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Posts posted by wathe

  1. 2 hours ago, Bootsie said:

    This is helpful.

    When scientist say that the vaccine can prevent someone from being "infected" by COVID, does this mean that the vaccination helps prevent the virus from attaching the the cell, penetrating the cell, replicating once it is in the cell, or for the progeny to escape the cell?  


    That would be a textbook length answer.  Bottom line:  The vaccine itself doesn't fight the infection.  The vaccine primes your immune system to recognize the virus and fight the virus.  The immune response is complicated.  It will both mop up loose virus and kill infected cells.

    Links to get you started down the rabbit hole:

    CDC primer

    British Society for Immunology

    professional journal summary paper  Fundamentals of Vaccine Immunology



    • Like 4
  2. I feel like I'm not expressing myself well.  Case definitions use practical (rather than purely biological/physiological) criteria used to define a case.  They are obviously driven by biology/physiology, but don't necessarily use bio/phys only to define cases.  And case definitions tend to get revised as we learn more about emerging diseases.  On Ontario, the Covid case definition has been revised multiple times as our understanding evolves.

  3. 2 hours ago, Bootsie said:

    Can you explain what clinical case definitions are?  


    Sure.  A set of criteria that public health uses to define a "case", for public health surveillance purposes.  The covid numbers that you see reported in the news would be based on case definitions, and they would be used to set policy etc.  Example:  Ontario case definition

    Basically a way to define the disease without going into the minutia of the pathophysiology (and especially useful when the pathophys isn't completely understood - ie emerging new diseases)


  4. 23 minutes ago, Bootsie said:

    Can somebody explain at what point "infection" is said to have occurred?  If a virus attaches to a living cell and then enters it, is it the penetration of the cell that then classifies the person as being "infected"?  Or, is it not until the virus has copied its genome that the person is infected?  Or, is it the escape of the progeny virions that is then classified as "infected"?

    Generally, infection means the organism has invaded, and is multiplying.  You are right, though, that there is a spectrum of infectedness.  Which is why public health generally uses clinical case definitions rather than purely biological definitions.

    • Like 4
  5. 59 minutes ago, KSera said:

    Would sure be nice if more comfortable, but still effective masks were developed. This is one of the articles putting forth that AGP are not meaningful as a classification of higher risk activities, as higher levels of infectious aerosols are generated during other activities that don't fall in that category (coughing being one of the worst, but also talking and speaking): https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lanres/article/PIIS2213-2600(21)00216-2/fulltext


    It's impossible for policy to keep up with science, sadly.  Institutional change is cumbersome and slow.

    ETA: and expensive.  so we end up with good enough rather than best.

    • Like 1
  6. 11 minutes ago, KSera said:

    What I’ve been reading the aerosol people saying (I can’t remember if it’s Linsey Marr or Kimberly Prather, or both) is that people just talking create more infectious aerosol than aerosol generating procedures do. It seems strange, and I’d have to go back and read to remember why that is. On the other hand, it’s interesting that it is seeming in practice that surgical masks are doing enough. It’s surprising. Although, surely better masks would help even more?

    Right.  It is paradoxical.

    Re n95 helping more: yes and no. 

    In a high risk care situation (AGMP) when you are in the care space for a defined time period then doffing carefully, then yes. 

    But for shift-long wear, maybe not.  The problem with n95 for shift-long use is that they are really, really uncomfortable.  It takes tremendous will power to avoid touching/adjusting after it's been on for a while.  Staff are more likely to wear their medical mask properly and always, for the entire duration of the shift.

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  7. 2 hours ago, KSera said:

    I think there has been somewhat of a turf war, but that the semantics have been important, because they have real world implications. I think this has been a far bigger deal in Canada than the US, from what I can gather, especially for health care workers and PPE. There were many places outright denying there could be aerosol spread. 

    Yes, it is an issue here.  Covid is treated as droplet in hospitals in Ontario.  That affects PPE practices for HCW and patient flow practices (suspected covid patients in emergency departments can sit in the same space as other patients as long as masked and 2m apart).  We use airborne precautions only for aerosol generating procedures. 

