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Momi is just trying to stay safe and take good care of you. 😊 I don't wear gloves, but it's not a bad idea. One day at the grocery store I stopped to get something at the deli. There was an older woman waiting to be helped. I noticed she was holding her hand over her mouth and nose. Her mask was Kleenex!🤣 I was just waiting to see what would happen. When it was her time to order the deli person said he couldn't help her without a mask. She said "I forgot my mask." He told her she had to go purchase a mask before ordering. I sure hope she didn't touch anything in the fruit and vegetable section. We still are very careful wiping all our groceries with a diluted bleach solution. I wash all the fruits and vegetables. It's probably overkill, but it makes me feel safer.
 

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I suspect this is especially true in some workplace environments. I also suspect it's more complicated than just filtering the virus effectively. There's a huge human behavior component. Personally, I think a big part of it is complacency, and I think some complacency would happen with high filtering masks. But maybe we'd get some renewed commitment that would get us to that month marker. I can't speak to other regions, but the majority of the spread in my area is not wearing masks at all in more private settings, and complacency in distancing and other measures over time. Since it's more comfortable to wear medical masks in comparison to a lot of cloth masks, providing them might also improve compliance in wearing them. The other advantage is people might go for it if they allow for more relaxed social distancing, since that's already happening a lot, but I don't think that's the case, is it?

Cloth masks were never intended to prevent the spread of covid independent from other measures of limiting social interactions, social distancing, hand washing, and ventilation. The presence of masks can help guide human behavior, but only as far as we want those reminders. I am happy to wear a medical mask for a period of time if that's what's recommended, but I do wonder what kind of decrease we'd see in transmission if people recommitted to wearing cloth masks and exercising caution for a while longer. Maybe not as much as we'd see with medical masks, but I bet the improvement would be significant.
I know that the countries that supplied medical-grade masks to their entire populations early-on have very, VERY low infection rates, and have been able to keep it that way the entire time. Places like Singapore, and if I remember correctly, Vietnam. The reason for cloth masks, in the beginning, was to save the medical-grade masks for the medical personnel who really needed them. But the supply has caught up now, and there are enough of these being made that we can buy them too, without interfering with the supply of the hospitals.

The reason they hand you anew mask when you enter a hospital or clinic setting, no matter what kind of mask you are wearing is that they have no faith that you have been handling it correctly or that it IS a "safer" mask. And the people handing them out are not people who can make that determination. They are low=paid clerical workers. At my hospital, it is the guy in the parking garage. If he gets paid more than minimum wage, it's not MUCH more. So the rule is, "everyone gets a new mask. PERIOD They can wear the new one or wear it over their own. No ifs ands or buts." :)
 

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I was just watching the news and it is possible we will now be wearing two masks due to COVID mutations. When DH went for his post-op visit Monday we required to wear two masks before entering the building. Yesterday two masks were again required at PT. This is going to be a problem for some people.🤔
This is why I modified a lot of our masks, to allow for double masking, although it's not required here. However, I heard from an acquaintance that all of the medical offices in her building have already been providing patients with surgical masks, even though they are asked in prescreening to wear one. It sounds like there has been discussion about whether they will require two. Currently patients can use their own and wear the surgical mask over it, or replace the personal cloth mask with the surgical mask. But one of the problems is a poor fitting respirator type mask can't be covered with a second mask or it can be more dangerous. I think the hesitancy to go all in on recommending double masks is only because it's been so hard to get people to wear one properly.

To be honest, medical offices and hospitals are the places I am least concerned about covid transmission to patients. It's not the same as long term care facilities. Healthcare workers are at risk in a completely different way, so I'll continue wear a mask and/or a surgical mask to protect them, but I'm honestly not worried about contracting covid from an appointment. I've never seen such fastidious practices, even during our strange hospital stay recently. I bet the c-diff numbers and antibiotic resistant infections in hospitals are lower than ever. I haven't heard of a patient who has contracted covid from exposure at a doctor's office or even in the hospital, at least not since last fall. DS is tested all of the time as part of prescreening.

