COVID-19 detected in United States (7 Viewers)

ghost

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Well... it's happened. Covid has hit our family. My wife tested positive this morning. She has had cold/sinus infection type symptoms since Monday with off and on low grade fever. They didn't tell her what variant strain she was positive for. (Is that a separate test?) She got an infusion this afternoon to see if that might help speed up the recovery. Then on the news tonight, they reported of the 3 monoclonal antibody infusions available... only 1 of them is effective for Omicron. So I guess her treatment will have a 33% chance of helping her if she has O. So far I'm doing ok. My son and daughter are flying in for a few days and we had some big celebrations planned. Those are on hold now and my kids will stay with their mom who also lives in the same town where I do... hopefully I will stay well and get to spend a little time with them. I hope everyone stays safe and has a Blessed Christmas.
 

Jacob

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Well... it's happened. Covid has hit our family. My wife tested positive this morning. She has had cold/sinus infection type symptoms since Monday with off and on low grade fever. They didn't tell her what variant strain she was positive for. (Is that a separate test?) She got an infusion this afternoon to see if that might help speed up the recovery. Then on the news tonight, they reported of the 3 monoclonal antibody infusions available... only 1 of them is effective for Omicron. So I guess her treatment will have a 33% chance of helping her if she has O. So far I'm doing ok. My son and daughter are flying in for a few days and we had some big celebrations planned. Those are on hold now and my kids will stay with their mom who also lives in the same town where I do... hopefully I will stay well and get to spend a little time with them. I hope everyone stays safe and has a Blessed Christmas.

From what I've read, the one that is the most effective against Omicron is the one that is in shortest supply. The other two still help some, but they aren't nearly as effective as they were against Delta.

As far as testing for the variant, I think a certain percentage of PCR tests are sent off for sequencing, but the person being tested never knows what they had (in most situations). A standard COVID test itself cannot tell you what variant you have without the additional testing.

Hope you guys feel better though. A lot more people on here and friends/family will catch it in the next few weeks.
 
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StormStalker

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Well... it's happened. Covid has hit our family. My wife tested positive this morning. She has had cold/sinus infection type symptoms since Monday with off and on low grade fever. They didn't tell her what variant strain she was positive for. (Is that a separate test?) She got an infusion this afternoon to see if that might help speed up the recovery. Then on the news tonight, they reported of the 3 monoclonal antibody infusions available... only 1 of them is effective for Omicron. So I guess her treatment will have a 33% chance of helping her if she has O. So far I'm doing ok. My son and daughter are flying in for a few days and we had some big celebrations planned. Those are on hold now and my kids will stay with their mom who also lives in the same town where I do... hopefully I will stay well and get to spend a little time with them. I hope everyone stays safe and has a Blessed Christmas.
Hope everyone gets to feeling better soon!
 

ghost

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Covid update on my wife.... felt really rough this morning and stayed in bed all day mostly napping. My daughter (who lives in Tampa and flew in yesterday and is staying with her mother) came over and visited with me this afternoon. We took some food to a family who had a need and she helped me wrap Christmas presents. Talked to my wife a little bit from the door of her bedroom before she left. My wife's voice sounded much better. I went out and ran some late errands and when I got home, she was up cleaning the house and said she felt much better! She sounds good... her congestion is nearly gone, hasn't coughed in 3 hrs, and said if her throat wasn't still sore, she would feel normal! I bought some at home Covid tests and my youngest stepson took one and he is negative. Thankful for this positive turn of events and hopefully more to come! She has had 2 vaccine shots back in the early spring and the monoclonal infusion yesterday.
 

Evan

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Hope everyone recovers quickly, ghost. Let us know how everyone is doing.
 

Evan

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Fauci recommending or "throwing out there" the idea that airline passengers should be mandated to have the vaccine is utterly absurd and tone-deaf. It simply pours gasoline on the fire for extremely minimal gain at best. It's a 98-99% chance it creates nothing but negative outcomes and results vs a tiny chance of having a very minimal to non-existent benefit.

Omicron is going to spread irrespective of vaccine mandates on airlines. Yet again, Dr. Fauci is behind the curve and misreading the benefits, reality, and politics of this type of public health recommendation/policy.

The D.C. bubble is real and can be quite a dangerous thing. If would be helpful if there was some kind of shadow bureaucrat counter-part, located in the Midwest or Southeast in the federal apparatus, for such powerful officials, and that said officials are required to consult with their counterpart before announcing or floating major policy changes. It would save a lot of heartache and angst if those inside the bubble had to occasionally hear from someone outside it.
 
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ghost

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Hope everyone recovers quickly, ghost. Let us know how everyone is doing.
She had a really good day Saturday but didn't feel as well yesterday. Today she is feeling better again. She's worked all day from home on her computer... washed and folded laundry... and wanted to cook supper and made a very tasty blackened chicken pasta.

