Covid-19

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cowboyinexile

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Yup we continue to get more info. But we cannot allow the loud fear mongers incorrectly use data to push kids from in-person school.

As CDC Director, Robert Redfield, said last week when asked about sending his school-age grandchildren back to school, “ I’m a hundred percent that they can get back to school“.
“I think it's really important to get our schools open,” he said. “As I've said, it's not public health vs. opening the schools or the economy. It's public health vs. public health.”

Redfield added that “there really are a number of negative public health consequences that have happened to our K through 12s by having these schools close.”

We need to have virtual options for our vulnerable children and teachers, but we need the vast majority of students and teachers in the classroom.
It's more complicated than that. I want my kids back in school. In my opinion the psychological and educational risks for my oldest (2nd grade) if they do distance learning this fall is greater than the risk of them having a serious case of this if they return. My youngest hopefully starts pre-school and he'd be ok, but I have concerns about how my oldest would handle it. So on this, any bias I have is outweighed by my immediate concerns.

I think my oldest will be fine. I think his classmates will be fine. His teacher who is a lovely lady, but in her 60's, that's a little different. One of his classmates has a parent who basically said if kids are required to wear masks they are homeschooling this year. That family has 4 kids in the school so if they aren't being responsible that's a lot of potential for exposure. And I'm sure they aren't the only ones.

It boils down to risk. In Minnesota the recommendation is based on the number of active cases in the area. Where I'm at, currently we are at about half the threshold to consider distance learning so the risk is low enough that it isn't a major concern. Metropolitan areas don't have the same luxury. I'm guessing we will see a lot of this where in general rural districts let kids back in and urban districts utilize more distance learning options. I feel really bad for kids in cities if this happens, but as a parent my concerns would be greater if I was in an area where new daily cases were 100+ versus an area where it's under 5 at most and often none.
 

RxCowboy

Has no Rx for his orange obsession.
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Yup we continue to get more info. But we cannot allow the loud fear mongers incorrectly use data to push kids from in-person school.

As CDC Director, Robert Redfield, said last week when asked about sending his school-age grandchildren back to school, “ I’m a hundred percent that they can get back to school“.
“I think it's really important to get our schools open,” he said. “As I've said, it's not public health vs. opening the schools or the economy. It's public health vs. public health.”

Redfield added that “there really are a number of negative public health consequences that have happened to our K through 12s by having these schools close.”

We need to have virtual options for our vulnerable children and teachers, but we need the vast majority of students and teachers in the classroom.
https://thehill.com/changing-americ...999-cdc-director-advocates-smart-reopening-of

“I do think that it’s really important to realize it’s not public health versus the economy about school reopening,” Redfield said, explaining that school reopenings need to be done “smartly,” which includes implementing the current CDC-recommended public health practices in school day routines.

“We think that if you do five things, we can accomplish as much as we did as shutting down this nation,” he reportedly said. “The face mask, the social distancing, the hand hygiene, staying smart about gatherings and staying out of crowded bars and crowded restaurants. If we did those five things, we’ve done modeling data, we get the same bang for the buck as if we just shut the entire economy down.”

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/schools-childcare/prepare-safe-return.html

What is known about how schools have reopened and the impact on SARS-CoV-2 transmission?
Internationally, schools have responded to COVID-19 using a variety of approaches. [19], [20] For example, China, Denmark, Norway, Singapore, and Taiwan all required temperature checks at school entry. [21] Most countries have changed the way they operate to reduce class sizes, increase physical distance between students, and keeping students in defined groups to reduce contacts (i.e., cohorting). [22] Furthermore, many countries have staggered attendance, start and stop times, and created alternating shifts to enable social distancing. In some places this means that only certain students have returned to schools, either by grade range or need. For example, Denmark was the first European country to reopen schools. Denmark staggered students’ reentry in waves (e.g., one group started school first, followed by another group at a later date), with limited class sizes and using other social distancing measures. [23] Younger students (under age 12) returned first based on their lower health risk and need for more supervision than older students. Class sizes were reduced to allow physical distancing. In Taiwan, students returned to school with mandatory temperature checks and use of face masks. Rather than national school closures, Taiwan relied on local decision-making to determine if classroom or school closures were needed, based on infection rates. [24]

