How Could Contact Tracing Help Slow The Spread Of Covid
Anyone who comes into close contact with someone who has COVID-19 is at increased risk of becoming infected themselves, and of potentially infecting others. Contact tracing can help prevent further transmission of the virus by quickly identifying and informing people who may be infected and contagious, so they can take steps to not infect others.
Contact tracing begins with identifying everyone that a person recently diagnosed with COVID-19 has been in contact with since they became contagious. In the case of COVID-19, a person may be contagious 48 to 72 hours before they started to experience symptoms.
The contacts are notified about their exposure. They may be told what symptoms to look out for, advised to isolate themselves for a period of time, and to seek medical attention as needed if they start to experience symptoms.
Should I Postpone My Elective Surgery
The availability of elective surgeries and procedures throughout the United States is very fluid, and may reflect the number of cases and infection rate in a given area. If COVID-19 cases are rising in your area, it’s quite possible that you already have been canceled or rescheduled by the hospital or medical center in which you are scheduled to have the procedure. If not, you should consider postponing any procedure that can wait.
That being said, keep in mind that “elective” is a relative term. For instance, you may not have needed immediate surgery for sciatica caused by a herniated disc. But the pain may be so severe that you would not be able to endure postponing the surgery for weeks or perhaps months. In that case, you and your doctor should make a shared decision about proceeding.
Vaccinated People Are At The Lowest Risk Of Reinfection
Can vaccinated people get COVID-19 again? In short, yes but the likelihood is far lower than for unvaccinated people.
There is a very, very small chance, Dr. Esper says.
Data shows that fewer than 0.005% of fully vaccinated Americans have experienced a breakthrough case resulting in hospitalization or death and people who have already had COVID-19 may be even less likely to be reinfected.
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Q: What Do I Need To Know About The Temporary Policy For Food Labeling Of Minor Ingredient Changes During The Covid
A: Although the temporary policy allows some flexibility, the eight major food allergens under the Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act of 2004 cannot be substituted for labeled ingredients by manufacturers without a corresponding label change. While the temporary policy does not list all ingredients known to cause sensitivities in some people, manufacturers should avoid substituting ingredients with major food allergens or with ingredients recognized as priority allergens in other parts of the world without a label change. These flexibilities are intended to remain in effect only for the duration of the COVID-19 public health emergency in the United States. However, when this public health emergency is over, extensions may be needed if the food and agriculture sectors need additional time to bring supply chains back into regular order. For more information please see more Questions and Answers on FDAs Temporary Policy on Food Labeling Changes During the COVID-19 Pandemic.
Latest On Coronavirus From New Scientist
Booster vaccines:The evidence on coronavirus booster shots isnt definitive yet, but it suggests you really should get an extra vaccine dose if you are offered one.
Vaccination strategy: Prioritising people of colour for the covid-19 vaccines when they were in short supply would have prevented more deaths than rolling out the vaccine purely by age groups, a US modelling study suggests.
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As Coronavirus Continues To Spread Many Questions And Answers
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Below, you’ll find answers to common questions all of us are asking. We will be adding new questions and updating answers as reliable information becomes available. Also see our blog posts featuring experts discussing coronavirus and COVID-19 and our glossary for relevant terms.
Cdc Suggests Recovered Covid
People who have recovered from COVID-19 can safely interact with others for three months, according to a recent update from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggesting that immunity to the virus may last at least that long.
The recent change is part of the agency’s guidance on quarantining. It states that people should quarantine if they’ve been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19, “excluding people who have had COVID-19 within the past 3 months.” People who have tested positive for the virus don’t need to be tested again for up to three months, as long as they don’t develop symptoms again.
The CDC previously acknowledged that people who have recovered from COVID-19 can test positive for the virus for up to three months, though these positive results don’t mean that a person is still sick. Instead, the test may be picking up fragments of the virus’s genetic code. Dr. Brett Giroir, the undersecretary of health who leads coronavirus testing for the White House, has advised people against being tested again after they recover.
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Are Variants To Blame For Reinfections
Not necessarily. Dr. Esper says the coronavirus doesnt mutate nearly as much as the flu, which changes nearly everything about its appearance from one year to the next. Rather, its COVID-19s infectiousness that makes it so, well, infectious.
This variants infectiousness including its ability to evade immune systems and prevent long-lasting immunity for those people who are infected with it is one of the reasons why its been able to persist and come back, he explains.
Delta Is More Contagious Than The Other Virus Strains
One thing that is unique about Delta is how quickly it is spreading, says F. Perry Wilson, MD, a Yale Medicine epidemiologist. Around the world, he says, Delta will certainly accelerate the pandemic. The first Delta case was identified in , and the variant soon became the predominant strain of the virus in both India and then Great Britain. By the end of July, Delta was the cause of more than 80% of new U.S. COVID-19 cases, according to CDC estimates.
