The Status of the COVID-19 Vaccine — And What to Know About Vaccine Safety: Part II

Vaccine Safety and Development in a COVID-19 World Vaccination remains our greatest source of hope during the current pandemic. However, the modern world is wrought with misinformation about vaccine safety and development. Here’s a look at projections for the COVID-19 vaccine’s progress and eventual release to the public. Spoiler: it won’t arrive nearly as soon as we’d hoped. Factors Contributing to Vaccine Delays While optimistic estimates suggest that a coronavirus vaccine could be fully tested and ready for use by late 2020, most experts believe that such a solution cannot be realistically applied en masse until several months into 2021….

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Back-to-School Safety Tips in an Era of COVID-19 and Homeschooling

  With some schools re-opening, others going hybrid, and many remaining virtual, today’s parents face a series of tough decisions. Unfortunately, this represents only the beginning of what could be one of the most challenging school years yet. Follow these tips to keep your kids as safe as possible: Digital Safety A surprising variety of hazards accompany all-digital learning. Implement these practices to avoid top safety risks: Update security software on any devices your kids will use for school. Consider updating your firewall and anti-virus software to provide better network security. Use strong passwords for your children’s accounts — and…

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Caution for Excessive Hygiene and Hand Sanitizer

How Our Newfound Obsession with Hygiene And Hand Sanitizer Might Eventually Backfire Our understanding of COVID-19 has come a long way since the early days of the pandemic. Over time, researchers have discovered that transmission is far more likely to occur due to respiratory droplets and close contact than on surfaces. Hence, while hand-washing and sanitizer remain important, they might not play as large a role in mitigation as we initially assumed. There’s no need to let up on hygienic efforts just yet. However, we must nonetheless consider the potential downsides of taking such behavior to an excess: The Danger…

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Mental Health Tips And Resources For Those Stressed During the COVID Era

  Mental health problems were common prior to the coronavirus pandemic, but they’re even more prevalent now that COVID has taken over. According to the Healthline Mental Health Index, 45 percent of the U.S. population currently lies outside of the “normal” range on a common depression and anxiety survey known as the Patient Health Questionnaire-4 (PHQ-4). While this secondary epidemic may not be overcome until we find a cure for COVID, several measures can ease our anxiety during this difficult time, as highlighted below: Make the Most of Digital Resources Videoconferencing applications and other digital tools make even the strictest…

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Safety Tips for Reintroducing a Nanny Into Your Life After Quarantine

  As quarantine draws to a close, you may need to return to work or otherwise spend more time outside of the home — and away from your children. Now, you face a difficult decision: how to secure quality childcare while you’re away. In many cases, the best approach involves a trustworthy nanny. This option is by no means risk-free, but it can limit your children’s exposure to other youngsters. Implement these tips to keep your children and nanny safe. Consider a Live-In Nanny Live-in care may be expensive, but it also can dramatically reduce the risk of infection for…

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Doctors, Nurses, And Other Healthcare Workers: Could Their Pandemic Burnout Put Patients At Risk?

  Far too many healthcare professionals suffered burnout long before coronavirus entered the lexicon. Today, however, overwork is even more of a threat. While demands vary between departments and facilities, many doctors and nurses report considerable fatigue prompted by the pandemic. This represents a huge risk not only for medical workers, but also for the vulnerable patients they treat. The State of Burnout in Healthcare United States medical professionals entered the coronavirus pandemic with alarming rates of burnout. An article from the Harvard Medical School references the current situation as “stabbing a fresh wound.” Doctors, nurses, and other healthcare workers…

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Quarantine Era Surgery And Diagnostic Delays: What Dangers Do They Cause?

  In the early days of the coronavirus pandemic, several quarantine initiatives placed a moratorium on elective surgeries and other healthcare procedures. Additionally, many patients replaced traditional in-person checkups with virtual appointments, which, while helpful, do not always provide a sufficient substitute. These strict measures are beginning to ease up, but many patients still struggle to determine whether greater risk lies in avoiding medical settings or seeking critical care. We offer insight into this difficult decision below: The Risk of Delayed Diagnosis While the dangers of delayed diagnosis vary considerably based on the condition in question, early detection is always…

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Surge of New COVID Cases: What’s Happening? What Comes Next?

  The COVID era feels like an eternity. We know a lot more about the disease than we did a few short months ago, but unfortunately, our will to follow CDC guidelines seems to be waning. Hence, the recent surge of cases in states such as Florida, Texas, and Arizona. Prompted in part by efforts to open the economy, these hotspots indicate that the pandemic is far from over. The Origins of the Surge Signs of a surge first became evident in late June, as new cases and hospitalizations increased dramatically over a period of several days. Since then, several…

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Vacationing During COVID: Safety Insights And Resources

  In a time of COVID, no excursion is completely risk-free. Some measured risks, however, may be worth taking — especially if accompanied by the right precautions. With a little planning, it’s possible to reduce the potential for infection. Keep the following suggestions in mind as you plan a much-needed vacation: Stay Close to Home Despite airlines’ efforts to keep passengers safe, airports and planes remain some of the riskiest settings in the midst of the pandemic. The CDC highlights air travel as more hazardous than other forms of transportation. Long road trips should also be avoided, as they may…

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Excessive Heat in DC Prompts Heat Emergency Procedures

  Due to the expected high heat index in the city, Mayor Bowser activated DC’s Heat Emergency Plan for the period of Saturday July 18th through Wednesday, July 22nd. Cooling Centers During the heat emergency, cooling centers around the city will open for residents to seek relief from the heat. Certain public recreation centers, public libraries, and public schools are open to the public as places to cool down. Unlike previous years, public pools and spray parks will not be open as cooling centers; these places will remain closed until further notice due to the Coronavirus Public Health Emergency. All…

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