Monday CoronaBuzz, December 20, 2021: 74 pointers to updates, health information, research news, and more.

Going back to five days a week until we get through this. Will index the 12,000th covid-related article for CoronaBuzz in the next day or so. Please get a booster shot. Please wear a mask when you’re inside with a bunch of people. Much love.


The Daily Beast: Fox News Host Advises Viewers Against Boosters as COVID Rages. “As the Omicron variant rips through the country and New York City experiences a record surge in COVID-19 cases headed into the holidays, public health officials have one big message for all Americans over 16 years old: Get your booster right now. But Fox News viewers got a very different message when they tuned in to The Five on Friday afternoon. According to the channel’s self-described comedy host, you’re better off with ‘nature’s vaccination.'”


Washington Post: In Japan, back-to-back tragedies renew calls for boosting neglected mental health resources and education. “A pair of high-profile tragedies in Japan over the weekend — a deadly arson attack and the suicide of a pop star — have highlighted growing concerns about the country’s mental health crisis, which experts say has been exacerbated by isolation and anxiety during the pandemic. The back-to-back news stories renewed calls for more resources and education on mental health needs in Japan, which has seen a rise in suicides among youths and women amid the covid crisis.”


Deutsche Welle: Germany: Thousands protest against COVID measures across country. “Opponents of vaccinations and the German government’s coronavirus policies demonstrated in several German cities on Saturday. Several thousand people took to the streets in the northern port city of Hamburg, then marched in several blocks through the city center, police said. About 8,000 attendees were registered.”


New York Times: Doctors and Nurses Are ‘Living in a Constant Crisis’ as Covid Fills Hospitals. “The highly contagious Omicron variant arrives in the United States at a moment when there is little capacity left in hospitals, especially in the Midwest and Northeast, where case rates are the highest, and where many health care workers are still contending with the Delta variant. Some researchers are hopeful that Omicron may cause less severe disease than Delta, but health officials still worry that the new variant could send a medical system already under pressure to the breaking point.”

Kennebec Journal: Some hospital workers raise alarms over lack of dedicated COVID-19 paid sick time. “If workers get sick with COVID-19 and are unable to come into work, most state and many municipal and private-sector workers get paid COVID-19 sick time so they don’t have to use their regular sick time or vacation time for their time out of work. But some hospital workers in Maine are raising alarms that they are not getting such benefits even as they’re on the frontlines of the pandemic.”

Washington Post: Omicron and holidays unleash scramble for coronavirus tests across the U.S.. “Coronavirus testing was a breeze when J.D. Schroeder traveled to Abu Dhabi and Mexico this fall. Not so much at home in Pennsylvania when he felt sick Wednesday and found out he had been exposed. The mechanical engineer started looking for an over-the-counter rapid test because the earliest antigen test appointment he could find in his Pittsburgh-area community was almost a week away. Rite Aid would only let him order online. The closest CVS pharmacies were all out of stock. He nabbed the last box at a Walgreen’s, which came back positive.”


Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: ‘Everywhere is full’: New COVID-19 surge is clogging Pennsylvania hospitals. “On Wednesday, Allegheny Health Network issued guidance to patients seeking medical attention to prevent long waits and backups at hospitals. The 14-hospital system advised patients to only seek care in an emergency room in cases of chest pain, stroke symptoms, difficulty breathing or other conditions that could be life threatening.”

KOMO News: Hospitals call for help amid spike in COVID cases. “On Friday, Ohio activated its National Guard to send more than 1,000 members to help overwhelmed hospitals. Right now, one in every five hospitalizations in the state is due to COVID-19. Maine is doing the same. The National Guard is now working with 10 hospitals that are understaffed. Pennsylvania is asking for FEMA’s help after hospitalizations jumped 66% in just one month. Medical response teams will be sent to the hardest-hit areas. Similar teams are already on the ground New Hampshire.”

