Covid News Update and What it Means for You

Note to readers: As of Feb. 28, 2021 I am no longer updating this blog on a regular basis. Vaccines are available. Scientists and the CDC can speak out now.

Popular posts on this blog:

On March 5, 2021, I was fully vaccinated. My life has changed.

Before that day I worked at home and seldom left except to go to grocery store or to my office about once a week.

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Covid Long Haulers – Affects All Ages

Persons of all ages become sick for a long time, months, and possibly years, which often starts after mild initial symptoms.

As with many other aspects of Covid, seeing is better than reading. Watch These Videos. You will not forget them.

UPDATED 1-13-21 Watch the video below to hear the stories of people in their 20s with long Covid. PBS Newshour 13 minutes

The medical community scrambles to understand COVID-19 ‘long haulers’ This video is about people in their 20s and their struggle to get help and their persistent symptoms.  

Link to more information, audio, and complete transcript.

11-24-21 Post-Acute Covid-19 Syndrome: covid “long haulers” 13 minutes

Persons with Long Covid interviewed included a personal trainer, a competitive marathon runner, and a physician treating long haulers. The video below is about people in their 40s and a New York clinic that is helping them.

What is a Covid Long Hauler and what are the symptoms?

Any person, of any age, who gets Covid can become a long hauler. Often long haulers don’t go to the hospital as they don’t feel very sick. The symptoms start later.

Long haulers test negative for SARS-CoV-2. The damage has been done, and there is nowhere for the virus to infect, and it is gone from our bodies.

Covid travels through our bodies in our blood vessels and can significantly affect many parts of the body, including the brain, heart, liver, etc., and can cause death.

Click continue reading for lots more information on symptoms, long term effects on society from disabled persons, why medical professionals took so long to recognize it as physical and not “just in your head”, etc..

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Dr. Fauci – Virus Mutation Expanding, Testing, Schools, The Future 12-29-20

Video 29 minutes. Interview with Gavin Newsom, California Governor

Find out what is happening today, and what it means for you, from a trusted source:  Dr. Tony Fauci

The Covid Virus mutation was detected in Southern California and appears to be community transmission, similar to other states. A new fast test for monitoring covid infections. We need to open schools. When will we all be vaccinated?

When can you get a Covid vaccination? Your state decides

When there is a shortage demand goes up! Remember toilet paper and cleaning supplies?

1-13-21 UPDATE

SOME STATES ARE FIRST VACCINATING 65+ OR 75+ THEN 65+. For example, CALIFORNIA JUST WENT TO 65+ STARTING 1-13-20. They are prioritized over essential workers due to the high death rates 65+ and surges and virus new mutations. After age 65, death rates go way up the older you get. See the data table below.

All, or almost all states, all will be completing Phase 1a Health care personnel (21M) and residents of long-term care facilities (3M). Total 24 Million.

See what your state is doing compared to other states – not updated for new CDC 65+ requirements above

Details by state

A new analysis examines the different approaches states are taking to manage the limited initial supply of COVID-19 vaccines and balance the desire to vaccinate those at greatest risk first with the need to ensure a fast and effective statewide vaccination effort.

Based on a review of state vaccination plans, the analysis finds that states are increasingly departing from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommendations as they move through the first three phases of distribution (known as Phases 1a, 1b, and 1c).

Overall State-by-State Data Reveals Range of Early Approaches to Managing “Vaccination Line” and Many States Departing from CDC Recommendations Source: KFF (Kaiser Family Foundation), a non-profit not affiliated with Kaiser Permanente HMO.

The analysis concludes that identifying specific priority groups may more effectively target a limited supply of vaccines but may also lead to greater difficulty in implementing vaccine distribution plans and make it harder to communicate those plans to the public. The growing variations across states suggest that a person’s place in the COVID-19 vaccine priority line will increasingly depend on where they live.

New CDC Guidelines, December 20, 2020.

The CDC recommends who gets the vaccine and when.
Your state makes the final decisions.

