Tag Archives: Masks

😷 Covid-19 Info & Resources Update April 1, 2021 Thursday (USA)

keep-calm-wash-your-hands_8.5x11

Info and updates for friends and Loved Ones— It’s no joke, things are getting better! The older folks socially distanced, jibber-jabbering across two tables at the café this morning: A doctor, a fund manager, a former teacher, all retired, all extroverts. They have lots to say. Loudly. Covid and vaccines. They’ve all had at least one shot, most are fully vaccinated. Now they’re comparing notes about their children and grandchildren. Who got which vaccine? J&J? Pfizer? Moderna? “The stuff’s all the same,” says one fellow. “We’re hoping to get back to Europe in the Spring,” says another. “Not looking good for that,” says the female former pharma exec. They briefly debate why New Jersey’s infection rate is so high, why “certain people” won’t or can’t get vaccinated. Is there a genetic susceptability to Covid? “They’re gonna make you laminate your vaccine card, and then when you get the booster, you’ll get an official ‘passport’.” And so on. The tone is cautiously optimistic. Everyone agrees they will still wear masks, especially in public places, and with the important stuff covered… they move on to discussing Major League Baseball and the unusual architecture of Fenway Park.

551,638 (USA) dead at this writing.

Everything Has Changed, Sort of—At last! I’ve received an “invitation to schedule” my vaccine from every site where I was able to get on a list. Remarkably, even the pathetic, trundling, NJ State Program offered to schedule me. Some sites are even smart enough to make it easy to cancel, to free up the slot for someone else. There’s enough vaccine. Everyone I know who wanted the vaccine has received the first shot, or is about to. Next week the state makes even more groups eligible including Age 55+.

Communication has improved dramatically—We now have Newsletters, web site, blogs, Twitter feeds, and vastly improved tracking on pages of most major media. I won’t even list them here. (If you need help, see my previous posts.)

Which means, I can step back, I think, and stop trying to curate everything! Is it possible to get back to one page posts? I hope so!—Christo


Interim public health recommendations describing the type of activities people who are fully vaccinated can do once fully vaccinated.
03/08/2021—Read on www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/fully-vaccinated-guidance.html

Covid vaccine side-effects: what to know and why you shouldn’t worry – Side-effects have been reported for all three vaccines approved for emergency use in the US but most are mild and short-lived
03/18/2021—Read on www.theguardian.com/world/2021/mar/18/covid-vaccine-side-effects-pfizer-moderna-johnson-is-it-safe

What Can You Do Once You’re Vaccinated? – You have to do your own risk assessment. Here’s how.
03/30/2021
—Read on www.nytimes.com/interactive/2021/03/30/opinion/coronavirus-vaccine-risks.html


Masks:

An Updated Guide to Face Masks Learn more about five types of masks — which ones offer the best protection, and how to avoid counterfeits.
02/19/2021—Read on www.nytimes.com/interactive/2021/02/19/well/n95-kn94-medical-masks.html

How to Defog Glasses When Wearing a Mask – The New York Times Lens fog plagues glasses-wearers these days. Here are some things that can help.
03/11/2021— Read on www.nytimes.com/interactive/2021/03/11/smarter-living/wirecutter/antifog-for-glasses.html

‘Masking works’: Austin fights back as Texas loosens Covid-19 restrictions Local jurisdictions have decided to keep their coronavirus safety protocols, drawing ire from state politicians.
03/14/2021—Read on www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/mar/14/austin-fights-texas-loosens-covid-19-restrictions-masks

Here’s an Easy Way to Do Double Masking Right – Two masks can increase your protection against the coronavirus. Just make sure you know the dos and don’ts.
03/28/2021—Read on www.nytimes.com/article/double-masking-tips-coronavirus.html


Long Covid:

Many ‘Long Covid’ Patients Had No Symptoms From Their Initial Infection – An analysis of electronic medical records in California found that 32 percent started with asymptomatic infections but reported troubling aftereffects weeks and months later.
03/08/2021— Read on www.nytimes.com/2021/03/08/health/long-covid-asymptomatic.html

Will vaccines protect us from ‘long-haul Covid’? We need answers – A recent study found that 30% of Covid patients surveyed still had persistent symptoms nine months later
03/12/2021—Read on www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/mar/12/vaccines-long-covid-health-answers


Find peace. Seek stillness. Practice your T’ai Chi. All you need to know is in my previous Covid updates: wash hands, (properly) wear a (multi-layer, well-sealed) mask, social distance, isolate, and quarantine if you’re sick or exposed to someone who is, and test – but don’t rely on tests because you can be sick and contagious for 3-5 days before you test positive.