She says she feels good enough to go into work tomorrow but said she is still going to stay in her office away from others. Tomorrow is day 9 since symptom onset.
 

Jacob

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One unfortunate piece of the puzzle is how we count COVID hospitalizations and don't seperate with COVID/from COVID in the reporting, it just all goes into one pool. Incidental admissions in Europe are up a lot with Omicron, i.e. people at the hospital for something else and end up testing positive for COVID. I expect we'll see that same pattern all across the US.

One I've been following since the start of this deal is Jackson Medical System in the Miami area. On December 15th they reported 48 hospitalizations, and as of today 12/28 they are reporting 252 hospitalizations. Yesterday they were at 212 and the Miami-Herald did a dive into their numbers, and of those 212, 127 were hospitalized for something other than COVID. That's almost 60% incidental admissions.
 

Jacob

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I'm a bit suspicious of those numbers at the moment, as the last two weeks are modeled estimates. I've seen those NOWCAST projections be off by a pretty decent percentage once the actual data comes in. I suspect it is closer to the lower bound of that estimate (34%) at the moment, as outside of a couple places (NYC) the northern wave has been a pretty smooth rise and fall in the last couple weeks. Even so, that's still a rapid progression and would be the dominant one in a matter of another week or two even if I'm right.

Based on the case increases in the last week or so of the coastal areas, I might have to walk back this statement. Hadn't really looked closely at NYC/RI/NJ area outside of hospitalization data, which the rapid increase isn't reflected well in yet.

So the CDC revised last week's estimate from 73% to 22%. Just a wee bit off. They now estimate this past week that Omicron is at 58% of infections, which is reasonable. Might still be a tad high though.
 

Evan

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So the CDC revised last week's estimate from 73% to 22%. Just a wee bit off. They now estimate this past week that Omicron is at 58% of infections, which is reasonable. Might still be a tad high though.

While I think Delta was always going to stick around and likely was a bit higher in some areas than thought -- I don't trust the CDC's analysis either. They've been a day late and a dollar short throughout the pandemic. Which is something I hate to even type out because the CDC has always been an institution I've thought highly of. They've been behind the curve from the start and pandemics are literally something they're supposed to specialize in.

There should be a massive confidence interval on these estimates simply because we sequence such a small percentage of positive tests. To be such a technologically sophisticated country with immense wealth we have done a pretty terrible job of sequencing and collecting data on the pandemic.
 

Jacob

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Fauci recommending or "throwing out there" the idea that airline passengers should be mandated to have the vaccine is utterly absurd and tone-deaf. It simply pours gasoline on the fire for extremely minimal gain at best. It's a 98-99% chance it creates nothing but negative outcomes and results vs a tiny chance of having a very minimal to non-existent benefit.

Omicron is going to spread irrespective of vaccine mandates on airlines. Yet again, Dr. Fauci is behind the curve and misreading the benefits, reality, and politics of this type of public health recommendation/policy.

The D.C. bubble is real and can be quite a dangerous thing. If would be helpful if there was some kind of shadow bureaucrat counter-part, located in the Midwest or Southeast in the federal apparatus, for such powerful officials, and that said officials are required to consult with their counterpart before announcing or floating major policy changes. It would save a lot of heartache and angst if those inside the bubble had to occasionally hear from someone outside it.

Apparently Biden stated today that if his medical team advises it, he'll issue the mandate for domestic travel.

Like you stated, it is all pain and no gain with any domestic travel mandate. It is purely political, and one that isn't going to be popular at all. I can't see any logic in even considering this as an option at this point.
 

KoD

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From what I've read, the one that is the most effective against Omicron is the one that is in shortest supply. The other two still help some, but they aren't nearly as effective as they were against Delta.

As far as testing for the variant, I think a certain percentage of PCR tests are sent off for sequencing, but the person being tested never knows what they had (in most situations). A standard COVID test itself cannot tell you what variant you have without the additional testing.

Hope you guys feel better though. A lot more people on here and friends/family will catch it in the next few weeks.
The state will take a small sample of PCR tests for typing. At our clinic we type every PCR so we always know the variant but not many places will do that afaik. The equipment cost a lot of money and it was mostly a business decision to invest in it, as we could advertise being able to tell people what variant you have if you get tested with us. The data we collect has been around 1-2 weeks ahead of the data published by the state (regarding positively rates, variant percentages) especially since there's no daily reporting requirement most places will batch submit their data. I haven't crunched any numbers lately but about two weeks ago Delta went from 94% of cases to 83-85% of cases for us and was rapidly dropping.
We're currently slammed with antibody infusions & can't get enough of any of them to treat everyone. It's practically impossible to get Sotrivimab (the GSK product that works with Omicron) and the little that we have we reserve for confirmed Omicron + high risk/moderately Ill & ofc almost always they're unvaccinated. Most of the infusions are from rapid antigen positives though so we don't know the strain for those. As such most everyone gets the regeneron or bamlanivimab/etesevimab as it's all we can get and almost all of it we have to physically drive to and pick up from another facility in the state because they aren't using it fast enough. They've even "extended" expiration dates on product to get it out. It's honestly a mess here in Alabama. ADP has terrible communication and we never know until the day of when or if we're going to get any antibodies or told we can take it from somebody else.
 

