CDC To Relax COVID Testing for the Vaccinated

I'm almost as tired of writing about COVID-19 as I used to get writing about Trump. The CDC seems to me to have jumped the shark. Now they are recommending less testing for people who have been vaccinated?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said last week that most people who have received the full course of shots and have no COVID-19 symptoms don’t need to be screened for the virus, even if exposed to someone who is infected.

When will these experts figure out that we need to prevent the virus, not just treat it after it infects and kills. To do that you need to test. This year-old interview with Virologist Shao Yiming, chief AIDS expert at China’s Center for Disease Control and Prevention,published in Science Insider Magazine makes a lot of good points.


Q: China’s ahead of the rest of the world in terms of responding to COVID-19, so a big question outside of China is how do we best control this without lockdowns?

A: You have to do early finding of cases, which means measuring temperatures all the time, and you have to do an epidemiological investigation and contact tracing of each case within 24 hours. Prevention has to focus on old people and nursing homes, key personnel, larger factories, pregnant women, and university and school campuses. Scale up testing: Testing is going up in China, even though there are no more cases. In order to guarantee a safe opening, you need to test more people.

In other words,

Nowadays, conventional war is not the top danger of mankind anymore. Emerging and re-emerging epidemics are. Prevention is the most effective way to fight epidemics, not the rescue plan afterward. We have to get ahead of viruses, and today, we’re behind them.

Doing away with mass testing is a huge mistake. The sources for the AP article about the CDC relaxing testing is totally lopsided. I'm surprised this guy made it to Yale:

“At this point we really should be asking ourselves whether the benefits of testing outweigh the costs — which are lots of disruptions, lots of confusion and very little clinical or public health benefit,” said Dr. A. David Paltiel of Yale’s School of Public Health.

And where did they find this guy?

“The vaccines overperformed, which is the best news possible,” said Dr. Jeffrey Engel of the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists. “So now you can begin to peel back some of these other layers of mitigation like mask use and screening.”

I bet he voted for Trump.

There are still 30,000 new cases a day in this country, and only 40% of adults are vaccinated. Yet the CDC has changed its tune to rely on evidence that seems more anecdotal than scientific.

Even when vaccinated people do contract COVID-19, their infections tend to be milder, shorter and less likely to spread to others.
....As a result, the CDC says vaccinated people can generally be excluded from routine workplace screening for COVID-19.

It's absurd to call the vaccine a "success" when less than half the country has been vaccinated, there are new variants every day,and there are plenty of breakthrough cases of vaccinated people getting infected.

What is the science behind the claim that vaccinated people who come down with COVID or a variant won't transmit it?

Melbourne, Australia just imposed a partial lockdown today due to new cases. New Jersey reported 10 deaths today.

The India variant has made it's way to the U.S. A new study in England says the Pfizer and Astro Zenaca vaccines have proven effictive against it. The study hasn't even been peer-reviewed. I sure wouldn't take this statement by the study author to the bank: "We expect to see even higher levels of effectiveness against hospitalisation and death.” How about waiting until you have some results that show that?

Another variant (from dogs?) was disclosed this week. Memorial Weekend is just around the corner. The crowds will be huge. I think last year was a grain of sand compared to the scenes we will see this year. We're going to get gob-smacked again but maybe a fourth surge is needed to to get people realize that beating this virus out of existence is far better than learning to live with it. What if people had taken that attitude towards smallpox and polio?

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  • Display: Sort:
    Good news from the Lancet (5.00 / 0) (#1)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Sun May 30, 2021 at 06:59:16 AM EST
    That is good news if you are Covid recovered.


    The findings of the authors suggest that infection and the development of an anti body response provides protection similar to or even better than currently used SARS-CoV-2 vaccines. Although antibodies induced by SARS-CoV-2 infection are more variable and often lower in titre than antibody responses induced after vaccination, this observation does make sense considering current SARS-CoV-2 vaccines induce systemic immune responses to spike proteins while natural infection also induces mucosal immune responses and immune responses against the many other open reading frames encoded by the approximately 29 900 nucleotides of SARS-CoV-2. The SIREN study adds to a growing number of studies, which demonstrate that infection does protect against reinfection, and probably in an antibody-dependent manner.

    PWire (none / 0) (#2)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed Jun 02, 2021 at 09:59:27 AM EST
    Easing Mask Requirements Has Not Led to Virus Spread

    June 2, 2021 at 11:07 am EDT By Taegan Goddard Leave a Comment

    David Leonhardt: "First, new Covid cases have continued to decline at virtually the same rate as during the month before the CDC announcement, which came on May 13... Overall, daily new cases have fallen by almost 75 percent since mid-April and by more than 90 percent from the peak in January."