Hang in there!! Stay Healthy and continue to #WearAMask!!

— Christo

😷 Covid-19 Info & Resources—SPECIAL GET VACCINATED Edition!! Update Feb. 24, 2021 Wednesday (USA – New Jersey)

keep-calm-wash-your-hands_8.5x11

Your goal is to get vaccinated. Mine too!! Call me a “WV” (Wannabe Vaccinated). I am “1B” qualified, and so far am on a bunch of lists, but have not received my first shot. If you aren’t offered a vaccine through your work, and no one else has contacted you to offer you one, then expect to be last on every list. If you don’t want to wait, you can try to get vaccinated. You probably know people who have done this, successfully. Right now, as I write this, it’s unlikely that any vaccine distribution site will actually schedule you, immediately, at the time you contact them. However, if they know what they’re doing and want your business, they will have a waiting list.

This process is in constant flux. It will change. Here’s how:

  • In a few weeks or a month, not only should there be more vaccine, hopefully slots will open up because the vaccinators have over-estimated the demand because so many of us have signed up on multiple lists! That’s good.
  • But, it might turn out a few weeks or a month from now, that ALL the people who are trying to get their second shot will be the priority at all the locations, and there still won’t be any appointments for the rest of us. I know, it’s a frustrating mess.
  • Caveat Lector—The information below will undoubtedly change. Sites will be improved, processes streamlined, all good stuff, I hope. I won’t be chasing those changes. (It’s too much work!!) If you stick to the basic guidelines, you’ll be fine…

To be clear, apply only at sites that will:

  1. 🗒 Put you on a waiting list and
  2. 📞 Reliably contact you when they do have vaccine or
  3. 📅 Schedule a vaccination appointment immediately. They should also make it easy to…
  4. 📆 Schedule your second visit preferably when you schedule the first visit, or at least, when you get your first injection. (Until the J&J Vaccine becomes available, full immunity REQUIRES TWO INJECTIONS). You want to sign up with a site that is smart enough to schedule you for both. They should not expect you to go through this whole quest all over again for the second shot.

    Got it? You can go with that, or read on for more details.
    We’ll start at the “top”…

The CDC Guidelines— The CDC has set guidelines to prioritize vaccinations for the most important or most vulnerable groups, people who ought to get vaccinated first. Unfortunately, states and distribution sites are inconsistent in applying the guidelines. And, a lot of states have “opened” up vaccinations to lower priority groups long before they’ve received or distributed enough vaccine to the groups that were supposed to be vaccinated first. I can’t change that, President Biden will try, meanwhile I’m just telling it the way it is…


The NJ State Program —In New Jersey (and maybe in other states, but I’m talking about New Jersey here) you can sign up for the state distribution program. They will screen you and let you know whether you are eligible based on state guidelines. Don’t waste your time. Once eligible, they tell you to go find your own vaccine. Which means you have to register somewhere else, and all the distribution sites do their own screening. So skip the state, and get on with your search. (There’s a huge list of sites where you can get vaccinated in New Jersey—you just have to find one with vaccine.) And I have more time-saving advice…


Hunterdon County Health Dept. (My top choice)
🗒📞📅📆—For me, and maybe for you and your county health department, this is the best bet, because after a month of flailing around with “Survey Monkey” and no waiting list, the Hunterdon County Health Dept. has become transparent and organized. They have a list of 5000, confirm that you are on the list via email, “guarantee” if you get on the list you will get vaccine when they have it, sending out notices each Wednesday as they get vaccine, and automatically schedule your second visit when you receive your first shot. Period. Be patient and try to get on their “list of 5000”.
https://www.hunterdoncountyvaccine.org/
(908)788-1351

Nobody’s perfect, the Health Department server got overwhelmed on the first day, but I did get a confirmation that I was registered. Be patient!


