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Everything You Actually Need To Know About Wearing Sunscreen – HuffPost

Here’s a myth we’d like to immediately dispel: Sunscreen is only necessary in the summer, while at the beach or playing sports outdoors. In fact, as experts have been arguing for years, protecting your skin from the sun should be part of your year-round routine given the negative consequences of prolonged exposure to sunlight.

As Dr. Nahid Vidal, a micrographic surgeon and dermatologic oncologist at the Mayo Clinic, explained to HuffPost, the sun causes skin damage in several ways, all directly related to UVA and UVB rays. “UVA is the longest wavelength and can reach deeper into the layer of skin, causing changes to our collagen in the dermis related to aging and wrinkling,” she explained. “UVB rays tend to be shorter and affect the top layer of our skin (epidermis).”

Most importantly, both types of rays penetrate a person’s DNA, potentially leading to mutations and therefore increasing the risk of skin cancer while simultaneously causing rashes and flare-ups.

“The melanin acts as a little brown umbrella to shade important genes that can be mutated.”

– Dr. Nahid Vidal

The actual heat from the sun, on the other hand, depletes the skin of natural oils, potentially leading to premature wrinkles. “Ultimately, while the sun can give us a ‘healthy’ look with a tan, what is actually happening is the body is attempting to protect the DNA in cells by producing a pigment called melanin in the skin,” Vidal said. “The melanin acts as a little brown umbrella to shade important genes that can be mutated.”

Clearly, as comforting as the sun might feel on our skin, we should be careful about soaking in too much of it ― which is why we thought it wise to offer you this “everything there is to know about sunscreen” guide.

Let’s start from the basics. How do we protect ourselves from the sun?

Physical vs. chemical sunblock

There are two types of sunscreen: physical (also known as mineral) and chemical. When applying the physical sunscreen, the sun’s rays will hit the skin but then bounce right off. Chemical blockers, on the other hand, absorb the UV ray, convert it to heat and release it from the body so as to not damage one’s DNA. The most visually apparent difference between the two kinds of blockers is how they appear after application. “Chemical sunscreens may come in formulations that rub in well without leaving behind a thick white residue” that physical blockers are usually known for, Vidal explained.

Physical (mineral) sunblocks leave a whiter cast on the skin than chemical sunblocks.

Physical (mineral) sunblocks leave a whiter cast on the skin than chemical sunblocks.

Both forms of sunscreen follow the same sun protection factor (SPF) scale (more on that later) and are similarly regulated in the United States by the Food and Drug Administration.

Who regulates sunscreen labels?

It’s important to note that the FDA releases guidelines that sunscreen companies are to abide by, but doesn’t necessarily check on each product you might find at the drugstore.

“It’s up to the individual sunscreen companies to do their own tests,” explained board certified dermatologist Dr. Whitney Bowe. “The FDA isn’t pulling sunscreens off the shelf and testing them before they come to market to make sure that the SPF label is accurate.”

That job falls within the company’s own purview which, obviously, can become tricky. That’s why objective third parties such as Consumer Reports sometimes lead their own trials and reports, independently validating the various claims made by sunscreen producers.

“Brands may sometimes say their products boast SPF 30 on the label but then Consumer Reports will do its independent testing and find that it’s actually SPF 8,” Bowe said, specifically calling out a 2016 study by the company that found nearly “three-quarters of ‘natural’ sunscreens fell short of the SPF on their labels.”

Although not evaluating every single product on the market, the FDA does regulate the lingo that can be used across the board. The term “broad-spectrum,” for example, indicates protection from both UVA and UVB radiation and it is regulated by the FDA, just as the classification “water-resistant” is. The latter conveys a 40-minute effectiveness while “very” water-resistant promises a resistance of up to 80 minutes.

Beware of ‘natural’ sunscreen

Looking for a sunscreen that claims it is “natural”? You might want to think again. The term doesn’t have a definition, according to the FDA, and therefore cannot be trusted.

“Natural doesn’t mean anything when it comes to sunscreen in the United States,” Bowe said.

‘Waterproof’ sunscreen is a lie, too

There’s more: “Sunscreens are banned from claiming true ‘waterproof’ or ‘sweat proof’ [capabilities] as the FDA has determined these are misleading claims,” Vidal said.

Bowe explains that, when comparing U.S. sunscreen regulations to ones in other countries, we’re mostly looking at different grading systems. “In the U.S., there’s a threshold and it’s very black and white,” she said. “You can sort of barely pass the test and still get to say you’re offering broad-spectrum protection on the label, but it doesn’t mean it’s robust.”

How safe are the ingredients in sunscreen?

Physical blockers mainly boast titanium dioxide and zinc oxide, active ingredients that the FDA considers GRASE (generally recognized as safe and effective) “because there really is not a significant concern for absorption into the bloodstream,” Bowe said. The discussion about absorption leads directly to chemical blockers.

Boasting active ingredients the likes of oxybenzone, avobenzone, octisalate, octocrylene, homosalate and octinoxate, the chemical sunscreens have recently been the subject of studies claiming potential harm.

“There have been some studies showing that many of the chemical sunscreen ingredients are indeed absorbed through the skin and enter the bloodstream,” Bowe said. That being said, the expert argues it is yet unclear how some of those ingredients may affect our health. “People are just more suspicious of chemical sunscreens in general, even though some of the absorbed ingredients may not have any kind of detrimental effect on the body,” she said.

How to properly apply sunscreen

“The biggest mistake that people make is that they don’t apply enough sunscreen and don’t re-apply it enough,” said Dr. Mary Stevenson, assistant professor at New York University and a dermatologic surgeon. Virtually all experts said the same.

Industry standards in the U.S. call for the application of half a teaspoon of the product on the face, one full teaspoon if applying to the face and neck and an ounce (basically a shot glass) to be spread across the body. 

Industry standards in the U.S. call for the application of half a teaspoon of the product on the face, one full teaspoon if applying to the face and neck and an ounce (basically a shot glass) to be spread across the body. 

And so, here are a few rules to keep in mind: When spending time outdoors, go for an SPF 30 or above. You’re going to want to look for something water-resistant if you’re planning on swimming or sweating, for example.

“But, if you’re indoors, the SPF number is much less important than looking for a broad-spectrum solution because UVB can’t penetrate through window glass but UVA rays can,” Bowe said. “A broad-spectrum indicates protection from UVA rays.”