Who can be vaccinated in the Phases is decided by each state. Which groups get the vaccines first, second, etc., will be difficult decisions. This is already controversial. Many organizations, such as airlines, are trying to get their persons prioritized. Others want to be added to the list of essential workers in Phase 1c.

See what your state says on their web site. Follow your state and local news to find out what is being planned.

States differ widely in what they plan to do

For example, some states want to include correctional facility workers and prisoners. Other states want to include everyone 65 and older in Phase 1b. There will be many variations on how the states decide what groups go into each phase. Every state sent its distribution plan to the CDC by a deadline before the vaccines were distributed.

For info on details of the CDC Guideline’s Phases so you can compare with your state, age as a factor, and more info, click Continue Reading below.

Continue reading “When can you get a Covid vaccination? Your state decides”

A Spontaneous Moment of Joy in Tough Times 12-24-20

Watch It. Only 5 minutes. You will feel better, just like me! It made me laugh and cry. There Is Hope!!

Interviewer (Stephanie Sy):

Social distancing may have defined 2020, but it didn’t stop spontaneous moments of joy from springing up and making us feel connected.

One of those moments was captured on video.

Avalina Whitlow, a (3 year old) toddler in Portland, Oregon, and her neighborhood mailman dance together every day while separated by the window in her family’s living room. It’s a video that has gotten millions of views, including the 30 times I watched it.

And Avalina, her father, David, who made the video, and Ian Simon, their mailman, joins us now.

Click here to watch and read a full transcript plus audio

Humor posts on this blog I need more Humor and Fun and Joy posts!

Dr. Fauci Current Vaccine News: Who Gets It First and Why, Virus Mutations, Travel Bans, etc. 12-21-20

Tony Fauci speaks on current vaccine topics on the PBS Newshour 12-21-20. Judy Woodruff, my favorite interviewer, speaks with him. (13 minutes).

Topics include (in order):

Continue reading “Dr. Fauci Current Vaccine News: Who Gets It First and Why, Virus Mutations, Travel Bans, etc. 12-21-20”

Operation Warp Speed’s Tiberius Vaccine Distribution Software – Woops!!

On November 9, 2020, I watched a 60 Minutes segment (13 minutes): Operation Warp Speed: Planning the distribution of a future COVID-19 vaccine. The segment included a brief demonstration of the Tiberius software and a few interesting comments from General Perna.

Tiberius distribution software is designed to track the Covid vaccine distribution very closely by “combining data from all over the government and the shipping companies into one unified picture that everyone could see.” On November 9, it had been working for only two months.

At 8:50, the moderator, David Martin, asked “Will you be able to bang your fist on the table and say ”What happened to that shipment that was going to Good Samaritan Hospital in Baltimore?

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Coronavirus Vaccine Update With Anthony Fauci 12-11-20 – 32 minutes

This video was recorded for the JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association. Sometimes it gets technical, but most of it is understandable. See a timed topic list below the video and watch what you want. This video was recorded before the Pfizer vaccine was approved.

Scroll to listen to the topics you want

Continue reading “Coronavirus Vaccine Update With Anthony Fauci 12-11-20 – 32 minutes”

Appraiser/Educator Bryan Reynolds and COVID-19

Appraiser/Educator Bryan Reynolds and COVID-19 Podcast April 7, 2020 31 minutes

“I had a bit of a difficult time with this podcast. We like to think we’re invincible, immune, unaffected, but that’s silly. We are, at the end of the day, all vulnerable. This chat with my long time friend and partner, Bryan Reynolds, brought that realization home, in stark reality and made it tangible and personal.”

“People, we damn near lost Bryan. Please give this podcast a listen. I’ve posted it here, largely unedited. This podcast is the epitome of authentic. “

Hal Humphreys
Partner Appraiser eLearning
Free webinars on youtube

My comments:

Bryan Reynolds

Before he got Covid, I interviewed Bryan for an article I was writing. I regularly attend his free webinars on youtube. Whenever I am asked if I know anyone who has had covid with symptoms, I say yes. I don’t know anyone else who had terrible symptoms like Bryan’s. I had been writing about Covid and appraisers in my appraiser newsletters since February 2020.