Hunterdon Health Care, our local Medical Center
? ? ? ?—These guys are a big disappointment. After several previous web-only fiascos, they announced a clinic with dial-in. This began at 8:00 am, with no online access, no waiting list, just call supposedly and schedule an appointment. I made 53 Calls in 30 minutes. Never got through, never spoke to a human. As I’ve said, if they can’t even manage a waiting list, don’t bother. On their web site, it doesn’t even look like they are getting any more vaccine. I’m sure they’ll do better, but when?
https://www.hunterdonhealthcare.org/when-can-i-get-the-covid-19-vaccine/

Other Hospitals, Medical Facilities—By word of mouth, I heard about several sites that seemed to be organized, maintain lists, and actually vaccinate people. Of course, by the time you hear about these, so have thousands of other WV’s . Although I’m still waiting, for all my readers in Beautiful Western Central New Jersey, I will share my secrets:

  • St. Luke’s University Health Network
    🗒📞📅📆 —Headquartered in Bethlehem, PA, they do serve clients from New Jersey and have a location in Philipsburg, NJ. Sign in to their “My Chart” program, they maintain a list and they will stay in touch after you pre-register for the Covid vaccine. I know people who succeeded in getting vaccinated here.
    https://www.slhn.org/
  • RWJ/Barnabas Health
    🗒📞📅 ? — They have lots of locations in New Jersey, and provide vaccinators to several of the state “Super Sites”. They maintain a list, and I have been told that people I know were contacted and vaccinated. https://www.rwjbh.org/patients-visitors/what-you-need-to-know-about-covid-19/schedule-a-vaccine/covid-19-vaccine-appointment-request-form/
  • Virtua Health
    🗒📞📅 ?—Virtua runs the Moorestown “Mega Site”, the only one I list here. After experiencing the frustration of some of the more inept sites (see CVS and Rite Aid, below), this one will give you confidence. I know several people who have been vaccinated there after signing on to the list on this web site. https://www.virtua.org/services/covid19-vaccine-info

CVS Pharmacy
? ? 📅📆—This sounds like a great idea! Search for the first dose by trying different locations until you find a pharmacy with timeslots available. Then, immediately try to schedule. Whoops! If you ‘re not fast enough, the open slots disappear, and now you have to search for another location! If you actually get an appointment, they “hold” that slot for you, Hooray!!

But you must schedule your second dose before they even take your name! You must go through the process again, locate a pharmacy with vaccine, quickly select a time, and click the [Continue Scheduling] button.

Almost there!! And you wait. And wait. And nothing happens. The site seems to be locked up. But what about all those timeslots they are holding?? Sorry…

Remember: they don’t have any of your information yet. If you click [Cancel], or refresh the web page, or click the browser “back” button….POOF!! It’s all gone, and you have to start over. That happened to me twice! And I gave up. This is just BAD DESIGN. The Good News is that when CVS doesn’t have any available slots, you can’t even search for a location—at least they save you the trouble. No list. (Psst: Someone told me if you go on at 4 AM, you might find some open spots. Have at it!!)
www.cvs.com/immunizations/covid-19-vaccine

Rite-Aid Pharmacy
? ? 📅📆—This sure sounds like a great idea! Another convenient pharmacy with vaccinations! When CVS doesn’t have vaccine, they don’t ask you to pick a store and see if there are appointments. BUT that’s exactly how the Rite Aid site works! Enter your location, and they’ll give you a list of ten nearby stores. Then, you have to pick one, to see if it has vaccine. You have to go through the whole search to discover there is no vaccine available. BAD DESIGN. If successful, they will schedule the second appointment right away. Nothing available AFAICT, but I hear a rumor today that you should try at 5 AM. 🙂 If you get an appointment, let me know!!
http://ritea.id/newjersey

Remember that every site screens you for eligibility? On the Rite Aid site, if your medical condition isn’t on their list, DO NOT select “None of the Above”. Do that, you will be immediately considered “not eligible”.