In terms of time of day, Vidal suggests incorporating SPF into your morning ritual. “If you are using chemical sunscreen, apply it before a moisturizer,” she said. “If using a physical one, you can apply it after. Indoors, once in the morning may be enough, but if you’re in direct sunlight, on a car ride for example, it would be best to put it on 30 minutes prior to exposure and reapplying every two hours. If you are sweating or swimming, you may need to re-apply more often.”

Specifically, industry standards in the U.S. call for the application of half a teaspoon of the product on the face, one full teaspoon if applying to the face and neck and an ounce (basically a shot glass) to be spread across the body.

When it comes to sprays versus creams, most experts agree that the latter form of protection is the way to go. “Spray sunscreens lead to uneven application,” Bowe said. “You’re much less likely to have a uniform coat of sunscreen as most people don’t use them correctly. If you spray the sunscreen, then you have to actually rub it in.”

The sprays, which happen to be alarmingly flammable as well, also release aerosolized particles that are dangerous to breathe in.

As for whether one’s skin tone affects the types and ways the sunscreen is to be applied, the short answer is no. “Skin cancer rates are lower among people of color,” explained Bowe, “but when people of color ― especially African Americans ― are diagnosed with melanoma, it tends to be much more aggressive and lethal.” As a result, the dermatologist advises all of her patients to use high-grade sunscreen.

Is it true that anything above SPF 30 doesn’t actually work?

How many times have you heard somebody claim sunscreens that boast an SPF above 30 don’t really work better than 30? Let’s dig into that (mostly) false claim.

A bit of background first: According to SkinCancer.org, when analyzing an SPF number, you should think of it as an indication of how long it would take for the sun to burn your skin when using the product as compared to not using any sunscreen at all. When applying SPF 15, for example, it would take 15 times longer for your skin to redden when compared to not wearing sunscreen at all.

Even more specifically, SPF 15 will block 93% of UVB rays from affecting your skin. That number jumps to 97% when looking at an SPF of 30. SPF 50 blocks 98% of rays and SPF 100 blocks 99% of them. When solely looking at these percentages, most folks might think the difference in numbers to be so relatively low to almost be irrelevant.

“But these numbers are based on laboratory studies where the sunscreen is being applied in a very specific way, under very controlled conditions,” Bowe explained. “In a real-life scenario, when applying an SPF 50 that blocks 98% of rays in a lab, you’re actually putting on almost half what they do in the study so you’re probably getting closer to an SPF of 30.” In short, the percentages we think we’re working with don’t actually factor in the human error involved in correct application methods. Investing in a higher SPF will therefore provide a bit more of a buffer.

But there’s yet another issue at hand, albeit a more psychological one involving a false sense of security. “If you put SPF 100 on, while you are getting better protection, it’s not for longer,” Stevenson said, explaining that most people believe that higher protection correlates to longer protection ― which is untrue. “You still need to apply just as much.”

“When people see SPF 100, they think it’s like a shield and they don’t need to wear a hat, for example,” Bowe said, urging everyone to move away from that frame of thinking and take all necessary measures to protect all parts of one’s skin from the sun.

Which is to say: Put as much sunscreen, as often as possible, all over your face and body, no matter what it is that you’re doing every single day of the year.

Ready to buy a new sunscreen? These are our editors’ favorites:

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunscreen, SPF 55

“I went years without wearing sunscreen religiously when I was younger and have a face full of freckles to show for it. These days, I’ve learned my lesson: If I’m going to remain in LA, I can’t forgo SPF. I have friends that swear by Shiseido and stock up on it whenever Sephora has its Beauty Insider sale, but I don’t use anything too fancy. Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch water resistant and non-greasy sunscreen lotion with broad spectrum SPF 55 is my go-to. The formula feels light, my makeup blends nicely over it, and it doesn’t feel greasy like other sunscreens I’ve used before.” ― Brittany WongGet the Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch sunscreen lotion with SPF 55 for $7.97.

Image Skincare Prevention+ Daily Matte Moisturizer SPF 32+

“This is my go-to for everyday sunscreen because it’s perfect for wearing under makeup, whether you wear foundation or just a light BB cream. It’s oil-free and goes on matte, providing the perfect canvas for makeup to glide on over, and it doesn’t smell like a typical sunscreen — it’s light and a little fruity.” ― Kristen AikenGet the Image Skincare Prevention+ daily matte moisturizer SPF 32+ for $44.

EltaMD UV Shield Broad-Spectrum SPF 45

It’s OIL FREE and it’s light, offers full protection, works great on the body too, absorbs well, leaves no residue, blends well with other products and doesn’t stain at ALL. It’s about $30 but worth every cent. It’s not to be confused with the SPF 46, which is great too and made for sensitive and acne-prone skin, [or those with] rosacea or hyper-pigmentation. I’ve used that one too, but once they made an oil-free version, I never looked back.” ― Izzy BestGet the EltaMD UV Shield broad-spectrum SPF 45 sunscreen for $50

EltaMD UV Clear Broad Spectrum SPF 46

“I started wearing EltaMD UV Clear probably five years ago and it’s helped my sensitive skin so much. It’s a moisturizing sunscreen (SPF 46) that doesn’t feel like a sunscreen and it’s perfect for someone who has acne-rosacea like me. It’s worth the money in my opinion! I’ll never wear anything else.” ― Carly LedbetterGet the EltaMD UV Clear broad-spectrum SPF 46 sunscreen for $37.

Cetaphil Daily Facial Moisturizer with Broad Spectrum SPF 15

“When I need something quick to throw on because I’m running an errand and will have short exposure to the sun, I use Cetaphil Daily Facial Moisturizer with Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 15. It absorbs nice and quickly and doesn’t feel like it just sits on your skin.” ― Brittany WongGet the Cetaphil Daily Facial Moisturizer with SPF 15 for $26.09.

Kiehl’s Super Fluid Daily UV Defense SPF 50+

“I love this Kiehl’s facial sunscreen because it’s ― as the name suggests ― super fluid and thin to apply. It’s a white color but takes no time to blend in and provides SPF 50 coverage not only from the sun but from pollution. I tend to burn easily and get lazy about reapplying sunscreen (I know, I know) but this makes it super easy to remember and reapply at the beach.” ― Jamie FeldmanGet Kiehl’s Super Fluid Daily UV Defense sunscreen for $40.

