Weekly coronavirus-related chat, questions, and minor updates - week of December 26
This thread is posted weekly, and is intended as a place for more-casual discussion of the coronavirus and questions/updates that may not warrant their own dedicated topics. Tell us about what the situation is like where you live!
In Europe there are 4-in-1 combo tests available for COVID, Influenza A and B, and RSV.
Since the mask mandates were dropped here (New Zealand), I've noticed that the number of people wearing masks is decreasing over time. For a good few months it was 1 in 10 people. Now it feels like 1 in 20 or more even. It is as though everyone just pretends there is no Covid.
I got told yesterday that I'm actively harming my immune system by continuing to wear a mask a lot when I go out in public. The rationale being that masking is putting up too much defense against ordinary bacteria and viruses, etc. and that will decrease my immunity over time. There is probably some truth in this given how more virulent viruses like RSV and flu have been when they haven't been circulating as much in the community. However, I still think I'll be masking up for another couple of years at least until the evolutionary pathway of the virus becomes clearer and treatment options more effective. Long Covid has destroyed me and I'm probably way more sensitive to the fear of getting the virus again than most people. All of my efforts are probably in vain though, because none of the people I live with take any precautions whatsoever.
Anyone else in the same boat?
China's COVID cases overwhelm hospitals (Reuters)
Paywalled (and I'm too lazy to except parts), so click to expand