Health Watch USA Logo Health Watch USA – Coronavirus Messaging
 

    
Health Watch USA - COVID-19
Major OpEds, Interviews & Radio Shows
    

  

Corona Virus Transcript Of
George W. Bush

Pandemic Response

 
Anti Public Health History
    
Continuing Education
Courses

 
School Resources

 
Major OpEds                  
Infection Control Today Articles & Videos

 

13.  We can see a light at the end of the COVID tunnel, but we still have to be diligent
We can now see a light at the end of the tunnel but let’s not brick up the end. We must slow down the transmission of this virus, so nature’s lab does not outpace our pharmaceutical giants. If a safe and effective vaccine is available, please take the vaccine and encourage others to receive it. And wear a mask along with social distancing.  Lexington Herald Leader. Nov 20, 2020.  References  https://www.kentucky.com/opinion/op-ed/article247262694.html
   
12.  Distortion of Science to Inhibit the Adoption of Infectious Disease Strategies.
Distortion of science for political and economic ends has prevented the allocation of needed resources to stop the spread of dangerous pathogens. This places all of society as a whole at risk, but exacting an insufferable toll of death and disability on our front-line healthcare workers, along with our most vulnerable populations. COVID-19 has demonstrated how dangerous this scenario has become..... Whether one deals with MRSA or COVID-19, screening and decolonization or self-isolation of healthcare workers is of utmost importance. Their health, the health of their families along with their patients depend upon it.  BioMed Central.  Nov. 13, 2020.  References   https://blogs.biomedcentral.com/on-health/2020/11/13/distortion-of-science-to-inhibit-the-adoption-of-infectious-disease-strategies/  
 
11.  Will the COVID-19 Pandemic Transform Health Care ?
Many lessons have been learned from COVID-19. We have learned that case definitions can be rapidly created and a reporting system which comprises all types of healthcare facilities can be implemented. The same needs to be done for other dangerous pathogens, including the CDC’s Urgent and Serious Threats, and strategies need to be standardized across all types of facilities. SARS-CoV-2 does not vary its lethality or infectivity based upon the facility type or region of the country.  BioMed Central.  Nov. 13, 2020.   References  http://blogs.biomedcentral.com/on-health/2020/11/11/will-the-covid-19-pandemic-transform-health-care/ 
 
10.  COVID-19: through the eyes through the front line, an international perspective
COVID-19 is continuing to ravage the globe. In many Western Countries, the populace has not embraced public health advice which has resulted in a resurgence of the COVID-19 virus.
This vulnerable population of frontline workers are faced with a choice of going to work with inadequate PPE or placing food on their families’ table. In the United States, official recommendations seem to be ever changing, based more upon supply and test availability, than on science. We must rely on science and learn from the lessons of past pandemics or we will relive, even to a greater degree, the deaths and devastations experienced by our ancestors over 100 years ago.  Anitmicrobial Resistance and Infection Control.  Nov. 7, 2020.  https://aricjournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13756-020-00850-2 

 
9.  To successfully deal with COVID-19, we need to transform our way of life
It is imperative that we need to take our head out of the sand and unite as a nation. Successfully dealing and living with viruses is the new norm. We need to adapt and need to invest in our infrastructure and transform our society. New Zealand, Australia, Taiwan, China and South Korea have done this, so can the United States.  Courier Journal.  Nov. 5, 2020.   References    https://www.courier-journal.com/story/opinion/2020/11/05/to-deal-with-covid-19-we-must-transform-our-lives/6093570002/  
 
8.  Our nation needs to learn how to live safely with the coronavirus
As our society continues to live in a way that defies public health logic, one can only conclude the infectivity and lethality of this virus is being severely underappreciated by our leaders. An underappreciation exemplified by Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul’s recent push for a policy of opening all schools and having only those at risk wear masks.
We need to approach this pandemic not with third-world nation strategies but by expanding rapid testing and case identification, along with transforming our infrastructure and society to allow us to safely live with this virus.   Courier Journal.  Aug. 26, 2020. 
  References  https://www.courier-journal.com/story/opinion/2020/08/26/covid-19-pandemic-how-live-safer-we-go-through/3402655001/ 