A July CDC report on Delta’s transmissibility came after an outbreak that occurred in Provincetown, Mass., after a crowded July 4 weekend, which quickly turned into a cluster of at least 470 cases. While the number of reported “breakthrough” cases in general has been very low in the U.S., three quarters of those infected in Provincetown were people who had been immunized. According to the CDC, even people with breakthrough cases carry tremendous amounts of virus in their nose and throat, and, according to preliminary reports, can spread the virus to others whether or not they have symptoms.
The CDC has labeled Delta a variant of concern, using a designation also given to the Alpha strain that first appeared in Great Britain, the Beta strain that first surfaced in South Africa, and the Gamma strain identified in Brazil.
Because of the math, it grows exponentially and more quickly, he says. So, what seems like a fairly modest rate of infectivity can cause a virus to dominate very quickly.
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Is Reinfection More Likely With The Delta Variant
The delta variant is much more transmissible than past variants and experts think it might be causing more severe disease. According to a CDC presentation, reinfection rates with the delta variant might be higher than reinfection with the previously dominant alpha variant.
Weissenbach said that reinfection with viruses, including the coronavirus, is expected at some level. “Much like the flu virus mutates every year, we’re seeing different mutations among the circulating variants of COVID-19,” he said. So far, no variant has found a way around our vaccines, as they all continue to protect against severe disease and death caused by the coronavirus.
But the ever-evolving virus will continue to mutate and form new variants so long as a significant portion of the population remains unvaccinated or without immunity. As it does, experts fear there could be a variant that strips away protection from the initial vaccines.
Bottom line: “It’s worth re-emphasizing that the vaccines are safe and effective at providing a protective immune response against the virus,” Weissenbach said. “Inherently that benefit would minimize any risk of either initial infection or potential reinfection.”
The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.
Agency Clarifies Its Guidance Chides Media Misinterpretation
byMolly Walker, Associate Editor, MedPage Today August 17, 2020
People infected with COVID-19 do not necessarily have immunity to reinfection for three months, the CDC said late Friday night, trying to squelch speculation the agency had inadvertently stimulated.
While people can continue to test positive for SARS-CoV-2 for up to three months after diagnosis and not be infectious to others, that does not imply that infection confers immunity for that period, the agency said.
The confusion stemmed from an August 3 update to CDC’s isolation guidance, which stated:
Who needs to quarantine?
People who have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 — excluding people who have had COVID-19 within the past 3 months.
People who have tested positive for COVID-19 do not need to quarantine or get tested again for up to 3 months as long as they do not develop symptoms again. People who develop symptoms again within 3 months of their first bout of COVID-19 may need to be tested again if there is no other cause identified for their symptoms.
These statements could be read as suggesting that those recovering from COVID-19 will likely be safe from reinfection for three months even with close exposure to infected people. Media reports took this as a tacit acknowledgment of immunity from the agency.
Friday’s CDC statement chided the media for misinterpreting its guidance, which was about retesting, not immunity.
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Q: What Does It Mean To Be An Fda
A: FDA approval of a drug means that the agency has determined, based on substantial evidence, that the drug is effective for its intended use, and that the benefits of the drug outweigh its risks when used according to the products approved labeling. The drug approval process takes place within a structured framework that includes collecting clinical data and submitting an application to the FDA. Learn more about the FDAs Drug Review Process.
Unvaccinated People Are At High Risk For Getting Covid
Think you dont need to get vaccinated because youve already had COVID-19? Think again.
This virus can overcome a persons host immunity and cause a second infection, Dr. Esper says. Reports indicate that vaccination provides longer protection than natural infection.
Hes referencing a study that shows that unvaccinated people are 2.34 times more likely to be reinfected with COVID-19 than those who are fully vaccinated which drives home the importance of being vaccinated, even if youve already had the virus.
Almost all the cases that were seeing right now are people who have not been vaccinated, he says.
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Is It Safe To Travel Once Im Vaccinated What If Im Not Vaccinated
Guidance from the CDC issued in April 2021 states that fully vaccinated people may travel more freely within the US. Travelers do not need to get COVID testing before or after travel and do not need to quarantine, unless required by local or state authorities.
The CDC is more cautious about international travel, noting the increased risk of variants in other countries, even for people who are fully vaccinated.
As a general rule, travel can increase your chance of spreading and getting COVID-19 if you are not vaccinated. The CDC recommends that unvaccinated travels get tested before and after domestic travel and self-quarantine for 7 to 10 days after travel. They discourage unvaccinated people from travelling outside of the US.
