Vital COVID data.

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Following a COVID-19 infection (Post COVID Syndrome), Long COVID is a recognized entity of long-haul COVID-19, which could be unrecognized or undiagnosed, with any combination of these symptoms: “brain fog” or cognitive dysfunction, troubled breathing or shortness of breath, fatigue, malaise, sense of “not feeling well,” Vaccines have been helpful to these chronic patients, making them feel better. A complete medical evaluation is warranted to rule out any specific organ malady. A patient-specific rehabilitation, including a physical exercise regimen, plays a vital role in the management of these patients.

Omicron on plastic

While Omicron, especially the Stealth variant, has been found to be the most rapidly transmissible SARS-CoV2 strain, recent studies have shown it to survive longer than previous strains on plastic surfaces and skin. Omicron “lasts on plastic for nearly 200 hours (8-1/2 days) and on the skin for about 21 hours.” The original variant survived on plastic for 56 hours, the Delta for 114 hours. This obviously means Omicron could be spread through touch also, besides through inhalation, the reason for the recent rapid massive vertical surges. Frequent handwashing, besides masking and social distancing, could be life-saving.

Omicron kills

Compared to the original Wuhan strain of COVID-19 and the Delta variant, Omicron has been described as a milder virus. While it is milder, it is NOT mild, as has been misinterpreted. So far, Omicron has been killing about 2,200 in the United States each day, higher than the peak 2,078 deaths from Delta in September 2021. Omicron deaths have surpassed the highest 7-day average of the ”more severe” Delta strain, which is less rapidly transmissible than Omicron.

Getting vaccinated, using facemasks, social distancing, and personal hygiene are measures that will prevent replication and mutation of the virus in the bodies of the unvaccinated, and its rapid spread of more severe future strains to others.
Omicron Stats

“During the Omicron waves, unvaccinated adults were 23 times more likely to be hospitalized, and nearly four times as likely to be infected compared to vaccinated adults who had also received a booster,” according to data from Los Angeles County.
Compared to fully vaccinated but non-boosted adults, unvaccinated individuals were more than five times more likely to be hospitalized, and about twice as likely to be infected during this time, reported Sharon Balter, MD, of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, and colleagues.
Moreover, unvaccinated adults were significantly more likely to require ICU admission, intubation for mechanical ventilation, or die compared to vaccinated adults with or without a booster” according to the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
Austria’s vaccine mandate

As people in the United States (at least 20 percent of them) prefer to exercise their freedom of choice and civil liberties to dodge the vaccines and as politicians take advantage of political correctness in order not to lose votes, existing proven science (that includes vaccination of the population) to quickly end the COVID-19 pandemic in this country has been negligently disregarded by the government to the detriment of almost a million Americans who were killed by COVID-19.

Obviously believing and heeding science more than politics and political correctness, the Austrian government became the first Western democracy to federally mandate the entire adult population (except those with medication contraindication) to be vaccinated to protect them and others from the killer COVID-19 viruses. Polls show that the mandate, a pioneering move, is supported by the majority of the people. This only shows how wise, intelligent, and compassionate the Austrian leaders and the people are. They apparently understand that national welfare, well-being, and safety take precedence and prevail over freedom of choice and individual civil rights, when it comes to defeating this global killer. This bold “science-based” decision by the country’s leaders is Solomonic and inspiring. Austria and the other European countries to follow suit are teaching all other countries around the world on how to properly, effectively, and more rapidly contain COVID-19 and future pandemics by rigidly following our currently available internationally-accepted and proven epidemiology protocol in managing infectious diseases, with mandatory vaccination and/or vaccine passes to access public places.

Sadly, in the United States, it is obvious that this will never happen, because the exercise of the freedom of choice (against the vaccines) and political correctness appear to be more important to government leaders and to at least a third of the population over pure science in dealing with this global medical catastrophe that has killed more than 927,000 Americans and almost 5.8 million worldwide. Politics is, indeed, more deadly than the virus.

The coronavirus deaths in the United States “has been at least 63 percent higher than in any other large, wealthy nation in the world, the highest deaths per capita among rich nations…Americans are now dying from COVID-19 at nearly double the daily rate of Britons and four times the rate of Germans.” More than 36 percent of Americans have not been vaccinated at this writing. At this rate, this killer virus will linger in the United States much longer, and then become an endemic requiring a semi-annual or an annual COVID-19 vaccination forever.

As I have asked in this column before: Is this dereliction of duty by our government not a negligent “genocide”?

More than Ten Billion vaccines have been administered globally, 212 million fully vaccinated in the United States (around 68 percent of the population), proving how safe and effective they are, and yet some people are still refusing the vaccines, putting their lives at grave risk. Not to mention the fact that their unprotected bodies will be a massive reservoir (hosts) where the virus will replicate, mutate, and rapidly transmitted to people (vaccinated or not) around them. More than 98 percent of the spreaders of the virus are unvaccinated. This is why the freedom of choice in this case (to refuse the vaccines, spread COVID-19, kill people, and prolong this pandemic) is a misinterpretation of civil liberties provided for in our Constitution.

While the 30 percent (60 million) unvaccinated have the right to choose (refuse the vaccines), don’t the 70 percent (a clear majority) not have the freedom to choose NOT to be infected and NOT to be killed by the virus mostly being transmitted by the unvaccinated?

Philip S. Chua, MD, FACS, FPCS, a Cardiac Surgeon Emeritus based in Northwest Indiana and Las Vegas, Nevada, is an international medical lecturer/author, Health Advocate, newspaper columnist, and Chairman of the Filipino United Network-USA, a 501(c)3 humanitarian foundation in the United States. Websites: FUN8888.com, TODAY.SPSAtoday.com, and philipSchua.com Email: scalpelpen@gmail.com

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