Washington Post: Hits ‘keep coming’: Hospitals struggle as COVID beds fill. “Ohio became the latest state to summon the National Guard to help overwhelmed medical facilities. Experts in Nebraska warned that its hospitals soon may need to ration care. Medical officials in Kansas and Missouri are delaying surgeries, turning away transfers and desperately trying to hire traveling nurses, as cases double and triple in an eerie reminder of last year’s holiday season. ‘There is no medical school class that can prepare you for this level of death.’ said Dr. Jacqueline Pflaum-Carlson, an emergency medicine specialist at Henry Ford Health System in Detroit. ‘The hits just keep coming.'”

Click on Detroit: Sunday Read: Henry Ford Health officials say Michigan’s current COVID ‘crisis’ worse than a year ago . “‘Unfortunately, today, we are in as bad of a situation — in fact, worse — than we were a year ago, with respect to our numbers within the hospitals and across the hospitals in this state and in other states,’ said Dr. Adnan Munkarah, executive vice president and CCO of Henry Ford Health System….About 75-80% of Henry Ford’s hospitalizations due to COVID are in unvaccinated residents, and more than 85% of patients in the ICU or on ventilators for COVID are unvaccinated, according to Munkarah.”


Rolling Stone: Brett Eldredge, Billy Strings Cancel Shows as Omicron Variant Surges. “As the spread of the Omicron variant reignites fears about another wave of Covid outbreaks in the U.S., the ongoing pandemic continues to throw a wrench into the normal operations of touring artists in the country and Americana sphere. Billy Strings and Brett Eldredge both canceled shows this week — in Nashville and Chicago, respectively — due to positive Covid cases within their circles.”

ITV: Silent night: Some Christmas nativities cancelled due to coronavirus while others get creative. “Christmas nativities are a tradition many parents and grandparents have for the second year in a row missed out on. While the Government said school and nurseries could host festive shows this year, the rise in Covid cases means many have been cancelled or are being attended virtually.”


CNN: Zoom Santas are back and eager as ever. “Santa Bombing piggybacks on the runaway success of virtual Santa visits last year. Like the explosion in popularity for curbside dining options and Zoom itself, the sudden rise of Zoom Santas met a pandemic need. It offered families a safer alternative to the annual tradition of visiting Santa Claus at a mall amid a surge in Covid cases, and offered actors a chance to still earn a paycheck for Santa work over the holidays — in some cases far more money than with IRL Santa work.”


New York Times: Boeing joins other federal contractors in dropping its vaccine mandate.. “Boeing said on Friday that it had suspended a vaccination requirement for employees after a court blocked enforcement of an executive order by President Biden that instructed federal contractors to impose such mandates.”

Variety: Omicron Is Here and Hollywood Is Finally Taking Notice. “Social life in Hollywood had all but fully resumed in recent months, with cocktail parties for awards voters, splashy film premieres and power lunches five days a week. But things are changing rapidly as one agency and studio after another discovers breakthrough cases of COVID within its ranks.”

Washington Post: Pfizer to test a third dose of coronavirus vaccine in young children after two-dose regimen falls short. “The companies reported that two doses of the pediatric vaccine failed in 2-, 3- and 4-year-olds to trigger an immune response comparable to what was generated in teens and older adults. The vaccine did generate an adequate immune response in children 6 months to 2 years old. If three doses are successful at triggering a protective immune response, the companies expect to submit the data to regulators in the first half of next year.”

New York Times: Moderna says its booster significantly raises the level of antibodies to thwart Omicron.. “A booster shot of the Moderna coronavirus vaccine significantly raises the level of antibodies that can thwart the Omicron variant, the company announced on Monday. The news arrives as Omicron rapidly advances across the world, and most coronavirus vaccines seem unable to stave off infection from the highly contagious variant.”


BBC: US court reinstates Covid vaccine mandate for large US businesses. “A federal appeals court has reinstated a vaccine-or-testing mandate for large US businesses. The mandate will require workers at private companies with more than 100 employees to get fully vaccinated against Covid-19, or be tested weekly.”

CNN: Biden admin eyes a potentially stark shift in messaging around ending the pandemic. “Already, cases and hospitalizations are surging in some parts of the country, leading to a 31% increase in cases and a 20% increase in hospitalizations from two weeks ago. Yet Biden and his team have all but ruled out new lockdowns, and behind the scenes, administration officials have been debating how to shift public attention from the total number of cases — which appear likely to surge, even if many are mild — toward the number of severe infections that are overloading health systems and causing interruptions to normal life.”

