* Washington Post story on the delta variant…
Then came delta — B.1.617.2. It had spread rapidly in India, but in the United States, it sat there for months, doing little as the alpha advanced. As recently as May 8, delta caused only about 1 percent of new infections nationally.
Today, it has nearly wiped out all of its rivals. The coronavirus pandemic in America has become a delta pandemic. By the end of July, it accounted for 93.4 percent of new infections, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. […]
Hospitals in states with low vaccination rates are struggling to cope with a flood of patients. At the same time, vaccination rates are jumping as the reality of the pandemic and the efficacy of the vaccines overcome fear, inertia and disinformation. […]
The flip side is that the delta surge is expected to peak faster. A more contagious virus finds susceptible people quickly and burns through that “fuel” faster. This may explain why the United Kingdom and India have both experienced surprisingly swift drop in cases after recent delta surges.
Hope is not a plan, but keep your fingers crossed anyway.
* Illinois State Fair…
Ticketholders in the grandstand track area (also known as Standing Room Only) will be required to provide a print or digital copy of personal Vaccine Card, Vaccine Record, or Negative COVID-19 test within the 72 hours preceding the concert.
* The Center Square…
Illinois state fair concerts to require vaccine proof or negative test and masks
Grab the mask and your vaccination card, or be ready to prove you don’t have COVID-19, if you plan to attend the concerts at the Illinois State Fair starting Thursday in Springfield.
That’s just a ridiculous over-statement. I sure hope newspapers are actually reading this freely supplied content before publishing it.
* WICS TV…
DCFS not included in state’s new mask requirements
Gov. JB Pritzker announced sweeping mask and vaccine requirements for multiple state agencies Wednesday, but one was notably left off the list: the Department of Children and Family Services.
Yes, DCFS was indeed included in the state’s mask requirements last month. Private organizations run the agency’s congregate care facilities, which probably explains the lack of a vax mandate there.
Do better, teevee.
Long-term care facilities were among the hardest hit by COVID-19 in McLean County last year. Nursing home employees also were put at the front of the line to receive COVID vaccines when they became available in late 2020.
But many nursing home employees have passed on getting the vaccine.
Records recently posted online by the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) show three long-term care facilities in McLean County — Bloomington Rehabilitation and Health Care Center, Luther Oaks and Arcadia Care of Bloomington — have staff vaccination rates of less than 25% as of July 25. […]
An advocate for nursing home residents said facility operators need to figure out why some staff members are reluctant to vaccinate. Angie Baker, regional ombudsman with the East Central Illinois Area Agency on Aging, said unvaccinated staff pose health risks to nursing home residents as the Delta variant fuels a new wave of coronavirus infections.
The data is here.
* Don’t be this guy…
Andy Ray must have repeated it to himself a hundred times, especially in the minutes before caregivers at HSHS St. John’s Hospital leaned his head back and inserted a breathing tube down his windpipe to keep COVID-19 from killing him.
“I kept thinking, ‘If I had gotten that shot, I wouldn’t be here,’” Ray, 52, told The State Journal-Register Thursday. “That’s all I could think of.”
Before going on a ventilator that would help him breathe for five of the 23 days he spent in the Springfield hospital in May and June, the rural Mount Sterling farmer’s thoughts also dwelled on the close family friend who succumbed to COVID-19 in the fall, before vaccines were available.
Once in the hospital, Ray, who lives about 65 miles west of Springfield, asked whether he could get a COVID-19 shot but was told it was too late for the vaccine to do any good. His wife couldn’t be at his side because she, too, had contracted COVID-19 by that time, though she didn’t need to be hospitalized.
* Vaccination milestone: 70% of Chicago adults have gotten at least one shot, city says
* Will County awards $138,000 in grants to help increase vaccination rate
* An uptick in mild breakthrough COVID infections in Illinois has some feeling they’re no longer ‘untouchable,’ but doctors say the vaccines are working
* CPS, Chicago Teachers Union trade barbs in dueling letters as talks for fall reopening sputter 3 weeks before the start of school: About 82% of CPS teachers have been vaccinated, according to district data. Meanwhile, 52% of Chicago kids aged 12 to 17 — whether they attend CPS or not — had received their first shot as of Wednesday, city data shows.
* Kids sick with Covid are filling up children’s hospitals in areas seeing spikes
* As Delta Variant Spreads, Florida Hospitals Race to Find Open Beds
* Austin warns of ‘catastrophe’ as Texas again becomes center of pandemic
* Pharmacists Fight Off COVID Truthers Demanding Horse Medicine Ivermectin Instead of the Jab
* Anti-Vax Insanity
* 2021 Illinois State Fair: Find out how to get a refund for grandstand concert tickets