Walgreen’s Pharmacy
🗒 ? ? ?—This sure sounds like a great idea! Another convenient pharmacy with vaccinations! You have to sign up with Walgreen’s and/or download their app before they will even tell you if they have vaccine available. They get you on their list before you get any information. Pretty clever!! I will just say, no vaccine, no list, no thank you. Your mileage may vary.
https://www.walgreens.com/findcare/vaccination/covid-19?ban=covid_vaccine_landing_schedule

? ? ? ?Shoprite Pharmacy—This sure sounds like…oh never mind. I wasn’t going to include Shoprite, because after having vaccine early on, now they don’t seem to have any at all. At least they don’t make you wait online or bother with a list. They just tell you, “We don’t have any, all slots are taken.”
https://vaccines.shoprite.com

So there you have it Christo’s helpful summary of the current status of getting a vaccine in New Jersey (and elsewhere in the USA). Remember the basics, be patient and do your T’ai Chi. If you haven’t had enough already, I’ve included links to more vaccine info with suggestions and guidance. Good luck, Stay Healthy, and Keep Wearing a Mask!!

— Christo


🦠 FLASH!! – THIS JUST IN‼️ (FEB. 25, 2021)
VaccineFinder.Org (CDC)
— The CDC now supports a “curation” site that pulls much of this COVID Vaccine info together in one place. My impression is it might save you a little time, but results in a “tease” – informing you that CVS in Trenton has vaccine, but when you click the [Schedule] button, you get the same “No Appointments Available” result that comes up when you go direct to their web site… Give it a try.
https://vaccinefinder.org/

How and where to register for the COVID-19 vaccine in N.J. – WHYY Where you should go to register for the COVID-19 vaccine in New Jersey, and why there are so many websites to do it.
— Read on whyy.org/articles/how-to-register-for-the-covid-19-vaccine-in-new-jersey/

How Do I Get A COVID-19 Vaccine Appointment? : Shots – Health News : NPR
— Read on www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2021/02/18/967448680/how-to-sign-up-for-a-covid-19-vaccine-in-your-state

Johnson & Johnson one-dose Covid vaccine shown to work | World news | The Guardian UK has bought 30m doses of product that could transform world’s immunisation programmes
— Read on www.theguardian.com/world/2021/jan/29/janssen-one-dose-vaccine-shown-to-work-against-covid

Why Some Who Are Vaccinated Still Get Coronavirus – The New York Times Experts say cases like these are not surprising and do not indicate that there was something wrong with the vaccines or how they were administered.
— Read on www.nytimes.com/2021/01/31/us/covid-19-vaccine-coronavirus-positive.html

Covid-19 Vaccines – The latest news and resources about the coronavirus vaccines to help you better understand and navigate the path to life after the pandemic. — Read on www.nytimes.com/spotlight/coronavirus-vaccin


P.S.: Hang in there!! Stay Healthy and #WearAMask

Custom Masks from my photos!

— Christo

😷 Covid-19 Info & Resources Update January 24, 2021 Sunday (USA)

keep-calm-wash-your-hands_8.5x11

Info and updates for friends and Loved Ones— It’s a new year and for many of us a brand new day. 🙏🏻 In the USA we now have an actual national leader who believes in science and cooperating with state and local governments to save all our citizens and defeat Covid. He even has a plan. Imagine! Unfortunately it’s going to take months to enact an actual plan and weed out the ineptitude, indifference, stupidity, and magical thinking that have characterized much of our country’s response so far. The irresponsible and arrogant will refuse to wear masks or take other precautions. People will continue to get sick, and to die.

418,000 dead at this writing.

How long can this go on?? Longer. Quite a bit longer. Last month I wrote: “…people, friends, loved ones, businesses big and small, are going to be having a very hard time at least into the summer of 2021.” I’ll stand by that.

The short summary is this:

1) Masks, Social Distancing, hand washing, and all that sensible stuff – CONTINUES TO BE EXTREMELY IMPORTANT. In fact, with the new more transmissable variant(s) of Covid, now is the time to double down on proper and careful mask use — wear multi-layer masks, wear N95s, and be sure you’re wearing the mask properly, not “chin diaper” or “mask slipping” like Bill Clinton, and other men.

2) Get the Vaccine if you can. But you probably can’t
. Be patient. Try not to judge those who have been vaccinated, seemingly by their own devious means, when others are more vulnerable. Be patient.

In New Jersey you can sign up for the state distribution program.

