business news in context, analysis with attitude

Random and illustrative stories about the global pandemic and how businesses and various business sectors are trying to recover from it, with brief, occasional, italicized and sometimes gratuitous commentary…

•  The current US Covid-19 coronavirus numbers:  84,692,706 total cases … 1,028,014 deaths … and 81,438,103 reported recoveries.

The global numbers:  525,215,109 total cases … 6,295,208 fatalities … and 495,007,034 reported recoveries.  (Source.)

•  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that 77.7 percent of the total US population has received at least one dose of vaccine … 66.5 percent are fully vaccinated … and 46.4 percent of fully vaccinated people have received a vaccine booster dose.  The CDC also says that 49.1 percent of the US population eligible for a booster shoot has not gotten one.

• The New York Times reports that "as the coronavirus morphs into a stubborn and unpredictable facet of everyday life, scientists and federal health officials are converging on a new strategy for immunizing Americans: a vaccination campaign this fall, perhaps with doses that are finely tuned to combat the version of the virus expected to be in circulation.

"The plan would borrow heavily from the playbook for distributing annual flu shots, and may become the template for arming Americans against the coronavirus in the years to come.

"But some experts question how well a renewed vaccination push would be received by a pandemic-weary public, whether the doses can be rolled out quickly enough to reach the people who need them most — and whether most Americans need additional shots at all.

"On June 28, scientific advisers to the Food and Drug Administration will meet to identify the coronavirus variant most likely to be percolating in the United States as temperatures cool. That should leave manufacturers time to decide whether the vaccines’ composition needs to be revised and to ramp up production, hopefully enough to churn out hundreds of millions of doses by October."

Speaking as someone who is double-vaxxed and double-boosted, I would say that I've been working on the assumption that when I get my flu shot in the fall - and I always get a flu shot, because it seems like the intelligent thing to do, just I've been happy to get vaccines for shingles, pneumonia, and pretty much anything my physician advises me makes sense.  I'm weary of the pandemic just like pretty much everyone else, but what I'm really weary of is getting emails from people who suggest that I (and most of the media) have not been sufficiently skeptical about masking and vaccination strategies and have not questioned the motives of those who push them.  It would be true that I made a decision to trust the vast number of public health officials who I think have been heroic in how they've dealt with the pandemic over the past two years, preventing far more deaths that would've occurred otherwise … though not as effectively as public health officials did in places like Australia.  Cast aspersions all you like.  I'm comfortable with both my personal and professional position on this, and we'll just have to agree to disagree.