COVID-19 Transmission and Understanding Exposure Risks

2022-09-08T09:47:25-04:00September 1st, 2022|Categories: eNews, Physical Health, Staying Healthy|Tags: |

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has created a series of questions around factors that can determine a lower or higher risk of COVID-19 transmission. These questions are designed so you can assess your risk of exposure and possible transmission in various settings, as well as the likelihood that you were infected if you had recently been around a person with COVID-19. If multiple factors indicate you could be in a higher transmission risk scenario, you  may consider adding more preventative actions or take steps outlined for what to do if you were exposed. As always, you should [...]

Will the COVID-19 Pandemic Ever End?

2022-08-08T15:37:03-04:00August 1st, 2022|Categories: Dialysis, eNews, Immunizations, Mental Health|Tags: |

By Alan S. Kliger, MD, Clinical Professor of Medicine, Yale School of Medicine, and Chair, Excellence in Patient Care Advisory Committee, American Society of Nephrology Some recent quotes I’ve heard - - - I’ll bet you have too: “Who can even pay attention when the subject of COVID-19 is raised?” “Enough already – I’m through with it” “What’s the difference? Even with vaccines and boosters, I still got COVID twice!” After nearly three years of this pandemic, COVID-19 infection has gone from a frightening and deadly disease to a major disruptor of our lives, to annoying background noise for most of [...]

Just how accurate are rapid antigen tests? Two testing experts explain the latest data

2022-07-07T12:42:50-04:00July 1st, 2022|Categories: eNews, Immunizations, Staying Healthy, Uncategorized|Tags: |

Once in short supply, rapid antigen tests are now available throughout the U.S. Nathaniel Hafer, UMass Chan Medical School and Apurv Soni, UMass Chan Medical School As of May 2022, the U.S. is experiencing another uptick in the number of COVID-19 cases. High rates of infection in Europe and Asia, along with the continued emergence of new sub-variants, such as omicron BA.4 and BA.5, raise concerns that another surge could be on the way. Even though demand for COVID-19 tests greatly overwhelmed supply earlier in the pandemic, rapid home tests are more available today. While home tests provide a quick, [...]

New Medicare Initiative to Cover Costs of OTC COVID-19 Tests

2022-05-10T12:53:34-04:00April 22nd, 2022|Categories: eNews, Physical Health, Staying Healthy|Tags: |

Beginning April 4, 2022, Medicare now covers the cost of up to eight over-the-counter (OTC) COVID-19 tests per calendar month for Part B and Medicare Advantage participants. It is important to note that Medicare will not cover OTC COVID-19 tests for patients who only have Medicare Part A (Hospital Insurance) coverage, but they may still be eligible for free tests through other programs. Medicare will cover the costs of these tests until the COVID-19 public health emergency (PHE) comes to an end. Patients can get the tests through any participating pharmacy or health care provider. A partial list of participating pharmacies [...]

COVID.gov Launched by the White House

2022-04-12T12:33:41-04:00April 1st, 2022|Categories: eNews, Immunizations, Resources|Tags: |

On Wednesday, March 30th, the White House launched a new website, https://www.covid.gov/, that will be its one-stop shop for questions on masks, treatment, vaccines, testing, and where to find and order resources. Users can search by county to access the latest COVID-19 Community Level in their area, and can click on links that take them directly to the CDC’s site for guidance on staying up-to-date with vaccines, when to get tested, and additional precautions that can be taken for those at high risk for severe illness, such as those who are immunocompromised. The site is designed to be accessible to a [...]

It Was Already Hard to Find Evusheld, a Covid Prevention Therapy. Now It’s Even Harder

2022-04-12T12:24:26-04:00March 31st, 2022|Categories: eNews|Tags: |

By Hannah Recht March 17, 2022 As immunocompromised people across the country work to get Evusheld, a potentially lifesaving covid therapy, several hundred providers of the injections were removed from a federal dataset on Wednesday night, making the therapy even harder to locate. White House officials had announced March 15 that a planned purchase of more doses would have to be scaled back without new federal funding. And federal and state health departments aren’t making it easy to find, leaving patients whose hospitals say they don’t have enough of the drug to write desperate tweets and Facebook posts seeking the shots [...]

Identifying Health Misinformation

2022-03-08T13:00:47-05:00March 1st, 2022|Categories: eNews, Immunizations, Lifestyle, Mental Health, Physical Health|Tags: |

Over the last two years, people have been exposed to a lot of information, from many different sources, regarding COVID-19. There are many reputable sources for health information, such as the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO). However, there has been a recent rise in health misinformation, which caused confusion about vaccination and other public health measures, such as masking and social distancing. Although health misinformation is not new, with more people having access to the internet and various social media platforms, it has spread in recent years at an unprecedented rate. In order to keep yourself, [...]

COVID-19 and Patients with Kidney Disease on Dialysis

2022-05-06T15:50:34-04:00February 25th, 2022|Categories: Dialysis, Employment, eNews, Immunizations, Kidney Transplant, Lifestyle, Mental Health|Tags: |

By Alan Kliger, MD Updated March 18, 2022 I am writing this mid-March 2022, as the last peak of COVID infection with the Omicron variant has rapidly fallen in every US state, but wastewater analysis has shown places in the US where virus infection in some communities is rising again. A new sub-variant, BA.2 is making up about 23% of cases. Abroad, the United Kingdom is seeing increasing hospitalizations with COVID infection, and many locations in the far east have raging infections. The effects of the surge in Omicron cases around the world this past winter have deeply affected [...]

Up-to-Date vs. Fully Vaccinated – What to Know About COVID-19 Vaccination

2022-02-10T12:39:30-05:00February 7th, 2022|Categories: eNews, Immunizations|Tags: |

With Omicron continuing and the possibility of new variants in the future, it is important to not only be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, but also receive a booster dose, when eligible, so that you are up-to-date. Someone is considered fully vaccinated when they have received their primary series of COVID-19 vaccines. In order to be considered up-to-date, a person has to have received all recommended COVID-19 vaccines, including any booster(s) when eligible. The recommendations provided by the CDC will be different for everyone, depending on age, health status, and when you received your first vaccine. It is important to note that [...]

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