It's great healthcare facilities seem to be jumping on increasing protection measures, it can only help, but I have a feeling it's other workplaces that really need better masks to protect their employees.
 

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I know that the countries that supplied medical-grade masks to their entire populations early-on have very, VERY low infection rates, and have been able to keep it that way the entire time. Places like Singapore, and if I remember correctly, Vietnam. The reason for cloth masks, in the beginning, was to save the medical-grade masks for the medical personnel who really needed them. But the supply has caught up now, and there are enough of these being made that we can buy them too, without interfering with the supply of the hospitals.
True, but also the people in those countries also did not take egoistical stands against wearing masks. Just yesterday DD brought up how angry it makes her that a common line here is, "I don't believe in masks but I wear them out of respect around people who care." She understands what they're trying to say, but what it really tells her is, "I'm going to go ahead and potentially spread covid as long as it's not in front of people who care or in public places."

The reason they hand you anew mask when you enter a hospital or clinic setting, no matter what kind of mask you are wearing is that they have no faith that you have been handling it correctly or that it IS a "safer" mask. And the people handing them out are not people who can make that determination. They are low=paid clerical workers. At my hospital, it is the guy in the parking garage. If he gets paid more than minimum wage, it's not MUCH more. So the rule is, "everyone gets a new mask. PERIOD They can wear the new one or wear it over their own. No ifs ands or buts." :)
This is what they have started here, too. But I think this is to protect healthcare workers more than anything, and that's the right thing to do.
 

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I also think France is on the right track. The new rules on types of masks there will better protect people in the workplace. With the increased availability of masks, all employers should provide their employees with real masks, it’s basic respect.
 

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Arf! Arf!
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Discussion Starter #146
Momi and Popi received their second vaccination of Moderna yesterday. We were only required to wear a single mask unlike our first vaccination. I will not sugar-coat the results but give you an honest assessment from my perspective.

We felt fine after the injection which was painless. This morning after about 24 hours later we are experiencing more side effects than after our first. Momi has flu-like symptoms with sore muscles, fatigue, and minor chills. She is in bed napping at this time. I have a dull headache and fatigue. I am up and about but I passed on taking Ricky on his customary morning walk. Neither one of us is taking anything for the symptoms because they are so minor. We are optimistic about immunity being built and will reach maximum immunity in about 14 days.

I asked the supervising RN questions yesterday that have come up on HF:
- Is it necessary to get the vaccine from the same lot? RN said we got our first inoculation on Jan 11 under the previous Administration. There was little information available at that time. At that time health care professionals were requiring vaccine from the same lot in an abundance of caution. Today, there is much more information and guidance coming from the Federal government. Vaccination from the same lot is no longer required BUT vaccine MUST be from the same manufacturer!
- Must the second dose of vaccine be taken exactly in 28 days (Moderna) or 21 days (Pfizer)? RN said that was the initial recommendation and is also still the recommendation by the two manufacturer and as approved by the FDA. However, the Federal Covid Taskforce has suggested that the second dose should NOT be taken SOONER than the recommended waiting period but can be taken WITHIN 7 to 10 days AFTER the recommended wait period by the manufacturer. However maximum immunity will not occur until after 7 to 14 days AFTER the second dose (even if that second dose has been delayed).
- Is the second vaccine exactly the same as the first vaccine? YES they are exactly the same. The second vaccine is NOT "thicker" than the first. However studies have shown that there appears ( but does vary) to be more side effects than the first vaccination but effects soon disappear.
- Do we have enough vaccine? NO, much more vaccine than currently available is needed. However, Kaiser is getting about three times the amount it was getting a month ago.