CBS News: Two positive COVID tests on trip with Secretary of State Antony Blinken were not disclosed. “Three cases of COVID-19 upended Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s multi-nation trip this week — including two previously undisclosed cases among members of the Air Force flight crew. On Friday, the Pentagon confirmed the additional two positive cases among its personnel in response to inquiries from CBS News.”

Axios: Report: CDC overcounts millions of vaccinations. “The U.S. government has overcounted the number of Americans who are at least partly vaccinated against the coronavirus, Bloomberg reports. Why it matters: Millions more people than initially thought are unprotected as coronavirus infections, hospitalizations and deaths are rising across the country.”

NBC News: Biden to deliver Tuesday speech on omicron variant as Covid cases rise. “President Joe Biden will deliver a speech on Tuesday addressing the omicron variant and unveil new steps the administration is help communities in need of assistance, a White House official told NBC News on Saturday. Biden is expected to go beyond his already unveiled ‘Winter Plan’ with additional measures while ‘issuing a stark warning of what the winter will look like for Americans that choose to remain unvaccinated,’ the official said.”

The Guardian: Fauci: Omicron ‘raging through the world’ and travel increases Covid risks . “The Omicron variant of Covid-19 has ‘extraordinary spreading capabilities’, the US government’s top infectious diseases expert said on Sunday, warning that it is already ‘raging through the world’.”

Politico: ‘It is embarrassing’: CDC struggles to track Covid cases as Omicron looms. “Continuing gaps in the CDC’s data collection program, which almost two years into the pandemic still relies on state health departments who use a mix of often incompatible and outdated state systems to identify cases, impedes the nation’s understanding of where and how fast the virus is spreading, according to more than a dozen state and federal officials involved in tracking cases.”


BBC: Covid: Action needed to limit hospital admissions – Sage scientists. “More stringent restrictions need to be brought in very soon in England if ministers want to stop hospital admissions reaching 3,000 a day, the government’s scientific advisers say. The BBC has seen leaked minutes of a meeting of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies held on Thursday.”

BBC: Covid-19: Omicron spreading at lightning speed – French PM. “The Omicron variant is ‘spreading at lightning speed’ in Europe and will likely become dominant in France by the start of next year, French Prime Minister Jean Castex has warned. He spoke on Friday, hours before France imposed strict travel restrictions on those entering from the United Kingdom.”

BBC: Coronavirus: Hospitality venues in Ireland to close early. “The Irish cabinet has agreed that hospitality venues, cinemas and theatres should have a closing time of 20:00 to curb the spread of Covid-19. The measures will take effect from Monday, 20 December. The National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) had originally recommended a 17:00 cut off from Monday.”

Reuters: Dutch flock to shops before expected Christmas lockdown. ” The Dutch hit the shops on Saturday as they prepared for a Christmas lockdown that is expected to close all but essential stores from Sunday, as the health minister said authorities were ‘extremely worried’ about the Omicron variant of COVID-19.”

Washington Post: Highly vaccinated countries thought they were over the worst. Denmark says the pandemic’s toughest month is just beginning.. “As omicron drives a new phase of the pandemic, many are looking to Denmark — and particularly the government institute devoted to testing, surveillance and modeling — for warnings about what to expect. The emerging answer — even in this highly vaccinated, wealthy northern European country — is dire. For all the defenses built over the last year, the virus is about to sprint out of control, and scientists here expect a similar pattern in much of the world.”

KGMI: Canada reintroduces COVID PCR test entry requirement . “Canada’s government has announced they are reintroducing the requirement of pre-arrival COVID PCR tests for all travelers coming back into the country. The travel restriction will go into effect starting on Tuesday, December 21st, and will apply to everyone regardless of how long they’ve been out of the country.”

Associated Press: Iran says ambassador in Yemen has coronavirus, recalls him. ” Iran said Saturday it is recalling its ambassador in Yemen for medical treatment as he has been infected by the coronavirus. The Foreign Ministry said on its website that Ambassador Hassan Irloo was in need of urgent medical care after being infected for several days, and was en route to Iran.”

