Coronavirus Watch

Every One of Those Deaths is Unnecessary

Reacting to recent Merck and Ridgeback Biotherapeutics announcement of a first-of-its-kind antiviral pill against Covid-19, Dr. Jonathan Reiner, professor of medicine and surgery at George Washington University, reportedly told CNN that ‘no one needs to die from this virus’.

“We’ll be able to prescribe this to folks. They’ll take a five-day course and hopefully be able to stay home, not come in for an intravenous infusion and keep folks out of the hospital. So, it’s really very promising news,” Dr Reiner told CNN.

“We’ve lost 700,000 Americans now and fully 200,000 of those folks have died since vaccines have been available almost to everyone in this country, and every one of those deaths is unnecessary. So even though the news is great for this antiviral agent, really the message that people need to receive is ‘get vaccinated.’ No one needs to die from this virus.”

– Dr. Jonathan Reiner, professor of medicine and surgery at George Washington University (source: CNN Health)

Covid-19 Cases are Declining

CNN Health’s Madeline Holcombe writes that Covid-19 cases are declining — but experts cautioned that cases in children still remained exceptionally high.

Dr. Ashish Jha, the Dean at Brown University School of Public Health, told CNN “I am worried that we still have some tough days ahead. Even though we’re doing reasonably well on vaccines, we’ve got to do much better because the Delta variant is very good at finding people who are unvaccinated and infecting them.”

What’s going to determine whether this is the end of this surge or not really is up to us.

Dr. Megan Ranney, the Associate Dean of Strategy and Innovation for the School of Public Health at Brown University (source: CNN Health)

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), told CNN “I think we have underestimated the impact on children. Look at the pediatric hospitals throughout the country… they’re seeing a lot of children in the hospital with severe infection.”

We’re still in for a pretty rough ride for the rest of the year

Dr. Peter Hotez, Dean of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine (source: CNN Health)

Even though new Covid-19 cases gradually improve, health experts have an urgent message: Don’t get cocky and relax.

Dr. Jorge Rodriguez, a viral researcher and internal medicine physician, told CNN “We can’t get overconfident. Every time we do and we put our guard down … we get another surge with another variant. So yes, things are better. But they’re far from over.”

The best way to assure that we’ll be in good shape as we get into the winter would be to get more and more people vaccinated.

Dr. Anthony Fauci (source: CNN Health)

“We’ve just got to concentrate on continuing to get those numbers down, and not try to jump ahead by weeks or months and say what we’re going to do at a particular time. Let’s focus like a laser on continuing to get those cases down, and we can do it by people getting vaccinated,” Dr. Fauci told CBS Sunday.

Coronavirus-19 vaccination watch

According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) COVID vaccination tracker page (as of October 6, 9 a.m.) 480,427,985 doses have been distributed and 398,675,414 doses administered. According MDH COVID-19 Response vaccine data (as of October 4) a total of 6,519,376 doses of Covid-19 (Pfizer & Moderna) vaccines have been administered in Minnesota. According to the MDH latest tally (as of October 6) the confirmed COVID-19 cases in Minnesota are 729,334 (out of 12,758,518 tested) with 8,243 deaths.