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COVID-19 News Update for Feb. 16, 2021

Data Snapshot  

UW Medicine Hospitals:

COVID-19 Positive Inpatients Feb 15 2021

King County: The county reported 622 new positive cases and 3 new deaths on Feb. 15.  

Washington: The state reported 311,288 cases and 4,675 deaths as of Feb. 12.  

United States: The CDC reports 27,542,421 cases and 485,070 deaths as of Feb. 16. 

Global: WHO reports 108,822,960 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 2,403,641 deaths as of Feb16.  

Numbers update frequently, please follow links for most up-to-date numbers.  

UW Medicine COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Update  

Total Vaccine Doses Administered: 78,536 

  • Total first dose: 54,778 
  • Total second dose: 23,758 

As of Feb. 11, 2021. 

COVID-19 Literature Report  

COVID-19 Literature Situation Reportis a daily (M-F) newsletter put together by the Alliance for Pandemic Preparedness that provides a succinct summary of the latest scientific literature related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Key Takeaways: COVID-19 Literature Situation Report Feb. 12, 2021 

  • The CDC released new guidelines for reopening K-12 schools for in-person learning, noting that evidence suggests that many K-12 schools that have strictly implemented mitigation strategies have been able to open safely for in-person instruction and remain open. More. 
  • The rate of SARS-CoV-2 was twice as high among lower-secondary school teachers in Sweden who taught in schools that remained open (7.4 cases per 1,000) compared to upper-secondary teachers who taught in schools that closed during the initial phase of the COVID-19 pandemic. By contrast, primary school teachers in schools that remained open had lower rates of SARS-CoV-2 (3.8 to 4.8 cases per 1,000). Masks were rarely used in schools and exposed individuals were only quarantined if they developed symptoms. More. 
  • The AstraZeneca-Oxford SARS-CoV-2 vaccine was not effective in preventing mild or moderate COVID-19 in a randomized trial conducted in South Africa where 39 of 42 COVID-19 cases were with the B.1.351 variant. The study was unable to assess protection against severe COVID-19 since no severe cases occurred in the vaccine or placebo groups. More. 
  • Among hospitalized people with COVID-19, an observational study found that initiation of prophylactic anticoagulation in the first 24 hours after hospitalization was associated with a 27% lower risk of 30-day mortality and no increased risk of serious bleeding events. More.

COVID-19 Literature Surveillance Team, is an affiliated group of medical students, PhDs and physicians keeping up with the latest research on SARS-CoV-2 / COVID-19 by finding the newest articles, reading them, grading their level of evidence and bringing you the bottom line.

Read the latest report: Feb. 12 | Daily COVID-19 LST Report.
Listen to the latest podcast: Feb. 8 | COVID-19 LST Podcast. 

UW Medicine in the News 

Business Insider: The coronavirus is going to stick around forever. Get ready for the new normal.
Featuring: Deborah Fuller, Microbiology
When the first vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna were authorized for emergency use last year, there was real hope that they could crush the pandemic. The shots were over 90% effective — a stunning achievement — and provided overwhelming protection against mild, moderate, and severe symptoms. Now the goal for vaccines has become more modest: Blunt the worst outcomes, preventing deaths and hospital stays. I’ve seen the language changing already from ‘We’re going to hit herd immunity’ to ‘Hey, we’re going to have something that is going to get us back to normal, from the perspective that our hospitals aren’t going to be overloaded, said Deborah Fuller, a UW School of Medicine microbiologist and vaccine researcher.

The New York Times: We Asked 175 Pediatric Disease Experts if It Was Safe Enough to Open School
Featuring: Danielle Zerr, Pediatrics
“The point of most agreement was requiring masks for everyone. All the respondents said it was important, and many said it was a simple solution that made the need for other preconditions to opening less essential. “What works in health care, masks, will work in schools,” said Dr. Danielle Zerr, a professor and the division chief of pediatric infectious diseases at the University of Washington. ‘Kids are good at wearing masks!’ Half the panel said a complete return to school with no precautions — no masks, full classrooms and all activities restored — would require that all adults and children in the community have access to vaccination. (Vaccines haven’t been tested yet in children and most likely won’t be available until 2022.)” 

UW Medicine Newsroom: Study: COVID-19 infection rates high in pregnant women
FeaturingKristina Adams Waldorf, Obstetrics and Gynecology
“Researchers studying infection rates in Washington state found a 70% higher rate of SARS-CoV-2 infection in pregnant women than in similarly aged adults who were not pregnant. ‘The idea that pregnant women were not at risk from COVID19 is a myth. And this means to us that the exclusion of pregnant patients from the vaccine trials was a mistake. Although we will soon have more information regarding the risks of COVID-19 vaccination in pregnant healthcare workers who are being vaccinated now, we should’ve known this before,’ says Dr. Kristina Adams Waldorf, professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the UW School of Medicine.” 

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