Ada Derana (Sri Lanka): Coronavirus: 18 more deaths, 430 new cases confirmed . “The Director General of Health Services has confirmed another 18 coronavirus related deaths for December 18, increasing the death toll in the country due to the virus pandemic to 14,752.”

Associated Press: Navajo Nation reports 40 new COVID-19 cases, 3 more deaths. “The Navajo Nation has reported 40 new confirmed COVID-19 cases and three additional deaths. The latest numbers released Saturday pushed the tribe’s total to 40,765 cases since the pandemic began with 1,576 known deaths.”

Associated Press: Israel to ban travel to US, Canada over omicron variant. ” Israeli ministers on Monday agreed to ban travel to the United States, Canada and eight other countries amid the rapid, global spread of the omicron variant. Prime Minister Naftali Bennett’s office announced the decision following a Cabinet vote.”


Washington Post: Reinstating indoor mask mandate ‘on the table’ as coronavirus cases surge, Bowser says. “D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D) on Friday said that reinstating the District’s indoor mask mandate is ‘on the table,’ among other measures, as the city sees its highest-ever daily numbers of coronavirus cases since the pandemic began. On Friday morning, Bowser implored eligible residents to get vaccinated, schedule their booster shots and reconsider going to social events in the coming weeks. While the vaccine has helped stymie deaths and hospitalizations, Bowser said, the highly transmissible omicron variant — which has now been detected throughout the region — is of particular concern.”

WJHG: Ethics Board Orders Cuomo To Pay Back $5.1m In Book Profits. “Former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has been ordered to pay $5.1 million to the state attorney general’s office after he made use of state resources to author a book on the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Route Fifty: Booster Mandates Are a Tough Call for States, Businesses. “More than a dozen universities, most of them in left-leaning states, have begun requiring booster shots for employees and students. But few if any states appear poised to add a booster requirement. And it’s unclear whether the federal vaccine rule mandating employers with more than 100 workers to require either vaccination or regular testing will expand beyond initial doses—if it’s upheld in court.”

Associated Press: Company backed by Conn. first lady to exit COVID testing. “A health care company whose investors include a venture capital firm run by Connecticut’s first lady will exit the COVID-19 testing business after questions were raised about contracts it received to run state testing sites. The CT Mirror reported Friday that Sema4, the company backed by Annie Lamont’s venture capital firm, has told public health officials and investors that it will leave COVID testing in mid-January and return to its core business, genomic testing.”

Governor of Louisiana: Two Governor’s Office Staffers Test Positive for COVID. “These staff members are at home in isolation, per guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Louisiana Department of Health. These vaccinated staff members are currently all doing well and the Governor’s office is following CDC guidance on contact tracing and testing. These people were close contacts of the Governor and he tested negative on Friday.”

Associated Press: California’s Employee Workplace Restrictions Revised For Covid-19. “The move Thursday was criticized by business groups and hailed by labor advocates. The revised rules require that vaccinated but asymptomatic workers who come in close contact with someone infected with the virus must wear masks and stay 6 feet (1.8 meters) from others for 14 days if they return to work.”

Associated Press: Federal probe sought on Alabama’s plan to use $400M in COVID funds to build prisons. “Nearly two dozen organizations have sent a letter asking the U.S. House Financial Services Committee to investigate Alabama’s plan to use $400 million in coronavirus pandemic relief funds to build two super-size prisons.”

Washington Post: States rushed to loosen alcohol laws in the pandemic. Heavy drinking went up, some studies say.. “The new rules include cocktails-to-go laws, which allow consumers to pick up mixed cocktails, beer or wine at their local pub or restaurant, and direct-to-consumer laws that allow grocery stores or liquor stores — and sometimes distillers, brewers or winemakers — to deliver alcoholic beverages directly to people’s homes…. But critics say expansion has come at the same time alcohol sales soared and drinking spiked. Studies have found higher rates of binge drinking and alcoholism, and some state coroners have reported a sharp increase in alcohol-related deaths during the pandemic.”


