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People’s CDC November 13 COVID-19 Weather Report
New State-Level COVID Transmission Map, HICPAC in the News, Demand Funding for Long COVID Research and Treatment
Published November 13, 2023
It is the job of the CDC and our public health institutions to collect essential data to give us a clear idea of the status of ongoing pandemics so that we can make informed decisions that affect the health of ourselves and our communities. Dismally, the CDC and our public health institutions have been failing to do their basic job for many months now, leaving us in the dark as a mass disabling crisis unfolds on their watch. This is why we at the People’s CDC have painstakingly put together lab-based PCR testing data from the HHS to make a new transmission map to shed light on the current situation. Our goal with these maps is to give you a clearer idea of the state of the pandemic state-by-state during a time when understanding transmission levels is so desperately needed.
Below, we can see maps of the cumulative total of new COVID cases over a 7-day period for October 5th and October 12th. Although our new methodology is a bit slower (our expected turnaround time is once every 2-3 weeks) and although there are clear gaps in data in many states due to incomplete reporting from the HHS, the main message here is that everywhere in the country, COVID transmission levels are substantial or higher. There is not a single state with reported data where the transmission levels are moderate or below. COVID is very clearly still spreading like wildfire–and we now finally have maps again that show this.
If you would like to learn more about our methodology for making these maps, please check out our methods description here and the data itself on our Github. Also, please let us know if you have any feedback on these maps here so we can make them the best they can be!
Now that Biobot is reporting wastewater data again while they are filing an appeal to the CDC for rescinding their contract, we are moving back to reporting on Biobot data as it is easier to understand given our history of using their data. Wastewater levels everywhere in the country except the northeast have been rising, with the most dramatic rise happening in the midwest. Even in the northeast, wastewater levels aren’t necessarily decreasing but rather are plateauing. This data supports once again the reality that COVID transmission is indeed substantial or higher throughout the country and that we must remain vigilant to protect each other.
In the wake of CDC’s HICPAC’s failure to propose healthcare policy that actually protects patients from COVID, our comments and actions have shined a light on their cruelty in the media sphere. Articles from Medpage Today, Infection Control Today, and CNN have all come out in the past couple weeks making our critiques clearly visible for the public to see, adding to the pressure. Of course, these articles are imperfect–CNN specifically has a blatantly misleading title that suggests that HICPAC supports masks in healthcare when in reality they do not–but the point is that our concerns are spreading far and wide and that we should keep up the pressure to make things right. Once HICPAC publishes draft documents in the Federal Register, we will have another comment period where we can share our thoughts on it and put even more pressure on HICPAC to make healthcare actually accessible to people without risk of disablement or death.
A new study examining Long COVID patients experiencing long-term fatigue has shown that Long COVID is marked by T-cell aging, which gives us another marker for helping with diagnosis and treatment.
Historically, “moonshot projects” funded by the federal government have fundamentally changed the landscape of our country from the interstate highway system to the moon landing. As we are currently living in a mass disabling crisis where at least one-in-ten infections result in Long COVID, we desperately need federal funding for a moonshot project for researching Long COVID so as to determine viable treatments and eventually a cure. This is particularly urgent because the $1.15 billion the US government had allocated for Long COVID research is pretty much gone now, with no treatments or future funding on the horizon.
To this end, the Long COVID Moonshot patients group is having a Call & Letter Campaign on Tuesday, November 14th to demand Senators and Representatives commit to invest at least $1 Billion each year over the next 10 years for NIH research funding and clinical trials regarding Long COVID. Please join us in making 3-5 minute phone calls using the call guide and script here with a focus on the following bills, Long COVID Support Act (S. 2560), TREAT Long COVID Act (HR 3258), and Long COVID RECOVERY NOW Act (HR 1114), and join the Launch party on twitter spaces on November 14th at 3 pm EST.
Notes: 1) The numbers in this report were current as of 11/11/2023. 2) Changes in testing access as well as data reporting have led many federal data sources to become less reliable. 3) Check out the links throughout & see our website for more!