There is mixed evidence about whether returning to school results in increased transmission or outbreaks. For example, Denmark initially reported a slight increase in cases in the community after reopening schools and child care centers for students aged 2-12 years, followed by steady declines in cases among children between ages 1 and 19 years. [25] In contrast, Israel experienced a surge of new cases and outbreaks in schools after reopening and relaxing social distancing measures; it is unclear what caused the increase in cases and what other mitigation measures the schools had implemented. [26] In summer 2020, Texas reported more than 1,300 COVID-19 cases in childcare centers; however, twice as many staff members had been diagnosed as children, suggesting that children may be at lower risk of getting COVID-19 than adults. [27]

It is important to consider community transmission risk as schools reopen. Evidence from schools internationally suggests that school re-openings are safe in communities with low SARS-CoV-2 transmission rates. [28] Computer simulations from Europe have suggested that school re-openings may further increase transmission risk in communities where transmission is already high. [29] More research and evaluation is needed on the implementation of mitigation strategies (e.g., social distancing, cloth face coverings, hand hygiene, and use of cohorting) used in schools to determine which strategies are the most effective. Such research would improve understanding of the impact of mitigation strategies on the risk of SARS-CoV-2 transmission in schools, and ongoing monitoring and surveillance of transmission in schools could help with timely outbreak detection and prevent wider spread.

Guiding Principles to Keep in Mind
The more people a student or staff member interacts with, and the longer that interaction, the higher the risk of COVID-19 spread. The risk of COVID-19 spread increases in school settings as follows:
  • Lowest Risk: Students and teachers engage in virtual-only classes, activities, and events.
  • More Risk: Small, in-person classes, activities, and events. Groups of students stay together and with the same teacher throughout/across school days and groups do not mix. Students remain at least 6 feet apart and do not share objects (e.g., hybrid virtual and in-person class structures, or staggered/rotated scheduling to accommodate smaller class sizes).
  • Highest Risk: Full sized, in-person classes, activities, and events. Students are not spaced apart, share classroom materials or supplies, and mix between classes and activities.
COVID-19 is mostly spread by respiratory droplets released when people talk, cough, or sneeze. It is thought that the virus may spread to hands from a contaminated surface and then to the nose or mouth, causing infection. Therefore, personal prevention practices (such as handwashing, staying home when sick) and environmental cleaning and disinfection are important principles that are covered in this document. Fortunately, there are a number of actions school administrators can take to help lower the risk of COVID-19 exposure and spread during school sessions and activities.
 
Mar 11, 2006
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https://thehill.com/changing-americ...999-cdc-director-advocates-smart-reopening-of

“I do think that it’s really important to realize it’s not public health versus the economy about school reopening,” Redfield said, explaining that school reopenings need to be done “smartly,” which includes implementing the current CDC-recommended public health practices in school day routines.

“We think that if you do five things, we can accomplish as much as we did as shutting down this nation,” he reportedly said. “The face mask, the social distancing, the hand hygiene, staying smart about gatherings and staying out of crowded bars and crowded restaurants. If we did those five things, we’ve done modeling data, we get the same bang for the buck as if we just shut the entire economy down.”

[.
I absolutely agree that schools need to do whatever they can to minimize exposure. Masks for middle school and high school students. Moving desks so they don’t face each other. Staggering cafeteria time. Spending more money on cleaning (which should be included in funds from the CARES ACT).
But kids, that are not vulnerable, need to be In school. (I 100% support and know there is a need for virtual-only for many students and teachers that are vulnerable or just plain scared).

