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Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Empty Stadium Sports Will Be Really Weird

So, with the very likely possibility that baseball and basketball — at minimum — will be played to empty stadiums, it begs the question: Will it be as fun?

And before you answer, think about it for a second. No crowd noise. No intensity that builds for the home team or against the away team. Yes, the scoreboard will tell the tale, but the pressure is cranked up when you have a building full of crazy fans screaming their lungs out.

I get that it’s a business and that the money’s at the ML level, but considering crowds, distance from population centers, and the pleasures of relaxed fandom, I’ve been thinking that we might just run some mLs instead.

Mayor Blomberg Posted: April 28, 2020 at 10:17 AM | 12176 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: business, fans, stadiums

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   11901. bunyon Posted: January 26, 2021 at 01:23 PM (#6001835)
Not to lean too hard on Dr. Lowe, but his pitching namesake was an innings eater, so I'll post one more:

Derek Lowe on Pfizer data

Here is the paragraph on efficacy. BLB basically has the gist in 11899.

Now to efficacy. As we know, “overwhelming efficacy” was declared at the first (and only!) interim analysis, with 94 total cases split 90/4 between the placebo group and the vaccinated group. The final analysis shows 170 cases, split 162/8 (confirmed coronavirus infection at least 7 days after the second dose). That’s a VE (vaccine efficacy) of 95%, with the 95% confidence interval on that number running from 90.3% to 97.6%. A new and interesting data set cover what happened after the first dose and before the second. There were 50 cases of coronavirus in the one-dose treatment group, versus 275 in the placebo group. But look at how those 50 cases came on:

And then Figure 13. My understanding of the trials is both placebo and dosed groups were told to continue to take all the other Covid-19 precautions (mask, distance, hand washing, etc).

While the pandemic is going strong, I wouldn't drop those other guards even if I were two weeks past a second dose of vaccine. But 95% efficacy is extremely high for a vaccine. Both the moderna and pfizer data are pretty incredible.
   11902. Kiko Sakata Posted: January 26, 2021 at 01:27 PM (#6001836)
When they say the vaccine trials were 90+ % effective, what does that mean? I assume that's relative to the control group in some way?


From Pfizer's original press release (Nov 18, 2020):

The first primary objective analysis is based on 170 cases of COVID-19, as specified in the study protocol, of which 162 cases of COVID-19 were observed in the placebo group versus 8 cases in the BNT162b2 group.


I believe the basic math is just: 8 is 95% lower than 162 (8/162 - 1 = .9506)

The press release mentions 43,000 participants. I assume half of those got placebos. And they did some further analysis of sub-populations.
   11903. bunyon Posted: January 26, 2021 at 01:30 PM (#6001837)
The xcd graph in 11900 is basically Figure 13. It's incredibly strong data.

Assuming, of course, that your local pfizer administrator can keep their doses cold enough.
   11904. Ron J Posted: January 26, 2021 at 03:10 PM (#6001868)
There's a secondary benefit. It also seems to limit severity if it doesn't outright prevent infection.
   11905. Lassus Posted: January 26, 2021 at 03:42 PM (#6001875)
There's a secondary benefit. It also seems to limit severity if it doesn't outright prevent infection.

This is the pretty exciting part, yes.
   11906. puck Posted: January 26, 2021 at 07:33 PM (#6001946)
Thanks for the info. That is a pretty huge contrast between the groups.
   11907. reech Posted: January 27, 2021 at 11:00 AM (#6002140)
FWIW- If anyone would like to view- my daughter was on Nightline last nite talking about her long range damage from COVID (she had it beginning of March)- Shayna- first one up-


https://abcnews.go.com/Nightline/video/year-covid-19-survivors-suffering-lasting-symptoms-75509203
   11908. SoSH U at work Posted: January 27, 2021 at 11:23 AM (#6002147)
Damn reech. That's awful. Best wishes to your daughter.
   11909. reech Posted: January 27, 2021 at 11:34 AM (#6002149)
thanks
   11910. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 27, 2021 at 12:02 PM (#6002158)
I’m sorry to hear that reach. I hope she is able to recover.

A college friend of mine is a COVID long-hauler as well. The bizarrely wide range of symptoms that people describe is one of the things that frightens me most about this thing. It’s like, roll the dice and maybe you’ll be completely fine, maybe you’ll suffer extreme physical symptoms, maybe you’ll have trouble functioning cognitively, maybe you’ll need to be on dialysis, etc.
   11911. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: January 27, 2021 at 01:15 PM (#6002179)
reech, thanks for sharing. Best wishes.
   11912. Mayor Blomberg Posted: January 27, 2021 at 04:57 PM (#6002263)
sorry to heart that, reech. best of luck
   11913. bunyon Posted: January 27, 2021 at 05:51 PM (#6002291)
Thanks for the link, reech. I hope things pick up for her (and all the others).
   11914. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: January 28, 2021 at 11:34 AM (#6002419)
Even without accounting for delays in reported deaths, as of now the CDC for 2020 has reported about 450,000 more deaths than 2019. Once all the delays are accounted for that number will be well above 500,000, probably close to 550,000.