In other news, DD1 is responsible for the vaccination distribution at her university venue. She is NOT a health care professional. Her area of expertise is LOGISTICS (by education and experience and background). The campus site is open 4 days a week, 7 hours per day. They distributed about 1000 first doses of Pfizer last week. There were no significant problems. They provide a "drive by" venue with people staying in their car to be vaccinated (and subsequent 15 minute wait period). Here is what she has learned:
- Pfizer CANNOT be refrozen once thawed and then used at a later time.
- Pfizer has a shelf life of about 6 hours once thawed.
- The number of doses in a vile ranges from 5 to 6 doses because the amount of vaccine in a vile is not always exactly the same AND when the nurses are withdrawing the vaccine from a vile, it is "eyeballed" so there is some variation. Planning to use every last drop of vaccine is "tricky."
- They thaw about 250 doses per day for use that day.
- She is experiencing 5 to 10 "no shows" per day so they have to call staff who are on a wait list to come in at the last minute for vaccination so they don't waste even one dose.
- over that one week, they had 3 people who experienced side effects that required assistance in their campus health center. No one was hospitalized.

DD is pleased that things have gone so smoothly and can gear up to double or even triple their weekly vaccinations within a week. They have enough vaccine for another 1000 vaccinations this week. BUT, there is a problem! The Los Angeles County Health Dept. is likely to reduce the allotment to her university starting next week for political reasons. There is now an emphasis on increasing allotments to minority neighborhoods (which are admittedly being under served). DD is hoping that there will be more vaccine available to them by the end of the month as J&J gets emergency approval and all manufacturers increase production.

So it is complicated but things are improving. Everyone should get the vaccine as soon as available to you. According to Fauci it is going to be necessary for all of us to wear masks, distance, and maintain cleanliness at least till the late Fall when we reach 75 to 85% vaccination rate.

Be well amigos

Ricky's Popi
 

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Congratulations to Ricky's Popi and Momi. You are doing your part to stem the tide of this awful virus. Yesterday, my 90-year old mother also received her second injection. Believe it or not, she has had no side effects from the injection, not even a sore arm. On, a side not, Boo just finished his lunch and is down for his afternoon snooze. Keep wearing your masks and social distancing everyone. Boo and Dad
 

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Good to hear you and Momi got your second injection! :clap2: Yesterday my friend got her first Moderna vaccine. Today she has a sore arm and body aches. I was told by a friend that last Friday 1,080 online vaccine appointments opened up where receive our medical care and were gone in 38 minutes! I was never notified they had appointments available. 🙁 Two more weeks until our appointment...
 

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Metrowest, MA
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Great information, Popi! Thanks for the update! My 92 YO stepmom got her first vaccine last week. She was a little tired and "under the weather". I had to remind her that that was a known side effect, because she couldn't figure out why she was feeling poorly. :) It DOES seem that people who are in the group eligible for the vaccine are getting them now in MA... We just all have to wait our turns!
 
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Joyce
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Ken and I received our second vaccination on Sunday. We definitely have felt some effects: extremely sore arms (kept me up Sunday night), minor body aches and slight headaches but, most of all, a feeling of great fatigue. Ken is totally better today. I am still very tired. We are very grateful to have received our shots. These minor side effects just remind us of just how serious a case of COVID would be. I hope everyone in our Forum has the opportunity to get the vaccine soon. Here in Florida it is still very difficult.
 

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Arf! Arf!
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Discussion Starter #151
It has been 48 hours since Momi and Popi had their second vaccination. After a good nights sleep, we are 90+% back to normal. I took Ricky on his normal walkies this morning. He was thrilled. We, all three, will be going to the plant nursery later today (with masks on) to pick out some new plants for the Spring.

We feel very fortunate to have the vaccinations behind us. We are optimistic about what the future holds. We are optimistic about our Havamigos will get their vaccinations soon. Better days are ahead.

Ricky's Popi
 

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My friend called this morning and said she was able to make an appointment for her mom tomorrow at Stanford. We all have appointments at the end of Feb or March. We both were hoping for earlier appointments. That would meaning canceling our appointments to reschedule and possibly lose our appointment. We didn't want to take the chance. I decided to try calling and waited about 1/2 hour. Appointments were available any day this week. I rescheduled us for Saturday.😊
 

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Arf! Arf!
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I decided to try calling and waited about 1/2 hour. Appointments were available any day this week. I rescheduled us for Saturday.��
Patience and PERSISTENCE, but it is happening! Congratulations!