RTE: London declares ‘major incident’ to help Covid-hit hospitals. “London Mayor Sadiq Khan has declared a “major incident” to help the city’s hospitals cope with a surge in Covid-19 cases caused by the fast-spreading Omicron coronavirus variant. Mr Khan took the step, which allows for closer coordination between different public agencies, after Britain reported the largest 24-hour increase in the number of new cases yesterday since the pandemic began.”

Gothamist: As COVID Surges, An Adams Indoor Inauguration Takes On Public Health And Political Risks. “New York City has long had a history of quirky and unpredictable mayoral inaugurations — from Fiorello La Guardia, who decided to skip the festivities entirely and go straight to work, to John Lindsay, who was forced to cancel a celebratory five-borough tour due to a transit strike. But no previous mayor has had to contend with the unwelcome presence of COVID-19 on inauguration day, and as Eric Adams plans for an indoor ceremony on January 1, the surge in cases brought by the omicron and delta variants may throw the new mayor’s plans into a tailspin.”

NBC New York: NYC Still Offering Free Hotel Isolation for COVID-Positive New Yorkers. “After the pandemic struck last spring, New York City created the COVID-19 Hotel Room Isolation Program to provide free hotel rooms throughout New York City for up to 14 days for individuals who qualified. The city’s isolation program extends to New Yorkers who test positive or exhibit symptoms and live with someone who is vulnerable, share a bathroom, or can’t stay more than six feet from someone else.”

Houston Chronicle: Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner says he has COVID-19, plans to isolate. “Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner announced Friday he has COVID 19, putting him among a rising number of infections as the omicron strain of the virus begins to sweep the country.”


NBC News: Covid in Wuhan. Now she may not survive jail.. “In the early days of the coronavirus pandemic, when the Chinese government was trying to contain the initial outbreak, reporting by citizen journalists like Zhang [Zhan] questioned the scale of the crisis and the government’s response. But they worried their aggressive reporting wouldn’t be tolerated for long in a country where the news media is strictly controlled.”


Billboard: Queen’s Brian May Tests Positive for COVID-19: ‘The Shocking Day Finally Came’. “Queen guitarist Brian May has tested positive for COVID-19. The 74-year-old rock icon took to social media on Saturday (Dec. 18) to share the news with his fans.”


CBS Sports: NFL postponements: Raiders-Browns, Washington-Eagles, Seahawks-Rams games pushed back due to COVID-19 issues. “The NFL has postponed Saturday’s scheduled game between the Cleveland Browns and Las Vegas Raiders. The game will instead be played on Monday. Kickoff is slated for 5 p.m. ET and will air on NFL Network. Sunday’s Washington-Eagles and Seahawks-Rams games have been postponed as well and both will kick off on Tuesday at 7 p.m. ET. Those games will air on Fox and will also be available via NFL Sunday Ticket.”

ESPN: NBA discussing plan to require teams short-handed by COVID to sign additional replacement players, sources say. “In the wake of dozens of players being sidelined in the league’s health and safety protocols, and with looming concerns leaguewide about more games being halted, the NBA and National Basketball Players Association are discussing a plan that would require teams decimated by COVID to sign additional replacement players, league sources tell ESPN.”

Reuters: NHL announces enhanced COVID-19 measures amid rise in cases. “The National Hockey League has announced enhanced COVID-19 measures which include daily testing and restrictions amid the emergence of the Omicron variant and a recent increase in positive cases among teams, it said on Saturday.”

Washington State Department of Health: New COVID-19 safety guidance released after multi-county outbreak linked to high school wrestling tournaments. “The Washington State Department of Health (DOH), is updating the health and safety requirements for high contact indoor sports in the wake of a multi-school, multi-county outbreak. The outbreaks are linked to a series of wrestling tournaments held in early December and are linked to an estimated 200 COVID-19 cases. Genomic sequencing recently confirmed at least three cases are omicron.”

Texas Sports Nation: Rice postpones college basketball games due to COVID-19 issues. “Rice has postponed its men’s and women’s basketball games this weekend because of COVID-19 issues in the programs. The men were scheduled to host St. Thomas on Sunday, and the women were to play at No. 23 Texas A&M.”

