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COVID-19 News Update for March 25, 2021

Data Snapshot  

UW Medicine Hospitals:

COVID-19 Positive Inpatients March 24

King County: The county reported 346 new positive cases and 0 new deaths on March 23.  

Washington: The state reported 335,606 cases and 5,200 deaths as of March 23.  

United States: The CDC reports 29,834,734 cases and 542,584 deaths as of March 25. 

Global: WHO reports 124,215,843 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 2,734,374 deaths as of March25. 

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

UW Medicine COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Update 

Total Vaccine Doses Administered: 155,453 

  • Total first dose: 88,421 
  • Total second dose: 67,041 

As of March 23, 2021. 

UW Medicine in the News 

KOMO 4: Traveling in 2021? Doctors urge caution despite optimistic vaccine goals
Featuring: Paul Pottinger, MD, DTM&H, Allergy and Infectious Diseases; Brittany Philbin, Harborview Nurse
“Despite the ambitious goal to vaccinate most Americans by this summer, doctors said even those who get inoculated need to be prepared to cancel their travel plans. ’We don’t know everything,” said Brittany Philbin, a Harborview Medical Center Emergency Department nurse. “A variant could pop up that’s either more contagious or easy, more easily transmissible between people.’ Philbin urges people to be considerate of others when making vacation plans in 2021. ‘It’s just about caring about the people around you and not necessarily just thinking about what’s going to affect you,’ Philbin said.”

Crosscut: More Black and Latinx people in Washington are getting vaccines
Featuring: Leo Morales, MD, PHD, FACP, Chief Diversity Officer
“Looking forward, Morales said inequities in vaccination rates may change because some of the first workers to be eligible for the vaccine skew white, including health care workers and teachers, while upcoming groups like agriculture and grocery workers include a higher percentage of nonwhites. ‘So it’s important to quickly move to essential workers who are going to be disproportionately nonwhite…and that will change things,’ he said. Morales said he would have preferred to use risk of infection as the indicator for priority vaccination. ‘If you look at infection rates among different groups of employees, essential workers are probably the highest at risk of any group, more so than doctors or nurses, and more so than teachers,’ Morales said.”

KIRO 7: State working with CDC to track ‘breakthrough’ COVID cases
Featuring: Pavitra Roychoudhury, PhD, MSc, Laboratory Medicine
“The state is working to vaccinate people as quickly as possible to stop the spread of COVID-19. Along with cutting down the number of deaths and hospitalizations, they want to reduce chances of variants. ‘Every case is an opportunity for the virus to mutate, so the fewer cases we have in the community, we are preventing new variants from arising,’ said Pavitra Roychoudhury, Ph.D., at UW Medicine. Roychoudhury works in the UW Medicine Virology lab where she says they’re able to process up to 15,000 COVID tests a day. At the same time, they are sequencing 500-600 positives tests a week, searching for variants. That’s where they identified the arrival of the Brazil variant in King County.”

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 March 19, 2021 

  • School-related COVID-19 incidence was <1% among Florida K-12 students (August-December 2020), were most schools resumed in-person instruction sometime during August 2020. The incidence among students was correlated with community incidence and was highest in smaller counties, districts without mask requirements, and those that reopened earliest after closure in March 2020. Approximately 11% of K-12 schools experienced outbreaks with a median of 6 cases per outbreak. 20% of school outbreaks were associated with activities outside of the classroom. More. 
  • Despite high community incidence and an inability to space classroom seats at least 6 feet apart, there was low SARS-CoV-2 transmission and no school-related outbreaks in 20 Salt Lake County elementary schools with high mask adherence. More. 
  • Secondary transmission occurred in only 2% of 102 students and staff who had close contact with someone with COVID-19 in school settings in two counties in Missouri. More. 
  • Higher doses of anticoagulation did not improve all-cause mortality or reduce venous thromboembolism compared with standard prophylactic anticoagulation in a multicenter randomized trial of patients with COVID-19 admitted to the ICU. 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: March 23 | Daily COVID-19 LST Report.
Listen to the latest podcast: Week of Feb. 15 | COVID-19 LST Podcast. 

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