8/11/2020 5:12:00 PM COVID-19 Update: Russians Say They Have A Vaccine
Wayne Howard Staff Writer
Lincoln County added another death to its COVID-19 report Tuesday (Aug. 11th) making 10. The number of active cases in the county dropped slightly to 113 as 721 people are now said to have recovered from the disease.
In Gaston County, another death brought the total there to 56; the number of active cases increased, but only slightly, to 1290.
The big news of the day was a claim by Russia that it has achieved creating a vaccine against the coronavirus. Russia officially registered a coronavirus vaccine and declared it ready for use on Tuesday despite international skepticism. Russian President Vladimir Putin said the vaccine underwent the necessary tests and offers lasting immunity, but scientists around the world say rushing the vaccine could backfire without a third phase of trials, which normally last months and involve thousands of people.
In the US, volunteers are still being sought for two late-stage antibody therapy clinical trials. Antibody therapies could provide protection against the virus immediately, compared to a vaccine, which can take a few weeks to take effect. However, antibody therapies usually only work for a couple of months, while vaccines are usually expected to provide long-term protection.
Three different major efforts funded by the US government are working on a vaccine, and at least two of them are showing significant progress, but it will likely be sometime next year before any of those vaccines will be given approval to be administered to the public.
Even then, the vaccines may not provide the hoped-for herd immunity where nobody gets the disease. Many have already indicated they will not take the vaccine once it is approved--for various reasons, ranging from uncertainty about its safety to objections based on a false fear that the vaccine shots will also include a GPS tracking device.
There is certainly reason to believe that many won't take the vaccine. Only about 46% of Americans get a flu shot, and in the 18-49 age group, only about 33%. Since many younger people have expressed the idea that the coronavirus won't hurt them (most of the deaths have been senior citizens), they may opt to skip the vaccine.
The North Caroina Dept. of Health & Human Services updated its report on breakouts at congregate living facilities. The latest report includes no new cases at nursing homes or residential care facilities in Lincoln County.
The worst hit facility in our area is the Brian Center on Cox Road in Gastonia. They have had 111 total cases of the disease--25 staff members and 86 residents were infected; one staff member and nine residents died. The facility is currently reporting 44 active cases of COVID-19.
Carolina Care in Cherryville has had two residents and four staff members infected, but no deaths. At Peak Resources, six staff members and 11 residents were infected; three residents died.
Catawba County's worst outbreak was a Trinity Ridge, where 12 staff members and 19 residents were infected and five residents died.
Cleveland County had 20 staff members and 14 residents at White Oak Manor in Shelby infected; four of those residents died. At White Oak Manor in Kings Mountain, 14 staff members and eight residents were infected, but no deaths have been reported.
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