Then, the question become where to set the baseline deaths for 2020. As noted previously, the average increase in deaths over the last 10 years has been about 40k per year, and the biggest increase was 86,000 in a year. I guess you could make an argument for something around 100,000 more this year, and if you squint really hard, maybe 150,000. (The best argument for this is the "dry tinder" based on two low years of deaths. A counter argument is the two low years of deaths should have been expected based on the very bad flu year immediately prior, in 2017-2018, so there's no reason to think that people were especially vulnerable in 2020.) The CDC estimated a low amount (about 30,000), which, prior to covid hitting, was still looking like it would be an overestimate, as we seemed to be heading for another light year in deaths.

Regardless, there's just no realistic way to get under about 400,000 excess deaths for 2019, and 500,000 will probably be close to the consensus number in the final accounting.
   11915. puck Posted: January 28, 2021 at 03:26 PM (#6002475)
So this Brazilian variant, anyone seen good articles on it? The stuff in the regular news stories (like the NPR article I linked) is pretty scary.

"If you were to ask me right now, what's most concerning of all the things that I've heard so far, it's the fact that they are reporting a sudden increase in cases in Manaus, Brazil," virus expert Jeremy Luban at the University of Massachusetts told NPR two weeks ago before the variant arrived in the United States. "Manaus already had 75% of people infected [in the spring of last year]."


Are there that many people in Manaus being reinfected or could the initial estimate have been way high?
   11916. base ball chick Posted: January 28, 2021 at 04:01 PM (#6002483)
aunt bea

you might could have said before but i've forgotten -

does "excess deaths" mean from ALL causes or just from ones that are known to be not covid? like accident, suicide, homicide, cancer without covid, etc
   11917. Mayor Blomberg Posted: January 28, 2021 at 05:26 PM (#6002510)
Excess means more than anticipated based past years. It covers deaths from all causes. If we take the average of the past 5-10 years, goose it a little for population growth, and adjust for, say, the severity of the flu season, that tells us how many deaths we might expect for the year. We're now 400,000 deaths above that expected number, and climbing.
   11918. Ron J Posted: January 28, 2021 at 06:05 PM (#6002518)
#11917 And if you want a better sense for the impact of Covid in itself you can also adjust for the lower death in traffic accidents. I doubt this truly moves the dial but it is worth noting.
   11919. Srul Itza Posted: January 28, 2021 at 06:50 PM (#6002527)
It certainly looks like the Christmas/New Year's surge has begun to subside a bit, as the number of daily new cases has dropped. The daily death numbers are still high, but should go down as well, as that lagging indicator catches up.

Which means States are loosening restrictions.

Which means numbers will start to go back up, especially as what are reported to be more contagious variants take hold here.


The total number of "confirmed" cases, per Worldometer is over 26 million. Has anyone seen any convincing reports as to what the likely number of actual infections is, factoring in all the asymptomatic people and others who are never tested?
   11920. reech Posted: January 28, 2021 at 06:57 PM (#6002528)
Does anyone have data on if dwi and dui arrests are down since the plague began?
   11921. Mayor Blomberg Posted: January 28, 2021 at 07:13 PM (#6002529)
Which means States are loosening restrictions.

Only states that once tightened them

   11922. Srul Itza Posted: January 28, 2021 at 07:47 PM (#6002531)
you can also adjust for the lower death in traffic accidents. I doubt this truly moves the dial but it is worth noting.


The total number for the last few years has been around 35,000 to 37,000. Numbers I have seen for 2020 seem to fall into that same range, so really no discernible effect.

   11923. Ron J Posted: January 28, 2021 at 08:39 PM (#6002534)
#11922 That surprises me. I didn't expect it to be anything major but I did expect it to be noticeable.
   11924. Mayor Blomberg Posted: January 28, 2021 at 08:50 PM (#6002537)
Ron J --
Robert C. Wunderlich is director of the Center for Transportation Safety at Texas A&M University. He told Texas Standard that it’s not only the number of drivers on the road that leads to more traffic deaths; speed also plays a major role.
“The thing about speed is it’s an exponential function, so that a 10% increase in speed can be over a 50% increase in severity, particularly in terms of fatal crashes,” he said.

I've not seen final Texas numbers
   11925. puck Posted: January 28, 2021 at 09:03 PM (#6002539)
#11922 That surprises me. I didn't expect it to be anything major but I did expect it to be noticeable.


The rate (deaths/mile) is supposed to be up, so that must make up for fewer miles?
   11926. Ron J Posted: January 28, 2021 at 09:17 PM (#6002540)
11925 Risk takers making up a disproportionate share of the people driving? Plausible I suppose.
   11927. Mayor Blomberg Posted: January 28, 2021 at 09:23 PM (#6002541)
Not even necessarily risk-takers if it's speed. Fewer cars = less congestion = higher speed. A crash at 60 has a better chance than one at 30 or 40 of being fatal.
   11928. Ron J Posted: January 29, 2021 at 09:18 AM (#6002572)
Today's news on the vaccine front is good. Johnson & Johnson's vaccine appears to be 66% (85% if you look only at severe cases) effective after a single dose. Not as good as their two dose results, but acceptable given current issues with supply.
   11929. Howie Menckel Posted: January 29, 2021 at 10:43 AM (#6002603)
Not even necessarily risk-takers if it's speed. Fewer cars = less congestion = higher speed. A crash at 60 has a better chance than one at 30 or 40 of being fatal.