CBS Sports: College basketball hit hard by COVID-19 cancellations: Memphis, UCLA among schools on pause due to outbreaks. “The latest significant news came Saturday morning when, less than 80 minutes before tip time, Memphis announced its game in Nashville vs. No. 18 Tennessee was off due to COVID protocols in Memphis’ program. The news followed the high-profile cancellations of Kentucky vs. Ohio State and North Carolina vs. UCLA in Saturday’s CBS Sports Classic.”


Michigan Daily: UMich to require booster shots on all campuses after first student omicron case identified in Ann Arbor. “In an email to the campus community Friday, University of Michigan President Mark Schlissel announced all Ann Arbor faculty, staff and students, including Michigan Medicine employees covered by the U-M vaccination policy, must receive a booster shot for COVID-19 by Feb. 4 or as soon as they are eligible to receive an additional dose. According to the University Record, all students, faculty and staff on the Flint and Dearborn campuses will also be required to receive a booster shot.”

WCVB: Harvard University shifting to remote learning for first 3 weeks of January due to COVID concerns. “Most students and staff at Harvard University will be learning and working remotely for the first three weeks of January due to COVID-19 concerns. In a message to the Harvard community, university leaders stated that the move was prompted by the rapid rise in COVID-19 cases locally and across the country, as well as the growing presence of the omicron coronavirus variant.”


New York Times: As Covid Surges, Experts Say U.S. Booster Effort Is Far Behind. “As the pandemic has surged toward its third year, shape-shifting into the contagious new Omicron variant and spiking dangerously in the Northeast, around the Great Lakes and in other parts of the country, health officials and epidemiologists are vehemently urging Americans to get vaccinated and boosted. But the going has been slow. Of American adults who are fully vaccinated and eligible for a booster shot, only about 30 percent have received one, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”

Georgia Public Broadcasting: How to get your teens or college-age kids to take omicron seriously. “‘Covid is becoming endemic,’ my son told me. ‘We’re all vaccinated and we’ve just got to live with it.’ And he’s not alone. Data from the COVID States Project shows many people have relaxed their behaviors and are taking fewer precautions compared to last spring. But, if apathy greets omicron at the door, the surge will put lots of people at risk — including older friends and relatives who are vaccinated. So, how best to communicate this to your kids?”

Washington Post: The pandemic could drive another national health crisis, GAO warns: covid-19 anxiety. “As if more than 800,000 deaths and 50 million covid-19 cases in the United States are not bad enough, the virus appears to be spawning a different health calamity. ‘The pandemic is potentially driving another national crisis related to its effects on behavioral health, with people experiencing new or exacerbated behavioral health symptoms or conditions.’ That’s the stark warning in the first paragraph of a letter to Congress in a new Government Accountability Office (GAO) report.”


Medical Xpress: Parents underestimate teens’ social media use during pandemic. “Parents’ and adolescents’ estimates of adolescent screen use during the first year of the pandemic differed significantly, according to a new study published in Academic Pediatrics. While parents estimated their children spent more total time using screens recreationally than their kids estimated, parents underestimated the amount of time spent specifically on social media and multi-player video games (versus texting, video chats, and other uses).”


CTV News: Countries with national mask mandates had lower COVID-19 death rates, global study finds. “A study examining the association between face mask policies and a reduction in COVID-19 deaths found that countries that enacted national mask mandates at the beginning of the pandemic had significantly lower death rates per million people than countries that did not enforce any mask rules, which researchers say supports the use of face masks to prevent excess coronavirus deaths and should ‘be advised during airborne disease epidemics.'”

CNET: When can pets get the COVID vaccine?. “They’re man’s best friend (or good acquaintance, if you’re talking about a cat), and they might stick like glue to your side while you recover from the worst of illnesses, including COVID-19. But research throughout the pandemic has shown that pets and other animals can catch the coronavirus – according to the US Department of Agriculture more than 15 species of animals, including domestic pets and wild animals, have contracted COVID-19. So will your dog or cat be able to get a COVID vaccine?”

BBC: Trial begins of needle-free Covid vaccine targeting new variants. “A trial has begun of a new needle-free Covid-19 vaccine to protect against future variants of the virus. The vaccine, administered through a jet of air, has been developed by Prof Jonathan Heeney of Cambridge University and chief executive of DIOSynVax.”

