COVID-19 STATS FOR November 28, 2021
Debra Schrishuhn for PDA National Staff
Top Ten states with COVID-19 cases:
- California 5,062,737
New York 2,709,306
N Carolina 1,526,197
Top Ten states with COVID-19 deaths:
New York 56,917
New Jersey 28,335
+Still 14 states post more than 1M cases, the remainder being Tennessee, Arizona, New Jersey, , and Indiana.
++++Still 24 states with more than 10K COVID-19 deaths, the remainder being Arizona, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Indiana, Tennessee, Alabama, Missouri (surpassing Louisiana, Virginia, and South Carolina), Louisiana, Virginia, South Carolina, , Maryland, Kentucky (surpassing Oklahoma), Oklahoma, , and Mississippi.
LONDON (Reuters), 11/28: The new Omicron coronavirus variant kept spreading around the world on Sunday, with two cases detected in Australia, even as more countries tried to seal themselves off by imposing travel restrictions.
Washington Post, 11/27: “When President Biden came into office, he had three overriding priorities: The first was to tame the coronavirus pandemic and deal with its effects on the economy. The second was to persuade Congress to enact the most sweeping domestic policy initiatives in generations. The third was to unify the country the best he could. The first was a challenge, the second a gamble, and the third, given a recalcitrant Republican Party, always a long shot. As December approaches, none of these goals has been fully accomplished, and that shapes the political environment heading into next year’s midterm elections, which could dramatically affect his presidency.”
Wall Street Journal, 11/27: “The U.K. and Italy became the latest countries to detect the Omicron variant of the coronavirus, as other European nations investigate suspected cases of a strain that health authorities say could be more transmissible and has been driving a jump in infections in South Africa.”
Los Angeles Times, 11/27: “A small study that’s among the first to track people’s protective antibodies over time found that those who were immunized against COVID-19 with two doses of an mRNA vaccine and received a booster shot about eight months later saw their levels of neutralizing antibodies skyrocket. Among this group of 33 fully vaccinated and boosted people, the median level of these antibodies was 23 times higher one week after the booster shot than it had been just before the tune-up dose. What’s more, their median post-booster antibody level was three times higher than was typical for another group of people whose antibodies were measured a few weeks after getting their second dose of vaccine, when they’re close to their peak. And it was 53 times higher than that of a group of 76 unvaccinated people who had recovered from COVID-19 just two to six weeks earlier.”
Washington Post, 11/27: New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) declared a state of emergency to prepare for a new coronavirus variant first identified in South Africa. “As part of the emergency, the state’s health department will be allowed to protect hospital capacity by limiting nonessential and non-urgent care until at least Jan. 15. Hospitals with less than 10 percent staffed bed capacity, or those designated by the state, will be authorized to screen patients and restrict admissions to keep beds open for the most urgent cases.”
Playbook, 11/27: “In a real sense, Biden’s presidency rises and falls on the waves of the coronavirus. The Delta wave in August precipitated a lasting fall in Biden’s political popularity and job-approval numbers — which sets up Omicron as yet another major test for the White House. That reality — plus the economic jitters rattling an already-uneasy economy — could have the makings of a storm for the president.”
Associated Press, 11/27: “Scientists know that omicron is genetically distinct from previous variants including the beta and delta variants, but do not know if these genetic changes make it any more transmissible or dangerous. So far, there is no indication the variant causes more severe disease. It will likely take weeks to sort out if omicron is more infectious and if vaccines are still effective against it.”
New York Times, 11/27: “Vaccines are expected to provide some protection against Omicron because they stimulate not only antibodies but immune cells that can attack infected cells… Mutations to the spike protein do not blunt that immune-cell response. And booster shots could potentially broaden the range of antibodies people make, enabling them to fight against new variants like Omicron. For now, there’s no evidence that Omicron causes more severe disease than previous variants. And it’s also not clear yet how quickly Omicron can spread from person to person.”
New York Times, 11/27: “The W.H.O. and scientists on multiple continents cautioned that very little is known yet about the Omicron variant, or about whether the dangers it poses will justify the fears it is stoking. South African scientists announced its existence on Wednesday, and the number of cases definitively identified, all of them within the past three weeks, is still small, under 100. But the swift global responses demonstrated that after nearly two years of facing accusations that they were too slow and timid in tackling the pandemic, many policymakers would rather risk overreacting to a new threat than under-reacting.”
Financial Times, 11/26: Testing has begun to determine whether the Pfizer vaccine protects against a mutant strain of Covid-19 that first appeared in South Africa and has already made its way to East Asia and Europe.