yes, this has been the finding all over the U.S., and I believe in other countries as well. some people who fervently wished those "idiots" in front of them would just go away got their wish - and well, careful what you wish for, and careful with your speed.
   11930. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 29, 2021 at 10:50 AM (#6002606)
I also suspect there hasn’t been as much of a decrease in number of miles driven as many people here think.
   11931. Lassus Posted: January 29, 2021 at 11:52 AM (#6002624)
I don't know what people think is the decrease, but from April - August for me alone JUST for work it was 30 miles a day x 18 work days a month x 4 months, so.
   11932. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 29, 2021 at 11:59 AM (#6002626)
Looks like the overall decline is somewhere between 12-15%.. Certainly meaningful, but not going to have any significant effect on overall mortality.
   11933. Mayor Blomberg Posted: January 29, 2021 at 12:06 PM (#6002628)
No, it's not going to have a significant effect because less driving means higher speeds and deaths rise exponentially with speed.
   11934. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 29, 2021 at 12:19 PM (#6002632)

Even if driving deaths declined by 15%, it just wouldn’t be that meaningful. I mean, it would be a great thing, but it would be a rounding error in overall mortality even in a normal year. And we have seen swings of that magnitude before that nobody outside of traffic safety experts really paid attention to.
   11935. Ron J Posted: January 29, 2021 at 12:31 PM (#6002637)
#11934 Yeah. That's what I was expecting. 10% decrease in traffic death that makes no real difference to the overall picture.
   11936. puck Posted: January 29, 2021 at 01:21 PM (#6002641)
Looks like the overall decline is somewhere between 12-15%..

That makes sense. I've been driving to work for much of this...it seems like there's a lot more traffic now. Not quite normal but a lot more cars than back in April or so.
   11937. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: January 29, 2021 at 01:22 PM (#6002642)
Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds signs law requiring schools offer 100% in-person option


Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds Friday signed a requirement for Iowa schools to give parents the option to send their children to school five days a week Friday morning.

She signed it at a state Capitol event, just hours after both chambers of the Iowa Legislature approved it Thursday.

"It's time to put local control into the hands of parents, where it belongs, so that they can choose what's best for their children," she said before signing the bill, surrounded by a small group that included state legislators, parents and students.

The requirements will go into effect Feb. 15, giving Iowa's public and accredited private schools that currently offer a mixture of in-person and virtual instruction two weeks to make the transition. Many schools already offer an in-person option, but several do not due to continued community spread of the coronavirus.

The new law will not prevent schools from continuing to offer hybrid options or a fully virtual option for parents who request it. However, some school districts that are currently instructing partly in person and partly online expect to drop that hybrid option once the law goes into effect.

The law will require school districts to give parents at least five days to decide which option to select for their children.

Reynolds and Republicans have emphasized that students in some districts have missed out on the advantages of in-person instruction, which include mental health benefits and access to several services. They have also pointed to evidence that grades have fallen behind during the pandemic.

But Democrats and others say Iowa first needs to reduce community spread of the virus and ensure schools have enough resources in order to reopen safely. Iowa will begin vaccinating teachers an other schools staff Feb. 1, but they will not be fully vaccinated by Feb. 15.

On Friday, Reynolds applauded schools that had already returned to in-person learning and said the state plans to support schools with personal protective equipment and federal coronavirus funding.

"Sadly, the biggest risk to our students is their continued absence from school," she said, adding that national research and achievement results within Iowa have shown more students are falling behind.


   11938. Ron J Posted: January 29, 2021 at 03:38 PM (#6002707)
In today's possibly least surprising news, it turns out that NY was significantly under-reporting nursing home Covid deaths. By around 50%. The figure that they've been reporting turns out to be only those who died on nursing home property.
   11939. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 29, 2021 at 03:58 PM (#6002719)

In today's possibly least surprising news, it turns out that NY was significantly under-reporting nursing home Covid deaths. By around 50%. The figure that they've been reporting turns out to be only those who died on nursing home property.


Yeah, as you indicate, this was pretty well known. I don't know whether they ever claimed their statistics represented something that they didn't, but it was still pretty bad that they refused to report the number that would have been a better indicator of what was actually happening.
   11940. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: January 29, 2021 at 05:20 PM (#6002751)
The deaths were reported as covid deaths, just not as nursing home covid deaths. Still, it was likely done (or not discontinued) at least in part for political reasons, and it was definitely misleading.
   11941. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 29, 2021 at 05:31 PM (#6002753)

#11940, yes, 100% agree.
   11942. Ron J Posted: January 29, 2021 at 05:33 PM (#6002755)
Apparently Cuomo was fond of citing the "official" numbers to prove that had done an ... OKish job on the nursing home front.
   11943. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: January 29, 2021 at 05:54 PM (#6002761)

The NY State requirement that nursing homes accept COVID positive patients was a big anti-Cuomo talking point on the right. I don't think that NY State was much worse when it comes to nrsing home deaths than, say, Massachusetts or New Jersey, but the state would never release the numbers to be able to make a valid comparison, which was always suspicious and almost certainly political.
   11944. Mayor Blomberg Posted: January 30, 2021 at 10:13 PM (#6002955)
Scene at Dodger Stadium:
One of the largest vaccination sites in the country briefly shut down Saturday afternoon because maskless, anti-vaccine protesters blocked the entrance, officials said.
For nearly an hour, thousands of motorists in line to get a coronavirus vaccine shot at Dodger Stadium were stalled as about 50 people demonstrating against immunization efforts caused officials to temporarily close the site’s gates, Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman David Ortiz told The Washington Post. The protest had no impact on the number of shots given Saturday at the site, which can vaccinate 8,000 people a day, Ortiz said.


