Indoor Maine Wedding Is Linked To Seven Deaths
Maine CDC Director Dr. Nirav Shah said, "The virus favors gatherings." Other COVID news is on loneliness, herd immunity, flu season and more.
US Coronavirus: Maine Wedding Is Linked To The Deaths Of 7 People Who Didn't Attend
A wedding in Maine is linked to 176 Covid-19 cases and the deaths of seven people who didn't attend the celebration, demonstrating just how easily and quickly the virus can spread at social gatherings, public health experts say. As officials continue to push preventive measures, such as wearing masks and practicing social distancing to keep infection rates low, they also have been vocal in warning against large gatherings. (Holcombe, 9/16)
Coronavirus Death Toll From Maine Wedding Rises To 7, With Over 175 Infected
None of the seven people who have died attended the wedding or the reception. But among those who did attend the event was an employee of the York County Jail, where 72 cases have been linked to the gathering, health officials have said. Maine health officials have also said the wedding and reception are tied to the virus' spread at a Madison rehabilitation center. And, the state is investigating whether an outbreak at Calvary Baptist Church, whose pastor officiated at the wedding, is linked to the event. The church is tied to at least 10 cases. (Burke, 9/15)
In other public health news —
Loneliness, Isolation Doubled Among Older Adults Early In Pandemic
Twice as many older adults—who are at high risk for serious COVID-19 outcomes—reported feeling lonely and isolated in the first months of the pandemic than in 2018, a new University of Michigan poll shows. The university's National Poll on Healthy Aging team asked a national sample of more than 2,000 adults aged 50 to 80 about changes in loneliness and the number of social interactions outside of their household from March to June. Chronic loneliness is associated with declines in memory, physical and mental health, and longevity. (9/15)
Explainer: Reaching Herd Immunity In A Viral Pandemic
The novel coronavirus pandemic has brought “herd immunity” to the public consciousness, kindling hope the phenomenon can help slow or even end the outbreak. Herd immunity refers to a large portion of a community developing a degree of immunity to a virus, thereby reducing person-to-person spread. As a result, the whole community gains protection, not just those who are immune. (Sharma, Scarr and Wardell, 9/16)
Burlington Free Press:
Flu Season 2020: When To Get Your Shot During The Pandemic.
While the flu season is not fully underway, leading Vermont Health Department officials are advising Vermonters to plan ahead for getting their shot. "A good time to get the flu shot would be any time in the rest of the month of September, or during October. I wouldn't want people to wait too much beyond that this year," said Health Commissioner Mark Levine during a news briefing Tuesday. The commissioner added that the flu vaccine has gradually arrived to Vermont medical practices and pharmacies, albeit not in large volumes. (Bakuli, 9/15)
Latino Nurses Push Through COVID-19 Burnout, Sleepless Nights And Lost Loved Ones
Six months since COVID-19 was declared a national emergency in the United States, Latino health care workers say they’re burned out as new information about the virus changes work protocols, and they're traumatized by the virus’s impact on those they’ve cared for and saddened by the way in which the virus has ravaged their community. “What I’m seeing now is the patients are coming in sicker and they’re taking longer to recover,” Mary Juarez, a registered nurse in Los Angeles, told ABC News. “It’s generally seen mostly in the Latino population, so of course, I am very, very aware of that. … My anxiety level is 100% more. My anxiety begins a day before going into work.” (Rivas, 9/16)
Poll: Latinos Struggle Financially As Pandemic Sweeps Through U.S.
Working as a fast-food cashier in Los Angeles, Juan Quezada spends a lot of his time these days telling customers how to wear a mask. "They cover their mouth but not their nose," he says. "And we're like, 'You gotta put your mask on right.' "Quezada didn't expect to be enforcing mask-wearing. Six months ago he was a restaurant manager, making $30 an hour, working full time and saving for retirement. But when Los Angeles County health officials shut down most restaurants in March because of the spreading pandemic, Quezada lost his job. The only work he can find now pays a lot less and is part time. (Fortier, 9/16)
Minority Homes Bear Financial Strain Amid COVID-19
An unequal burden in America's COVID-19 pandemic has been borne by those most vulnerable to the virus, and most at risk to its economic fallout. Latino, Black and Native American households across the country already weathering the brunt of converging crises - coronavirus, and systemic racial inequality - now find the virus' havoc hitting home. (Pezenik, 9/16)