Derek00

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We went to my wife's family Christmas dinner a few days before Christmas and three members of her family showed up KNOWING they had it and were sick. 8/10 people there ended up with it thanks to them, including my wife and five-month-old daughter. Thankfully, both of them are dealing with pretty mild symptoms. I don't know how I've avoided it, but it has been over a week and I have no been sick or tested positive with an at-home test. I've heard those aren't very reliable, so who knows, maybe I'm just asymptomatic? I've been vaccinated and have had my booster, so I'm not sure if that is what has stopped it or what.
 

Jacob

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For the first time in two years, Jackson Medical System in Miami reported their numbers and included incidental/non-COVID related admissions of COVID+ patients. This is the same pattern seen in Europe as well. Anywhere where Omicron is surging, the reported hospitalizations FROM Covid are likely only about 40% of the reported numbers. This is good news. If the timing of the peak in Miami is similar to Gauteng, they should be nearing a peak in cases within the next week.

 

Evan

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We went to my wife's family Christmas dinner a few days before Christmas and three members of her family showed up KNOWING they had it and were sick. 8/10 people there ended up with it thanks to them, including my wife and five-month-old daughter. Thankfully, both of them are dealing with pretty mild symptoms. I don't know how I've avoided it, but it has been over a week and I have no been sick or tested positive with an at-home test. I've heard those aren't very reliable, so who knows, maybe I'm just asymptomatic? I've been vaccinated and have had my booster, so I'm not sure if that is what has stopped it or what.

No, the rapid tests are reliable for showing if you have enough viral load to be contagious.

When did you take the rapid test? Just one?

The recent CDC statements on rapid tests are extremely misleading if not outright wrong.

See Michael Mina's comments on this:


He's far from the only testing expert pointing out that the CDC has really stepped in it in regards to their comments on rapid tests and the new quarantine guidelines.

See also:
Read the whole thread as he also answers your question on why you might be asymptomatic and the role of vax/immunity in regards to symptom onset and test positivity.

We really screwed up by not having enough rapid antigen tests. They are extremely good for determining if someone is positive for Omicron and if they are infectious. The CDC not pairing rapid tests with their new quarantine guidelines is asinine. We could have people quarantining for less than 5 days with serial negative rapid tests while making sure individuals who are contagious only quarantine for the time necessary to not be contagious.

PCR testing is largely useless for determining a quarantine period whereas the rapid tests are absolutely excellent for this -- especially since Omicron tends to produce symptoms BEFORE someone's level of contagiousness ramps up. PCR tests can be positive for a very long time -- well after someone is no longer contagious -- whereas once the rapid test begins to fade contagiousness has peaked and is almost always going to rapidly decline.

Total failure by the current admin and the CDC. FDA has also beclowned themselves with recent claims about rapid test sensitivity as well. Really disappointing considering the evidence and experts who can explicitly prove otherwise are out there screaming from the rooftops.

What this comes down to is we're going to see hundreds of thousands of cases for weeks, and we don't have the rapid tests to keep up because this admin put all their eggs in the vax+booster basket. They simply didn't plan for new variants which top experts have guaranteed were going to occur because of how the spike protein in COVID continues to see mutations. Thus, because this admin wanted to bet almost exclusively on vax+boosters, and ignore trying to scale up rapid testing, we were going to see huge swaths of the workforce across all occupations be quarantined and unavailable UNLESS they changed the quarantine rules. Those rules needed to be changed to allow for shorter quarantine periods but it needed to be done in conjunction with much expanded access to rapid tests. That way only those who truly need to quarantine (those actually contagious) have to quarantine and those who aren't contagious can go on with their lives.

It's yet another debacle by the public health authorities at the federal level. No lockdowns are needed. We just needed rapid tests to be available with simple guidelines. We're past the point of being able to convince the unvaccinated to get the vaccine. We could've made testing and quarantine guidelines actually follow the science for once, but due to inaction few people will actually be informed on how to best handle a positive test, and for how long they should quarantine. We're more focused on trying to mandate people be vaccinated to fly. Galaxy brain stuff.

Thank God Omicron did end up being significantly milder than Delta. Otherwise we'd truly be in a disastrous situation.
 
