The country’s daily infection rate – about 55,000 a day – is still less than a third of what it was during Omicron’s peak, but cases are rising as fast as they fell just two weeks earlier, when self-isolation rules for infected people ended. In Great Britain.
The situation has caught the attention of US public health experts, who fear that the rise in infections in Europe could be a harbinger of what will happen in the US. Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told CNN that his British colleagues attributed the rise in cases to a combination of three factors: a more contagious variant of BA.2; the opening of society and the communication of people in enclosed spaces without masks; weakening of immunity from vaccination or previous infection.
“Without a doubt, the openness of the society and the communication of people indoors is clearly something that is contributing, as well as a general weakening of the immune system, which means that we really need to stay alert and follow the pattern here.” Fauci said. “So that’s why we’re watching it very closely.”
In the UK, 86% of eligible people are fully vaccinated and 67% are boostered, compared to 69% of eligible vaccinated and 50% revaccinated in the US. “What we’re seeing happening in the UK might be better than what we should expect here,” Altoff said.
Even though the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) lifted masking recommendations for much of the country two weeks ago, it’s vital to remain vigilant. “We need to remain diligent in terms of monitoring and testing and be prepared to possibly reverse most of the relaxation of these restrictions,” said Deborah Fuller, a microbiologist at the University of Washington.
“We cannot let our guard down because the message people get when they say ‘we are lifting restrictions’ is that the pandemic is over. And it’s not.”
YOU ASKED. WE ANSWERED.
Q: What factors should people consider if they need to return to work in person?
“People need to consider three factors. What is your medical condition and the health status of other members of your family? What is the level of Covid-19 in your community? And finally, what precautions are already being taken at your workplace?” Wen added. “Some offices require proof of vaccination, require regular testing, distancing and ventilation. And remember that masks are always available, even if they are not required,” she said.
READINGS OF THE WEEK
White House warns Congress of possible disruptions in Covid response
The latest warnings signal increased pressure from the Biden administration ahead of key funding deadlines. Additional funding for federal efforts to combat Covid-19 was originally included in the recent massive comprehensive spending package, but was excluded due to disagreement over how those costs would be reimbursed.
As European cases soar daily, a senior Biden administration official has warned that Congress’s failure to pass additional Covid-19 funding bill could leave the US unprepared for a potential new surge. “Our scientific and medical experts have made it clear that in the next couple of months we may see an increase in Covid cases here in the US, just as we are seeing an increase in cases abroad right now,” the senior official said, adding: “We are worse prepared without additional funding than we would otherwise be.”
In China, 37 million people are in lockdown as the country faces its worst outbreak since Wuhan.
China has been fighting the worst Covid-19 outbreak since the early days of the pandemic. This outbreak has spread much faster than previous waves of less contagious variants, with daily cases skyrocketing from a few dozen in February to more than 5,100 on Tuesday, the highest since the outbreak in early 2020 in Wuhan.
Authorities and state media say it is still unclear how the first few outbreaks started. But several factors, including imported cases and the prevalence of the Omicron variant, have exacerbated the severity of the outbreak across the country.
She had a near death experience due to Covid. But it wasn’t a glimpse of the afterlife that changed her.
They were spiritually transformed not by a glimpse of the afterlife, but by what they saw in this life as they struggled to stay alive after being hit by Covid.
Stories of this type usually don’t get books or movies. However, people like Paige Diner, 41, have incredible survival stories that can help us all.
Start with the power of gratitude. It’s a cliché for some, but not for many Covid survivors. “I often think about how much we take for granted,” Diner wrote in a Facebook post shortly after she was released from the hospital in December, “from being able to walk or swallow to breathe.”
- Masks need to be stored in a dry place, said Christopher Sulmonte, project administrator for the Johns Hopkins Biosecurity Division at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. “Personally, I use a paper bag without sealing it because it is important that it is recirculated with air,” he said.
- Store your face coverings in a perforated plastic container.
- As for sheet masks, be sure to wash them like you would any other piece of clothing you have.
- If you take a break from wearing a mask, be sure to check the expiration date, it can often be found on the outside of the boxes.