7.  On COVID-19, the U.S. is turning into a dangerous cult of bad information
Some of us formed into online cliques and developed a Jonestown cult mentality in our approach to American life. Added to the toxic mix, foreign agitation placed us on the precipice of one of the greatest ordeals which our society may endure – COVID-19. A study from Carnegie Mellon University found almost half the tweets regarding the coronavirus are likely bots with a playbook similar to Chinese and Russian disinformation campaigns. Reuters reported similar findings, describing a European Union document which concluded Russia implemented an online misinformation campaign, in multiple languages, which was making the EU’s response to the epidemic difficult.   Lexington Herald Leader.  July 8, 2020.   References   https://www.kentucky.com/opinion/op-ed/article244032807.html  
  
  

6.  Opinion: If we don't come together as a nation, the coronavirus will win the battle
Currently, society is struggling on two fronts, both for social justice and at the same time to control a raging epidemic. The epidemic of COVID-19 may be with us for a long time. And those who try to minimize it are doing so by placing front-line workers and economically disadvantaged populations at risk. We are opening our economy, but we need to do so safely, and we need to learn to live with this virus. That means wearing masks in public and in stores, social distancing and protecting, not fighting others. While we fight for social justice, it is imperative that at the same time we need to slow the spread of this virus, so our technology and vaccine development can catch up. Courier Journal.  June 6, 2020.  References  https://www.courier-journal.com/story/opinion/2020/06/16/coronavirus-kentucky-we-must-come-together-lose-battle/3191282001/  

 
5.  Healthcare system's basic infrastructure left it unprepared for COVID-19
"
Hospitals are receiving massive bailouts based upon their Medicare billings. However, this will primarily shunt money to large healthcare systems as opposed to frontline hospitals. Similar, to everyday citizens’ stimulus checks, hospital bailouts should be based upon need. Non-profits with high net assets should not receive as much funds as frontline hospitals with negative assets. If for-profit facilities or private equity firms receive a bailout, it should be paid back with interest or the Government should acquire an equity position in the company. And all of this should be predicated on not furloughing workers."   Lexington Herald Leader.  April 28, 2020.   References  Read more here: https://www.kentucky.com/opinion/op-ed/article242268966.html  
 
4.  There's No Excuse for Lean Healthcare Systems — Especially during COVID-19
"There is no excuse for running a system which is lean on hospital rooms, supplies and staff. Net-profits and assets are desirable, but not at the expense of public safety. Hospital staff are being asked to see patients under draconian conditions and at the same time they do not have an adequate economic and healthcare safety net. Healthcare workers do not need paid sick leave, they need adequate PPE and worker’s compensation benefits, if they become infected. IPs are placing both themselves and their families’ lives at grave risk under the crisis management CDC infectious disease recommendations. That is the very least we can do for them."  Med Page Today (non-redacted version).  April 20, 2020: References https://www.medpagetoday.com/infectiousdisease/
covid19/86061
 

3. The United States has squandered resources it needs to fight coronavirus
"The United States is on the verge of being ravaged by an invader which we have far too little resources to confront. New estimates from the United Kingdom are predicting 2.2 million deaths in the United States from an unmitigated coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic. If our healthcare system is overrun, this care will not be available to all. In Italy, there are reports of those over 80 not being placed on ventilators. In addition, critical care survivors, including the young, may well develop pulmonary fibrosis, a disabling chronic lung disease."  Lexington Herald Leader.  Mar. 24, 2020 (Online).  References   https://www.kentucky.com/opinion/op-ed/article241422756.html
        
2. The Untimely Reporting of Drug-Resistant Outbreaks in the United States.
Over the course of the last few decades, the United States has fallen into the dark abyss of secrecy: if truth is inconvenient, just cover it up and don't disclose it. The United States needs to implement mandatory real-time public reporting of the CDC's dangerous biological threats. The Center For Disease Dynamics, Economics & Policy. Mar. 3, 2020 (Online).  References  https://cddep.org/blog/posts/the-untimely-reporting-of-drug-resistant-outbreaks/
  
1. Coronavirus is the biggest challenge our healthcare system has faced.
Is Kentucky prepared? In January, I concluded an OpEd with an alarmist statement: "The epidemic of antibiotic resistant organisms may be the final solution to global warming." We are currently on the precipice of a massive pandemic from the coronavirus (COVID-19). Initial data from China has documented massive economic disruption with a 25 percent drop in carbon emissions. A sobering observation, but of even more concern when one considers the United States does not have the authoritarian structure and a culture of population control which exists in the Chinese government. According to the CDC, the unknown is when, not if, the epidemic will hit the United States and "severe disruption" of everyday life may occur. Lexington Herald Leader. Feb. 27, 2020 (Online).  References  https://www.kentucky.com/opinion/op-ed/article240697331.html 
 