Supergoop! Unseen Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 40

“I love the way the buttery gel stretches across the skin and leaves me with a soft, velvet finish almost like a primer. It’s a thick enough barrier to make me feel like I’m wearing something, without actually being heavy on the skin. It’s also amazing under makeup, especially in the summer so I don’t have to worry about it melting off.” ― Danielle GonzalezGet the Supergoop! Unseen sunscreen for $34.

Drunk Elephant Umbra Sheer Physical Daily Defense Sunscreen

“I usually find mineral sunscreens to be way too thick for me, but when I tried this Drunk Elephant version, I was pleasantly surprised. The formula was admittedly thick, but it blended in well, didn’t make me look like I was covered in chalk and didn’t feel too heavy. The only thing I don’t love about it is the smell, but it dissipates very quickly.” ― Julia BrucculieriGet the Drunk Elephant Umbra Sheer Physical Daily Defense broad spectrum sunscreen for $34.

CosRX Aloe Soothing Sun Cream SPF 50

Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunscreen SPF 100+

“I like that it doesn’t feel greasy on my face. It also doesn’t hate my moisturizer, so I don’t have to worry about the products just sitting on top of each other. A little really does go a long way.” ― Rowaida AbdelazizGet the Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch sunscreen with SPF 100 for $12.99.

La Roche-Posay Anthelios 50 Mineral Ultra Light Tinted Sunscreen

Aveeno Positively Radiant Daily Moisturizer With SPF 30

“If you’re dark-skinned it’s really hard to find a sunscreen lotion that doesn’t make you look ashy, purple or stripy. This one [doesn’t do those things]. It feels like my favorite moisturizer and I know I’m getting protected. The bottle lasts a long time and you can wear it under makeup.” ― TK MatundaGet the Aveeno Positively Radiant daily moisturizer with SPF 30 for $12.54.

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Goa, a Tourism Hotspot in India, Faces a Devastating Surge of Infections – The New York Times

NEW DELHI — Just a few months ago, the southwestern state of Goa was welcoming tourists from across the rest of India who were drawn to its picture-perfect beaches, an ideal source of relief from coronavirus rules in other regions.

Group celebrations, many without masks, were common. Life appeared to have gone back to normal.

But it did not last.

With India in the grip of a devastating coronavirus outbreak, 26 people died at the state-run Goa Medical College and Hospital on Tuesday morning, possibly because of an oxygen shortage, one official said.

“Due to interrupted supply of oxygen, we feel that between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m. many people are dying in G.M.C.,” the health minister for Goa, Vishwajit Rane, told The Times of India. He also called for a High Court inquiry to investigate the cause of the deaths.

Goa reported 75 deaths in total on Tuesday, its highest daily toll of the pandemic, and there were over 32,800 new daily infections in the state, which has a population of about 1.5 million. Officially, India has surpassed 250,000 total reported deaths from Covid.

Contradicting the health minister, Pramod Sawant, Goa’s chief minister, who visited the hospital, said that there was “no scarcity” and that the state had “abundant supplies of oxygen.” Mr. Rane said the chief minister might be “misguided.”

Goa has been reporting one of the highest infection rates in the country for at least a week.

Mr. Rane said in an interview with CNN last week, “Opening up of tourism without any restrictions in December has led to this situation.”

Goa has also created headlines for approving the use of ivermectin, an anti-parasite drug, in the treatment and prevention of Covid-19. The World Health Organization has said that there is not enough evidence to suggest that the drug reduces mortality in coronavirus patients.

On Monday, Mr. Rane announced on Twitter that the state government would make the drug available for everyone over 18 as a prophylactic.

Patients will be treated with ivermectin for a period of five days, Mr. Rane said, adding that the government would make the drug available at hospitals and primary health centers for people to “start the treatment immediately, irrespective of any symptoms.”

The W.H.O. has warned against the use of the drug, except in clinical trials.

“Safety and efficacy are important when using any drug for a new indication,” said Dr. Soumya Swaminathan, the W.H.O. chief scientist, in a post about ivermectin on Tuesday.

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Long-haul COVID-19 patients surprise Mayo researchers – Minneapolis Star Tribune

Lingering breathing problems and complications in the weeks and months after suffering COVID-19 illnesses were most common in women and in patients who didn’t need hospitalizations or suffer severe initial infections, a new Mayo Clinic study found.

The roundup report offered several surprises about the first 100 patients to receive care through Mayo’s rehabilitation program for so-called “long haul” post-COVID symptoms. Only 25% of the patients had been hospitalized for COVID-19, according to the study by Dr. Greg Vanichkachorn and colleagues that was published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings.

“We are not seeing that hospitalization is a huge risk factor for this prolonged COVID state,” said Vanichkachorn, medical director of Mayo’s COVID-19 Activity Rehabilitation Program (CARP).

The study is among the first to not only address the mystery of who suffers post-COVID syndromes, but also the types of symptoms they endure. Eighty of the 100 patients reported fatigue while 59 reported breathing problems and 59 reported neurological symptoms ranging from headaches to dizziness. Forty-five reported cognitive impairments, such as fogginess in memories and thoughts.

While 91 patients had been working before COVID-19 illness, only 63 were back working and 29 had returned to full hours.The prevalence and nature of post-COVID symptoms has been poorly understood, though a few studies have offered estimates and the National Institutes of Health recently named the syndrome as post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 (PASC).

Mayo’s rehab program started last year with an initial definition of the syndrome as someone experiencing symptoms four or more weeks after a positive test for SARS-CoV-2 infection. The average age of the patients in the study was 45, and the majority did not have underlying health problems before infections.

Vanichkachorn said the fatigue in patients was severe enough to link to COVID-19, rather than to related issues such as depression and anxiety caused by isolation during the pandemic or other issues.

“It’s not like ‘I’m always sort of tired,’ ” he said. “Its like, ‘I take my dog for a walk or do some light gardening and then I take a four-hour nap or I have symptoms for the next two, three days.’ Some people will tell me it’s like all of their life energy is sucked out of them.”

Basing the study on the first 100 people to seek post-COVID care at Mayo creates some limitations, including that certain demographics might be more likely to seek medical care for problems that others might try to endure on their own.

The patients in the study on average were evaluated 93 days after infections. Vanichkachorn said the findings are helpful in that they identify the common symptoms, which could motivate patients to seek screening for rehab care sooner.