All travelers should wear a mask that covers the nose and mouth, maintain a physical distance of six feet from others, avoid crowds, and wash hands often. Anyone who is sick or has tested positive for COVID-19 should not fly if at all possible.
Stay current on travel advisories from regulatory agencies.
Q: Is The Us Food Supply Safe
A: Currently there is no evidence of food or food packaging being associated with transmission of COVID-19.
Unlike foodborne gastrointestinal viruses like norovirus and hepatitis A that often make people ill through contaminated food, SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19, is a virus that causes respiratory illness and not gastrointestinal illness, and foodborne exposure to this virus is not known to be a route of transmission.
It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads. Its always important to follow the 4 key steps of food safetyclean, separate, cook, and chill.
A: Currently there is no evidence of animal food or food packaging being associated with transmission of COVID-19.
Foodborne exposure to the virus that causes COVID-19 is not known to be a route of transmission.
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Should I Get Tested For Covid
If you develop symptoms such as fever, cough, and/or difficulty breathing, and have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19 or have recently traveled from an area with ongoing spread of COVID-19, stay home and call your healthcare provider. Older patients and individuals who have severe underlying medical conditions or are immunocompromised should contact their healthcare provider early, even if their illness is mild. If you have severe symptoms, such as persistent pain or pressure in the chest, new confusion or inability to arouse, or bluish lips of face, contact your healthcare provider or emergency room and seek care immediately. Your doctor will determine if you have signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and whether you should be tested.
Q: Are There Going To Be Any Animal Drug Shortages Due To The Covid
A: The FDA has been and is continuing to closely monitor how the COVID-19 outbreak may impact the animal medical product supply chain.
We have been reaching out to manufacturers as part of our approach to identifying potential disruptions or shortages. We will use all available tools to react swiftly to help mitigate the impact if a potential disruption or shortage is identified.
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Q: Can I Prevent Or Treat Covid
A: No. Disinfectants should not be used on human or animal skin. Disinfectants may cause serious skin and eye irritation.
Disinfectants are dangerous for people to inject, inhale, or ingest. If you breathe, inject, or swallow disinfectants you may be seriously hurt or die. If someone near you swallows, injects, or breathes a disinfectant, call poison control or a medical professional immediately.
Disinfectant products such as sprays, mists, wipes, or liquids are only to be used on hard, non-porous surfaces such as floors and countertops, or on soft surfaces such as mattresses, sofas, and beds.
Q: Should I Take Ivermectin To Prevent Or Treat Covid
A: No. While there are approved uses for ivermectin in people and animals, it is not approved for the prevention or treatment of COVID-19. You should not take any medicine to treat or prevent COVID-19 unless it has been prescribed to you by your health care provider and acquired from a legitimate source.
A recently released research article described the effect of ivermectin on SARS-CoV-2 in a laboratory setting. These types of laboratory studies are commonly used at an early stage of drug development. Additional testing is needed to determine whether ivermectin might be appropriate to prevent or treat coronavirus or COVID-19. Read more about ivermectin.
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Physical Distancing Masks Vaccines And Other Preventive Measures
You’ve gotten the basics down: you’re wearing your mask when you need to, avoiding crowds, and keeping your distance. But you likely still have questions. Does wearing a mask protect you, others, or both? How exactly will physical distancing help? And what do you need to know about the new COVID-19 vaccines?
Visit our Coronavirus Resource Center for more information on coronavirus and COVID-19.
Q: What Is Convalescent Plasma And Why Is It Being Investigated To Treat Covid
A: Convalescent refers to anyone recovering from a disease. Plasma is the yellow, liquid part of blood that contains antibodies. Antibodies are proteins made by the body in response to infections. Convalescent plasma from patients who have already recovered from coronavirus disease 2019 may contain antibodies against COVID-19. The FDA has issued an emergency use authorization for the use of convalescent plasma in hospitalized patients. It is being investigated for the treatment of COVID-19 patients. Based on scientific evidence available, the FDA concluded this product may be effective in treating COVID-19 and that the known and potential benefits of the product outweigh the known and potential risks of the product for patients hospitalized with COVID-19. Learn more about donating from this video.
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Does Testing Positive Twice Mean I’ve Definitely Been Reinfected
Not necessarily, especially if you’re tested within three months of first getting sick, according to Weissenbach. If someone tests positive for COVID-19, tests negative and then tests positive again, it’s likely due to viral shedding of the original virus, he said.
“Many viruses can shed for quite some time after the illness has subsided,” Weissenbach said. True reinfection with COVID-19 means that someone was infected with the virus on two different occasions, usually months apart. Long COVID-19, a syndrome that some people develop after having the coronavirus, is also not a reinfection or active infection.
In the waiting room at the doctors’ office, signs on every chair ask that patients refrain from sitting.