 
Selected Radio Segments      Jack Pattie    Jeff Santos
    
2020, Nov. 9:  COVID-19: Vaccine 90% Effective - Virus Mutating
Dr. Kevin Kavanagh from Health Watch USAsm discusses the new Pfizer Vaccine which is reported to be 90% effective in preventing COVID-19 (prevention of deaths was not an endpoint). This underscores the necessity to follow public health advice so the virus does not spread further and mutate. Mutation of the virus became even more of a concern with the report from Denmark of a mutant strain in minks which appears to be vaccine resistant and it has jumped back to a few humans. The outbreak is contained and 17 million minks were culled. There are also reports of up to 10 laboratory made SARS-CoV-2 mutations which are also may be monoclonal antibody resistant. Jack Pattie Show. WVLK AM 590. Additional References:  https://youtu.be/4CA2UIijJVA    
 
COVID-19: Should We Open All Schools And Masks Worn Only By Those At High Risk?
Dr. Kevin Kavanagh from Health Watch USAsm responds to the strategy of only giving masks to those at risk for COVID-19 and opening all schools. He stresses that cloth masks do not provide effective protection to the wearer but are intended to protect others and lower the R0 of the virus to slow down and possibly stop the pandemic. It was stressed that the lethality of the pandemic is the infectivity of the virus and that during a raging pandemic children can be very infectious placing those at home at risk for COVID-19. Finally, there are long haulers and lasting disability in many who are stricken by this disease. Heart, lung and cognitive problems are common in those hospitalized, even those who are treated at home can develop disabling conditions. Jack Pattie Show.  Jack Pattie Show WVLK 590 AM. Aug. 14, 2020.  (14:52)   https://youtu.be/SMir00P3jC4
       
COVID-19: Increasing Rates of Infections & The Importance of Wearing Masks
Dr. Kevin Kavanagh from Health Watch USAsm, discusses the implications of the lack of transmission to any of the 140 clients of the COVID-19 virus positive hairdressers; and what that means for the efficacy of the public wearing masks. He also discusses large gatherings, restaurants and funerals; along with the new antibody therapy being developed by Eli Lilly which should be available in September. Jack Pattie Show. WVLK 590 AM. June 12, 2020.  (15:21)  https://youtu.be/1a6yQl7nRlg  
 
COVID-19. The Public Needs Testing Availability As The White House & The False Narrative of Herd Immunity.
Kevin Kavanagh, MD, from Health Watch USAsm discusses herd immunity and how the infectivity and immune response to the virus makes this an unrealistic strategy. This is further complicated by the emergence of a new strain 614G on the East Coast. Jack Pattie Show with Scott Johnson. WVLK 590. (14:40) May 8, 2020.  https://youtu.be/AVpE6onrMTU
 
COVID-19: New Strain Faster & Meaner -- What We Need to Do
Dr. Kevin Kavanagh from Health Watch USAsm discusses the reports of the new strain of the COVID-19 virus. This virus has been found to be more infectious and produces an increased viral load in the cell. The attachment spike has been mutated and this may cause those who were immune to the previous version to be susceptible to this one. Herd immunity does not appear to be an option. In addition, vaccines need to be modified to increase their effectiveness against this strain. WVLK 590 AM with Scott Johnson. May 6, 2020. (5:31)  https://youtu.be/lp9mi09dYFg
  
Open or Not Open Our Economy - Is COVID-19 Herd Immunity a False Narrative ?
Kevin Kavanagh, MD, from Health Watch USAsm, discusses the COVID-19 experience in Sweden vs. Finland and if the United States should open their economy, stressing the importance of worker safety and patrons wearing masks. Problems with herd immunity are also discussed along with the fast tracking of vaccines. Jack Pattie Show. May 1, 2020. (15:31)  https://youtu.be/I__VsLXZ-XM
    
False COVID-19 Narratives from Elected Official's?
  