meanwhile,
Michigan is under shutdown, but inside Sunrise Family Diner, you might assume there is no pandemic.
This is the other rebellion. While armed extremists gathered outside the statehouse in Lansing a week after a mob stormed the U.S. Capitol in support of President Donald Trump’s false claims of election fraud, dozens of restaurateurs across Michigan held their own protests against reality.
The restaurants are operating in open defiance of the state’s governor and the restrictions she ordered in an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The businesses say the science on which the rules are based — pushed by the state health department, World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — is politicized and untrustworthy.
   11945. Esmailyn Gonzalez Sr. Posted: January 30, 2021 at 10:26 PM (#6002956)
First Derek Lowe, now David Ortiz?
   11946. bunyon Posted: January 31, 2021 at 10:48 AM (#6002990)
Must be issues with Red Sox pensions.
   11947. SoSH U at work Posted: January 31, 2021 at 10:52 AM (#6002993)
I'm really looking forward to Dr. Pokey Reese's assessment of the efficacy of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine.
   11948. Lassus Posted: January 31, 2021 at 02:01 PM (#6003012)
I often cite Cuomo as a good exemplar of the difference between the GOP and Dems. If JE said he'd like to fire Cuomo out of a cannon into a brick wall 12 feet away, I'd counter with three feet; but try and get Clapper to comment on Jewish space lasers and QAnon from his elected representatives and there's a big nothing.
   11949. Srul Itza At Home Posted: January 31, 2021 at 07:18 PM (#6003056)
A lot of people tried to act as if Trump's dishonesty, conspiracy mongering, white supremacy pandering, bigotry and authoritarianism were somehow an anomaly in the GOP. In fact, they are now its core values.

A lot of people are now trying to act as if Marjorie Taylor Greene's slightly more blatant espousal of the same creed singles her out as deserving of censure of some kind. But what she is saying is openly supported by a large section of the party at the grass roots, and quietly humored everywhere else.

The GOP will not do anything to her, for fear of alienating a huge section of the party. The result is that more and more of them will feel free to be more open about their views.

I would tell you to get used to it, but what you should really do is get ready for it to get worse.

Everyone who ever supported Trump is at least partly responsible for this death spiral.

Lie down with dogs, get up with fleas.
   11950. Mayor Blomberg Posted: January 31, 2021 at 07:56 PM (#6003063)
I would tell you to get used to it, but what you should really do is get ready for it to get worse.

indeed. We've seen it already with the AZ and OR parties.
   11951. baxter Posted: January 31, 2021 at 08:15 PM (#6003065)
11944 I do not understand why it took the LAPD an hour to restore order. Also if one is anti vax; fine, but preventing others who want to vaccinate is a big problem.

2nd part I understand the restaurant owners' concerns. A local guy we know has said, he is trying to comply w/the orders promulgated bureaucrats who don't have to worry about where their next paycheck or revenue is coming from (yet). The government did not take care of the small businesses, at least enough to tread water until things can open up wider. If one is losing one's livelihood, perhaps the investment of a lifetime's work, that is terrible. Now, it isn't going to force me to go to restaurants (though I've gotten some take out), but maybe for younger people, they want to take the chance. The problem is there's an externality. If one becomes ill (even asymptomatically) one spreads the contagion further, so the cost extends beyond one's own activity. The government regulations amount to a temporary taking, the businesses should receive compensation, again, enough to tread water. I would pay more taxes for that, but I want the big boys to pay, too. No more 15% tax rate for these hedge funds, for example. It is a shared sacrifice.
   11952. Mayor Blomberg Posted: January 31, 2021 at 09:53 PM (#6003076)
compensation is certainly the reasonable response to this issue, but there's been the problem of political will, or, in this case, won't.
   11953. bunyon Posted: February 01, 2021 at 10:18 AM (#6003104)
Yeah, the blame ultimately goes to government/society for not making it possible for businesses to close. If you let a business stay open under conditions where closing means ruin, they're going to stay open and it's hard to blame them.

There are no shared sacrifices in modern America. It's the wild west. Sorry to go OTP
   11954. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: February 01, 2021 at 11:33 AM (#6003119)
Last week was the biggest yet for reported deaths and reported covid deaths by the CDC, but they were still just treading water with the recent peak.

Today there was a huge dump of 43,000 reported covid deaths, mostly since the start of December. Also about 60,000 total reported deaths, so almost all the deaths they had been hanging onto were covid-related.

Before today's 43,000, the most ever reported covid deaths in a day was about 7,000, which gives you a sense of the scale of how far behind they were.
For all reported deaths, the 60,000 new ones today is also tops, with only 2 other days ever over 25,000 or so. Both of those other two came in the last two weeks.

A minor thing, but maybe the change in administration is making a difference here finally as well.
   11955. Lassus Posted: February 01, 2021 at 11:43 AM (#6003121)
Minor victories are still victories: Seattle health workers raced to inject 1,600 coronavirus vaccine doses in the middle of the night to whomever they could find after a freezer failed
The freezer malfunction meant the Moderna vaccines would expire by the morning of January 29, so workers at Seattle's Swedish Health Services rushed to vaccinate as many people as they could. Within the last 15 minutes, before the shots expired, workers administered dozens of shots mostly on the street. They reportedly injected the last shot at 3:45 a.m. on the dot.

