Coronavirus BRIEFING
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Crisis Response Tactics

Biden Administration Launches $500,000 Contest for Face Mask Innovation

By Staff
Friday, April 9, 2021 12:01 AM With this mask challenge, we want to get people across the country involved in developing new masks that are both effective and comfortable. This will help us control COVID-19 and be better prepared for future public health emergencies.

Men and Women Differ on Masks During, After COVID-19, WebMD Survey Says

By Staff
Thursday, April 8, 2021 8:00 AM More women than men plan to wear a mask due to COVID-19 as long as public health experts like those at the CDC recommend it, according to a survey conducted by WebMD.They survey shows that 73 percent of women will keep wearing masks "while recommended by public health experts," compared with 63 percent of men.

Parents Are Split on Vaccinating Kids, Axios-Ipsos Poll Says

By Staff
Wednesday, April 7, 2021 3:59 PM Just half of U.S. parents plan to get their children vaccinated for COVID-19 as soon as they can, according to the latest installment of the Axios/Ipsos Coronavirus Index. High vaccination rates are seen as a key to achieving herd immunity, but many parents don't want their kids to be the first in line once pediatric vaccinations become available.

The Big Picture

As millions of adults get vaccinated and receive new stimulus payments, confidence is rising and pandemic risk perceptions are declining.

• For the first time in a year, the survey showed a net improvement in how people perceive their ability to do their jobs effectively—and a respite from declining ability to afford household goods.

• 37 percent of those surveyed said they felt returning to their normal place of work would be a large or moderate risk—the lowest since Axios began asking the question last May.

• Just 28 percent said they're now working at home or remotely—the lowest share in a year. Education was a major predictor: 43 percent with a bachelor's degree or higher are still working from home, compared to 18 percent with less than a bachelor’s degree.

• 55 percent said it would be very or moderately risky to return to their pre-coronavirus live—the lowest in a year—and 37 percent said airplane or mass transit travel is a large risk, down from 73 percent last April.

• Perceived risks of seeing friends and family outside the home, going to the hairdresser, attending sporting events, retail shopping and taking a vacation also declined.

• Respondents' ability to pay the rent or mortgage continued to improve.

• 63 percent said they've received stimulus money from the government in the last few weeks.

Click here for a closer look at the Axios-Ipsos poll results.

New Double Mutation Variant from India Found in U.S., WebMD Reports

By Staff
Tuesday, April 6, 2021 10:53 AM Researchers at Stanford University have identified a case of a new coronavirus variant with two mutations, which was first detected in India last month. The variant was found in a patient in the San Francisco Bay Area, university officials announced on Saturday. “We believe this is the first described case with this variant in the United States,” Lisa Kim, a spokeswoman for Stanford Health Care, told NBC News in a statement.

Men and Women Differ on Masks During, After COVID-19, WebMD Survey Says

By Staff
Tuesday, April 6, 2021 9:21 AM Answers ranged from "while recommended by public health experts" to "never" regarding the wearing of masks during and after the COVID-19 pandemic in a new WebMD survey. Significant differences emerged between women and men, as well as by age. A much higher percentage of women plan to wear a mask because of COVID-19 as long as public health experts such as those at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend it—73 percent, compared with 63 percent of men.

Would You Get a COVID-19 Vaccine From Your Dentist? 'Drillers and Fillers' Fight Pandemic

By Staff
Tuesday, April 6, 2021 12:01 AM We used to be drillers and fillers. Now we’re looking at the overall health of an individual.

CDC Updates Guidance to Cruise Ship Industry, Urges Vaccinations

By Staff
Monday, April 5, 2021 9:18 AM The U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention on Friday issued new guidance to the cruise ship industry, including the need for COVID-19 vaccinations, a necessary step before passenger voyages can resume. The new technical instructions, the first update since October, include increasing from weekly to daily reporting frequency of COVID-19 cases and illnesses and implementing routine testing of all crew based on a ship’s COVID-19 status and establishing a plan and timeline for vaccination of crew and port personnel.

Where Do COVID Vaccines Stand Against the Variants?