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Lost microbes found in ancient poop could relieve chronic illness – CNN

The microbes lived in our ancestors’ digestive systems, forming part of the ancient human gut microbiome, which differs significantly to those found in people living in modern industrialized societies, according to a study published in the journal Nature on Wednesday.

The microbiome is a combination of fungi, bacteria and viruses that resides in your gut, primarily in the large intestine, helping digest food, fight disease and regulate the immune system.

Previous research has made a connection between preindustrial diets, greater diversity in the gut microbiome and lower rates of chronic illnesses, and the team set out to find reconstruct ancient human gut microbiomes to investigate this link, researcher Aleksandar Kostic of the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston told CNN.

Research in the field has been held back by a lack of well-preserved DNA samples, but the team were able to perform a detailed genetic analysis of eight human feces samples found in Mexico and the southwestern United States, which date from 1,000-2,000 years ago.

The feces were “exquisitely preserved” thanks to the extreme aridity of the desert areas where they were found, Kostic told CNN.

Mediterranean diet scores another win for longevity by improving microbiomeMediterranean diet scores another win for longevity by improving microbiome

Researchers reconstructed a total of 498 microbial genomes and concluded that 181 were from ancient humans. Of those, 61 had not previously been found in other samples.

The team then compared them with present-day gut microbiomes from industrial and nonindustrial populations and found that the ancient ones are closer to today’s non-industrial genomes.

A nonindustrial lifestyle is “characterized by consumption of unprocessed and self-produced foods, limited antibiotic use and a more active lifestyle,” according to the study, which uses samples from Fiji, Madagascar, Peru, Tanzania and a Mazahua indigenous community in central Mexico.

Both the ancient and modern nonindustrial genomes contain more genes used to metabolize starches. This may be because people in these societies ate more complex carbohydrates compared with present-day industrial populations.

Could the poo of elite athletes provide an ingredient to improve physical performance? Could the poo of elite athletes provide an ingredient to improve physical performance?

When microbes disappear or become extinct there are knock-on effects on our health, Kostic told CNN.

“When they’re gone we’re missing a key piece of what makes us us,” he said.

While research is at an early stage, Kostic hopes the microbes reconstructed by the team could eventually be used to reduce the rate of chronic conditions such as obesity or autoimmune diseases.

“We could reseed people with these human-associated microbes,” he said.

Research in the field is advancing, said Kostic, with some fecal microbic transplants working toward approval from the US Food and Drug Administration.

The plan is to first see if the rediscovered microbes are in fact present in nonindustrial populations alive today, and then introduce gut biomes from nonindustrial people into animals to see how they are affected.

How Neanderthal DNA from cave dirt is revealing details about how early humans livedHow Neanderthal DNA from cave dirt is revealing details about how early humans lived

Next is pinpointing certain microbes that can be introduced to the human gut, and then using synthetic biology to reconstruct them, Kostic said.

At the same time, more archeological research is needed to determine if there is “a unified human microbiome that used to exist,” he added.

In the meantime, Kostic said there’s nothing we as individuals can do to bring back extinct microbes to our gut microbiomes.

However, we can boost the diversity of our gut microbiomes by eating fiber and complex carbohydrates, exercising and coming into contact with soil and animals, he added.

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Maine CDC reports 1 new COVID-19 death, 302 additional cases – WMTW Portland

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They’re Not Anti-Vaccine, but These Parents Are Hesitant About the Covid Shot – The New York Times

Akiko Iwasaki, a professor of immunobiology at Yale School of Medicine, who wrote an article for The Times debunking disinformation about the Covid-19 vaccine and fertility, said: “Even during the vaccine trials some of the women inadvertently got pregnant. There’s nothing even to empirically support” a link between infertility and the Covid vaccine. “I have two daughters myself, who are in the 12-14 year age group, I totally understand the fear,” she said. “But there’s really no basis for it.”

Molly Herman, 35, who has a 2-year-old and is 32 weeks pregnant with her second child, said she’s anxious about giving her daughter the vaccine, even though she chose to get the shot during her pregnancy. Her daughter has never had antibiotics and she’s barely been sick, so “I don’t know what she’s allergic to,” said Ms. Herman, who lives in Medfield, Mass., and works in higher education.

Nicole Frehsee Mazur, 39, who lives in Birmingham, Mich., was also concerned about her children, who are 4 and 6, having an allergic reaction to the vaccine, because she had an averse response to the Moderna shot and the kids have allergies. “I’m not opposed to vaccinating them, I would just like to wait until more kids are vaccinated,” she said.

Vaccines may be available for children over 2 by September at the earliest, so these concerns are theoretical at the moment. Dr. Nia Heard-Garris, a pediatrician and a researcher at Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University, said that she understands parents’ hesitations. “That kind of conversation has been present before we had a feasible vaccine, especially from groups that have been marginalized and experimented on. It’s not a fear that’s far-fetched,” she said.

But Dr. Heard-Garris said she trusts the science and the data, and that the abstract fears of the vaccine’s long-term effects should be weighed against the real-life impacts of the virus. As the A.A.P. President Dr. Beers put it: “While fewer children than adults have suffered the most severe disease, this is not a benign disease in children. Thousands of children have been hospitalized, and hundreds have died.”

The doctors I spoke to were hopeful that, as the vaccine becomes a reality for young kids rather than an idea, parents will become less hesitant. They urged parents, especially those whose kids have allergies, to talk to their pediatricians about the best approach for their children.

Dr. Talib said that parents and teens alike in her practice have said they would feel more comfortable getting their vaccines in a pediatrician’s office, closely monitored by a doctor they know, than at a large vaccine site like a convention center or a pharmacy, the way many adults have been vaccinated. Last week, President Biden said that he was shifting his administration’s vaccination strategy away from mass vaccination sites and toward more local sites in order to get more shots to younger people and the vaccine hesitant.

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Pandemic investigation: how the world failed to curb COVID – Nature.com

A woman at a grave in Manaus, Amazonas State, Brazil

A woman at a grave in Manaus, Amazonas State, Brazil

More than 400,000 people in Brazil have died of COVID-19 since the beginning of the pandemic.Credit: Michael Dantas/AFP via Getty

The World Health Organization (WHO) was too cautious in communicating the risks of COVID-19 early last year, according to the first major investigation of the global pandemic response. Had it been bolder, and had nations heeded its guidance, the pandemic might have been curtailed, say the authors of the report.