At around 11 p.m. on Thursday night, the medical center tweeted an urgent message saying it had hundreds of available vaccine appointments in the next few hours before the doses expired. Hundred people showed up in their pajamas and robes, the NBC affiliate KING-TV reported.
Brackett said she was going through the long line seeking out people who were 65 or older so they could be prioritized.

"I was a little worried that the line maybe would not be too thrilled," she said. "You know, that I am letting others go first. But that wasn't the response I had at all. Actually, the crowd kind of cheered."
   11956. Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: February 01, 2021 at 12:14 PM (#6003125)
There are no shared sacrifices in modern America.


On this note, does anybody else get annoyed whenever someone says "we're all in this together"?
   11957. Mayor Blomberg Posted: February 01, 2021 at 12:50 PM (#6003132)
"I was a little worried that the line maybe would not be too thrilled," she said. "You know, that I am letting others go first. But that wasn't the response I had at all. Actually, the crowd kind of cheered."

Every once in while, a glimmer of memory that there is a we in it together.
   11958. Ron J Posted: February 02, 2021 at 08:28 AM (#6003283)
Covid Tracking Project announces it's closing in a month.

https://covidtracking.com/analysis-updates/covid-tracking-project-end-march-7
   11959. Ron J Posted: February 02, 2021 at 10:25 AM (#6003297)
And the Sputnik vaccine is around 91% effective. Nice to have another good option.
   11960. Greg Pope Posted: February 02, 2021 at 10:38 AM (#6003300)
On this note, does anybody else get annoyed whenever someone says "we're all in this together"?

Not annoyed, but since my kids are the right age for this, I think of this EVERY SINGLE TIME.
   11961. Lassus Posted: February 02, 2021 at 02:02 PM (#6003324)
And the Sputnik vaccine is around 91% effective. Nice to have another good option.

Can someone explain to the stupid person why J&J's 65% effectiveness is touted as a good thing? I found that very confusing.
   11962. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: February 02, 2021 at 02:04 PM (#6003326)
The Mystery Of India's Plummeting COVID-19 Cases

India's climate and demographics have not changed during the pandemic. And the drop in India's COVID-19 caseload has been recent. It hit a peak in September and has declined inexplicably since then.

In fact, India's numbers went down exactly when experts predicted they would spike: in October, when millions of people gathered for the Hindu festivals of Diwali and Durga Puja. It's when air pollution is also worst, and experts feared that would exacerbate the pandemic too.

Cases have also declined despite what many thought would be a superspreader event: tens of thousands of Indian farmers camping out on the capital's outskirts for months.

Shah, the epidemiologist, wonders if, just like more infectious variants of the coronavirus have been discovered in the U.K. and elsewhere, perhaps a milder variant may have started mutating in India.

"Some processes must have happened. This is an evolution of the virus itself. In some places there are mutations happening," she says. "We need some more deeper evidence and deeper studies."

The truth is, scientists just don't know.
   11963. Mayor Blomberg Posted: February 02, 2021 at 03:00 PM (#6003350)
Texas's little secret about back-to-normal classes: There aren't enough substitute teachers to step in when coronavirus keeps Texas teachers out of the classroom

Texas school districts, like those across the country, are having trouble keeping their classrooms staffed as teachers stay home for COVID-related quarantine or isolation and the well of substitute teachers is drier than in past years. Like many other industries requiring in-person work during the pandemic, schools are being disrupted by the persistent employee absences and the inability to easily find replacements. School leaders are coming up with solutions on the fly: tagging in paraprofessionals and administrators to take over for teachers, combining multiple classes in a room and even reverting to virtual school for days at a time.

Texas is now requiring all school districts to offer in-person instruction with few exceptions. But school leaders and teachers know that, even with more students back in classrooms, normalcy is close to impossible until the pandemic is fully under control.
   11964. Ron J Posted: February 02, 2021 at 03:47 PM (#6003361)
J&J is 65% on a single use. With the booster shot it's much better.

Thing is the 65% is good enough for mitigation. It's great news that it's fairly effective to start with.
   11965. ramifications of an exciting 57i66135 Posted: February 02, 2021 at 04:01 PM (#6003363)
Can someone explain to the stupid person why J&J's 65% effectiveness is touted as a good thing? I found that very confusing.

it's the first vaccine that doesn't need to be transported and stored at -80 degrees, which makes the logistics significantly less onerous. it can be distributed without also needing to build out an entirely new parallel infrastructure.
   11966. Srul Itza Posted: February 02, 2021 at 04:08 PM (#6003365)
J&J is 65% on a single use. With the booster shot it's much better.


Aren't they still gathering data on the effect of a second shot?
   11967. bunyon Posted: February 02, 2021 at 04:48 PM (#6003376)
J&J is 65% on a single use. With the booster shot it's much better.

Thing is the 65% is good enough for mitigation. It's great news that it's fairly effective to start with.


I think they are still gathering data on the second shot, Srul, and it isn't clear that it will be much better.


However, 65% for a vaccine is really solid. Had that been the first one reported, we'd have been jumping up and down and J&J stock would have skyrocketed.

It's great news to have a vaccine with that activity that is so robust. At this point, we need as many as we can get.

   11968. JL72 Posted: February 02, 2021 at 05:02 PM (#6003380)
It's great news to have a vaccine with that activity that is so robust. At this point, we need as many as we can get.