Hearing about his experience directly from Bryan made Covid much more personal for me.

Listen to this podcast!! I saw a short video live on March 26. Hal Humphreys was speaking from his front yard and said that Bryan had coronavirus. I am so glad that he is recovered!

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Where Are You In the Line for Covid Vaccine – UPDATED: New CDC Guidelines December 20

New Blog Post Click here When can you get a Covid vaccination? Your state decides All CDC updates starting from December 20, 2020 are on this post.

New CDC Guidelines, December 20, 2020 for Phase 1b and 1c.
The CDC recommends who gets the vaccine and when.
Each state decides who gets the vaccine and when they get it.

Find Your Place in the Covid-19 Vaccine Line

See an infographic of where you are in the line Input your age, state, county, health risk, type of work. You may be a long way down the line, but everyone will eventually get to the top of the line. Find Your Place in the Covid-19 Vaccine Line. NOTE: this animation was done using the groups in the revised phases December before the December 1 table below but is useful as an overall guideline.

The simulation on the infographic above is one possibility, combining a proposal by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (ACIP) , with a fuller proposal by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine (NASEM), with 4 phases, released October 2. Note: both reports are detailed and technical. See below for more understandable info


Video has a very good, short explanation of Who and Why. – 3 min. 43 seconds
Click here for written information about the topics in the video, plus related links.

A Framework for Equitable Allocation of Vaccine for the Novel Coronavirus National Academy of Medicine Report (NASEM) – good summary at the top. Very long detailed technical report available.

Click “Continue Reading” below for lots more info on how the vaccine is distributed, a table of the four distribution phases., who decides which groups receive the vaccine, etc.

Continue reading “Where Are You In the Line for Covid Vaccine – UPDATED: New CDC Guidelines December 20”

New Covid-19 Vaccination Record Card

Everyone will be issued a written card that confirms their vaccination that they can carry with them. It will confirm what vaccine they had and when their next dose is due. “Let’s do the simple, easy thing first. Everyone’s going to get that.”

A Department of Health and Human Services employee holds a COVID-19 vaccine record card Nov. 13, 2020, in Washington D.C. The cards will be sent out as part of vaccination kits from Operation Warp Speed, which is an effort by several U.S. government components and public partnerships to facilitate the development, manufacturing and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, therapeutics and diagnostics. (DoD photo by EJ Hersom)

Vaccination clinics will also be reporting to their state immunization registries what vaccine was given. For example, an entity could run a query if it didn’t know where a patient got the first dose.

Good article: Vaccination cards will be issued to everyone getting Covid-19 vaccine, health officials say

My comments

Continue reading “New Covid-19 Vaccination Record Card”

Face Masks and Covid Risks in Homes

Why should you use a face mask?

SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes the disease, Covid-19 is spread by sharing breaths. When we breathe, water particles are released. The virus “attaches” to the water. The air-water particles are much larger and are easier to filter out than covid. A good visual example of what happens is exhaling when it is cold outside. Water droplets form in the air. Face Masks and Covid Risks in Homes is important to know about.

How tight the mask fits your face is very important. N95 masks are tight.  Surgical masks are loose. They protect the healthcare worker from giving bacteria or viruses to the patient during surgery.

The amount of virus exposure is a critical factor. The riskiest people are those who have symptoms such as coughing and sneezing. If infected, they expel large amounts of particles containing more virus.

What if you want more protection?

No face mask discussed in this post can keep outside air from coming in. You have to breathe the air to live.

To be safest, don’t let any person’s breath come inside your lungs. Wear a full body and head covering with oxygen supplied through a hose. The ultimate is a special containment room with no outside air coming in and air going out completely cleaned, used by pathogen researchers. Hoses run overhead from the air system to the researchers.

You may have seen recently on TV news that nurses and doctors caring for Covid patients sometimes use a portable device on their backs with long air hoses coming to their head and face coverings. They have complete body and head protection. I assume they use portable heavy-duty battery-operated air cleaners for the room air.

Which type of face masks to use inside homes

Click “continue reading” link for info about FDA approved n95 and surgical masks plus some info on cloth masks.

