Friday Reads: Test Test Test!

Image may contain: one or more people, tree, plant and outdoor

New Orleans Covid Testing is actually some of the most available in the country. We have a large number of folks that are endangered by the pandemic so it’s a good thing.

Good Day Sky Dancers!

Well, I spent a good deal of this morning in a socially distanced line wearing a mask in the first hint of the summer heat and humidity to get Covid-19 Testing.  I received both the swabbing test for active virus (unpleasant for sure) and then the blood test for antibodies.  This is part of the city’s Drive up testing that is showing up in every one’s neighborhood now.

I had to walk down to the Sister of Charities facilities where a closed Catholic church and elementary school have been morphed into a public clinic and elderly residence by Catholic Charities.   My way up town hospital system was the one running the testing site for the Med Center’s effort to determine the city’s pandemic status at this location.

So, I’m grading the final tests and essays written by students this semester and wondering when any one will see a class on campus again.  I guess we’ll wait and see here.  Our Governor and Mayor are letting the numbers and the science guide them. Hence, we have tests and only do things when the numbers are in keeping with CDC Guidelines.

But, the federal level continues to test the Public Health communities’ patience while hrumpffing off  testing their patients. Trump continues to push the narrative that we should blindly fight through this pandemic like they did in the Dark Ages and the Black Plague. After all, Wall Street and a November election await improved consumer spending which I refuse to die for.  Do I look like a Guinea pig to you?

Image

I watched all those crazy ass Wisconsin people crowded into a bar on TV last night and wondered which ones Fortuna will bless with a horrible death. It occurs to me that Trump simply thinks let them drink Lysol. Via Newsweek:

Governor Tony Evers said the decision turned the state into the “Wild West” with no restrictions in place, as he urged residents to remain at home, despite stating his team had “no authority” to compel people to do so following the ruling.

After the measures were lifted, crowds were seen flocking to bars as they reopened.

Following the court ruling, the Tavern League of Wisconsin, a trade association “dedicated to serving the needs of the retail beverage alcohol segment of the hospitality industry,” posted an update which read: “The Supreme Court Order is effective immediately. There is no stay included in the decision. It is legal to open your business today.”

It urged business which chose to open to review guidance from the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, which suggested employees wear face masks or cloth coverings. It also recommends reducing the customer-facing side of hospitality businesses as much as possible, underscoring the need for continued social-distancing of six feet between patrons and staff.

Despite the suggestions, photos and videos emerged in which bars appeared packed, with patrons seated next to each other as they joined friends for drinks.

We could be Sweden and we would be if Trump lived his dream of killing us all in the name of some morbid economic recovery led by higher demand for body bags and funerals.  The Swedish Experiment of seeking herd immunity through let the entire thing play out is showing itself to be quite deadly as the experts have been warning us.

Fortuna | 52 To Do

Ah!  Fortuna!

From the NYT’s today: “Sweden Stayed Open. A Deadly Month Shows the Risks.”

Sweden’s outbreak has been far deadlier than those of its neighbors, but it’s still better off than many countries that enforced strict lockdowns.

By late March, nearly every country in Europe had closed schools and businesses, restricted travel and ordered citizens to stay home. But one country stood out for its decision to stay open: Sweden.

The country’s moderated response to the coronavirus outbreak has drawn praise from some American politicians, who see Sweden as a possible model for the United States as it begins to reopen. “We need to observe with an open mind what went on in Sweden, where the kids kept going to school,” Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky, a Republican, said at a hearing on Tuesday.

But while Sweden has avoided the devastating tolls of outbreaks in Italy, Spain and Britain, it also has seen an extraordinary increase in deaths, mortality data show.

In Stockholm, where the virus spread through migrant communities, more than twice the usual number of people died last month. That increase far surpasses the rise in deaths in American cities like Boston and Chicago, and approaches the increase seen in Paris.

Across Sweden, almost 30 percent more people died during the epidemic than is normal during this time of year, an increase similar to that of the United States and far higher than the small increases seen in its neighboring countries. While Sweden is the largest country in Scandinavia, all have strong public health care systems and low health inequality across the population.

“It’s not a very flattering comparison for Sweden, which has such a great public health system,” said Andrew Noymer, a demographer at the University of California at Irvine. “There’s no reason Sweden should be doing worse than Norway, Denmark and Finland.”

 

Image may contain: one or more people, eyeglasses and indoor

Not only is testing uncool to Republicans but so are masks. We’re used to masking here but how did this become so partisan?  Well, Floridan Man is at it again.  This is from CNN’s Manu Raju: “GOP congressman on why he’s not wearing a mask: ‘There’s just no need’.”

