Corona Comments

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I'm Rachael. I'm a public health expert & here to answer your Coronavirus questions.

Coronavirus is taking over the news & our minds. It’s completely changing the way we live. 
 

I am a public health expert focused on public health preparedness and response. My work has examined a variety of emergencies related to infectious diseases and natural disasters and how we can work to communicate effectively and respond in a systematic way to limit their impact. Coronavirus has taken over both my personal and professional life. 
 

The goal of Corona Comments is to cut through the overwhelming amount of information & focus on key pieces that may be lost in the shuffle or that you may be particularly interested in. 


Here are great sources of existing Coronavirus content:


If there are particular questions you have, things you don’t understand, or concerns you have, please email us at coronacomments@gmail.com.

Our latest posts

Kids & Coronavirus

Gloves: to wear or not to wear?

Gloves: to wear or not to wear?

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While the impact of COVID-19 on kids has been limited, but it doesn't mean that they can't spread it 

Gloves: to wear or not to wear?

Gloves: to wear or not to wear?

Gloves: to wear or not to wear?

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As the economy gets going again (slightly) gloves have become common for people and workers alike, but do they make sense to wear?

Future Scenarios

Gloves: to wear or not to wear?

The Plan to Re-Open New York

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We dive into three future scenarios published by the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy (CIDRAP)

The Plan to Re-Open New York

The Plan to Re-Open New York

The Plan to Re-Open New York

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New York, and especially New York City, have been hardest hit by coronavirus. Div into Cuomo plan for reopening the state. 

Are cases going down?

The Plan to Re-Open New York

The WHO & Immunity Passports

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Don't be fooled into a false sense of security that the outbreak has gone away because states are reopening. 

The WHO & Immunity Passports

The Plan to Re-Open New York

The WHO & Immunity Passports

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The WHO's statement around antibodies and thoughts around the use of immunity passports.

State Actions

The Purpose of Antibody Testing

The Purpose of Antibody Testing

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More and more states have begun to relax social distancing measures and take steps towards reopening their economies.

The Purpose of Antibody Testing

The Purpose of Antibody Testing

The Purpose of Antibody Testing

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Thoughts on why test results need to be evaluating in the context of what we know about testing.

Treatment Update

The Purpose of Antibody Testing

The Future of Air Travel

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The latest results of Gilead pharmaceutical's trials for the use of the drug Remdesivir to treat coronavirus 

The Future of Air Travel

The Future of Air Travel

The Future of Air Travel

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What airlines are doing to encourage social distancing and what the foreseeable future of air travel might look like

Week of April 20th

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The Challenge of Creating a Vaccine

The likelihood we have a functioning vaccine that is scalable for the population is a long way away. The are currently two viable candidates being developed in the US and one in China.

The True Impact

The impact of the pandemic on health can be measured in two things, cases and deaths. 

Evolving Treatment Guidelines

Diving into the website published by the NIH to provide publicly available guidance on clinical care.

Community Wide Anti-body Testing

Results from the largest and most scientifically testing to date that provides important perspective on what we can estimate the level of infection has been in the population. 

Do I have it?

Coronavirus was likely circulating in the United States significantly before it was first identified. 

Week of April 13th

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Contact Tracing

What exactly is it? Contact tracing, in addition to diagnostic and serologic testing capacity, is being heralded as a necessity to be able to control case count and limit community spread.

Who Decides?

Debate is brewing about who has the authority to “reopen” the economy - the states or the federal government.

There's Sort of a Plan

A preliminary plan that reflects on the guidelines and staged ways to relax social distancing measures.

Just because you can get a test...

...doesn't mean you should. Why you should be skeptical of the test results from non-approved tests.

Interpreting Federal Guidelines

The guidelines provide what they call "gating criteria" or particular standards that should be met before a state proceeds to relax social distancing measures and discuss three phases of re-opening.

Week of April 6th

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Not an Equal Opportunity Virus

Deaths from coronavirus are more likely to occur in certain groups. This post explores differences across age, comorbidities, race, gender, and income . 

Understanding Supply Shortages

In some locations doctors, nurses, and other healthcare workers are facing the frightening prospect of work without personal protective equipment (PPE). Also, how you can help and where you can donate.

Why New York?

The biggest hotspot of the coronavirus outbreak in the United States is New York City. Explore how density, delays, and testing have contributed to New York's challenges. 

Testing the Asymptomatic

CDC will conduct three interrelated studies called “serosurveys” to determine the prevalence of antibodies in the population.

The Other Physical Health Benefits

Review some of the additional impacts of this virus on physical health and suggest some things you can do now to prevent future complications. 

Week of March 30th

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Federal, State & Interstate

What guidance and requirements are coming from the Federal versus State levels and interstate restrictions that have been challenged.

Evolving Timeline

What indicators will experts look to in order to make a call that we can begin to relax social distancing efforts.

Understanding the COVID-19 Models

Why do the models vary so widely, and what can we take from the models?

The Antibody Test

A test for antibodies can help improve our understanding of the virus. It will tell us how widely the virus spread in the population especially among people who may never have shown symptoms. 

The Mask Debate

CDC has changed their stance on whether or not the public should wear masks when outside. Previous guidance had said only to wear a mask if you are sick to prevent the spread of your respiratory droplets. New guidance would call for everyone to wear a mask whether showing symptoms or not. 

Previous Corona Comments

Protecting Yourself (3/16)

Flattening the Curve (3/17)

Flattening the Curve (3/17)

What to do to protect yourself and loved ones from Coronavirus

Flattening the Curve (3/17)

Flattening the Curve (3/17)

Flattening the Curve (3/17)

The healthcare system is going to be overwhelmed. This is why experts want to slow the rate of transmission and “flatten the curve” through social distancing.

Testing (3/18)

Flattening the Curve (3/17)

Transmission (3/19)

Without expansive testing, there's no way to know the extent of the virus. Case counts are vastly underreported because we can’t count a case that we can't diagnose through testing. 

Transmission (3/19)

Why Stay Home (3/23)

Transmission (3/19)

How do I get Coronavirus? Can I get it from my food? What about pregnant women?

Comparisons (3/20)

Why Stay Home (3/23)

Why Stay Home (3/23)

Coronavirus is often compared to the seasonal flu. This post explores the differences in symptoms, immunity, & mortality rates.

Why Stay Home (3/23)

Why Stay Home (3/23)

Why Stay Home (3/23)

 By social distancing (aka staying at home and not interacting with other people) you limit the number of contacts and therefore reduce the transmission rate of the virus.

What to do if you think you have Coronavirus? (3/24)

What to do if you think you have Coronavirus? (3/24)

What to do if you think you have Coronavirus? (3/24)

At this point, everyone probably knows someone who has been infected with coronavirus. So let’s talk about what to do if you think you are infected. 

Coronavirus(es) Explained (3/25)

What to do if you think you have Coronavirus? (3/24)

What to do if you think you have Coronavirus? (3/24)

There are 7 known types of coronaviruses that have impacted humans. This explores what can we learn about this virus by studying past outbreaks and how this coronavirus compares

Latest on Testing (3/26)

What to do if you think you have Coronavirus? (3/24)

Treatments Available (3/27)

The U.S. has been notoriously behind on testing. We want to take a minute to review why we are so behind and what it means for tracking and tackling coronavirus. 

Treatments Available (3/27)

Treatments Available (3/27)

Treatments Available (3/27)

Coronavirus treatment options are currently limited beyond symptom management. However, new experimental treatments are in the works as we wait for a vaccine that will hopefully stem future infections.