On an adjacent subject: I don’t understand why large school districts like OKC and Tulsa are going all virtual for the first 9-weeks ...but the school sports teams are going on as planned. Now, admittedly, I am happy the school sports teams are moving forward with playing, but I don’t understand that inconsistency.
The school I am most familiar with has over 40% of their students in extra-curricular activities. If all those students will be doing sports, or band, or Pom ...why not be in class?
 

cowboyinexile

Have some class
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I absolutely agree that schools need to do whatever they can to minimize exposure. Masks for middle school and high school students. Moving desks so they don’t face each other. Staggering cafeteria time. Spending more money on cleaning (which should be included in funds from the CARES ACT).
But kids, that are not vulnerable, need to be In school. (I 100% support and know there is a need for virtual-only for many students and teachers that are vulnerable or just plain scared).

On an adjacent subject: I don’t understand why large school districts like OKC and Tulsa are going all virtual for the first 9-weeks ...but the school sports teams are going on as planned. Now, admittedly, I am happy the school sports teams are moving forward with playing, but I don’t understand that inconsistency.
The school I am most familiar with has over 40% of their students in extra-curricular activities. If all those students will be doing sports, or band, or Pom ...why not be in class?
They won't do extra curricular activities this fall. They are saying they will do it now to keep kids engaged through the summer. Weight rooms aren't the best place for 16 year old boys right now, but take that away and they are doing what teenagers with no direction do and that opens up problems beyond the virus. High school football, cross country, cheerleading, and band aren't happening so I don't know that you can say if that's ok why not school in general.
 
Mar 11, 2006
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They won't do extra curricular activities this fall. They are saying they will do it now to keep kids engaged through the summer. Weight rooms aren't the best place for 16 year old boys right now, but take that away and they are doing what teenagers with no direction do and that opens up problems beyond the virus. High school football, cross country, cheerleading, and band aren't happening so I don't know that you can say if that's ok why not school in general.
Those activities are happening in Oklahoma high schools. In fact, school volleyball and softball has already started. Football starts the week after next.
 
Mar 11, 2006
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The MLB is on life support right now and that is professional athletes. The minute you start seeing spread due to high school sports they are going to stop.
Don’t know if you are aware, but HS sports have not stopped. They are occurring now. Nearly all school sports have summer activities. There are nearly every weekday and several hours per day.
Many students play multiple sports which means they have been doing off-season school sports workouts during this summer for ~4 hours/day, 4 or 5 days per week. And that doesn’t count the hours they spend with club ball (baseball, softball, volleyball, soccer, basketball).
 

RxCowboy

Has no Rx for his orange obsession.
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The MLB is on life support right now and that is professional athletes. The minute you start seeing spread due to high school sports they are going to stop.
When MLB stops all HS sports are going to stop. I don't think we're going to see college sports this year either. We'll be lucky to see them in the Spring.
 
Jun 18, 2010
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Where else but Stillwater
Wow, elections have consequences. It's enough to make me wish I had voted for Hillary.

The following are excerpts from speeches given by Hillary Clinton on the 2016 campaign trail:

"Public health is not commonly understood as a security issue, but it should be. Pandemic disease can destabilize regions, undermine economies, and create fertile territory for social and political unrest...We need to break the cycle in which our own public health system is beholden to emergency appropriations for specific epidemics... lacking the long-term budget certainty we need to shore up our defense for long term, accelerate development of vaccines..... bolster America's public health infrastructure to deal with the new challenges facing our communities and our families, including a new Public Health Rapid Response Fund to better respond to public health emergencies.....Hillary Clinton July 2016.

"That is why as President, I will create a Public Health Rapid Response Fund, with consistent, year-to-year budgets, to better enable the CDC, HHS, FEMA, state and local public health departments, hospital systems, and other federal agencies to quickly and aggressively respond to major public health crises and pandemics. I will also ensure that our government has strong leadership and is organized to better support and work with people on the ground facing public health challenges. Doctors and public health officials......Hilary Clinton August 24 2016.

