A report from the Alabama Department of Health’s online dashboard showed 1,883 hospitalized COVID patients, up by 432 over Sunday’s total. That’s an increase of 29.8% in just one day. The total is the highest since Feb. 1, which was during the downward trend of the winter surge in the virus, just as vaccines were first distributed. The pandemic record of 3,084 inpatients was set on Jan. 11. The new total is 11.3 times the low set on June 20 of 166 hospitalized COVID patients and 75% higher than one week ago.
At least 233 staff members at two major San Francisco hospitals, most of them fully vaccinated, tested positive for the coronavirus this month. About 75 to 80 percent of the more than 50 staff members infected at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital were fully vaccinated, Dr. Lukejohn Day, the hospital’s chief medical officer, said in an interview on Saturday. The University of California, San Francisco Medical Center said in a statement issued on Friday that 153 of its 183 infected staff members had been fully vaccinated.
Among 1497 fully vaccinated health care workers, 39 SARS-CoV-2 breakthrough infections were documented. On follow-up questioning, 31% of all infected workers reported having residual symptoms 14 days after their diagnosis. At 6 weeks after their diagnosis, 19% reported having “long Covid-19” symptoms, which included a prolonged loss of smell, persistent cough, fatigue, weakness, dyspnea, or myalgia.
Nine workers (23%) took a leave of absence from work beyond the 10 days of required quarantine; of these workers, 4 returned to work within 2 weeks. One worker had not yet returned after 6 weeks.
See also MedrXiv preprint: Breakthrough Symptomatic COVID-19 Infections Leading to Long Covid: Report from Long Covid Facebook Group Poll
The Greek Health Ministry submitted an amendment to Parliament on Wednesday according to which healthcare professionals will remain on unpaid leave during which they will also lose their social security if they do not get vaccinated against Covid-19.
The mandatory inoculation concerns medical, paramedical, nursing, administrative and support staff in hospitals, as well as private, public and municipal care facilities for the elderly and people with disabilities.
The unpaid leave will last, according to the government, “as long as the pandemic lasts.” The legislation will take effect as of August 16 for workers at nursing homes and from September 1 for healthcare staff.
** That’s a decision that will certainly come back to bite them ↓ ↓ ↓ **
No we didn’t. #WeKnowYouAreLying
Medical professionals are having to resort to fashioning personal protective equipment (PPE) out of clinical waste bags, plastic aprons and borrowed skiing goggles.https://t.co/QuDlTznTZX
— Corona Heads Up (@CoronaHeadsUp) April 5, 2020
Crowdfunder for Personal Protective Equipment PPE for NHS Staff Hits Nearly £1.2 million
— Corona Heads Up (@CoronaHeadsUp) March 31, 2020
Finland’s PPE guidance for healthcare workers (HCW) has been updated following the Kanta-Häme hospital Delta variant outbreak. “The use of FFP2/3 respirators in all patient contacts with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 patients is recommended.”
“Generally, HCWs have a higher risk of contracting a COVID-19 infection compared to the general population. Despite the high exposure to SARS-CoV-2, none of the ICU workers got a clear occupational COVID-19 infection, whereas working in a cohort COVID-19 ward or a normal ward with COVID-19 patients seems to have a high-risk association for occupational COVID-19 infections.
All ICU workers and most laboratory workers used FFP2/3 respirators and aerosol precautions when working with COVID-19 patients, whereas the PPE used in the wards followed droplet precautions with surgical masks. Notably, 29.3% of the infections were from colleagues, thus also requiring special attention for social distances and infection control measures between co-workers.
As practical implications, the use of FFP2/3 respirators in all patient contacts with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 patients is recommended.
Also, as a high number of COVID-19 infections and exposures among HCWs are from colleagues, the authors recommend the use of universal masking during the shift, also in personnel rooms. Safety distances and other means of infection control in the hospital environment need more research and implementation in the workplace to ensure HCWs’ safety during pandemics.
Finland research paper: Sources of Healthcare worker’s Covid-19 infections and related safety guidlines
In Kanta-Häme hospital epidemic, about 80% of those infected with corona have received at least the first dose of vaccine. The [Delta] variant of the coronavirus has been revealed to be the cause of the hospital epidemic. “The [B.1.617.2 Delta variant] is very easily spread.” says Chief Physician of the Kanta-Häme Hospital District Sally Leskinen. According to Leskinen, it is worrying that the precautions that have stopped the spread of previous virus variants in hospitals have not been effective enough now. “The fact that the surgical mask has been used in all situations and that patients with symptoms of infection have extensive protective equipment is not enough now,” says Leskinen.
The coronavirus epidemic has spread from Hämeenlinna to Kanta-Häme Central Hospital to health center hospitals in Hämeenlinna, Riihimäki and Forssa. There are a total of 80 infected in the chains. Hämeenlinna Central Hospital has two infection chains with a total of more than 50 infections. In addition, Riihimäki Hospital has a chain of 30 infections.
“The virus is easily infected. In those wards where infections occurred before the first cases occurred and the chains of infection were curtailed, 40 percent of patients have become infected,” says Sally Leskinen. Now the spread has been stopped and no new surprising infections have been detected in hospitals. Family members of nursing staff have also become infected, which in turn has caused extensive exposure situations in schools.
The majority of nursing staff have already received two coronary vaccinations, but still in Kanta-Häme, 11 per cent of the staff of the hospital epidemic outpatient department have been infected. About half of the infected nursing staff have had symptoms, some of them more severe.
HS.fi report (in Finnish)
Helsinki Times report (In English)
** UPDATE 3rd August 2021 ** Eurosurveillance report:
“Exposure to SARS-CoV-2 occurred in almost every unit of the central hospital. Some exposed patients had been transferred to four of the six primary care facilities. In three of these four facilities, the outbreak spread through transfers that took place before the outbreak was detected. In the fourth facility, the transfer happened after outbreak detection and the exposed patient was quarantined and there was no further spread.”