A Closer Look …

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

with Anthony Newcombe

Let’s take a closer look …

Topic:  How and who will pay for COVID-19 vaccinations?   

Issue:  Pandemic, vaccination costs, and the risks of ongoing collateral damage in the U.S.  

  1. Terminology 

Pandemic was recently dubbed the “word of the year” by Merriam-Webster (click link either left or below).  Congrats, pandemic, you’ve officially arrived!  However, now the discussion has shifted from acknowledgment of the pandemic (for many – but not all – of us) to another word, Vaccine/Vaccination

Whereas ‘pandemic’ can be delivered to our shores for free, ‘vaccine’ cannot and will not come ashore for the same, wonderful price.  What that leaves us with, is, how and who will be actually paying for the delivery and distribution of each vaccine? And, how much per dose?

  1. U.S. Imports: To me, it’s starting to take the form of most every other import into our country.  Those who have the means will receive the goods, and those who don’t will just have to sit and wait.  And since we’re not talking about the newest G.I. Joe (with the ‘Kung Fu grip’) toy or BMW model, it isn’t quite so simple a formula for success going forward. 
  1. Population/ Distribution: Though it is a good start, it isn’t nearly enough to simply vaccinate health care workers and the elderly or vulnerable.  To be even marginally successful, we’ll need the cooperation and participation of an overwhelming majority of our population – and still have no guarantees of immunity or threats of mutation outbreaks.   
  1. Trust/Distrust of Vaccines: For those of us who are unaware, the U.S. has, well, a murky history with respect to experiments and vaccinations in specific communities. One glaring example is the Tuskeegee experiment (reasons for distrust of vaccines) The experiment, logically so, has inflicted what many believe to be a permanent scar on the trustworthiness of vaccines and applications to our underserved population(s). It won’t be a quick or easy solution to turn this around soon enough to chart a new, universally trusted trajectory for the forthcoming Covid-19 vaccinations.  
  1. Cost: I’ve yet to hear much confirmation of the costs of each of the 100s of millions of vaccinations that are “in the works.”  Is it $20 per dose? $37? More expensive than the above? Excuse me for sounding overly concerned, but I believe this will be the most important element in the decision to take a vaccine or decline.  But, for someone who can’t afford their next meal and has been standing in food distribution lines for the past 6 months, this might as well be $2,000 or more per dose. They simply won’t be able to afford it, they won’t receive the vaccination, and we, in turn, won’t achieve the participation rate we need to kill off this raging virus.  

If we are collectively serious about controlling Covid-19 into 2021, we also need to pay much more attention to the feasibility of it all.  Without a true assessment, we may be kidding ourselves in opportunities for success. Chances are the vaccinations won’t be cheap and distribution won’t be equal. 

The dilemma is, will we somehow make this work for the sake of our nation – and the world too – or will it be viewed in history as one of the epic failures of our time. 

Tell me, What do YOU think? I’m curious to find out…

– A.N.  

Supporting links  

https://www.merriam-webster.com/words-at-play/word-of-the-year/pandemic

https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/06/tuskegee-study-medical-distrust-research/487439

https://www.healthline.com/health-news/how-much-will-it-cost-to-get-a-covid-19-vaccine

A Closer Look

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

with Anthony Newcombe

Let’s take a closer look …

Topic: Reopening vs. Testing (Covid-19)

Issue: Is it better to risk an economic collapse using a more deliberate approach in reopening America (with a broader national testing program), or, try to get us ‘back to normal’ as quickly as possible and risk another spike in infections and deaths?

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/may/09/trump-reopening-america-coronavirus

What do YOU think?

Let us know …

A Closer Look … (that virus)

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmail

with Anthony Newcombe (Vol. II)

Let’s take a closer look

Area: Covid-19 / Health & Pandemics

Issue: What “good” has already resulted from shutting down entire city, state, and nation populations due to the Covid-19 pandemic? Let’s take ‘a closer look’ …

If you haven’t yet noticed, we are in an international health crisis – the likes of which have never been seen on this size and scale. Our global population is closing in on 8 billion – and one of its largest, China, first experienced one of the most enigmatic and deadly outbreaks of what is termed “Covid-19.” As of this post publication (3/21/2020), China has (reportedly) gained control of the outbreak of new infections. Conversely, the location I’m currently residing in, Los Angeles, Calif., U.S.A. – is in its second full day of a complete lock down/ social distancing/ shelter-in-place, house arrest, or whatever you’d like to call it.

But rather than continuing to describe all of the necessary “inconveniences” that we are enduring (and will likely continue to endure for weeks or months ahead) I’m going to shift gears on the fly and discuss some of the obvious “positive repercussions” of this home confinement program.

  1. Traffic and other congestion: Almost immediately, our local neighborhood has been freed up of an unbelievable amount of “non-essential” traffic. Just to provide some perspective, the main street we live adjacent to is a thoroughfare for over 65,000 automobiles, trucks, motorcycles and ‘lambos’ per day. Yes, per day! The noise level, the noticeable lack of constant tripping of our motion sensor lights during the overnight hours and everything that comes with it (i.e. SLEEP) is nothing less than stunning!
  2. People are a lot nicer: With full disclosure, I must admit I don’t spend much time in the local supermarkets, big box retailers, etc. However, my wife does! And from what I’m hearing, people (yeah, the L.A. ones) are treating each other with a bit more respect.
  3. Trash in the streets: Since there are no car “meal-eaters,” coffee cup throwers, or whatever else, the streets are a lot cleaner and we don’t have to spend our mornings and/or evenings in the gutters picking up after strangers … again, a good thing!
  4. Cleaner air: Actually, I first noticed this from a report out of Wuhan, China last month (and more recently in Italy) that showed an infrared image before lock down (factories emitting particulates 24/7) and after (all closed and nothing emitting at all). Guess what? We see it here too. The local factories (we call them “malls”) aren’t overflowing with people and cars looking to hang out all day. More importantly, with most of the local businesses either closed or mostly empty, as bad as it is (admittedly) it does, in fact, allows the environment to “take a break” from the constant and considerable pounding it has been taking for so long.

What do you have to say about where you are? Don’t be shy, please tell us!

-A.N.