It sounds like this vaccine will be extremely beneficial for less developed countries that lack the infrastructure to store and transport some of the other vaccines.
   11969. ramifications of an exciting 57i66135 Posted: February 02, 2021 at 05:25 PM (#6003384)
It sounds like this vaccine will be extremely beneficial for less developed countries and the united states that lack the infrastructure to store and transport some of the other vaccines.
ftfy
   11970. Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: February 02, 2021 at 06:30 PM (#6003395)
Might make sense to use the J&J vaccine to get a lot of low risk people vaccinated quickly while using the more powerful vaccines on the people who need them most.
   11971. Ron J Posted: February 02, 2021 at 07:03 PM (#6003401)
Looks like a single shot of the AstraZenica is also around 67% effective.

Also 11970 Wendover Productions suggested the way to make use of two different vaccines is to save the one that requires super special handling for the urban centers that already have infrastructure in place to make it relatively manageable.

Oh year, the guy who intentionally spoiled the vaccines is a flat earther. Because of course he is.
   11972. ramifications of an exciting 57i66135 Posted: February 02, 2021 at 08:51 PM (#6003421)
based on self-identification, the 2020 electorate was significantly more Republican than the 2016 electorate. Second, public satisfaction with the economy favored the incumbent. Both pollsters found that people who voted in 2020 thought Trump would handle the economy better than Joe Biden would. McLaughlin’s analysis, based on his post-election survey of people who voted in 2020, noted that 61 percent of these voters said they were better off than they had been four years earlier. Despite this, Trump managed to lose one-third of the 61 percent. “Fully 20% of all voters thought they were better off today than four years ago and did not vote for President Trump,” McLaughlin wrote.

... we're all in this together.
   11973. Kiko Sakata Posted: February 02, 2021 at 10:35 PM (#6003441)
Can someone explain to the stupid person why J&J's 65% effectiveness is touted as a good thing? I found that very confusing.


The New York Times had a nice overview of how great the vaccine news is (including J&J).

In the official language of research science, a vaccine is typically considered effective only if it prevents people from coming down with any degree of illness. With a disease that’s always or usually horrible, like ebola or rabies, that definition is also the most meaningful one.

But it’s not the most meaningful definition for most coronavirus infections.

...

By those measures, all five of the vaccines — from Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca, Novavax and Johnson & Johnson — look extremely good. Of the roughly 75,000 people who have received one of the five in a research trial, not a single person has died from Covid, and only a few people appear to have been hospitalized. None have remained hospitalized 28 days after receiving a shot.

To put that in perspective, it helps to think about what Covid has done so far to a representative group of 75,000 American adults: It has killed roughly 150 of them and sent several hundred more to the hospital. The vaccines reduce those numbers to zero and nearly zero, based on the research trials.

Zero isn’t even the most relevant benchmark. A typical U.S. flu season kills between five and 15 out of every 75,000 adults and hospitalizes more than 100 of them.

I assume you would agree that any vaccine that transforms Covid into something much milder than a typical flu deserves to be called effective. But that is not the scientific definition. When you read that the Johnson & Johnson vaccine was 66 percent effective or that the Novavax vaccine was 89 percent effective, those numbers are referring to the prevention of all illness. They count mild symptoms as a failure.

“In terms of the severe outcomes, which is what we really care about, the news is fantastic,” Dr. Aaron Richterman, an infectious-disease specialist at the University of Pennsylvania, said.

...

Last week, Dr. William Schaffner of Vanderbilt University told my colleague Denise Grady about a conversation he had with other experts. During it, they imagined that a close relative had to choose between getting the Johnson & Johnson vaccine now or waiting three weeks to get the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine. “All of us said, ‘Get the one tomorrow,’” Schaffner said. “The virus is bad. You’re risking three more weeks of exposure as opposed to getting protection tomorrow.”


   11974. Random Transaction Generator Posted: February 02, 2021 at 11:22 PM (#6003452)
   11975. base ball chick Posted: February 02, 2021 at 11:37 PM (#6003456)
does anyone know any information about whether or not you can still catch and transmit covid after you are fully vaccinated? are people even covid tested after the vaccine?
   11976. Howie Menckel Posted: February 02, 2021 at 11:42 PM (#6003457)
post vaccine, per Wash Post

may be paywalled, but this is not a day that I am poking that bear. so an excerpt:

"Soon after Marc Wilson gets his second dose of coronavirus vaccine, he plans to resume one of his pre-pandemic joys: swimming laps with his friends. But most other activities — including volunteering at a food pantry and homeless shelter — will be off-limits until the outbreak is curbed and scientists know more about the threat of emerging variants.

“I can definitely broaden the things I do, but I still have to be quite cautious,” said Wilson, 70, a retired accountant in Norman, Okla., who has diabetes and other health problems. “When your doctor tells you, ‘If you get covid, you’re dead,’ that gets your attention real good.”

The arrival of coronavirus vaccines is beginning to have an impact on everyday life, with millions of newly inoculated Americans eagerly anticipating a return to long-postponed activities and visits with sorely missed relatives and friends. But with Anthony S. Fauci, the nation’s top infectious-disease expert, warning that vaccinations are not a “pass,” the recently inoculated are engaged in a new round of complicated risk-benefit assessments. What can I safely do? Where can I go? And how do I interact with people who are not vaccinated?

