COVID-19

We continue to be awash with COVID stories. But let us cut to the chase. How many annual COVID-19 deaths are the nation prepared to tolerate on a routine basis? Substantial public health efforts have been devoted to reducing these other causes of death; why should COVID be different? Reducing traffic accident deaths by mandating vehicle seat belts comes to mind, for which some 9000 lives were saved each year. How prepared are we to similarly enforce a comprehensive COVID-19 vaccination program?
The published literature on COVID now exceeds 211,000 papers, books, and documents, which include: 22,866 observational studies, 19,591 reviews, 1496 meta-analyses and 781 randomized control trials. These publications comprise the backdrop for our research and writing. The project began in the spring of 2020 based on a limited source of cumulative COVID-19 data and has broadened considerably. Here is what we have learned.
The same mRNA technology that gave us effective COVID-19 vaccines could yield a new generation of highly protective seasonal flu shots. When will we see these upgraded influenza vaccines? Perhaps sooner than you think.
In a bid to bolster their flagging anti-biotech agenda, several high-profile activist groups have bizarrely joined the chorus of voices suggesting that SARS-CoV-2 escaped from a lab. The science community needs to make clear that wherever the virus came from, its beginnings do not undermine the safety or efficacy of important biotechnology innovations in food and medicine.
There is widespread agreement in the scientific and public health communities about the importance of vaccination, to bring the pandemic under control. Public actions consist mainly of wishful thinking and handwringing. Vaccination resistance is widespread throughout the nation, with few signs of abatement. Fortunately, we’re awash in data, and we still hope to find sensible patterns.
Instagram recently censored the Cochrane Collaboration, a highly respected nonprofit group made up of medical experts, for allegedly sharing "false content" about COVID-19. This is an inevitable consequence of the growing push for social media censorship.
What went wrong during the COVID-19 pandemic? A team of public health researchers recently outlined some of the crucial policy mistakes we made and explained how we might avoid them in the future.
Over the last year, the number of immune individuals necessary to achieve herd immunity has risen from 70% to 90%. Is it even possible to achieve herd immunity? Every other disease has herd immunity; why not COVID-19? And another problem, why is COVID-19 different from its siblings SARS or MERS?
The media likes to compare COVID-19 outcomes in different states based on carefully selected metrics. A closer look indicates that these match-ups are less compelling than reporters think. This has consequences for the public's trust in science.
Merck just announced that it granted a royalty-free license for its antiviral drug molnupiravir to Medicines Patent Pool, a United Nations-backed organization dedicated to providing crucial medicines to 105 poorer countries. Will this make a difference in the battle against COVID? I argue that it will.
Just what we need: another COVID variant. This one is called Delta AY.4.2 and it's now circulating in the UK. It might be a bit worse than the already awful Delta variant. Should we be concerned? And what does this suggest about COVID in the future?
The vast majority of Americans don't trust the media to "report the news fully, accurately and fairly," according to a new Gallup poll. Let's examine some recent examples that may help explain why the public is so skeptical of journalists.