    Hospitals and TPTB have been very reluctant to acknowledge aerosol transmission for two main reasons:

    1) the current droplet precaution model actually seems to work.  We've have very few hospital outbreaks, and most have been traced to staff protocol breaches in break-rooms.  Staff covid rates have been lower than community rates.

    2) airborne precautions for all suspected covid patients would be near impossible in practice, particularly  in emergency departments - we don't have the infrastructure or n95 supply.

    It's easier to ignore the issue than to acknowledge that we have problem and admit we don't have the resources or political will to make best practice happen.

    ETA - I'm sure that a cost/benefit analysis has been done bt TPTB, and they have decided that the status quo is acceptable; and that the tremendous expense and impracticality of acknowledging airborne spread isn't worth it.


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  8. I think personal responsibility is especially impossible when there aren't social structures in place to make it easy (or even possible) to make the right decisions, like staying home when sick or staying home when one ought to be in quarantine.  Things like paid sick leave etc.


    • Like 13
  9. I see the same shift wrt more emphasis on personal responsibility.

    Unfortunately, as we've seen over and over in the past year, a personal responsibility model doesn't work for pandemics, and most especially for this pandemic.

    Personal responsibility works when the person who makes the choice, be it wise or foolish, is the one who benefits or suffers the consequences.  In this pandemic, that's not true.  Individuals can make poor choices, and other people suffer the consequences.  A presymptomatic or minimally symptomatice person can make an irresponsible choice, and some other vulnerable person become critically ill or die as a result.  On a broader level, a whole bunch of people make poor individual choices, the healthcare system gets overwhelmed, and the entire society pays the consequences.

    Pandemics need collective action, not personal responsibility.

    Super hard in the US, where the whole culture and economic system seem to based on individual/personal responsibility model.

    • Like 9
    • Thanks 11
  10. re efficacy of surgical/medical masks:

    We are going to see some decent data out of Canada on this, I think.  Here the PPE standard for HCW providing covid care is a medical mask, not an n95 (n95's strictly reserved for aerosol generating medical procedures).  My hospital uses pleated ear-loop medical masks - essentially equivalent to what you can buy at Costco.  Anecdotally, they seems to work.  Our HCW covid rates are lower than community rates, and have been for the entire duration of the pandemic.  There is at least one head-to-head medical mask vs n95 trail ongoing.

    Of course, the question of whether medical or surgical masks are effective in protecting against covid in HCW isn't the same as whether or not mask mandates are effective for the general public, but at least will answer the basic question of whether medical masks actually work or not (I think they do, and much better than the 50% I saw quoted up-thread).  HCW PPE practices are more than just masking, of course.  But if pleated ear-loop masks don't work, then Canada should have had an awful lot more sick HCW.

    • Like 9
    • Thanks 2
  11. 4 hours ago, Ottakee said:

    Well, I am out here.   When I made the reservations Thursday for a state park rustic campground about an hour from home it was temps of 70° day, 55° night and 0% chance of rain.    I am now in my tent hoping it is actually waterproof as it has rained off and on for 3 hours and a steady rain for past hour.

    I hiked just shy of 8 miles today solo and loved it.  One was a hike of about 4 miles with my fully loaded pack.  Second was was just me and my phone.

     My brother knows where I am including site number.   I feel very safe here and enjoyed my fire, hammock, dinner and s'mores.

    just wish I didn't have to run out in the rain to pee before I head to bed.

    tomorrow I hope to hike 6-7 miles if it is dry.

    That's wonderful!

    (Next trip, you could step up your game and embrace the pee-bottle +/- FUD.  Game-changer! 🙂 )

  12. @Not_a_NumberCloser reading of my contest administration instructions:  There are two contest dates, one for North and South America, and one for outside North and South America.  Strongly implying that international participation is a thing.  I think you're good.

    The eligibility seems stricter for the Euclid only (grade 12 exam). I'm guessing because that's the one with scholarships attached?

    • Like 1
  13. 3 hours ago, Not_a_Number said:

    Oooh. Can one do these as a non-Canadian? Because then maybe we'll do them next year. 

