Archive for Health/Nursing

NFPA Codes and Standards Are Freely Available Online

All the codes and standards have been placed online for public perusal. These are the codes that guide fire safety throughout the world. An invaluable resource.

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Covid-19 Restrictions/Mask Mandates by State

With the bewildering number of reports about openings/closings/mask wearing/school closures, especially in this area where we receive media reports from four different jurisdictions (Jersey City, New York City, New York State, and New Jersey), it is almost impossible to remember all the permutations. This feature from The New York Times goes a long way to alleviating the confusion; it is updated daily.

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How Will the COVID Vaccine(s) Be Distributed?

Who gets it first? Will there be a listing of priority groups? These and other questions are addressed in this preliminary report from the National Academies – Discussion Draft of the Preliminary Framework for Equitable Allocation of COVID-19 Vaccine. This document reviews the efficacy of previous mass inoculations, various scenarios for its allocation/distribution, and the establishment of a foundational framework. Each chapter is supplemented by copious references.

Here is a rebuttal opinion, offering a different set of options.

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International Responses to COVID-19

Many NGOs and governmental agencies have compiled comparisons of how various countries have responded to the COVID crisis. This informative CRS report – COVID-19 International Responses: Resources for Comparison with U.S. Policies – guides you to many relevant sites of relevance.

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What Are the Reopening Plans for the Nation’s 15 Largest School Districts?

As of this writing, only one district is offering in-person only education; all the other districts are offering modified/hybrid models. Of course, these plans may be altered as COVID-19 surges continue; this feature will be regularly updated as districts change their respective approaches to dealing with this pandemic.

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Historic Accounts of Epidemics

This collection from Harvard – Contagion: Historical Views of Diseases and Epidemics – contains hundreds of items spanning the 15th to the early 20th centuries. You will find here works dealing with yellow fever, small pox, plague, and other diseases that have beset mankind.

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What Colleges Have COVID-19 On Their Campuses?

This interactive New York Times feature, while not comprehensive, does list the hundreds of colleges that have reported coronavirus on campus; many institutions did not report citing privacy concerns.

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How Are Other Countries Reopening Their Schools?

This backgrounder from the Council on Foreign Affairs offers some insights; Science also provides some solid information supplemented by additional links. Other valuable sites include: Education Week presents some cases studies; utilization of safety measures in a handful of cities as presented by Education Source highlight what procedures should be employed; Brookings investigates reopenings in Denmark and Finland; Weill Cornell offers What Other Nations Can Tell the U.S. About How To Safely Reopen Schools During the COVID-19 Pandemic; and The Conversation publishes How other countries reopened schools during the pandemic – and what the US can learn from them.

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New CDC Guidelines for Reopening Schools

You can find the revised guidance here.

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Following COVID-19 Vaccine Development

We are starting to read about a ever-increasing number of COVID-19 vaccines, drugs, therapies; trying to keep all the news about them to manageable level is proving problematic at best. However, The New York Times has produced a daily-updated feature called Coronavirus Drug and Treatment Tracker. It lists the various drugs and treatments, 19 of the most widely-mentioned products, and gives us a range of observations from “widely used” to “pseudoscience or fraud”. There are embedded references within each entry for additional information.

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Here Is the Article on the Oxford COVID-19 Vaccine Trial Results

Again, tough reading for a layperson, but you can tease out the important information.

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Here Is the Scientific Report on Moderna’s COVID-19 Vaccine

It is heavy going, but this is the original document that has given hope to many.

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Reopening K-12: The Recommendations from the National Academies

The National Academic Press has just released Reopening K-12 Schools During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Prioritizing Health, Equity, and Communities.

The first recommendation is:

“Districts should weigh the relative health risks of reopening against the educational risks of providing no in-person instruction in Fall 2020. Given the importance of in-person interaction for learning and development, districts should prioritize reopening with an emphasis on providing fulltime, in-person instruction in grades K-5 and for students with special needs who would be best served by in-person instruction.”(Summary, 3)

Another recommendation is that:

“Based on what is currently known about the spread of COVID-19, districts should prioritize mask wearing, providing healthy hand hygiene solutions, physical distancing, and limiting large gatherings. Cleaning, ventilation, and air filtration are also important, but attending to those strategies alone will not sufficiently lower the risk of transmission. Creating small cohorts of
students is another promising strategy. (Summary, 5)

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CDC Guidelines for Re-opening K-12 Schools

For those who may have missed this guidance that is now the subject of intense debate, here it is. Here is a webinar from the Brookings Institution that addresses some of the concerns; an informative and relevant study can be found in the June 2019 issue of Preventive Medicine Reports. An Ethics Framework for the COVID-19 Reopening Process from Johns Hopkins is worth a perusal; it has also issued the COVID-19 School Reopening Response Checklist, and JHU Tracking State and National School Reopening Plans.

New Jersey’s plan is The Road Back: Restart and Recovery Plan for Education.

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UN Publications on COVID-19

From reports to working papers, here is a listing of relevant writings.

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CRS Reports on COVID-19

I can’t think of a better place to come to review the almost 300 reports that deal with such a wide variety of COVID-related topics. The Congressional Research Service (CRS) is one of the few non-partisan entities that still exist in Washington.

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Watch Live – Dr Fauci Testifying Before the Senate

Dr Fauci and other members of the Coronavirus Task Force are speaking to a the Senate committee this morning about early re-openings and vaccine development. You can watch the hearing live, read an ongoing transcript, or view this session at a later date.

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Governor Murphy’s Plan for Re-Opening New Jersey

This just-announced plan – The Road Back: Restoring Economic Health Through Public Health – is composed of six steps to gradually bring New Jersey back. Here is the press release with additional information, and here is a video of his announcement.

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The New York Times Free Ebook on Coronavirus

Answers to Your Coronavirus Questions, a 162-page ebook from The New York Times, collects some two dozen articles from the newspaper. They range from a timeline of the disease to a glossary of terms. Highly readable and informative.

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The Woman Scientist Who First Discovered Coronavirus

Her name was June Almeida. Information on her can be found at the BBC and the British Medical Journal (BMJ). Read one of her early works on viruses here.

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