Fixing What Ails Us: A Modest Proposal to fix Healthcare and Education

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I think decision makers in healthcare and education need to place less emphasis on just-in-time metrics and more emphasis on just-in-case planning.

Hang Tight: The Omicron Tsunami is Here

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Not surprisingly, our hunger to believe in Omicron’s possible mildness is blooming faster than scientists can support, even though the science is trending in encouraging directions. Here’s a status report.

British Columbia Tightens COVID Restrictions as Omicron Surges

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“We have a very fragile health-care-worker work force right now. People are so tired. All of us had a ‘Here we go again’ feeling. It is really challenging looking down the line at what could happen."

Omicron: What we Know so Far

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Omicron is now considered likely to drive a major new COVID wave over the next few months across the Northern Hemisphere. Case rates will probably break all records, and hospitalizations and deaths will inevitably rise again, hopefully at a lower rate relative to cases in previous waves.

Running in Reverse: What Overturning Roe V. Wade will Bring

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Should the court overturn Roe v Wade, it will trigger laws in more than 21 states to make abortion illegal.

Omicron: Omigod???

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Delta was 70% more transmissible than Alpha, it's already-transmissive predecessor. Omicron may be 500% more transmissive than Delta.

A Cancer Doc Reflects on COVID Response: How the System Held

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Local hospitals had to scramble to protect patients and staff from the spreading Covid, while steps in China were startlingly efficient. Earlier experience treating AIDS helped guide the authors' response.

Post Alley Podcast: Tom Corddry talks about Science, COVID, and Reporting on a Pandemic

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Post Alley writer Tom Corddry has written a series of stories to help us understand COVID and the miraculous breakthroughs of mRNA. In Post Alley's first podcast, he talks about how he dove deep into the data.

Survey Finds Viral Politicization Over COVID Vaccines

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“People’s trusted news sources are correlated with their belief in COVID-19 misinformation,” the Kaiser survey found. It noted trust in vaccination highest among those watching network news, viewers of CNN and MSNBC, and those watching their local news.

Are We Asking the Wrong Questions About Homeless Encampments?

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The author of a new book writes: "Encampments provide a community for users, creating the kinds of environmental cues that the USC psychologist Wendy Wood finds crucial in forming and maintaining habits. They are often places where addicts flee from treatment, where they can find approval for their meth use.”

Medical Revolution: The Tantalizing and Profound Promise of mRNA

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mRNA itself isn’t a single substance such as penicillin or aspirin. Instead, it’s a class of molecules with a nearly infinite number of possible variants.

A COVID Parable: Two Sick People, One ICU Bed

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Was the older man’s choice not to take the one available bed in ICU in some sense an act of forgiveness for the younger man if he chose not to be vaccinated or take pre-cautions? In the older man’s spot, what decision would I have made?

Groovy Man! Lawmakers Turn On to Dropping Out Laws Against Psychedelic Drugs

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A strategy for building a national movement that supports legalizing psychedelics can also address a community’s social justice issues and the individual’s freedom to explore their creative consciousness. This dual approach can bridge the ideological divide in our nation by refocusing on an issue that can work for the greater good regardless of one’s party affiliation.

The Key to Getting Better Health Insurance

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Transparency is the first step towards accountability and that is a key component of improvement. Otherwise, how can you tell when improvements are made?

Better Off Than Ever and yet Unhappier

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Like so many things, it strikes me that modern brain science is confirming what traditional and spiritual wisdom have long taught: moderation is wise. Fasting is a necessary complement to feasting. But we’re up against a culture and economy that tell us to indulge, to enjoy, and to feast all the time as we try to fill some deeper emptiness.

Long COVID: Slow Disaster-In-The-Making?

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Nearly all of the focus to date on COVID’s impacts has been about hospitalizations and deaths. We have assumed that if we can prevent those two outcomes, we’re past the worst of the crisis. But long COVID might be the third bad outcome, emerging from the shadows.

British Columbia Mandates Proof Of Vaccination for Most Indoor Activities

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“Vaccines are our ticket to putting this pandemic behind us. So I call on all eligible British Columbians to roll up their sleeves to stop the spread, and help protect themselves, people they love and the community,” said B.C. Premier John Horgan.

Everything You Need to Know About Schools, Students and COVID Right Now

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School Districts are scrambling, parents are frightened, and COVID is sending children to the hospital at rates far higher than before. Will the same happen here, or are we better prepared than they appear to be in Hawaii, Arizona, Florida, Alabama, and Missouri?

Are We Headed Back to the Dark-Alley Days for Abortions?

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I'm sharing a personal story. I'm hoping it will serve as a reminder of the risks that anti-choice activists would have us face.

France Compels Vaccines and Vaccination Rates Soar

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French president Emmanuel Macron’s edict spurred 160,000 protesters to take to the streets accusing him of dictatorial tactics. It also drove nearly 4 million others to book vaccinations.

New Threat: The Delta Variant

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Delta has expert COVID-watchers pacing uneasily. Here’s why: it appears to have done the best job yet of stitching together higher transmissibility and greater vaccine evasiveness.

British Columbia: A Sloooow Reopening (so slow you might not notice)

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There is no indication when the Canada-U.S. border will reopen to recreational and non-essential travel. The current closure lasts until June 21, But the crossing ban has been automatically renewed on the 21st of each month.

British Columbia Locks Down — COVID Variants Surge

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The Great White North has experienced little of the protest and defiance against COVID-19 measures experienced in “the States.” But that is starting to change.

A Really BFD: The First Next-gen Vaccine

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If this vaccine lives up to its potential, it will be a powerful tool to bring down the global pandemic.

Short-Circuited: BC Premier Declares “Circuit Breaker” COVID Lockdown

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Vaccination has had a relatively slow rollout, with just under 700,000 shots administered and just 87,000 B.C. residents fully immunized. Hence, a circuit breaker is now required until April 19 to break the chains of transmission.

Playing the Odds: Should You Send Your Kids Back to School?

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Few decisions are harder than those which involve increasing your chances of changing the odds that an unlikely bad event might happen. The decision is complicated here by the lack of data, because the virus is new and surprising.

COVID Update: Vaccines, Variants, and Endangered Kids

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Real world data remains to be gathered, but this result at least suggests that if we can in fact vaccinate the world fast enough, we still have a chance to clamp down hard on the virus.

Your COVID Forecast: Sunny with a Chance of Asteroid

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An asteroid variant could emerge wherever the case rate remains high, meaning either in the large part of the world that won’t get the vaccine for quite a while longer, or in a highly-vaccinated country that has lowered hospitalizations and deaths, but is still supporting a high rate of new infections.

Jumping the Line: Insidious Effects of Vaccine Favoritism

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Allocating vaccine according to professional, social or economic status only deepens the grievous race and class disparities we’ve already seen in deaths and other pandemic impacts.

The Variants & The Vaccines: What We Know so Far

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If Moderna’s preliminary results are correct, their vaccine will still suppress it, but if it becomes widespread around the world, it becomes a new jumping-off point for further mutations, and one of those might complete the jailbreak.