Kevin Kavanagh, MD from Health Watch USAsm responds to the false narratives of elected officials. Issues of piecemeal opening in states, infection rates and dangers of COVID-19 along with the use of mask by both employees and employers in retail establishments. The importance of officials wearing viral filtering masks in hospitals was also emphasized. Jack Pattie Show.  April 29, 2020.  (9:43)  https://youtu.be/IFXjVkPfNwA
  

Video Meetings, Lectures & Interviews
     

6.  COVID-19: COVID Facility Updates for Public K-12 Schools
Ken Wertz Executive Director of the Massachusetts Facilities Administrators Association discusses environmental considerations to make facilities safer during the COVID-19 pandemic. The processes of cleaning, disinfecting and sanitizing were discussed. The difference between a disinfectant and sanitizer was illustrated with the shift to students eating in classrooms. Before the change, a disinfectant was used to clean classrooms, but after the initiation of this strategy, a safer product, a sanitizer, needed to be used. In addition, pandemic strategies involving heating and air conditioning systems were explained along with the difference between air quality and air flow reports. The latter being of utmost importance in a pandemic. Strategies of air filtration and sanitation using UV Light and bipolar ionization of the air were also discussed. Health Watch USAsm meeting Nov. 18, 2020.  https://youtu.be/GvE9LqxzEKM   
  
5.  COVID-19: Risks and Solutions For Safe School Systems
Rafael Moure-Eraso, PhD, Massachusetts Teacher Association from Environmental and Safety Committee discusses the road blocks teachers have encountered it there quest for safe schools along with the importance of proper planning, PPE, social distancing, air quality, and social distancing. Health Watch USAsm meeting. Nov. 18, 2020.   https://youtu.be/tg5GxodZc3c      
  

4.  PACCARB, Sept. 2020 Public Comment: “One Size
Does Not Fit All” is an excuse for inaction, it did not work with MRSA and it led to a disastrous uncoordinated wack-a-mole approach with COVID-19. Of utmost importance is the implementation of a National Reporting System for Dangerous Pathogens. https://youtu.be/yfJ8Yb5LiQk    Download Written Comment

3.  COVID-19: Experience in Other Countries.
Dr. Kevin Kavanagh from Health Watch USAsm discusses the 2019 COVID-19 International Webinar which was organized with the Massachusetts Nurses Association. Most nations underestimated the lethality and infectivity of SARS-CoV-2. As more knowledge was gained public health guidance in various countries changed and their public changed their behavior. In the United States the changing narrative created mistrust and the public did not follow guidance. Internationally two main strategies emerged: The first strategy was a hard close down of the economy and when cases bottomed out, aggressive case tracking was started. The second strategy was universal use of masks. Case definitions differ widely between countries and the best comparison can be made using the rate of excess deaths as calculated by comparing historical death rates with the current observed death rates. Preparation was also key to confronting the pandemic. Singapore had a stockpile of three N-95 masks per resident of the country and had an operational cellphone tracking system for case tracking. (15:25)  July 28, 2020.  https://youtu.be/XvNsTdV26t0  

    
2.  Founder of Health Watch USA: Kentucky should consider shutting bars
“We still have our heads in the sand, thinking ‘It won't happen here in Kentucky, we need to go on just living as we always have,’” said Dr. Kevin Kavanagh, the founder and board chairman of Health Watch USAsm, a non-profit patient advocacy and healthcare policy research organization. “And that's anything but the truth.”
Dr. Kavanagh is growing increasingly worried that the pleas for people to wear masks are falling on deaf ears.
“I mean, if they're not wearing masks in the grocery store, they're probably not going to wear them in a bar where they're trying to drink at the same time,” Dr. Kavanagh said.   Citing research that shows daily growth in infections would be significantly reduced if 80% of the population wears masks. Dr. Kavanagh suggested the federal government issue a stronger directive on masks.
“If you have a huge outbreak, you can have governors take the lead in putting out fires,” Dr. Kavanagh said. “But to prevent spread between states, the virus knows no geographic boundaries. You need to have a national coherent policy.”  Lex 18 News.  July 2, 2020. 
https://www.lex18.com/news/coronavirus/founder-of-healthcare-org-beshear-should-consider-shutting-bars
 
   

1.  Protecting Our Protectors:  A conversation with RN Chris Pontus and Dr. Kevin Kavanagh.
Wednesday, April 1, 2020 7:00 PM 8:30 PM
https://www.criticalconnections.org/covid-events/2020/4/1/protecting-our-protectors-a-conversation-with-rn-chris-pontus-and-dr-kevin-kavanagh 
       

Republican Leaders and Governors -- Public Wearing Masks


 

This webpage is for guidance only, always consult your healthcare provider and the CDC Website for information before making decisions relating to the coronavirus.