Continue reading “Face Masks and Covid Risks in Homes”

New Mayo Clinic research: How Face Masks Reduce Risk

New, unpublished data from researchers at Mayo Clinic found that physical separation reduces the exposure of respiratory droplets. Three feet is helpful, but 6 feet separation reduces particle counts to near baseline levels. 11-24-20. This study quantifies that the closer you are to a person, the higher the risk to both people. How Face Masks Reduce Risk, especially if both people wear face masks.

Dr. Elie Berbari and Dr. Matthew Callstrom discuss mask study.

The findings strongly support the protective value and effectiveness of widespread mask use and maintaining physical distance in helping to stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

Mannequin experiment

This was an experimental study that emulated the production of respiratory droplets by using mannequins. Some were masked and other mannequins were unmasked. The study measured the spread of those droplets at various distances.

Researchers measured how effectively masks blocked the number of aerosol particles from a masked source. The study simulated an individual with a COVID-19 infection. They also simulated the risk of an individual contracting COVID-19, when they were masked.

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Fauci: Herd Immunity. Vaccines. Testing.

Recorded 11-23-20 34 minutes. The Path Forward: Combating COVID-19 with Anthony S. Fauci. Excellent interview. Hear Fauci speak about Herd immunity, Vaccines, Testing, and a lot more. Much better than reading about it!! Plus more time for Fauci to talk about it. News “sound bytes” are too short.

The interview starts with Thanksgiving, but Fauci’s comments apply to upcoming events in the next 30 days. Unfortunately, three of our most popular socializing times are Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years’. All are in the cold winter months when we meet indoors. Many of his comments apply anytime you are gathering indoors with persons outside your household, including other family members and friends.

Some of the topics (Starts at 17 minutes after surge warnings)

  • Herd immunity plus example using an African wildebeest (antelope) herd. Understandable by everyone.
  • Vaccines. Excellent analysis from approval to the future.
  • Very good explanation of the PCR vs. antigen vs. antibody Covid tests. – Post-Covid syndrome – after the virus is gone. It can last for months—many problems.

Dr. Fauci: Surges – Don’t Give Up. Vaccine Approval Process. 11-23-20

11-23-20 Video and full transcript 12 minutes, 40 seconds. Judy Woodruff is an excellent interviewer. This interview is long enough to have more than one topic typically included in a news story video, which is very short. Topics include Surges – Don’t Give Up. Vaccine Approval Process

The headline is “Thanksgiving gatherings will put families at risk,” but this topic only lasts for the first four minutes. The recommendations apply to any time you are getting together, for any reason, from a surprise visit from an out of town friend to family events to large crowded events.

Unfortunately, three of our most popular socializing times are Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years’, all are in the cold winter months when we usually meet indoors.

Youtube video – no transcript or comments

Link to video and full transcript – PBS Newshour. Note: Fauci is an excellent speaker. Seeing him is much better than reading a transcript. I tested this on myself. The transcript is useful if you want to be sure you remember what he said.

A few brief excerpts

“We don’t have to inevitably accept a dire situation, because it is within our power to do something about it.”

“The process of the decision of whether or not a vaccine is safe and effective… is made by an independent group of scientists, vaccinologists, ethicists, statisticians.

Covid: The Good The Bad and Some Humor!!


Parody of the Song ‘Alexander Hamilton’ With Dr. Anthony Fauci as the Title Character One minute. It made me smile ;>

Fun Covid Risk Rating Chart.

The Good

Very effective vaccines will be available to many people by early winter. Phase I is for healthcare workers and others, next older people, and others. Note: the final decisions on what groups are in the phases have not been determined.

Proposed phases Who Gets The Corona Vaccine First 10-2-20

The Bad

The Bad: The pandemic is out of control everywhere, just like the 1908 Spanish flu in the fall. I live in the Bay Area, which has always had strict requirements. Everyone wears face masks and does social distancing but cases are going way up.

My Holiday season advice for this year:

Skip getting together this year. By this time next year, probably earlier, many of us will be vaccinated, especially older people at high risk.