Washington Post, 11/26: “The United States will restrict travel from South Africa and seven other countries starting on Monday. The restrictions will apply to travelers from South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Lesotho, Eswatini, Mozambique, and Malawi. They do not apply to American citizens and lawful permanent residents.”
New York Times, 11/26: “In the past, governments have taken days, weeks or months to issue travel restrictions in response to new variants. This time, however, restrictions came within hours of South Africa’s announcement.”
Washington Post, 11/26: “The holiday shopping season has arrived, and retailers are ringing it in by doing everything from cutting prices to stocking showrooms to lure back customers who stayed at home last year. What the biggest of them are not doing is the one thing the White House and many public health experts have asked them to: mandate that their workers be vaccinated,” the Washington Post reports. As other industries with workers in public-facing roles, like airlines and hospitals, have moved toward requiring vaccines, retailers have dug in their heels, citing concerns about a labor shortage. And a portion of one of the country’s largest work forces will remain unvaccinated, just as shoppers are expected to flock to stores.”
Wall Street Journal, 11/26: “For seven days in a row, through Wednesday, daily airport passenger volumes exceeded two million people, a streak not seen since before the pandemic, according to the Transportation Security Administration. U.S. airports bustled with over 2.3 million people Wednesday—the most hectic day since February 2020. Sunday is expected to be even busier, TSA officials have said.”
Wall Street Journal, 11/26: “Stocks, oil prices and government-bond yields slumped after South Africa raised the alarm over a fast-spreading strain of the coronavirus, triggering concern that travel restrictions and other curbs will spoil the global economy’s recovery.”
CNBC, 11/26: “The downward moves came after WHO officials on Thursday warned of a new Covid-19 variant that’s been detected in South Africa. The new variant contains more mutations to the spike protein, the component of the virus that binds to cells, than the highly contagious Delta variant. Because of these mutations, scientists fear it could have increased resistance to vaccines.”
Washington Post, 11/26: “Global health leaders are urging caution as the holiday season gets underway, pointing to a 23 percent spike in coronavirus cases across the Americas in the past week, a surge that follows spikes in Europe — which officials warn could be a ‘window into the future for the Americas.’”
Wall Street Journal, 11/26: “As Covid-19 infections and deaths in the European Union eclipse those in the U.S., the region is confronting an ugly reality: Taming the Delta variant is proving harder than a virus-weary continent had hoped. Fast-rising Covid-19 contagion in parts of Europe, including Germany, is sparking fears of another winter of full hospitals. Countries are rushing to roll out booster shots as evidence accumulates that last summer’s vaccinations are losing some of their efficacy.”
Bloomberg, 11/26: “Scientists in South Africa are studying a recently identified new coronavirus variant of concern, stoking fears the country may face a potentially severe fourth wave that could spread internationally. The new discovery, called B.1.1.529 until a Greek letter is assigned to it by the World Health Organization, carries an unusually large number of mutations and is ‘clearly very different’ from previous incarnations.”
BBC, 11/26: “The latest is the most heavily mutated version discovered so far – and it has such a long list of mutations that it was described by one scientist as ‘horrific.’ while another told me it was the worst variant they’d seen.”
New York Times, 11/26: “A number of countries — including Britain, Israel, Italy and Singapore — were moving on Friday to restrict travel from South Africa and other countries in the region, a day after South African authorities identified a concerning new coronavirus variant with mutations that one scientist said marked a ‘big jump in evolution.’”
Political Wire, 11/25: Former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn said that Covid was intentionally released on the world by “Global Elites,” but “their little plan with covid didn’t work” because “digital warriors” exposed the truth. He added: “So I think what we’re going to see is potentially another type of virus that’s imposed on the public.”
New York Times, 11/24: “As cases surges once again in some parts of the country, Republicans have hit on a new line of attack: The president has failed on a central campaign promise, to tame the pandemic that his predecessor systematically downplayed. Democrats are incredulous, dismissing the strategy as another strand of spaghetti thrown at the wall.”
Political Wire, 11/24: As of mid-September, 90% of Democrats had been vaccinated, compared with 58% of Republicans.
CNBC, 11/24: “Several hundred Google employees have signed and circulated a manifesto opposing its widened Covid vaccine mandate.”
Wall Street Journal, 11/24: “Jobless claims fell sharply to a pandemic low of 199,000 last week, below pre-pandemic levels as employers curbed layoffs amid a tightening labor market.”