The Ohio State University: How new COVID-19 variants are found. “When you become sick with COVID-19, you can’t easily tell which variant or strain of the SARS-CoV-2 virus is responsible for your symptoms. But, using what’s called genomic sequencing, scientists like me in genomic laboratories can determine the virus’ specific makeup.”

Foreign Policy: Why People Reject Vaccination—and How to Change Their Minds. “Anti-vaccination beliefs are highly dependent on cultural and social context. Here’s what worked in two United States-based studies.”


ABC 7 NY: COVID News: New York sets new pandemic case record as testing demand soars. “With Christmas Eve just one week away, there is growing alarm over increasing COVID cases across the Tri-State region. Governor Kathy Hochul said that 21,027 positive test results were reported in New York state Thursday, setting a new single-day reporting record.”

NBC Chicago: COVID by the Numbers: Illinois Sets Single-Day High for New Coronavirus Cases in 2021. “The state of Illinois reported nearly 12,000 new cases of coronavirus in the last 24 hours, the largest single-day increase in new cases in more than a year. According to the latest figures from the Illinois Department of Public Health, the state recorded 11,858 new confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 in the last day.”

Bloomberg: COVID-19 ‘raging’ in New Jersey as leaders weigh next steps. “New Jersey reported back-to-back days of over 6,000 new confirmed cases on Thursday and Friday, as infections have dramatically spiked in recent weeks, state data shows. This time last month, the state was reporting under 2,000 daily new cases. The number of people hospitalized for COVID-19 has also been on the rise in the past month, from fewer than 700 in early November to over 1,700 currently, according to state data. COVID-19 patients in intensive care units and on ventilators are also up.”

Reuters: UK scientists suggest many more have Omicron coronavirus variant than reported. “Scientific advisors to Britain’s government said it was “almost certain” that hundreds of thousands of people were being infected with the Omicron coronavirus variant every day and hospital admissions were likely to surge.”

NBC News: Taylor Swift album party becomes superspreader event after nearly 100 test positive for Covid. “A Taylor Swift album party in Sydney, Australia, appears to have been a superspreader event, with authorities issuing an urgent warning after the party was connected to nearly 100 Covid cases. In a public health alert issued on Thursday, the New South Wales Ministry of Health said it had been notified of a ‘venue of concern’ in Sydney connected to at least 97 confirmed cases of Covid-19.”


Esquire: It’s a Miracle Anyone Survived Trump’s Meat-Headed Covid Response. “One of the least important problems with El Caudillo del Mar-A-Lago is that he is a complete political maladroit who surrounded himself with other complete political maladroits. Not to be crass, but the pandemic was a golden opportunity for him to demonstrate smart, tough political leadership and, not incidentally, guarantee his election to a second term. Not only did this not occur to him, apparently, it didn’t occur to anyone around him, either.”

New York Times: What Our Omicron Future Should Look Like . “Public acceptance of Covid disruptions, like business and school closings, has waned. Combine that with a highly infectious variant, and policymakers are left with a limited number of options. But they are not helpless. President Biden’s Covid-19 address planned for Tuesday must lay out how the federal government will support states in reducing severe illness and death, while maintaining the public’s resolve to follow basic Covid-19 control measures.”


Politico Congress Minutes: Long testing lines, fresh fears but no new masks amid rising cases: Omicron has landed on Capitol Hill. . “Cases are at all-time highs in the Washington, D.C. area, but Senate Democrats aren’t calling for the chamber to require masking. Even as they express frustration with maskless GOP colleagues, they’re framing masking as a personal responsibility to protect themselves and others from the Omicron variant of Covid-19. They aren’t calling for major new rules — nor would Republicans likely accept them willingly.”

CoronaBuzz is brought to you by ResearchBuzz. I love your comments, I love your site suggestions, and I love you.

Categories: coronabuzz

Tagged as: ,

1 reply »

  1. Thank you as always, Tara. And much love to you, too. Stay safe in the Batcave or whatever you call your broadcasting center. 😉

Leave a Reply