 infection. According to Harvard Medical School, As MGHfC pediatricians, both Yonker and Fasano are constantly getting questions from parents about the safe return of their children to school and daycare. They agree that the most critical question is what steps the schools will implement “to keep the kids, teachers, and personnel safe.” Recommendations from their study, which includes 30 co-authors from MGHfC, MGH, HMS, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, include not relying on body temperature or symptom monitoring to identify SARS-CoV-2 infection in the school setting.
Additionally, the researchers emphasized the relevance of infection control measures, including social distancing, universal mask use (when implementable), effective hand-washing protocols and a combination of remote and in-person learning. They consider routine and continued screening of all students for COVID infection with timely reporting of the results an imperative part of a safe return-to-school policy.
As we debate about school reopening, our leaders should take this study into consideration. This is the most comprehensive study to date. We should all question our state representatives and leaders. Our children are not immune from coronavirus. Just today a six year old child has become the youngest victim of COVID in Florida. Let’s not put any more children and educators’ lives at risk. I urge you to demand your lawmakers to do the right thing. Let do this for the children who don’t have a voice of their own.
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Hi there my beautiful lovelies! Hope you all are doing well and staying safe. I wish I could say the same for myself. It’s hard for me to tell you that I have been in a car accident. I am grateful that I am alive but I just wanted to make everyone aware of safe driving.
You may have heard it many many times about the important of safe driving. However, what my accident has taught me is that you can never be too careful. The first one happened a year ago, when I was driving to work. I was turning left when a left turn sign turned green and a young woman with probationary licensed t-boned me at a high speed. What was sad is that I was driving my sister’s brand new car, with less than 300 miles on it. It ended up costing more than $7,000 to fix the car and I had to take short term disability from work and go through physical therapy. I am was in so much pain.
Last week, I was driving to work again early in the morning before 5 am. I was driving in the highway when a white pick-up came towards me at what felt like at least over 90 miles per hour. My lovelies! When you change lane you try to change lane far away from the car behind you, but the pick up was driving towards me at high speed. In order to avoid collision, I want on the HOV-2 lane. I truck did the same thing again. I again tried to move the shoulder lane. As soon as I moved to the shoulder lane, I don’t remember anything else. I guess I lost control and collided with the divider.
My cousin came to pick me up and my co-worker called, and they both said that my speech was slurred and I was incoherent. He cousin took me to his car, where I passed out for few minutes. My dear beautiful lovelies! Driving safe is very important to me. I lost a cousin to drunk driver. He was only 24 and had his whole life ahead of him. The drunk driver who killed him was driving with a suspended license.
I am writing about this because, I am passionate about any public health related cause. Average number of car accidents in the U.S. every year is 6 million. That’s more than 90 death everyday in car accidents. Three million people in the U.S. are injured every year in car accidents, and around 2 million drivers in car accidents experience permanent injuries every year. Imagine the healthcare and human cost burden this create. My cousin was among the dead, and my parents, sisters (who were injured last year), and I are among the injured. The past two accident had a long term impact on my life.
My dear lovelies! I urge the following to every drivers out there. Please wear your seatbelt, drive sober, and within the speed limit. These small actions will save thousands of lives each year. I will end to today with a simple quote.
“Some car accidents are caused by the ignorance or disbelief of the fact that a driver’s eyes and mind can be thousands of kilometres apart.” ―
My dear lovelies! Please stay safe and I know together will overcome these tough times, because together we can do and overcome anything.
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