Reuters, 11/24: Dr. Anthony Fauci told Reuters that the vast majority of Americans who have been vaccinated against Covid-19 should receive a booster shot, and that an additional dose could eventually become the country’s standard for determining who is fully vaccinated.
New York Times, 11/24: “New Zealand plans to allow most fully vaccinated travelers into the country by the end of April without a mandatory hotel quarantine, as it slowly emerges from what has been one of the world’s longest lockdowns. But those entering the country next year will face significant restrictions, with a mandatory seven-day home isolation period, as well as tests on departure and arrival.”
Political Wire, 11/23: A new Yahoo News/YouGov poll finds that 74% of Americans say their lives have returned to “normal” since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.
Financial Times, Janan Ganesh, 11/23: “Under the maladministration of Donald Trump, these numbers could be explained away as something aberrant and fleeting: the wages of populism. But Joe Biden has now been president for around half of the duration of the pandemic. He was elected in large part to contain it. His failure to do so is the central fact of his presidency. It is also a curiously under-discussed one. The US does not have the atmosphere of a country that is still losing thousands to the illness each week.”
Reuters, 11/23: “The U.S. government asked a federal appeals court to immediately lift a court-ordered stay on a sweeping workplace Covid-19 vaccine rule to avoid ‘enormous’ harm to public health, or alternatively to allow a masking-and-testing requirement.”
Bloomberg, 11/23: “A global transportation system linking factories to consumers wasn’t designed to operate for long periods at peak capacity as the transpacific trade lanes have been doing. The system reached its breaking point in November, and though officials are optimistic the worst may be over, it may take months more to untangle.”
New York Times, David Leonhardt, 11/23: “For most people, the vaccines remain remarkably effective at turning Covid into a manageable illness that’s less dangerous than some everyday activities. The main dividing line is age. In Minnesota, which publishes detailed Covid data, the death rate for fully vaccinated people under 50 during the Delta surge this year was 0.0 per 100,000 — meaning, so few people died that the rate rounds to zero.
“Washington State is another place that publishes statistics by age and vaccination status. In its most recent report, Washington did not even include a death rate for fully vaccinated residents under 65. It was too low to be meaningful. Hospitalization rates are also very low for vaccinated people under 65. In Minnesota during the Delta surge, the average weekly hospitalization rate for vaccinated residents between 18 and 49 was about 1 per 100,000.”
New York Times, 11/23: German health minister Jens Spahn warned that by the end of this winter “just about everyone in Germany will probably be either vaccinated, recovered or dead.” Said Spahn: “Immunity will be reached. The question is whether it’s via vaccination or infection, and we explicitly recommend the path via vaccination.”
Bloomberg, 11/23: “The latest U.S. Covid-19 wave is taking its toll on some states’ intensive-care units, with several parts of the country seeing outbreaks that are as bad as ever. In 15 states, patients with confirmed or suspected Covid are taking up more ICU beds than a year earlier… Colorado, Minnesota and Michigan have 41%, 37% and 34% of ICU beds occupied by Covid-19 patients, respectively, the data show.”
Guardian, 11/22: “An offshoot of the Covid Delta variant that is on the rise in England appears to be less likely to cause symptoms than the dominant form, researchers have revealed – although experts say the finding requires further scrutiny,”
Politico, 11/22: “Around 95 percent of the 3.5 million federal employees covered by President Joe Biden’s vaccine mandate for government workers have complied with the requirement ahead of its Monday deadline.”
Politico, 11/22: “Don’t call it a comeback. Seriously, don’t. But for the White House, the breakthroughs they had last week represent major progress. And after the few months they’ve had, they’ll take it. In the span of four days, the president signed his bipartisan infrastructure bill into law and saw the second piece of his landmark economic package pass through the House. The Food and Drug Administration authorized Covid-19 booster shots for all adults, and the administration announced a new purchase of 10 million treatment courses of the Pfizer antiviral Covid-19 pill. All this, while government reports show strong gains in the number of jobs across the labor market.”
Washington Post, 11/21: “Up to 10,000 active-duty Marines will not be fully vaccinated against the coronavirus when their deadline arrives in coming days, a trajectory expected to yield the U.S. military’s worst immunization rate. While 94% of Marine Corps personnel have met the vaccination requirement or are on a path to do so, for the remainder it is too late to begin a regimen and complete it by the service’s Nov. 28 deadline. Within an institution built upon the belief that orders are to be obeyed, and one that brands itself the nation’s premier crisis-response force, it is a vexing outcome.”