    I think so.  Eligibility page.  I see that there is a requirement to attend school in Canada to be and official contestant for the Euclid, but then on the same page: "Any student may write the Euclid contest. Note that both Canadian and international students that write the Euclid contest are eligible for scholarship consideration."  So that's a little confusing

    • Like 1
  14. I think your plan is fine.  Not yet reading at 5 is normal.

    HWOT sounds like a perfect choice for you.  I had a kid with similar handwriting resistance and delayed fine motor skill.  We spend a lot of time with HWOT-sized chalk boards (wet,dry,try) using tiny pieces of chalk (to strengthen pincer grip).  Also lots of other fine motor skills activities (snipping strips of paper with scissors, sorting pompoms with forceps, pinching plasticine etc).

    You don't have to buy all the HWOT branded stuff.  Most of it can be done cheaply DIY.  Dollar-store chalk boards, or MDF with chalkboard paint.  I used car detailing pinstriping stick-on tape to make the lines for lower case work.  Break your own chalk, cut up sponges into small pieces, cut letter pieces out of cardboard etc.

    HWOT method is a lot more than workbooks.  You might benefit from the instructor's guide, if you don't have it already  - there is a lot of information on non-workbook activities.

    Let you OT know that you're using HWOT.  It was developed by an OT.  Your OT might be able to help you tweak it to to help your child get the most out of the program.

  15. 36 minutes ago, ScoutTN said:

    I like to have both a poncho and a rain jacket. Good for different things.


    34 minutes ago, Ottakee said:

    I have both too....but really prefer not to have to need either of them😀

    Add a golf umbrella for super luxury car camping 🙂

    • Like 1
  16. 7 minutes ago, Ottakee said:

    I have a similar one but not name brand.  If I were to solo it back country I might upgrade...but usually I will have several friends along and it would be rare for more than 1 stove to malfunction at a time.

    We will see how mine does.   I have used it to make coffee and tea.

    This is one of the reasons why group hiking is safer than solo (beyond the obvious).  Friends = built in equipment redundancy

  17. Just now, Ottakee said:

    Because I don't want to waste my mountain house dehydrated meals. Maybe I can make my own up....but, ok, really, I just love a hot dog cooked over an open fire.

    Good enough reason!

    But you could cook soup out of a can on your backpacking stove to go with your hotdogs.  And boil up some tea!

    • Like 3
  18. 15 minutes ago, ScoutTN said:

    Love my jet-boil for a light stove! 

    They're not for me; too tippy, and not versatile enough (I like to play around with cooking while on the trail).  I love my trusty Trangia; it's bomb-proof (I actually have two - my dad's 27 model from the 1970's, and a newer 25).  Next best white gas MSR whisperlite from the 90's.

    Funny stove story:  I took a winter camping seminar for scouts leaders a couple of years ago.  It was bring your own stove and cook your own lunch.  The trainers both had cooking mishaps:  The jetboil guy's jet boil tipped over and dumped his lunch on the ground, and the white-gas trainer somehow lit his whole stove (and some of the surrounding pine needles on the ground) on fire.  Trusty Trangia made soup and grilled cheese without incident.  ETA; with plenty to share with the lunchless trainers 🙂

    Now I want to know what kind of stove @Ottakeehas!


    • Like 1
    • Haha 1
  19. 3 minutes ago, Ottakee said:

    This will sorta be a combo of trying out some backpacking stuff but also having more comforts.   I can't totally go backpack mode as my tent is a 7*7 and weighs 8-10# and I just have a plain big, heavy sleeping bag and pad....and I want my pillow😀.

    I might do hotdogs over the fire and s'mores for supper but then try out my backpacking stove to make coffee/tea, oatmeal, etc for breakfast.

    I will use my phone battery bank charger and carry my water.

    Total hybrid camping.  I will have a fire and likely my regular lawn chair but I will have my hammock in my pack.

    Why not use your backpacking stove for supper too?  Test, test, test.

    • Like 1
  20. 4 minutes ago, ScoutTN said:

    Love rain boots or something else waterproof to slip on at night or early am for a quick trip to the restroom with dry feet.


    Yes, extra footwear!  You can have rain boots and sneakers and hiking boots and crocs......

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