"....in addition we need to do more to boost our preparedness for biological threats and bioweapons; to support research for new diagnostic tests, therapeutic treatments, and vaccines for emerging diseases; to build capacity in public health departments; to train the next cadre of public health professionals and ensure that public health and environmental health practices are standard to the educations of medical students; and to provide resources for states and local governments to plan for complex, multi-faceted public health threats, like the impacts of climate change and pandemics and build more resilient communities." Hillary Clinton October 2016
 
Jan 14, 2006
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Iowa HS baseball season ends tonight (only state where HS sports have taken place since pandemic)

It wasn’t exactly smooth sailing with Covid but:

- 94% of teams were unaffected
- 96% finished season
- all infections reportedly mild
- fans were allowed all season

( @iahsbb) https://t.co/LVcvLifwcC
 
Mar 11, 2006
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Norman Public School just switched to all virtual for the time being.
I think tomorrow another big school district is going to announce a change of plans and go all virtual as well. :( A LOT of parents are about to be unhappy.

EDIT: But that school district is still planning on school sports to begin as scheduled..
 
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RxCowboy

Has no Rx for his orange obsession.
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https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/new...rs-cov-2-and-may-pose-risk-for-medical-staffs

COVID-19 Story Tip: Have You Heard? Middle Ear, Mastoid Harbor Sars-Cov-2 and May Pose Risk for Medical Staffs
07/28/2020
1596452047733.png

A cutaway diagram of the ear showing the two regions — the middle ear and mastoid air cells (as indicated by the red arrows) — from where Johns Hopkins researchers recently isolated the SARS-CoV-2 virus (seen at upper right), the cause of COVID-19. Credit: Graphic by M.E. Newman, Johns Hopkins Medicine, using ear diagram courtesy of Bruce Blaus and SARS-CoV-2 virus image courtesy of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases

A team of otolaryngologists and pathologists at Johns Hopkins Medicine has confirmed that SARS-CoV-2, the novel coronavirus behind the current COVID-19 pandemic, can colonize the middle ear and mastoid region of the head behind the ear. Based on this, the team recommends that physicians, surgeons, nurses and other health care professionals — especially otolaryngologists — should practice recommended protective procedures against SARS-CoV-2 when dealing with examination, sample collecting, treatment and surgery of these two connected areas.

The physicians reported their findings in a research letter posted online on July 23, 2020, in JAMA Otolaryngology.

“Previously, medical personnel in the otolaryngology world only had a theoretical risk on which to base a decision whether or not to follow guidelines against SARS-CoV-2,” says C. Matthew Stewart, M.D., Ph.D., associate professor of otolaryngology–head and neck surgery at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and co-author of the letter. “Now that we have proven the virus can survive in the middle ear and mastoid, professionals in our community know the threat is real and can guard against it with appropriate procedures and protective equipment.”

The mastoid bone, located in the temporal region of the skull, contains a number of hollowed spaces known as mastoid air cells. These are believed to cushion the area against trauma, protect the delicate structures of the middle and inner ear, and regulate ear pressure. In humans, the middle ear contains the three tiny bones called the ossicles — more commonly known individually as the anvil, hammer and stirrup — that direct sound waves from the outside into the inner ear for processing.

In their study, the Johns Hopkins researchers autopsied three patients who had tested positively for SARS-CoV-2 and were symptomatic for COVID-19 prior to death. Stewart says that using powered instruments during the autopsies would have posed a dangerous risk for creating infectious droplets and aerosols, so the team relied on hand tools and techniques from the early 1900s to take bone and mucosal specimens from the left and right mastoids, as well as swabs of the left and right middle ears. These samples were analyzed to see if the novel coronavirus could be isolated from them.

One patient was negative for virus in both mastoids and both middle ears. SARS-CoV-2 was isolated from the targeted regions of the other two people — the first in the right middle ear only and the second in all four sampled sites. The researchers believe that, despite the variation in virus recovery seen in the three patients (possibly related, they say, to different time intervals between death and autopsy), the conclusive finding of virus in the middle ear and mastoid warrants more caution and protective measures by health care professionals working in these two areas, especially during ear surgery.

Stewart is available for interviews by the media.

For information from Johns Hopkins Medicine about the coronavirus pandemic, visit hopkinsmedicine.org/coronavirus. For information on the coronavirus from throughout the Johns Hopkins enterprise, including the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and The Johns Hopkins University, visit coronavirus.jhu.edu.