Last year, during the annual World Health Assembly, countries demanded that the WHO initiate an independent review of how the COVID-19 crisis unfolded, in order to draw lessons for the future. The resulting report, released on 12 May, was assembled by a panel of 13 global-health experts partly appointed by, but independent from, the WHO.

The lengthy investigation identifies February 2020 as the month when — in a parallel universe — the devastating toll of the pandemic might have been prevented, had countries acted fast to limit the spread of the virus. It goes on to list concrete actions that could help prevent a similar fate should another deadly pathogen emerge, and it lays out a plan for how vaccines can reach low- and middle-income countries as soon as possible, to end the current crisis. “The reality is, we are still in the thick of this,” explains Joanne Liu, a panel member and a health-emergency specialist at McGill University in Montreal, Canada.

Some researchers say that the panel’s suggestions on how to strengthen the WHO are too vague. But the panel does succeed in making a few ambitious recommendations, including creating a council of world leaders dedicated to fighting pandemics, says Stephen Morrison, director of global health policy at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington DC. “They are trying to grab a moment that everyone knows will pass pretty fast,” says Morrison.

A bolder WHO

Early last year, the WHO should have sounded its highest alarm, a ‘public health emergency of international concern’, or PHEIC, about a week earlier than it did on 30 January, the independent panel concluded in a preliminary report. But in its final summary of the investigation, the panel places more emphasis on what happened between that alarm and when the WHO called the crisis a pandemic on 11 March. Unlike in December 2019 and January 2020, by February, the danger of the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 spreading globally was well known and its toll might have been averted by national containment strategies. “It is glaringly obvious that February 2020 was a lost month,” the report says.

A handful of Asian countries made rapid moves in February of last year to curb COVID-19, including instituting comprehensive testing for SARS-CoV-2 and tracking people who tested positive. “But the rest of the world sat on their hands,” says Liu. She and her colleagues assessed how the WHO communicated risk during February 2020, and decided that the agency’s cautious weighing of incomplete evidence may help to account for why many countries failed to take action.

“When it became obvious that the countries that were wearing masks were faring better than the ones that weren’t,” she says, “the WHO might have said that even though we don’t have all of the data, we should apply the precautionary principle,” and recommend masks. Similarly, the report indicates that governments might have taken the danger of SARS-CoV-2 more seriously had the WHO described the epidemic as a ‘pandemic’ sooner, even though the term is not defined in the agency’s protocols for handling health emergencies.

Global health experts have long worried that the WHO faces severe limitations in triggering action. It lacks legal power to enforce recommendations and demand information. And it struggles to criticize a government’s actions because it is chronically underfunded and reliant on donations from its member countries and territories. So the panel recommends a higher budget for the agency, and it says that every country with an epidemic must permit WHO officials access tooutbreak locations on short notice — a swipe at the weeks of negotiation required for the first WHO visit to Wuhan, China, in February.

Jennifer Nuzzo, an epidemiologist at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, says these potential changes would be fine, but that they don’t fully address problems mentioned in the report. For instance, countries would need to agree to reform the regulations dictating the WHO’s protocols so that it has the authority to declare a pandemic. Currently, it can only declare a PHEIC. Nuzzo says, “The WHO is only what we deem it to be.”

Preventing future pandemics

Among the report’s stronger recommendations is the formation of an organization outside of the WHO — a Global Health Threats Council — to hold countries accountable for curbing pandemics. The council would include the presidents and prime ministers of several high-, middle- and low-income countries, and its role would be to admonish governments if they fail to prepare for, or respond to, health emergencies, based on advice from science agencies. It could be especially powerful if it’s enacted along with a pandemic treaty currently being pushed by European countries, in which governments have pledged to strengthen their responses. “Not a bad idea,” says Morrison, “but I don’t know if any of this is feasible in our deeply divided, nationalist world.”

For such a council to exist, a diverse and large number of governments would need to lobby the United Nations to adopt it. But Morrison says that nations that tend to be cagey with information are unlikely to back a group designed to pressure them into transparency. Nonetheless, Liu says the panel aims high, to match the stakes of preventing another crisis of this scale. “By 2025, we are expecting $22 trillion in losses,” she says. “This pandemic has paralyzed the planet for 18 months — when was the last time that happened?”

Liu and her colleagues will present the recommendations to world leaders at the Global Health summit next week, and at the World Health Assembly in late May. Their goal is to find countries willing to take the ideas forward so that they can become policy.

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Meditating for 12 Minutes Each Day Cuts Your Dementia Risk, Study Says – Best Life

It’s one thing to keep your body in the right shape as you age with proper diet and exercise, but it can be another thing entirely to keep your mind sharp in your later years. But it turns out that some daily habits could also boost cognitive health. In fact, research has found that doing this one activity for just 12 minutes a day can slash your risk of dementia or Alzheimer’s disease way down. Read on to see what you could be doing to keep your brain sharp.

RELATED: This Could Be One of the First Signs You Have Dementia, Experts Say.

A group of adults are taking a break from working in an office. They are sitting crosslegged and meditating.A group of adults are taking a break from working in an office. They are sitting crosslegged and meditating.
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In a study that was published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease in 2018, a team of scientists examined 60 older adults who had previously reported trouble with their memory during a 12 week period. Researchers then split the them into two groups, where they were instructed to either listen to music for 12 minutes or practice a 12-minute yoga meditation known as Kirtan Kriya daily. The meditation exercise involves repeating a series of chants and specific instructions—including singing, whispering, and hand gestures—for two minute intervals.

To assess physiological progress, the research team took bloodwork before and after the three-month study from participants to record indicators of Alzheimer’s disease. Results showed that those who practiced meditation saw major changes in the biological markers that would put them at a higher risk for Alzheimer’s disease by the end of the study, with the same participants reporting improvements in cognitive function, sleep, mood, and quality of life.

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Kim Innes, PhD, first author of the study and a professor at West Virginia University School of Public Health in Morgantown, and her team chose to assess blood samples for certain markers that are believed to predict the onset of Alzheimer’s disease, including telomere length, telomerase activity, and the levels of specific beta-amyloid peptides. A reduction in telomere length and telomerase activity—which is an enzyme that protects the length of the “protective caps” on chromosomes—is often seen as a “marker of cellular aging.”

