What We’re Reading: 02/05/21


A few highlights from around the web that made it into our feeds this week.

100 Million Covid Shots in 100 Days Doesn’t Get Us Back to Normal

The Biden administration made a campaign promise of 100 million doses in 100 days, but does that actually mean 100 million vaccinated people in 100 days? Unfortunately, it doesn’t. Even at the rate of 1 million doses administered per day, it’s more likely that 50-60 million people would be vaccinated by April 30. Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require two shots, and at that rate, herd immunity would not be achieved until 2022. Important questions are answered clearly and concisely in this one. (From khn.org

Why Are So Many Healthcare Workers Resisting the Covid Vaccine?

Healthcare workers display similar levels of vaccine hesitancy to the rest of the population despite toiling on the frontlines of the pandemic. It’s not that they are against vaccines or don’t believe the science. It’s a matter of trust and skepticism. On one end, there’s a sense of whiplash when pundits declare it’s impossible to create a vaccine in a year and yet here we are. More effort must be paid to explaining the development and testing process, a breakdown of how the scientific components were not rushed. 

The other end is more like a new beginning—deeper than politics, deeper than the rhetoric and neglect of the last four years. We must address dire racial disparities in medicine and healthcare. We must grasp at the root. (From newyorker.com)

A Parallel Pandemic Hits Health Care Workers: Trauma and Exhaustion

This one has been passed around the last two days. Nightly clapping for health workers ended long ago but inside the hospital lies tremendous burden. ER’s are packed, ICU’s remain at capacity all over the country, and the emotional, mental, and physical toll on our healthcare workers is burgeoning at a rate unheard of.  A national focus on vaccines can’t address burnout or mitigate trauma. The toll isn’t abstract, and physicians are sounding the alarm. (From nytimes.com)

Additional reading—NEJM paper cited in the NYTimes article above: 

“Before the virus struck, the U.S. clinical workforce was already experiencing a crisis of burnout. We are now facing a surge of physical and emotional harm that amounts to a parallel pandemic.

Just as the country rallied to care for September 11 first responders who suffered long-term health effects, we must take responsibility for the well-being of clinician first responders to Covid-19 — now and in the long run. We are calling for several immediate actions to lay the groundwork for a clear and accountable national strategy to safeguard the health and well-being of our clinician workforce.”

On that note, here’s a momentary time suck in the form of a game. Happy spelling!

Spelling Bee

See how many words you can make with seven letters.
(Friendly warning: this game is a bit addicting)

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