By Staff
Friday, April 2, 2021 10:50 AM As the virus that causes COVID-19 continues to evolve, drug makers are racing to adapt their vaccines to the changes in the virus' genetic code that appear to help it escape our immune defenses. Of the three "variants of concern" recognized by the World Health Organization and the CDC, studies have shown that the mRNA vaccines created by Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna, as well as the Novavax vaccine, remain highly effective against the B.1.1.7 variant, which was first recognized in the United Kingdom.

Check Out The Louvre From Your Couch

By Staff
Thursday, April 1, 2021 2:49 PM Travelling to Paris is probably out of the question for most of us right now, but that doesn't mean we can't virtually travel while we wait for it to be safe to visit The City of Lights in person again. Thankfully, The Louvre is here to help. The world famous museum has just launched a brand new online database which includes its entire collection—that's over 480,000 pieces. Head over to Mental Floss to learn more, or check out the database here

It Might Be a Bad Idea to Post Your Vaccine Card Online

By Staff
Wednesday, March 31, 2021 1:00 PM For many, getting vaccinated against COVID-19 is an exciting cause for celebration, and, in turn, many recently vaccinated people find themselves wanting to post about it on social media. Although getting vaccinated is a fantastic feat of science, it might not be a good idea to post a picture of the little white card you receive after the vaccination—it might be something scammers can use against you one day. Head over to CNBC for more. 

COVID Vaccines Could Lose Their Punch Within a Year, Experts Say

By Staff
Wednesday, March 31, 2021 9:18 AM Two-thirds of epidemiologists from leading academic institutions say the world will need new or modified vaccines for COVID-19 within a year, new research shows. In a survey of 77 epidemiologists from 28 countries by the People's Vaccine Alliance, 66.2 percent predicted that the world has a year or less before variants make current vaccines ineffective.

Meet the New Office: Out Go the Desks, In Come the Breakout Spaces and Armchairs

By Staff
Tuesday, March 30, 2021 6:56 PM NEW YORK—Many Americans have been working remotely for much of the past 12 months. But recently there has been much discussion about how and when those who have been out of their offices will begin the process of re-entry and what the office will look like when they arrive. The return to work in New York City took a step forward this week when mayor Bill de Blasio said city employees would begin making a return to their offices beginning May 3. “We’re going to make it safe, but we need our city workers back in their offices where they can do the most to help their fellow New Yorkers,” he said. Read on for a look at how some of the country’s biggest employers hope to get their workers back to life in the office. Read More

Vaccine Mismatch: What to Do After Dose 1 When Plans Change

By Staff
Monday, March 29, 2021 9:09 AM Ideally, Americans receiving their Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccines will get both doses from the same manufacturer, said Gregory Poland, MD, a vaccinologist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. After all, that's how they were tested for efficacy and safety, and it was results from those studies that led to emergency use authorization (EUA) being granted by the US Food and Drug Administration.

Optometry's Meeting 2021 to Now Take Place in Denver, June 24-26

By Staff
Sunday, March 28, 2021 2:10 PM ST. LOUIS—Optometry's Meeting has announced that after further examination, it will hold its 2021 Optometry's Meeting in Denver, Colo. at the Colorado Convention Center. The dates will remain the same, starting June 24 and be held through June 26. Optometry's Meeting had previously been scheduled for the same dates in Anaheim, Calif. In a letter to members, the American Optometric Association (AOA)'s president, William Reynolds, OD, and Alex Bennet, Amercan Optometric Student Association (AOSA) president, wrote, "The optometry community faced the growing challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 through a dedicated approach of adapting, overcoming and advancing, always delivering the highest level of safe care for patients nationwide throughout the crisis. Read More

COVID Vaccine Hesitancy May Prove Deadly for Many

By Staff
Friday, March 26, 2021 10:50 AM Even as millions of Americans flock to be vaccinated against COVID-19, there's a pressing question on the flip side of the lines and hard-to-find appointments—how many people will decide, ultimately, not to get a vaccine and what's that going to cost us? Researchers with Imperial College London’s COVID-19 Response Team recently took a stab at modeling what the future could look like with vaccine hesitancy in the mix—and it's not pretty.