Different Takes: US Needs More Covid Test Availability; Small Medical Practices Facing Vaccine Dilemma
Opinion writers examine these covid and vaccine topics.
The Washington Post:
Covid Tests Are Too Hard To Find
Thirty-six hours before my flight to Virginia to visit family, a friend texted to say she had tested positive for the coronavirus. We’d just had dinner together, indoors, side by side. Because we were both vaccinated, I was probably fine, but “probably” wasn’t good enough for flying shoulder to shoulder with other passengers, hugging 76-year-old parents and cuddling a 1-year-old niece. Which meant I needed to get tested and have the results before 8:15 a.m. the next day. How hard could that be? Thus began my epic quest to find a coronavirus test. (Kate Cohen, 10/15)
The Boston Globe:
Why Aren’t The Nurses In Our Pediatrician’s Office Vaccinated?
As parents of a pandemic baby, we find that life has revolved around diapers, nursing, and protecting our son from COVID-19, since he is too young to be vaccinated. Once our pediatrician began scheduling him for another round of the dozen vaccines that protect children from diseases that used to kill millions each year before their first birthday, we were shocked to learn that several nurses in our doctor’s practice were not vaccinated. How can this possibly be the case nearly a year after highly effective COVID-19 vaccines were approved and have saved thousands from illness and death? (Shan Soe-Lin and Robert Hecht, 10/18)
How The Pandemic Fueled Sexism Against Women Doctors
In the spring of 2020, as Boston’s first COVID-19 wave raged, I was the gastroenterologist on call responding to a patient hospitalized with a stomach ulcer. Wearing a layer of yellow personal protective equipment over a pair of baggy scrubs, I spent 30 minutes explaining to him that he needed an endoscopic procedure. We built a rapport, and by the end of our conversation about the pros and cons, he seemed to agree with my recommendation. I told him we would be ready to perform his endoscopy within half an hour. (Trisha Pasricha, 10/16)
How The Covid-19 Booster Shots Could Make The Vaccination Gap Worse
"We're all triply-vaccinated!" friends gleefully told me last week, as they invited me to their home for dinner. They were thrilled. I had rarely seen such big smiles since the Covid-19 pandemic began. As recipients of the Pfizer vaccine, they became eligible for a booster dose starting in late September. Since then, millions of others have been waiting with great anticipation to know whether the US Food and Drug Administration would approve boosters of other Covid-19 vaccines as well. (Robert Klitzman, 10/17)
Tennessee Must Step Up On Vaccines Before Loosening COVID Restrictions
Last Sunday, it poured in New York City. But heavy rain did not deter hundreds of visitors, including me, from waiting in line to enter the 9/11 Memorial Museum. The museum is a fantastic tribute that allows citizens to commemorate and reflect upon the worst attack on U.S. soil in American history, to remember a time when Americans came together with a single purpose, and to gain hope that maybe that unity is possible again. Before we made it to the entrance, however, museum staff told visitors to have their COVID-19 vaccine cards and IDs ready to show security. Everyone was wearing a mask. Nobody fought the staff. (David Plazas, 10/15)
Rebuilding The U.S. Health Care Workforce During And After Covid-19
As an emergency medicine physician and director of emergency management, I have taken part in disaster and humanitarian responses in Sri Lanka after the Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami, in Haiti during the height of the AIDS epidemic, and elsewhere. I often experienced “reentry” afterward — the disjointed feeling of returning to the place and activities I had left behind. I never expected to experience reentry from working in my own hospital in Northern California, yet that’s what I am feeling today. (Mary Meyer, 10/18)