The bloodwork results showed that while both groups saw a rise in the biomarkers, those in the meditation group saw a greater increase. The researchers also argue that such tests could help diagnose and treat Alzheimer’s disease before symptoms such as confusion or memory loss develop.

non coffee energy boostersnon coffee energy boosters
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This wasn’t the first time a link between daily Kirtan Kriya practice and Alzheimer’s risk has been made. A 2015 review of research published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease discussed a study in which 37 caregivers of family members who have dementia were placed on similar regimens, with one control group listening to relaxing music for 12 minutes daily and the other meditating for 12 minutes.

According to the study’s authors: “The outcome revealed that the [Kirtan Kriya] group had significantly lower levels of depressive symptoms, and greater improvement of mental health, well-being, and memory compared with the control group. Moreover, the [Kirtan Kriya] group showed a 43 percent improvement in telomerase activity, the largest ever reported, compared with 3.7 percent in the relaxation group.”

RELATED: Doing This When You Drive Could Be an Early Sign of Dementia, Study Says.

meditation can help you make fewer mistakesmeditation can help you make fewer mistakes
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Other studies highlighted in the review have found that meditation could help combat other symptoms that increase the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease, including reducing inflammation that is correlated to artery disease.

The 12-minute meditation also improved sleep quality and reduced stress.

RELATED: If You Have This Blood Type, Your Dementia Risk Is High, Study Says.

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Coronavirus: Covid can cause erectile dysfunction months later, study claims – Daily Mail

Coronavirus can cause erectile dysfunction months after a man has recovered from the illness, according to a study.  

Miami University scientists scanned the penis tissue of two recovered Covid patients aged 65 and 71 who were struggling to get erections.

And, in what they claimed was a world-first, they found the virus was still lingering in there more than six months after they had been ill.

One of the men was seriously ill and admitted to hospital but the other only had mild Covid, suggesting anyone infected may be at risk.

Experts not involved in the study said it was the first evidence that Covid had been found in the penis. 

The virus is known to be able to damage blood vessels and internal organs, and this research suggests it can block blood flow to the genitals, making it difficult to have sex. 

It may do this by triggering swelling and dysfunction in the linings of blood vessels that run through the body and into the penis.

Dr Ranjith Ramasamy, who carried out the small study, said: ‘We found that men who previously did not complain of erectile dysfunction developed pretty severe erectile dysfunction after the onset of Covid infection.’

The Covid virus (indicated by the blue arrows) is seen in tissue inside the penis. Scientists zoomed in to 10 nanometers - or 0.000001 of a centimetre - to spot it and said its presence may raise the risk of erectile dysfunction

The Covid virus (indicated by the blue arrows) is seen in tissue inside the penis. Scientists zoomed in to 10 nanometers - or 0.000001 of a centimetre - to spot it and said its presence may raise the risk of erectile dysfunction

The Covid virus (indicated by the blue arrows) is seen in tissue inside the penis. Scientists zoomed in to 10 nanometers – or 0.000001 of a centimetre – to spot it and said its presence may raise the risk of erectile dysfunction

The virus was also spotted in a separate patient. Miami University scientists checked samples from two men with erectile dysfunction who had had Covid for the virus

The virus was also spotted in a separate patient. Miami University scientists checked samples from two men with erectile dysfunction who had had Covid for the virus

The virus was also spotted in a separate patient. Miami University scientists checked samples from two men with erectile dysfunction who had had Covid for the virus

Dr Ramasamy, a urologist at MU, added: ‘This suggests that men who develop Covid infection should be aware that ED could be an adverse effect of the virus.

‘They should go to a physician if they develop ED symptoms.’ 

The study was likely too small to prove a definitive link between Covid and erectile dysfunction because it only included two men – it is not clear whether the virus enters the penis every time someone catches it.

And it is also not yet known whether the coronavirus being in the penis was causing the problem or whether it was a side-effect of damage elsewhere in the body.

Both of the men were past middle-age and one had high blood pressure and heart disease, which increase the risk of erection problems. They did not have erectile dysfunction before their bout of Covid.

HOW COULD COVID CAUSE ERECTILE DYSFUNCTION? 

More than one in five men who catch Covid may be affected by erectile dysfunction afterwards, estimates suggest.

Scientists have suggested several theories to explain why the dysfunction may be happening.

The virus – SARS-CoV-2 – is known to cause inflammation, which restricts blood flow.

Blood vessels leading to the penis are small and narrow, meaning that any inflammation could impede a man’s ability to get an erection.

Dr Channa Jayasena, a consultant in reproductive endochronology at Hammersmith Hospital in London, has suggested the issues may also be linked to disruption in hormone levels.

The virus can cause levels of testosterone to dip, which in turn could impact a man’s sexual arousal.

Experts say that anyone suffering from ED after a Covid infection should see their doctor.

But their tests were compared against samples from two other men who also had ED but had not been infected with the virus.

Levels of an enzyme involved in triggering an erection (eNOS) were lower in the Covid patients.

The Covid patients also had evidence of dysfunction in their blood vessel linings – called endothelial dysfunction – while the uninfected men did not.   

Scientists zoomed in to 100nanometres – about 0.000001 of a centimetre – on the tissue to search for the virus and also carried out PCR tests to detect Covid, which were positive.

A medical student working on the study, Eliyahu Kresch, added: ‘These latest findings are yet another reason that we should all do our best to avoid Covid.

‘We recommend vaccination and to try to stay safe in general.’

Professor Allan Pacey, a male fertility expert at Sheffield University, said the study was the first time that the virus had been found in the penis.

‘There has been much debate about whether Covid can affect various aspects of the male reproductive system, including the erectile tissue of the penis,’ he told MailOnline.

‘Last month a small study from Italy showed that men recovering from Covid were six times more likely to suffer with erectile dysfunction.

‘This study now provides the first evidence that the virus can be found in the penis, albeit in only two men.

‘This is not really a surprise, and should provide another reason why people should continue to wear masks as well as get vaccinated when their turn comes.’ 

The Miami study is not the first one to make the connection between Covid and erectile dysfunction.

But in a press release describing the findings, they claimed it was the ‘first to demonstrate Covid present in penis tissue long after recovery’.

Research in Italy last month found it could happen to one in three men who get the virus. 