The answers aren’t simple. In the meantime, the asymmetric nature of the rollout — with many older Americans and health-care workers receiving shots first, while tens of millions of others await their turns — is shifting relationships in families and in society more broadly. Grandparents who once hunkered down at home, most vulnerable to a virus that preys on the elderly, are likely to be better protected than younger relatives who are waiting to be vaccinated.

Experts agree broadly on many issues people have questions about. But they differ on details and lack some important information. They still don’t know, for example, whether people who are vaccinated can get asymptomatic infections and pass them on to those who are not inoculated — which is why they urge people to continue to wear masks and practice social distancing even after receiving their shots."

"Robert Califf, 69, a cardiologist and Food and Drug Administration commissioner during the Obama administration, agreed people need to take precautions after being vaccinated. But he cautioned doctors against being overly rigid in their prescriptions for post-vaccine life. “People won’t believe you,” he said.

A few weeks after he and his wife get two doses of vaccine, they plan to fly from North Carolina to Colorado to see both sets of grandchildren and will use “testing, masking and modified social distancing” during the trip to keep risks low.

"Some doctors say public health experts should emphasize the upside of vaccines and not dwell on what people can’t do after being inoculated. “Doom-and-gloom messaging” is not an effective way to encourage people to get the shots, said Monica Gandhi, an infectious-disease specialist at UCSF. “You have to message hope and optimism.”

She said she doesn’t see a problem with two couples who are vaccinated having dinner indoors together — something Swift and some other doctors advised against until the pandemic is curtailed."
   11977. bunyon Posted: February 03, 2021 at 07:58 AM (#6003474)
My take is that they are being careful to not say more than is definitively proven. But the data so far makes these look like fantastic vaccines. Which means that your risk of getting sick, getting seriously sick or transmitting the virus are dramatically reduced. The reluctance to say so is going to tip the folks on the fence about getting to not getting it. If getting a vaccine doesn't mean you have lower risk, why do it? How can everyone being vaccinated bring us back to normal if it doesn't reduce individual risk?

Yes, if you get the full dose of vaccine, your risk goes way, way down. Of course you could still get COVID and a couple in a million will get really sick. But the whole point of vaccinations is that you can do things safely that you couldn't before.
   11978. Lassus Posted: February 03, 2021 at 08:20 AM (#6003478)
However, 65% for a vaccine is really solid. Had that been the first one reported, we'd have been jumping up and down and J&J stock would have skyrocketed.
It's great news to have a vaccine with that activity that is so robust. At this point, we need as many as we can get.
It sounds like this vaccine will be extremely beneficial for less developed countries that lack the infrastructure to store and transport some of the other vaccines.
All of this makes sense, I guess somehow the numbers that have been tossed around for Pfizer and Moderna in the 90th percentile range just made this seem... I admit, lesser. The single-dose, lesser-temperature benefits maybe weren't trumpeted as much in the quicker takes I was reading. I can admit fault in the audience. My wife is on track for an appointment on March 12 we're hoping to move up if things open up in the next couple of weeks.
   11979. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: February 03, 2021 at 09:14 AM (#6003481)
Not annoyed, but since my kids are the right age for this, I think of this EVERY SINGLE TIME.

I suffer from the same affliction.
   11980. bunyon Posted: February 03, 2021 at 09:24 AM (#6003485)
Lassus, the lesson is that the Pfizer and Moderna data is phenomenal. Otherworldly. The fact that mRNA vaccines are, in theory, faster to adapt to new variants/mutants makes them even better.

60s and 70s percent with more practical handling is still great news. We're doing really well with development. Now if we can just get better with distribution.

   11981. Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: February 03, 2021 at 10:16 AM (#6003492)
If getting a vaccine doesn't mean you have lower risk


But even the lower ones have a 2/3 chance of granting immunity. For the cost of a sore arm for a few hours, that sounds like a terrific trade, even ignoring that it’s basically 100% at avoiding fatal sickness.
   11982. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: February 03, 2021 at 10:22 AM (#6003493)
Our country views everything as binary, so they only see the vaccines (and covid costs) in terms of life and death.

The vaccines should all reduce the severity of the disease if you still catch it. Which also applies to the flu shot. I'd take the 66% one tomorrow if I could.
   11983. bunyon Posted: February 03, 2021 at 10:34 AM (#6003495)
I wasn't arguing with you guys. I'm arguing with the authorities who are completely hung up in getting "gotchaed" that they've put so many caveats in the vaccine that a reasonable person could conclude there isn't a point to getting it. Yes, it's an EUA. Yes, there is still a lot we don't know. No, there are no guarantees in life. But, for the love of god, getting a vaccine should allow a person to live a much freer life amidst the pandemic. Telling them it won't is wrong and counterproductive.
   11984. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: February 03, 2021 at 02:56 PM (#6003557)
getting a vaccine should allow a person to live a much freer life amidst the pandemic. Telling them it won't is wrong and counterproductive.

Agreed.
   11985. base ball chick Posted: February 04, 2021 at 12:11 AM (#6003679)
Experts agree broadly on many issues people have questions about. But they differ on details and lack some important information. They still don’t know, for example, whether people who are vaccinated can get asymptomatic infections and pass them on to those who are not inoculated — which is why they urge people to continue to wear masks and practice social distancing even after receiving their shots."


