Today's post is from our broker blog, AllWays Insider. We're sharing it because it has some great information on how officials and health experts are combating COVID-19 and making things easier for those who may be affected.
While the wait for a COVID-19 vaccine continues, health experts shift their focus to containing the virus and helping people stay as healthy as possible. From flu vaccine recommendations to simpler coronavirus tests and contact tracing, catch up on what's new in COVID-19 news this week.
Marketing and advertising has already begun this summer with CVS, Walgreens, Walmart and many other pharmacies and grocers encouraging Americans to get the seasonal flu vaccination ahead of a fall rush. CVS expects to administer as many as 18 million seasonal flu vaccinations, which will be double last year's volume, and Walgreens said demand for flu, pneumonia and other immunizations could be as much as 30% to 50% higher. Walgreens plans to increase flu vaccine supply and staff up its pharmacies as drugstores prepare for an expected surge of customers wanting protection for the seasonal flu while they wait for a COVID-19 vaccine.
The FDA approved the use of the SalivaDirect saliva-based coronavirus test developed by researchers at the Yale School of Public Health, who say the tests could be helpful in containing the virus. The approval comes amid nationwide delays in getting test results in harder-hit states.
Massachusetts health experts have questioned the effectiveness of molecular tests, which they say do not accurately pinpoint those who are infectious among the population at the time of testing. Massachusetts relies primarily on molecular tests, which experts say are highly sensitive and can detect viral particles long after a person is no longer infectious. However, some experts are calling for testing that's less sensitive and more frequent. That way, health care professionals and public health officials can identify cases of COVID-19 when patients are most infectious and act early to prevent further spread of the disease.
Contact tracers in Massachusetts might order milk or help with rent. Here’s why. from Kaiser Health News
Massachusetts efforts to control the spread of COVID-19 include the addition of care resource coordinator in its COVID-19 contact-tracing program. The coordinators help people under quarantine due to the virus manage their everyday needs, such as getting groceries or paying rent. John Welch, director of operations and partnerships for Partners in Health's Massachusetts Coronavirus Response, which manages the state's contact-tracing program, said the resource coordinator is essential in returning people to "a sense of health, a sense of wellness, a sense of security."