Scientists in Rome asked 100 men who had recovered from Covid, with an average age of 33, whether they were suffering with arousals.

As many as 28 per cent said they were. For comparison, the rate was nine per cent among those who didn’t catch the virus.

Scientists have suggested the virus binding to ACE-2 receptors, which are present in the testes as well as the lungs, could lead to ED.

‘One of the devious ways the virus gets into the body is by its spike protein binding to a receptor found at quite high concentrations not only in the lungs but in the reproductive organs,’ said Dr Channa Jayasena, a consultant in reproductive endocrinology at Hammersmith Hospital, London.

‘When Covid binds to these receptors, they can no longer perform their normal function.’

Experts have also pointed to inflammation restricting blood flow as another possible cause, and to lower testosterone levels in those recovering from an infection. 

The Miami University study was published in the World Journal of Men’s Health

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The differences between elimination, eradication and herd immunity — and what it means for Covid-19 – CNN

Hope for an eradication akin to smallpox — or even a polio- or measles-style elimination — is a towering aspiration. Herd immunity, meanwhile, is a moving target that requires a lot of things to go right — and stay right, experts say. People will need to trust science, put their communities over personal comfort and realize that pathogens have no respect for state or national borders.
How previous disease fights have played out — from measles in the United States to anthrax in Kenya to the global defeat of smallpox — offers lessons for how humanity might overcome the latest scourge. Some variables — variants, for instance — are largely out of people’s control, but so many other proven measures are fully within their power.
“If we had done a better job of social distancing and continued it rigorously through the time that the vaccine became available, I think — not think, I know — we would’ve seen fewer cases and death, but that takes an enormous amount of discipline,” said Dr. Howard Markel, director of the University of Michigan’s Center for the History of Medicine.

Eradication, elimination or herd immunity?

With the coronavirus endgame in mind, let’s first take a look at the words infectious disease warriors use to describe their successes.

Herd immunity requires a certain percentage of people to be infected or vaccinated to stop the spread, but experts say it depends on the herd, or community, as well as its density, the number of susceptible people and other factors. No one knows the percentage until a community reaches it. It differs among diseases. With Covid-19, it will likely hinge on continued vaccinations.

“I think we are going to be seeing (Covid-19) or its cousins or variants for years to come,” Markel told CNN, predicting it might require annual vaccinations, like with influenza, where vaccinations are reengineered to adapt to changes in the virus.

Eradication is the unicorn of infectious disease. Markel calls it “exquisitely rare.” It’s been achieved only twice: with rinderpest, which sickens cloven-hoofed animals like cattle and buffalo, and with smallpox.

A doctor gives a measles vaccination to a boy in 1962 at Fernbank School in Atlanta. A doctor gives a measles vaccination to a boy in 1962 at Fernbank School in Atlanta.

Elimination is more common. It’s when cases are reduced to zero or near zero in a specific area, owing to continual efforts to prevent transmission. In the United States, examples include measles, rubella and diphtheria — all of which were largely stamped out by vaccination.

The key word is largely. Measles demonstrates the tentative nature of elimination if control measures aren’t maintained.

The United States declared measles eliminated in 2000, but cases continue to pop up, ranging from 55 in 2012 to 1,282 in 2019, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The latter tally included the largest US outbreaks since 1992, all of them linked to travel-related cases that reached at-risk populations and spread within “underimmunized close-knit communities.”

Thus, Markel and other experts frown on words like elimination and eradication, even if they’re the industry standard.

“Elimination, for me, is not precise enough a word,” he said, adding he prefers “‘eliminate by vaccine’ or ‘suppression by vaccine’ because we know the measles virus does circulate. It’s out there somewhere.”

The battle to vanquish smallpox

“I always have second thoughts about those words also,” said Dr. Bill Foege, the epidemiologist credited with instituting the tactics integral to ending smallpox worldwide (it is the disease that was eradicated, he emphasizes; the virus still lives in American and Russian labs).

Comparing diseases, responses and outcomes across locales isn’t always helpful, but strategies used in the smallpox fight, which came to a successful end in 1980, can be applied to Covid-19, he told CNN.

“It’s different, but from the beginning my suggestion (for Covid-19) has been that if you combine vaccination with contact tracing you could do it in such a way that you might well achieve success,” said Foege, who led the CDC from 1977 to 1983. “One thing we have not done very well is contact tracing and the use of vaccine as a tool.”

A school doctor and nurse deliver a smallpox vaccination in 1938 to a teen in Gasport, New York.A school doctor and nurse deliver a smallpox vaccination in 1938 to a teen in Gasport, New York.

In 1966, health authorities believed 80% of a population needed to be inoculated to wipe out smallpox in an area — similar to numbers tossed around with Covid-19 — but in Nigeria, doctors had nowhere near that supply of vaccine, nor was it expected to arrive with any haste, Foege told CNN.

When cases were confirmed in a village in eastern Nigeria, Foege and his cohorts went on the attack. They examined maps and coordinated with missionaries via ham radio to identify cases, which they then isolated. They tapped their limited vaccine stock to inoculate those who might have been exposed, then denizens of villages where their contacts and relatives lived, as well as the markets villagers frequented — a process known as ring vaccination, where doctors cut off spread by monitoring and vaccinating a “ring” around infected patients.

Within weeks, they’d snuffed out the disease with what Foege estimates was a 7% vaccination rate. Meanwhile, a city in eastern Nigeria boasting a 96% vaccination rate was still experiencing outbreaks, he said.

“We showed you didn’t need Step One in the (World Health Organization) strategy, which was mass vaccination,” Foege said. “We showed you can go right for the outbreaks. … This idea of herd immunity — you hear it used all the time now in print, on TV — people don’t understand what they’re talking about.”

Ring vaccination and the surveillance/containment strategy Foege and his team employed became the standard for fighting smallpox, which killed hundreds of millions of people in the 20th century alone. To those who say contact tracing in the United States is too arduous, Foege isn’t hearing it.
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When Foege and his team arrived in India in 1973, the nation had the bulk of the world’s smallpox cases. The following year was even deadlier. It took nine months to assimilate surveillance/containment techniques to Indian conditions, and by the time they were ready to launch their assault, there were 48,000 cases.

A year later, there were zero, with no smartphones or computers in the field, so Foege doesn’t believe it when he hears some political and public health leaders in the technology-drenched United States say it can’t be done now.