- which is what i worry about. gonna be a while before we all who want to get vaccinated get vaccinated
   11986. base ball chick Posted: February 04, 2021 at 12:26 AM (#6003681)
BLB,

how is your daddy?
   11987. Howie Menckel Posted: February 04, 2021 at 12:59 AM (#6003683)
experts agree broadly on many issues people have questions about. But they differ on details and lack some important information. They still don’t know, for example, whether people who are vaccinated can get asymptomatic infections and pass them on to those who are not inoculated — which is why they urge people to continue to wear masks and practice social distancing even after receiving their shots."


- "which is what i worry about. gonna be a while before we all who want to get vaccinated get vaccinated"

...............


yes, I wish my answer to your good question was a more definitive answer.

but this is where we are.
   11988. Ron J Posted: February 04, 2021 at 07:19 AM (#6003689)
We're closer to getting answers on the transmission question. Preliminary indications are that the Oxford-AstraZenica vaccine reduces transmission.

That's one vaccine, preliminary results and "reduces". A fair number of limiting words there.

Still good news.
   11989. Mayor Blomberg Posted: February 04, 2021 at 10:30 PM (#6003850)
Remember May 2020? Ioannidis

Influential mathematical models eventually dialed back to an IFR of 1.0% or 0.9%, and these numbers continue to be widely cited and used in both public and scientific circles as of this writing (May 12, 2020). The most influential of these models, constructed by Imperial College estimated 2.2 million deaths in the USA and over half a million deaths in the UK in the absence of lockdown measures. Such grave predictions justifiably led to lockdown measures adopted in many countries. With 0.9% assumed infection fatality rate and 81% assumed proportion of people infected, the prediction would correspond to a global number of deaths comparable with the 1918 influenza, in the range of 50 million fatalities.

...A comparison of COVID-19 to influenza is often attempted, but this may be an uneven comparison. At a very broad, bird’s eye view level, worldwide the IFR of COVID-19 this season may be in the same ballpark as the IFR of influenza (0.1%, 0.2% in a bad year).


Presently 27,273,890 US cases, 466,988 US deaths; World 105,417,124 and 2,294,419 (Worldometer)


   11990. SoSH U at work Posted: February 04, 2021 at 10:49 PM (#6003853)
466,988 US deaths;


We're closing in on the milestone of Epstein being three orders of magnitude off in his initial projection.
   11991. Mayor Blomberg Posted: February 05, 2021 at 12:59 AM (#6003859)
by the end of the month, alas.
   11992. bunyon Posted: February 05, 2021 at 08:43 AM (#6003869)
I've said before but one thing I learned in the pandemic is that R0 isn't a physical constant like g or e but it varies with behavior and conditions. Which, of course, makes complete sense if you think about it, I just never had.

The other thing that is obvious is that death rate will vary with conditions, who is getting sick and when they get sick. Being first in a big wave is very bad (Wuhan, Italy, NY). After we've learned more, getting sick under low infection rate conditions is not nearly as bad.

Even taking the quote at face value, 0.1-0.2% for flu in a "bad year" assumes society isn't really taking any precaution beyond a flu shot and after a century of learning. I'd guess that Covid will eventually be like the flu. Vaccines will knock down both R0 and the severity and we'll figure out how to treat the cases that do arise.

Just like eventually Tom Glavine got old and crappy, eventually, the "covid is the flu" folks will claim victory.
   11993. Mayor Blomberg Posted: February 05, 2021 at 01:01 PM (#6003918)
"Then we're stupid, and we'll die." -- Prisc to Roy in Blade Runner.
   11994. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: February 05, 2021 at 06:12 PM (#6004024)
CDC's excess deaths for 2020 is starting to crystalize around 510,000. Now, as mentioned their baseline is on the low side, so I wouldn't quibble with someone who says the actual number is closer to 450,000. Much beyond that, though, and you have to make pretty radical arguments for an unprecedented jump in expected deaths versus previous years, which is an argument literally no one was making prior to covid.

The numbers for non-natural cause excess was high in the summer, but has not been since the start of the fall. I'm only getting around 15,000 extra since the start of covid.
   11995. Mayor Blomberg Posted: February 05, 2021 at 08:36 PM (#6004044)
getting sick under low infection rate conditions is not nearly as bad.

Who would have guessed that the states with the highest infection rates would be ND and SD?
   11996. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: February 05, 2021 at 09:17 PM (#6004049)
Who would have guessed that the states with the highest infection rates would be ND and SD?


I am from a neighboring state (MN) and well I would. Not to speak ill of them, but ....
   11997. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: February 05, 2021 at 09:39 PM (#6004054)
Iowa governor Kovid Kim just lifted all restrictions on businesses. Anything goes starting Monday.

we are 47th nationally in vaccination rates, so this makes sense.

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED.

   11998. baxter Posted: February 05, 2021 at 10:51 PM (#6004064)
From "The Telegraph" via Yahoo News:

New Israeli Covid drug which cured 30 cases of disease hailed by scientists as 'huge breakthrough'

https://www.yahoo.com/news/israeli-covid-drug-cured-30-191709164.html

   11999. AuntBea odeurs de parfum de distance sociale Posted: February 05, 2021 at 11:26 PM (#6004067)
By excess deaths, it looks like we will have surpassed the Spring peak the week ending December 12, and we probably haven't gone back down below it yet, although potentially this current week will end up being below it.
   12000. Mayor Blomberg Posted: February 06, 2021 at 12:54 PM (#6004104)
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