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How Is the U.S. Doing with COVID, Now?
We have been through a pandemic unlike anything anyone today has ever seen. Shutdowns, isolation, school closures, business shutdowns, masks, vaccinations, boosters, political controversy and disruption of virtually every part of our lives upended.
We’re going on three long years since COVID-19 originated in China and made its way around the world infecting hundreds of millions of people and killing over a million people in this country alone. The changes in our lives, the country and the world, we will never forget. But, where do we stand at this point?
Now that’s a loaded question. COVID affects so many parts of our lives, determining where we are at any given moment is like examining every person, family, business and organization to see exactly how COVID is affecting them.
Current stories include President Biden and other world leaders maintaining distance and not shaking hands. Leaders in Congress have randomly been contracting the virus almost every time you watch the news. Infectious disease guru Anthony Fauci has been reported to test positive for COVID twice in the past month. There are ongoing debates in almost every state about opening schools and what kind of learning parents can expect for their children for the new school year which is quickly approaching. The US Army and National Guard have decided to remove some 60,000 soldiers from their job activities if they are not vaccinated.
These are just a few of the very significant things going on as a result of COVID and the lingering effect on all of us.
We have all become used to hearing from the friends who report they are COVID positive after being in a group setting. We try to isolate and look for symptoms. We all pretty much know the routine at this point. Mysteriously those people who never seem to test positive are easier to identify with no explanation as to why they don’t get COVID or test positive.
The CDC reports that over 88 million people in the US have tested positive and that’s a low estimate since people testing positive with home tests rarely report that to the health department. Some people estimate that virtually everyone who can catch COVID already has, and the 88 million being reported by the CDC is probably half or less of the actual total cases.
Each day they report new positive test results, but that doesn’t really take into account that those same people may have tested positive before and some have contracted COVID several times.
I’m not here to criticize the CDC, but the data they produce almost all has to be considered with a caveat or two. The number of daily deaths is around 250 in the US. If you do the math, that’s around 90,000 per year. Many people question if those people really died from COVID or if they had one or more underlying conditions that had more impact than COVID.
Some doctors have compared getting COVID when you have one or more serious underlying conditions to be much the same as if you got the common cold and had those same conditions. The data is hard to truly digest or analyze with a high degree of accuracy because of the way it was and is compiled.
Without doing an in-depth study of each case, it is unlikely you can know exactly why the person died, and if the real culprit was COVID, or possibly COVID was just the final straw. It’s hard to understand the number of cases, too. There are probably twice as many cases, or more, than the CDC is reporting, just because so many people test at home and don’t report the result.
One thing for sure is that COVID is still around. States and jurisdictions experiencing high rates of transmission are still shutting things down and requiring masks. It will probably always be with us in some form, or maybe it will fade away over time. Until then, do what you can to protect yourself and others.