Do not get together with anyone outside your household. That is what we are doing in my family. Of course, we have a scheduled big Zoom meet up with all of us!!

Do not celebrate with anyone who is high risk, such as older people.

Map of high risk U.S. counties, if you are traveling

Assume everyone, including yourself, has Covid, including family and friends. 50% of infected persons show no symptoms. I have been doing this since March.

Dr. Fauci says vaccine could be available to all by April

11-10-20, updated 11-17-20 Why has he changed his forecast from much later in 2121? Because with over 90% efficacy, many people will want to take the vaccines. The flu vaccines are 40-60% effective. Only about 50% of people get one. Covid is significantly more dangerous than the flu. Plus, the Covid vaccine could be available to all by April!

Return to Normalcy finally!!

Dr. Fauci has always said “cautiously optimistic” about vaccines. For the first time, he said “The results are really quite good, I mean extraordinary,”

Fauci has also said that Covid could remain a chronic problem, and face masks, distancing, etc., would still be needed for some time.

Several of the top vaccines now are mRNA. Moderna also has high efficacy. Both Pfizer and Moderna are expected to get FDA Emergency Use Authorization by the end of 2020. They are Genetic Vaccines that deliver one or more of the coronavirus’s own genes into our cells to provoke an immune response.

Click here to watch the 3 minute CNN video

Pfizer Vaccine over 90% effective – Fantastic news!!

This vaccine uses the same new messenger RNA technology as two of the other vaccines in late-stage clinical trials: Moderna and Novavax. They are Genetic Vaccines that deliver one or more of the coronavirus’s own genes into our cells to provoke an immune response. They will hopefully have similar efficacy so we will have three vaccines available. The other vaccines are based on existing dead vaccines. Pfizer Vaccine gives us hope for the future!

Return to Normalcy!

11-9-20 5 min. 18 seconds “How a COVID vaccine might work — and the challenges of distributing it” Video and transcript.

Excerpts: “We’re waiting for the independent review. The peer-reviewed science work is still unknown to us. But, assuming all of this bears out, this is an extraordinary number. This vaccine will easily get into the Hall of Fame batting .900 percent, 90 percent.

It’s stunning, actually. When you think about it, the typical flu vaccine, its efficacy is somewhere between 40 and 60 percent. But there’s still a lot of work to do here, obviously. We’re talking, in all, of 94 cases among tens of thousands, 94 cases of COVID.

Link to youtube video above (no ads and no transcripts)

PBS NewsHour video and full transcript


Continue reading “Pfizer Vaccine over 90% effective – Fantastic news!!”

Pfizer CEO on vaccine – a “game-changer” for controlling COVID-19

With an over 90% effectiveness, the number of humans for the virus to infect will decline. We will get closer to “normal”. Of course, face masks, distancing, etc. will be required until the vaccine is fully distributed. The percent of people vaccinated is the key to success but will take a while.

Video and full transcript PBS Newshour 11-9-20 5 min. 33 seconds. Excerpts: …”over 90 percent effective in preventing COVID among volunteers who had no prior infection. The data hasn’t been published or reviewed by a medical journal yet, but Pfizer released it on November 9, 2020, with the hopes of getting approval for use in the weeks ahead.” Pfizer new vaccine data.

Youtube video (no transcript)

“We can produce approximately 50 million doses this year, approximately 1.3 billion doses next year in the U.S., we will have 12.5 million people that we can protect…. People that they are more likely to get the disease, like first-line workers, very sensitive population, et cetera.”

My comments:

Hearing about the vaccine directly from the Pfizer CEO is worthwhile to find out about the background. He is not a dynamic speaker but is understandable.

Over 90% effective is fantastic!! Flu is 40-60%, with an average of 50% with annual doses. Probably why the FDA said 50% minimum. Measles is 97% effective with one dose in childhood. Half the doses are available in the U.S. The other half are in Europe as Pfizer’s partner is BioNTech, a German company. Return to Normalcy!

Continue reading “Pfizer CEO on vaccine – a “game-changer” for controlling COVID-19″