I signed up for the vaccine— In my case, I got an email stating that I am “on the list” for “Phase 1B” (see the chart below). In other words, I am qualified as an “essential worker” BUT it would be some time before I could get a vaccine. A week or two after that, I got another email, notifying me that I can now schedule a vaccination! EXCEPT, there is no vaccine and no appointments for which they can schedule me. BUT I might also be able to get a vaccination at one of the local medical centers, or Shoprite supermarket pharmacy, or local Health Department, or even through my employer if it’s in healthcare, all of which (apparently) get their own supplies of vaccine. (There’s a huge list of sites where you can get vaccinated in New Jersey—you just have to find one with vaccine.) I called, and checked web sites to find out… there is no vaccine! Does this sound like a cluster f***? Because it clearly is.

I’m sure it will change and get better, but until then? I can wait to receive an email from the state program, or I can keep checking the sites on the list. As I said, be patient.

Find peace. Seek stillness. Practice your T’ai Chi. All you need to know is in my previous Covid updates: wash hands, (properly) wear a (multi-layer, well-sealed) mask, social distance, isolate, and quarantine if you’re sick or exposed to someone who is, and test – but don’t rely on tests because you can be sick and contagious for 3-5 days before you test positive.


Vaccines:

Covid-19 Vaccines – The latest news and resources about the coronavirus vaccines to help you better understand and navigate the path to life after the pandemic. — Read on www.nytimes.com/spotlight/coronavirus-vaccine

Where, how, and when can I get vaccinated? For my fellow New Jersey residents, this is the state’s FAQ. — Read on covid19.nj.gov/faqs/nj-information/slowing-the-spread/where-how-and-when-can-i-get-vaccinated

CVS Pharmacy COVID Vaccine (COVID-19 Immunization Updates)This is great, but for now, only if you live in IN, MA, NY, and PR. I hope that eventually getting a vaccine will be easy at any CVS, anywhere! Let CVS help guide you through everything you need to know about the coronavirus vaccine. Get all your questions answered and learn how to schedule your vaccine online or through the CVS Pharmacy® app once available! — Read on www.cvs.com/immunizations/covid-19-vaccine


The “New Variant”:

What You Can Do to Avoid the New Coronavirus Variant Right Now It’s more contagious than the original and spreading quickly. Upgrade your mask and double down on precautions to protect yourself.
2021/01/19 — Read on www.nytimes.com/2021/01/19/well/live/covid-b117-variant-advice.html

European countries mandate medical-grade masks over cloth face coverings President Biden has enacted a mask mandate for all federal properties, public transit, airlines, and elsewhere. But some countries now have even stricter mask requirements… Confronting new, more transmissible variants of the coronavirus and a winter spike in infections, a number of European countries are beginning to make medical-grade face masks mandatory in the hope that they can slow the spread of the disease.
2021/01/22 — Read on www.cnn.com/2021/01/22/europe/europe-covid-medical-masks-intl/index.html


Long Covid:

What If You Never Get Better From Covid-19?— We’ve looked at “Long Covid” before. There are a couple of articles in this week’s NYT Magazine. Some patients could be living with the aftereffects for years to come. Recent research into another persistent, mysterious disease might help us understand how to treat them.
2021/01/21 — Read on www.nytimes.com/2021/01/21/magazine/covid-aftereffects.html


Hang in there!! Stay Healthy and #WearAMask

— Christo

😷 Covid-19 Info & Resources Update Sunday November 30, 2020 (USA)

Info and updates for friends and Loved Ones— Vaccines are on the way!! Wahoo!! Dr. Atlas has resigned!! (Barring a coup), the imposter in the People’s House will be leaving on January 20th! WE can see that things will get better, but unfortunately we have MONTHS to get through first. And, the advice is the same: wear a mask, wash your hands, social distance, and don’t be an idiot! Oh, that’s new!? But you know what I mean, right? No super spreader orgies or rallies. You have the idea. BE SAFE.