Republican Rep. Ted Yoho of Florida was spotted Friday walking around the Capitol and on the House floor without wearing a mask.

Asked why not, he told CNN: “There’s just no need.”

Told that the Capitol physician suggests wearing a mask when social distancing is not possible, Yoho cited no need because of “herd immunity.”

CNN noted to Yoho that medical experts haven’t determined that herd immunity applies to the novel coronavirus. Yoho responded: “Viruses do what viruses do.”

Asked if he thinks he’s protected by herd immunity, Yoho said: “I think the only way you’re going to get it is to get exposed.”

Anyway, I’m pretty worn out and that’s why this post is so late and so short. But, I am interested in hearing about your community.  Are tests available?  Have you had any?  Do most of the people wear masks? Do they social distance?    Is any one actually planning on hanging out with a crowd of strangers soon?

What’s on your reading and blogging list today?


13 Comments on “Friday Reads: Test Test Test!”

  1. dakinikat says:

    Be safe every one! Be kind to yourself and others! Stay your ass home!!!

    xoxo

    • Enheduanna says:

      You too Dak! No testing available here in the ATL to general population. Most wearing masks where I am but not all. No way am I going out to get a haircut or anything but groceries and cat food. Having some trouble getting cat food delivered because of overwhelming demand.

      • Enheduanna says:

        Apparently Gov Kemp is saying all 10 million of us Georgians can schedule a test by calling our “local state health representative”, whoever that is. So helpful. But it absolves him of providing tests of course.

  2. bostonboomer says:

  3. Mary Brown says:

    I’m envious that you are able to get both tests so easily. Here only with symptoms. I haven’t really been out since March 16, although I do go masked to the grocery store occasionally. I did venture to Target yesterday because I really needed underwear! Every one was in social distancing mode. We walk in the park every day. I really want a haircut….

    Home Depot has been open the whole time, but I am on paid time off. They’ve given me 9 weeks paid up front, then I could take 5 weeks vacation if I want to or more unpaid time off. I’ve only been working 16 hours a week before this, but it’s been a good part time job. I may or may not retire. Social distancing is impossible there, plus the customers are mostly entitled jerks.

    • dakinikat says:

      My sister told me that Jean hasn’t been able to get the antibody test which I find very alarming but she doesn’t think they’re not doing that yet there. Guess you can’t get the other without a doctor’s note or at least that’s what she said when when were talking about it. Jean says this Abbott test isn’t all that reliable but I did test negative for the antibodies so I assume the swab won’t be any different. I have no symptoms but who knows.

      • Enheduanna says:

        I just saw on teevee that Maxine Waters oldest sister died of covid after a hip surgery. They did not test her prior to the surgery.

        I can’t describe how livid I am about the lack of testing.

      • quixote says:

        The antibody tests just give you information — whether you’ve been exposed to the virus — not anything actionable. So there’s not really anything to be alarmed about at the lack of them. All it means is you don’t get to find out if you were exposed, but it doesn’t change the actions you take.

        Plus, the antibody tests, as far as I know, so far, have rather high rates of error. So even when they do give you info, it can easily be the wrong info.

        The test for the actual virus, as done by the famous “Abbott machine” is supposed to take 15-20 min for a positive, but at least 45 minutes for a negative. That’s because in the latter case you’re looking for something that is not there, so you have to spend a lot more time looking to increase the chances that you didn’t just happen to miss it.

        The false negative rate on the machines is quite high — I’ve seen as high as 48% mentioned! — and I suspect that’s not all the machine’s fault. I’m guessing it’s people cutting corners on the test at 40 minutes or even less. And even Abbott, which presumably does the tests under ideal conditions, says there’s a 15% false negative rate. (Don’t remember exactly. That’s from memory.)

        So, yes, it’s more of a handwaving indication than anything near a certainty.

        • Enheduanna says:

          My concern is less for myself really than for “essential” workers and for contact tracing when outbreaks happen. I am just listening to the experts. It certainly proved valuable in South Korea.

          • quixote says:

            Yes. My comment was to dakinikat’s. The US has a whole series of massive gaping gaps in its fight against the pandemic:

            — nowhere near enough testing done early enough and then at a sufficient scale to know who’s sick

            — no national health system or enough income support so that people can get tested, get treatment, and be quarantined without being ruined

            — nowhere near enough testing, contact tracing, and quarantining, and treatment to follow up on the cases found in Step 1

            As you say, lack of testing is at the center of the fiasco. Together with the lack of a national health and income support.