    "On the other hand, the CDC's change has had a noticeable effect on behavior in a positive way... For the previous month, the number of daily shots in the U.S. had been falling, as the country began to run out of adults who were eager to be vaccinated. Within a few days of the mask announcement, the decline leveled off."

    However, pediatricians in our area (5.00 / 3) (#3)
    by Towanda on Tue Jun 08, 2021 at 03:51:06 PM EST
    are uoset that schools stopped requiring masks, as the pediatricians saw an immediate impact of other viruses.

    Our grandchildren both had to go to the ER with croup, neighbors' kids have pneumonia, etc.

    Masks work.


    Scientific studies (none / 0) (#4)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Wed Jun 09, 2021 at 09:24:57 PM EST
    Here are a couple of controlled studies on mask effectiveness.

    The Danish study.

    The Marine study.


    More (5.00 / 5) (#5)
    by FlJoe on Thu Jun 10, 2021 at 07:37:29 AM EST

    Why not come out and call it a hoax? It will save you a lot of cherry picking time.


    But, it's fun (5.00 / 2) (#6)
    by KeysDan on Thu Jun 10, 2021 at 03:41:41 PM EST
    owning the libs.  Even if it takes big lies.

    To be clear (5.00 / 4) (#7)
    by CaptHowdy on Thu Jun 10, 2021 at 03:50:08 PM EST
    I'm all for wearing masks.  If for no other reason than it irritates all the right people.

    I wear a mask (none / 0) (#11)
    by Zorba on Sat Jun 12, 2021 at 12:05:44 PM EST
    When I go into a store.  I keep waiting for some maskless idiot to give me a hard time about it, but so far, no takers.  
    And here I always have my cane ready to bop them.  Oh, well.

    Thanks. (none / 0) (#8)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Fri Jun 11, 2021 at 05:54:44 PM EST
    But none of those are controlled studies as far as what they claim. A controlled study is the gold standard. Without a similarly situated control group to compare you have no way to differentiate from cherry picking.

    You may not have noticed that both studies I referenced have substantial sample group and a substantial control group.


    Hahahahahahahahaha (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by Yman on Sat Jun 12, 2021 at 08:13:17 AM EST
    "A controlled study is the gold standard"?!?  From the guy who's trying to cherry-pick two studies that don't even back up his wingnut nonsense?  The same guy who claimed that COVID undercount studies didn't control for deaths due to deferred medical procedures, when they clearly DID?  Would you like a list of peer reviewed studies showing masks are effective in reducing the spread of COVID, or would you just "misinterpret" those, too?

    Danish Study Doesn't Prove Masks Don't Work Against the Coronavirus

    I can't tell when you're trying to be funny.


    heh. I really appreciate you (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by leap on Sat Jun 12, 2021 at 09:26:10 AM EST
    being Abdul's tracker and take-down artiste. You are so good at that! Thank you.

    The (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by FlJoe on Sat Jun 12, 2021 at 01:03:53 PM EST
    Danish study did indeed have a control group, however it was also non-blinded so you can toss that "Gold Standard". Also it was a small study, done in decidedly non-laboratory conditions, further dimming the luster. The Danish population is hardly representative either, they had a relatively low transmission rate to begin with and during the timeframe of the study was dropping rapidly.

    The Marine study doesn't mean what you think it means. There was no control group, every recruit followed the exact same anti-covid protocols no matter if they participated or not. The participants were just monitored and documented more closely.

    During the supervised quarantine, public health measures were enforced to suppress SARS-CoV-2 transmission (Table S1 in the Supplementary Appendix, available with the full text of this article at NEJM.org). All recruits wore double-layered cloth masks at all times indoors and outdoors, except when sleeping or eating; practiced social distancing of at least 6 feet; were not allowed to leave campus; did not have access to personal electronics and other items that might contribute to surface transmission; and routinely washed their hands.

    Better find a better Cherry tree.

    Anyway even if those studies were "Gold Standard" and they meant what you think they do, they are only studies which pale when compared to actual empirical data being collected in real time.

    While observational studies, such as most of the studies that have been done can be problematic vs controlled studies, but when you start getting tens of millions of data points, collected in near real time, with multiple defacto control groups no limited study can match that. No matter what your hoax filled dreams say.