Ricky's Popi
 

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Popi - thanks for the information. I still have a couple of weeks to wait for my 2nd dose. I had a doctor appointment yesterday. She said when she got her 2nd dose she was quite sick for 3 days. I'm glad to hear you are feeling so much better. Now, if we could just find out how long the vaccinations last! I'm hoping it will be like the yearly flu shots.
 

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Discussion Starter #157
She said when she got her 2nd dose she was quite sick for 3 days. I'm glad to hear you are feeling so much better.
At the end of two days, we were totally back to normal.

Now, if we could just find out how long the vaccinations last! I'm hoping it will be like the yearly flu shots.
Longevity is unknown at this time, but initial evaluation is looking very positive. But I get a flu booster every year and I am willing to get a Covid booster annually too if necessary.

Ricky's Popi
 

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Well, I got my second dose of Pfizer yesterday and so far, almost no side effects. Arm is sore, but only when I move it. On the first dose, I had significant fatigue and went to bed early. This time, no noticeable fatigue yet. Maybe later this afternoon it will be a forced nap. Spent the morning watching the impeachment hearing so have not had a chance to measure energy level.

Meanwhile, things in the SF Bay Area have gotten significantly better. We have a strange situation in that there are nine counties surrounding the bay and each one is pretty much making its own rules, within the overall guidelines set by the state. I realized that I have family members living in five of the nine counties so the rules are different for each! However, although our county was in really bad shape with large quantities of vaccine sitting in the freezer (county public dashboard was publishing # of first and second doses shipped so there was no debate here that the vaccines were not going into the arms at the pace needed), things have picked up considerably. The county has issued new orders that allow residents to go to any provider, public or private, if they fall into the over-65 or health care provider category. They have also ramped up the vaccination sites enormously...opening sites throughout the county, including a massive one at the SF 49's stadium. Everywhere I am hearing of people getting appointments at one or another of these many sites., sometimes several weeks away but in other cases, the next day, depending on the site. San Francisco has announced it will be adding educators on Feb 24 into the priority groups. That appears to be a little different from the state guidelines which includes several other categories with educators, but nothing prevents an individual county from picking educators before food workers. One can debate endlessly the choices that policy makers are forced to make between different groups. I read that federal shipments have increased 28% this week (not verified, just heard it in media), so that sounds good.

One comment I want to make is that there is a big media campaign using the phrase, "my turn." Asking people to "wait" until "it is your turn." I think that is totally fine, but I think everyone needs to understand that "my turn" only means that you are now eligible...actually getting a vaccination, finding an appointment, grabbing it...can be a challenge if you aren't computer literate, using social media or crowd-sourcing or local media to find out where you can get an appointment. I only know one person, living in San Diego, undergoing cancer treatment, who was actually called by their health provider and helped to schedule an appointment. Health providers are sending out mass emails and even snail mail telling people they are "eligible", but that is only the first step...you have to take action to get an appointment. I got an early appointment because my prior skills at getting concert tickets (i.e.Hamilton and the last Beatles concert years ago at Candlestick Park) were refreshed in the last year in securing essential pandemic needs such as toilet paper, hand sanitizers, and face masks. As Popi said, "be persistent."
 

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I was able to sign up for vaccinations on 2/22 and 3/15 through my school district. I'm thrilled!

We are still in distance learning (which allowed me to spend this week visiting my parents), but tomorrow we're expecting to hear what's going to happen next. The district's plan was to return to hybrid on 2/22, but the teachers have been pushing to wait until we're fully vaccinated. The district finally surveyed the parents, students, and staff, so I'm hopeful that the consensus is to remain in distance learning until after Spring Break (i.e., beginning of April).
 

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Arf! Arf!
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Discussion Starter #160
I was able to sign up for vaccinations on 2/22 and 3/15 through my school district. I'm thrilled!
:cheer2: Randy too? You have no idea how liberated you are going to feel after even your first vaccination!

My blood oxygen level is at the lower end of normal in four days since my second vaccination but that means my immune system is making positive adjustments and that is a good sign.

Ricky's Popi
 
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