Yesterday the FDA approved the Pfizer mRNA vaccine for use in children 12 to 15 years old. The following serves as a brief response to the FDA’s approval and an update to our April 23 newsletter in which I answered questions submitted by parents: The Latest on Children, Teens, and COVID-19 Vaccines.
SF Bay Area Moms sat down on April 13, 2021 with Dr. Julia Getzelman and asked her their members’ latest questions…
I feel more rooted now than ever, more resilient. It may come as a surprise to many of you that I suffered from anxiety much of my adult life, in spite of the fact that people have long seen me as calm, cool and collected. My journey to finding my peace has been gradual—actually, it …
The good news is that even if you are a nursing mom who becomes sick, breast feeding is very safe AND beneficial for babies. With all viral illnesses, your baby will have been exposed to the virus by the time you notice symptoms. The best thing you can do in ordinary times (pre-COVID) is to continue to breast feed if you feel up to it. In fact, your breast milk contains illness-specific antibodies that offer protection to your baby. During COVID-living, things are a bit more complicated as we want to prevent the transmission of the SARS-CoV-2 virus to baby.
We are off to an impressive start to 2021. Not only do we have a highly competent new administration in the White House working to repair many aspects of our country, we also have at least two vaccines (e.g. Pfizer and Moderna) with 94% or better efficacy after two doses and their availability is rapidly ramping up. And, I expect that the Johnson & Johnson vaccine will receive emergency use authorization this month.
“We need to stop this false view of COVID as either death or recovered. A 25 year old with lifelong lung problems…[c]hronic kidney or heart disease seems increasingly likely….The risks to everyone, including young [people] must be understood.” – Andy Slavitt, former Acting Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (@ASlavit)
My primary goal in writing this article is to provide additional information to facilitate a more nuanced understanding of SARS-CoV-2 (“COVID”).
Many have asked me to share what I personally have been doing to keep myself healthy and protected given the current threat of COVID-19.
In addition to eating a whole foods organic diet with an emphasis on vegetables, keeping my stress levels as low as possible (via meditation, mindfulness, yoga, prayer, gratitude practice, etc.), moving/exercising every day for at least half an hour, getting a minimum of 7 hours of sleep each night, washing my hands, wearing a mask in public, and staying connected to friends, family and community, here are the immune supports that I have chosen for myself and would recommend for you.
Hold on tightly folks. Shelter-in-place and other restrictions imposed by state and local governments to slow COVID-19 are being loosened, and even lifted in some parts of California and the United States, without any comprehensive federal plan or testing strategy. At the federal level, chaos, lies, and gaslighting are preferred over planning, testing and leadership. Last week, Mr. Trump opined that COVID testing increases the number of novel coronavirus infections. This truly outrageous statement is beyond magical thinking. It is akin to suggesting there’s no need to use birth control to avoid pregnancy—instead, just skip the pregnancy test.
The pandemic has had a crushing effect on all of us and, like many of you, has caused me to take stock of my life and reflect deeply. Every day as I review medical reports, scientific data, studies and the real-world ramifications associated with COVID-19, I find myself asking: Can we ameliorate the many structural inequalities in our country that shouldn’t be ignored any longer while improving local and national health outcomes? How can we sharply reduce the likelihood of the next pandemic? And, do we as citizens have the political and cultural will to do something big with what seems like a once-in-a-century opportunity? My cautious answer to these questions is: with courage, we can!
I’m writing today about why wearing masks (almost any kind—even homemade) is an essential step in our war against COVID-19. Let me cut to the chase—MASKS MATTER: We all need to wear masks whenever we go out and we need to START NOW. What you have been hearing to the contrary is wrong. Here’s why mask wear can bring us back to some sense of normalcy sooner. Please help make this post go viral—we need to start a mass mask movement and demand that free masks be widely distributed ASAP.