“I just don’t buy it,” he said. “They don’t have the courage to do it.”

‘There was not a combined national commitment’

Several hurdles prevented a smooth US Covid-19 response, including federalism, politics, scientific advice “colored with partisanship” and “toxic nonsense,” such as the notion that the country could achieve herd immunity by letting enough healthy people get sick, said William Hanage, an associate professor of epidemiology at Harvard. Many Covid-19 outbreaks were entirely avoidable, especially the ones that occurred after we began to understand the virus, he said.

“Unfortunately, as soon as a president — either the current one or the previous — says something, large portions of the country will sort themselves into camps and disagree,” he told CNN. “That sort of partisanship is a real struggle to overcome.”

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Covid-19 preyed on shortcomings in the American health care system, including varying levels of quality and access. Hospitalized Americans had to navigate a variety of government and commercial insurance and prescription plans. Medical centers had to compete for resources, including personal protective equipment.

Incoherency reigned in a federal system that leaves health care to the states, which operate under different rules and reporting methods and contain numerous (sometimes at-odds) local and regional health agencies, Hanage said.

“There was not a combined national commitment to handling this,” he said.

Another factor seldom raised “is not part of health care, per se, but a huge part of public health”: the lack of paid sick leave across industries, especially in low-wage jobs, which forced people to choose between quarantining or paychecks, he said.

“We talk about the clever things that we can do,” he said, “but we haven’t done the really simple things.”

How other nations have reined in disease

Resolve to Save Lives, headed by former CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden, is a public health initiative of the nonprofit, Vital Strategies. It recently detailed how Covid-19 success stories in countries with a fraction of the United States’ resources did not come without some discomfort.
Still vigilant from the 2002-2003 SARS outbreak, Vietnam tapped the military to help with contact tracing, quarantined those who’d come in contact with infected people, reinforced mask and distancing policies and delivered free Covid-19-related health care.
Mongolia and Senegal took similar measures, with Senegal adding a robust education campaign — but there was blowback. Protests erupted in both countries. Still, the results are hard to debate, judging from Johns Hopkins University’s numbers:

• Mongolia (population 3.2 million) has had about 46,000 cases and 184 deaths.

• Senegal (population 16 million) has had about 41,000 cases and 1,120 deaths.

• Vietnam (population 103 million) has had about 3,600 cases and 35 deaths.

People line up in 2017 to receive yellow fever shots in Rio de Janeiro. People line up in 2017 to receive yellow fever shots in Rio de Janeiro.

These examples show how outbreaks can be reined in without reaching the incredible milestones of elimination, eradication or herd immunity. Frieden’s initiative also dives into past case studies to detail what it calls “epidemics that didn’t happen,” demonstrating how successful responses differ from one country and disease to the next:

• Brazil, which eliminated urban yellow fever in 1942, staved off an uptick of more than 2,000 cases between 2016 and 2018, despite a depleted vaccine stockpile. It ramped up vaccine production, administered partial doses to provide short-term immunity (and stretch supply) and prioritized surveillance of animal outbreaks. In 2019, it reported 85 cases.
• When the Democratic Republic of Congo declared an Ebola outbreak in 2018, Uganda enacted emergency protocols, testing everyone entering the country and opening treatment and rapid-testing facilities along the DRC border. While the DRC suffered the second-largest Ebola outbreak ever, almost 3,500 cases, only five cases were recorded in Uganda.
• In August 2019, a herder and two students in Narok, Kenya, fell ill from anthrax, which primarily affects animals but can infect humans who come in contact with infected animals or inhale spores. A Red Cross volunteer texted the country’s surveillance system. Within days, almost 25,000 cows and sheep were vaccinated. Health experts took to the radiowaves, met with farmers to build trust and instructed teachers how to screen children. Only one death was recorded.
When monkeypox reappeared in Nigeria’s Akwa Ibom state in 2017, teams trained doctors in sample collection and provided education to reduce stigma. Patients were directed to an infectious disease hospital, while residents were warned to avoid contact with animals and self-quarantine while samples were collected. The outbreak was contained within a month.

Like diseases, solutions must be ‘global and local’

None of these four illnesses is prevalent in Western nations, of course, but it’s important to remember viruses don’t honor political borders, nor do they care if governments consider animal and human health separate disciplines.

They do, however, thrive on apathy and unpreparedness, and Foege believes thinking narrowly costs more lives, he said. New infections — be they monkeypox or hemorrhagic fevers like Ebola — pop up about once a year, and with each outbreak, leaders vow to strengthen investment and infrastructure, but as infections diminish, so does their enthusiasm.

Red Cross officials in northeastern Democratic Republic of Congo meet with families in August 2019 to discuss fears surrounding Ebola and response teams. Red Cross officials in northeastern Democratic Republic of Congo meet with families in August 2019 to discuss fears surrounding Ebola and response teams.
Effective solutions require broad approaches, he said. Two-thirds of new infections are zoonotic, so scientists should be studying animal and human health hand in hand, Foege said. They must also think globally, which with a virus as transmissible as Covid-19, means wealthier nations sharing the vaccine.

“I’m concerned we are very late coming to that conclusion,” he said. “When people ask, ‘When will the US get back to normal?’ I just tell them, ‘When Mozambique gets back to normal.'”

There’s no place on Earth that isn’t local and global, said Foege, who has joined fights against polio, guinea worm disease and river blindness, and headed the CDC when it set its sights on eliminating measles.

“This is global and local, and that’s the way we have to be thinking. You can’t be a nationalist,” he said before aptly paraphrasing Albert Einstein: “Nationalism is an infantile disease; it’s the measles of mankind.”

The University of Michigan’s Markel, who chronicled in The New Yorker last month how trust in science had taken a serious hit since the advent of the polio vaccine in the 1950s, said the United States and other countries could eliminate or “very nicely suppress” Covid-19 but it would require people around the globe to place their faith in doctors and line up for the vaccine.

Markel understands why politicians would steer clear of mandatory vaccinations, but as a public health expert, he’d like to see them. Many experts describe worldwide vaccination as some sort of moon shot, he said, but the moon shot was developing and manufacturing safe and effective vaccines in record time.

“The moon shot happened. We’re on the moon,” he said. “I’m a vaccine man. If you counted up all the lives that have been saved and all the disease prevented over the last 100 years, you’re talking the top 9 out of 10 greatest hits of medicine.”

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