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Derek00

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No, the rapid tests are reliable for showing if you have enough viral load to be contagious.

When did you take the rapid test? Just one?

The recent CDC statements on rapid tests are extremely misleading if not outright wrong.

See Michael Mina's comments on this:


He's far from the only testing expert pointing out that the CDC has really stepped in it in regards to their comments on rapid tests and the new quarantine guidelines.

See also:
Read the whole thread as he also answers your question on why you might be asymptomatic and the role of vax/immunity in regards to symptom onset and test positivity.

We really screwed up by not having enough rapid antigen tests. They are extremely good for determining if someone is positive for Omicron and if they are infectious. The CDC not pairing rapid tests with their new quarantine guidelines is asinine. We could have people quarantining for less than 5 days with serial negative rapid tests while making sure individuals who are contagious only quarantine for the time necessary to not be contagious.

PCR testing is largely useless for determining a quarantine period whereas the rapid tests are absolutely excellent for this -- especially since Omicron tends to produce symptoms BEFORE someone's level of contagiousness ramps up. PCR tests can be positive for a very long time -- well after someone is no longer contagious -- whereas once the rapid test begins to fade contagiousness has peaked and is almost always going to rapidly decline.

Total failure by the current admin and the CDC. FDA has also beclowned themselves with recent claims about rapid test sensitivity as well. Really disappointing considering the evidence and experts who can explicitly prove otherwise are out there screaming from the rooftops.

What this comes down to is we're going to see hundreds of thousands of cases for weeks, and we don't have the rapid tests to keep up because this admin put all their eggs in the vax+booster basket. They simply didn't plan for new variants which top experts have guaranteed were going to occur because of how the spike protein in COVID continues to see mutations. Thus, because this admin wanted to bet almost exclusively on vax+boosters, and ignore trying to scale up rapid testing, we were going to see huge swaths of the workforce across all occupations be quarantined and unavailable UNLESS they changed the quarantine rules. Those rules needed to be changed to allow for shorter quarantine periods but it needed to be done in conjunction with much expanded access to rapid tests. That way only those who truly need to quarantine (those actually contagious) have to quarantine and those who aren't contagious can go on with their lives.

It's yet another debacle by the public health authorities at the federal level. No lockdowns are needed. We just needed rapid tests to be available with simple guidelines. We're past the point of being able to convince the unvaccinated to get the vaccine. We could've made testing and quarantine guidelines actually follow the science for once, but due to inaction few people will actually be informed on how to best handle a positive test, and for how long they should quarantine. We're more focused on trying to mandate people be vaccinated to fly. Galaxy brain stuff.

Thank God Omicron did end up being significantly milder than Delta. Otherwise we'd truly be in a disastrous situation.
I went and picked up a few after we found out about our exposure. I've taken a few this week (latest one being this morning) and I am still negative. Like I said, I have absolutely no idea how I've not caught it. I am now the only one out of the ten people there that's not tested positive. Apparently that Moderna vaccine/booster truly had some Dolly Parton magic in it.
 

Evan

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I went and picked up a few after we found out about our exposure. I've taken a few this week (latest one being this morning) and I am still negative. Like I said, I have absolutely no idea how I've not caught it. I am now the only one out of the ten people there that's not tested positive. Apparently that Moderna vaccine/booster truly had some Dolly Parton magic in it.

Glad you have continued to test negative. You can rest easy knowing you're not contagious. Prayers for your family and friend and hope they all recover quickly.
 

Evan

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WSJ article covering the overeliance on vaccines and the insufficient resources devoted to rapid testing:

Covid-19 Rapid Test Shortages Tied to Slow Federal Action https://www.wsj.com/articles/covid-...compounded-by-slow-federal-action-11640860212

One key factor I forgot to mention is federal bureaucracy getting in the way of approving tests. More specifically, the FDA continues to prance around as if we're not facing a public health emergency. We're from the government and we're here to help!
 

Evan

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Now, this makes sense. And, it results in people getting back to work as soon as possible, avoiding unnecessary quarantine days, while minimizing thr risk that a contagious person is contributing to further spread.

 

Jacob

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One thing that is significantly different in this Omicron wave vs. the prior Delta wave is the correlation in vaccination rates in areas vs. the amount of spread. When breaking down the Florida data, there was a moderate correlation back in the summer Delta wave between vaccination rates and positivity rates on a county-by-county basis. Counties with higher vaccination rates typically saw lower positivity rates. In the ongoing Omicron wave, there's a moderate correlation between vaccination rates and positivity rates, but it is just the opposite now. Counties with higher vaccination rates are typically seeing higher positivity rates.

Not really sure what to take from that and how it will affect the ongoing wave. It'll inflate hospital incidental numbers, and will cause disruptions due to COVID policies.
 
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