Wednesday, September 1, 2021

COVID-19 and the Industrial Hygienist

COVID-19 and the Industrial Hygienist:

I did not realize toilets were such a problem.  This is from a page run by the AIHA, who are Industrial Hygienists.

STEVE WELTY:
One unique example would be toilet aerosolization. Although diarrhea does not occur in the majority of COVID-19 cases, the coronavirus has been isolated in stool samples, and numerous studies have demonstrated the ability of biological particles to be aerosolized through toilet flushing. For a virus, a flushing toilet event is like being whipped up in a frothing undercurrent and launched airborne in a water droplet. That droplet quickly evaporates, becoming a “droplet nuclei,” which can stay airborne for hours and also be sucked upwards into the bathroom fan’s exhaust. Toilet-aerosolized droplet nuclei lifted into the breathing zones of unsuspecting individuals can be breathed into their lungs. Studies in the
Journal of Applied Microbiology
(JAM) and the
American Journal of Infection Control
(AJIC) indicate that for seven to twelve flushes later, airborne microbes are still being aerosolized.
For a virus, a flushing toilet event is like being whipped up in a frothing undercurrent and launched airborne in a water droplet. That droplet quickly evaporates, becoming a “droplet nuclei,” which can stay airborne for hours and also be sucked upwards into the bathroom fan’s exhaust. Toilet-aerosolized droplet nuclei lifted into the breathing zones of unsuspecting individuals can be breathed into their lungs. Studies in the
Journal of Applied Microbiology
(JAM) and the
American Journal of Infection Control
(AJIC) indicate that for seven to twelve flushes later, airborne microbes are still being aerosolized.

Monday, August 30, 2021

What Does the Delta Variant Mean for Kids and Covid? | WIRED

What Does the Delta Variant Mean for Kids and Covid? | WIRED

The much bigger problem is how fast Delta moves through an unvaccinated population, Fisman adds. Say that the variant’s arrival means doubling the hospitalization rate for kids with Covid—less than 1 percent of cases in children under 18 before Delta’s arrival, according to the CDC. That’s still a relatively small number. But with a virus now transmitting at a more aggressive clip, the growing denominator—the total number of cases—becomes meaningful. “That means those rare events happen in greater numbers,” Fisman says. “That’s the big worry.”

Evidence mounts that people with breakthrough infections can spread Delta easily

Evidence mounts that people with breakthrough infections can spread Delta easily

Even if you're vaccinated, you can carry the virus to young children and the immunocompromised, potentially killing people.  Let's say there's a healthy person who chose to not get vaccinated because they occupy what I call an "Information Sewer."  Are you so angry at that person's willful ignorance that you're willing to sentence them to death?

A preliminary study has shown that in the case of a breakthrough infection, the Delta variant is able to grow in the noses of vaccinated people to the same degree as if they were not vaccinated at all. The virus that grows is just as infectious as that in unvaccinated people, meaning vaccinated people can transmit the virus and infect others.

What Does the Delta Variant Mean for Kids and Covid? | WIRED

What Does the Delta Variant Mean for Kids and Covid? | WIRED

The largest group is little kids, those under 12, because no vaccine has been authorized for them. But the picture doesn’t get much better in older children. Only a third of kids aged 12 to 15 in the US are fully vaccinated, according to figures gathered by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the figure remains below average for people in their late teens and twenties. So it’s little surprise that 22 percent of the US cases reported in the third week of August, 180,000 in all, were diagnosed in children, up from a 14 percent share overall since the pandemic began. That weekly number is double what it was at the beginning of the month, and that’s putting strain on pediatric units across the US, especially in places where the highly transmissible Delta variant is raging.

Another good reason to mask up.  You're hurting children.  If you're not masking and distancing, you're hurting children and the immunocompromised.  You're choosing to hurt them. 

In NYC the vaccine effectiveness has dropped from 93% to 79%. Wear a mask.

New COVID-19 Cases and Hospitalizations Among Adults, by Vaccination Status — New York, May 3–July 25, 2021

During May 3–July 25, 2021, the overall age-adjusted vaccine effectiveness against hospitalization in New York was relatively stable (91.9%–95.3%). The overall age-adjusted vaccine effectiveness against infection for all New York adults declined from 91.7% to 79.8%.

Some of the breakthrough cases are particularly nasty.  Masking, social distancing, handwashing--all the stuff we learned during the first round applies now.  Do it for the immunocompromised.

Sunday, August 29, 2021

New COVID variant detected in South Africa, most mutated variant so far - The Jerusalem Post

New COVID variant detected in South Africa, most mutated variant so far - The Jerusalem Post: The study also found that the C.1.2 lineage has a mutation rate of about 41.8 mutations per year, which is nearly twice as fast as the current global mutation rate of the other variants. The scientists stated that this short period of increased evolution was also seen with the Alpha, Beta and Gamma variants, suggesting that a single event, followed by a spike in cases, drove faster mutation rates.

I honestly don't know what to think of this.  

Friday, August 27, 2021

Many Older Americans Still Aren’t Vaccinated

Many Older Americans Still Aren’t Vaccines: The Delta variant has hit many areas with clusters of vulnerable seniors particularly hard. Low elderly vaccination rates in Arkansas, Florida, Idaho, Louisiana and Nevada have coincided with surging rates of hospitalization and death.

The data visualization in this article is impressive.



Opinion | Omicron Is Not the Final Variant - The New York Times

Opinion | Omicron Is Not the Final Variant - The New York Times : The world got lucky with Omicron. It’s unimaginable what would have happen...