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Doc Hines - Covid News & Views - 6th October 2021

There has been a drop of about 100,000 in the daily number of tests for covid being done over the last couple of days. There were only 856,416 tests done today. The number of positive tests fluctuates daily but show no sign of a sustained drop, almost 40,000 were positive today. Overall, there were just 2% fewer positive tests in the last seven days.

The overarching trend in hospital cases is showing improvement but there are small troughs and waves. 666 were admitted on a single day the 2nd October, compared with 642 on the 1st October. Remember that not long ago it was near 1,000.

6,836 patients are in hospital as of yesterday and 800 are requiring a ventilator. Both these figures show a slight rise over last week, but it is marginal. The seven-day figures show a small fall.

There are still problems counting vaccine doses given, the figures still only refer to the over 16s. 49.03 million 1st doses and 45.04 million second jabs. Although the weekly number of deaths is still falling the daily figures have been quite high with 143 reported yesterday and 166 the day before. The seven-day figures showed a 7 day drop of about 15%.

The number immunised in the 16 to 18-year-old group seems to have stalled at about 55%. We must push third group to find time to get their jabs. This is the most at risk at present.

The government now claim that the three vaccines used in the UK have saved around 112,00 lives and prevented some 24 million infections.

I am sorry someone managed to join our group only to express her anti vaccine propaganda. I did watch the videos, but I subsequently removed them so that we did not have to waste time refuting them. Thank you for the restrained way you all dealt with it. I hope you agree I was right to delete them, this report is not the forum to argue about them.

The US Health Agencies are considering a research paper which is reported to show that in a study of the Pfizer Bion tech vaccine second doses initially provided 88% protection, but that after 6 months its effectiveness dropped to only 44%. This was the science which drove the provision of booster doses for the over 50s first. I am sure in turn everyone will be offered one.

I was very interested in as paper just published in the British Journal of Dermatology, where covid feet and hands were discussed, a small percentage of Covid sufferers are affected by hot red swollen toes and fingers. The author studied just 55 patients with covid toes and used 13 with chilblains as controls. They reviewed their immune systems and found two suspect mechanisms. One was the production of an antiviral protein called type 1 interferon and the other was an antibody produced that mistakes, then targets and reacts with the person’s own cells and tissues as well as the invading virus. This was a very small study, but this particular finding looks to be an autoimmune response in affected people.

Sweden have announced they are pausing the use of Modern vaccine in those born in 1991 or later due to an increase in the prevalence of myocarditis and pericarditis. This is very rare and has already been documented as a very rare side effect. They plan to use the Comirnaty version of Pfizer Bion Tech in the meantime.

With almost 40,000 daily cases, do not let anyone tell you pandemic is beaten yet. It is just resting and could pounce again at any time particularly if a resistant mutant appears. There is a balancing act to achieve, opening up to improve our economy against the repercussions of thousands still being affected. Make sure you all have the armour and the knowledge and skills to minimise your risks. I welcome the decision in Wales to require covid passes for many large gatherings. I do not want people tramping into my home with muddy boots and in the same way I do not want those not immunised leaving the covid virus in my home. So friends, please get fully immunised with boosters, respect space. and wear masks when necessary or advisable.

We may have other issues with financial deficits and fuel shortages to cope with but do not lose sight of covid in the confusion. Please all stay safe.

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