11/30/20 How Covid can Cause Neurological Problems Unfortunately, it appears it gets into your brain. —Read on https://www.nytimes.com/live/2020/11/30/world/covid-19-coronavirus/new-study-gives-clues-to-how-covid-19-can-cause-neurological-problems

11/29/2020 Long Covid: ‘Is this now me forever?’ A disturbing number of people continue to have symptoms for months after Covid… — Read on https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/nov/29/eleanor-morgan-is-still-struggling-with-long-covid-months-after-catching-the-virus

11/18/2020 Take at home Covid test Approved! Whoohoo! Something to look forward to!! 🙄 — Read on https://www.nytimes.com/live/2020/11/18/world/covid-19-coronavirus/fda-authorizes-the-first-at-home-coronavirus-test

11/21/20 Why Are States Imposing Coronavirus Curfews? – New York State and city leaders are trying to slow the spread of the coronavirus without full lockdowns. But whether curfews will help remains unclear. Or from my view, why close restaurants and bars at 10pm? Does Covid only come out after that? Jeez. If you’re going to close them, just do it! — Read on www.nytimes.com/2020/11/21/us/coronavirus-curfew.html

11/21/20 A (Not so) Nostalgic Look at Thanksgiving in the Flu Pandemic of 1918. Not so different… — Read on https://www.usatoday.com/in-depth/news/nation/2020/11/21/covid-and-thanksgiving-how-we-celebrated-during-1918-flu-pandemic/6264231002/?build=native-web_i_t

11/18/2020 If Covid is Airborne, why are we still Scrubbing Things?! “Fomite” transmission does not seem as hazardous as it did months ago. But you should still wash your hands!! — Read on www.nytimes.com/2020/11/18/world/asia/covid-cleaning.html

11/14/2020 The hottest of the Covid-19 hot spots in the United States.—Yet another example of how quickly things change in this pandemic. Today, two weeks after the article, the WHOLE COUNTRY is a hot spot. Well, pretty much…— Read on www.forbes.com/sites/suzannerowankelleher/2020/11/14/covid-19-alert-the-10-riskiest-states-to-visit-right-now-ranked/

Wear a mask, find some stillness, and be patient,

—Christo

COVID-19 Info and Resources (USA)

keep-calm-wash-your-hands_8.5x11Info and Links for Friends and Loved Ones

It’s been almost a year since I’ve posted anything. I noticed I keep emailing this info to people and update it every couple of days when someone sends me something of value. Silly me! It’s easier to put it on the blob. So here it is…

March 22, 2020, A doctor in New York recommended this video by another doctor. A bit long, PLEASE watch the whole thing, important and hopeful information throughout. “Dr. David Price of Weill Cornell Medical Center in New York City shares information in a Mar. 22 Zoom call with family and friends on empowering and protecting families during the COVID-19 pandemic.
March 17, 2020 Web Blog entry, by Dr. Hyman. Mark Hyman, MD is the Founder and Director of The UltraWellness Center, the Head of Strategy and Innovation of Cleveland Clinic’s Center for Functional Medicine, and a 13-time New York Times Bestselling author.
March 24, 2020, The Guardian, web page article.
March 26, 2020 New York Times Web Page, broken into 4 sections:
  1. Prevent Infection
  2. Prepare
  3. Stay Home
  4. Recover from Illness

April 19, 2020, Web Page is dynamic, I can’t find the “permalink” so you might have to follow it from this page. If you don’t want all the latest news, scroll down, to the bottom of the page to “Answers to Your Frequently Asked Questions”, and click “Read More” and pick a topic.

April 1, 2020 Dr. Jeffrey VanWingen

April 18, 2020 Supermarkets, grocery stores are shifting hours, adding hours for seniors and have purchase limits. What you need to know. – nj.com
— Read on www.nj.com/business/2020/04/supermarkets-grocery-stores-are-shifting-hours-adding-hours-for-seniors-and-have-purchase-limits-what-you-need-to-know-april-18-2020.html


No-Sew Face Mask with Handkerchief and Hair Tie-2
April 1, 2020 Article, No sewing required!!

How to keep your glasses or sunglasses from fogging up while wearing a face mask – nj.com
— Read on www.nj.com/coronavirus/2020/04/how-to-keep-your-glasses-or-sunglasses-from-fogging-up-while-wearing-a-face-mask.html


April 1, 2020 A computer model. Only look at this if you can handle the news. Big numbers. Fascinating and depressing information.

After that serious model, everyone should watch this!!


BTW: No. COVID-19 is not caused by 5G. Seriously? C’mon people, now, smile on your brother, everybody get together (with social distancing), right now.

 

Keep Calm and Wash Your Hands, and Wear a Mask! — Christo