a speech about covid 19 pandemic

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Keynote speech to the world health summit 2021 – 24 october 2021, unicef executive director henrietta fore.

Excellencies, colleagues, friends … it is a pleasure to be with you here today for the World Health Summit.  

I am honoured and inspired by the spirit of collaboration among experts in science, politics, business, government and civil society represented at this Summit.   

On behalf of UNICEF, I am grateful for the opportunity to speak with you now at this critical moment in the global response to the COVID-19 pandemic – a pandemic which continues to impact so many aspects of our lives.   COVID-19 has hobbled economies, strained societies and undermined the prospects of the next generation. While children are not at greatest direct risk from the virus itself, they continue to suffer disproportionately from its socioeconomic consequences. Almost two years into the pandemic, a generation of children are enduring prolonged school closures and ongoing disruptions to health, protection and education services.  

That is why today I am here to discuss the health threats facing the 2.2 billion children around the world who UNICEF serves, and the opportunity we have to protect them.  

Driven by new variants of concern, the virus continues to spread. While successful vaccination campaigns in the wealthy world have driven down rates of hospitalization and death, millions in low income countries await their first dose, and fragile health systems – on which children rely – are in jeopardy.  

Yet the gap between those who have been offered vaccination against COVID-19 and those who have not is widening. While some countries have protected most of their populations, in others, less than 3 per cent of the population have had their first dose. Those going without vaccines include doctors, midwives, nurses, community health workers, teachers and social workers – the very people that children, mothers and families rely upon for the most essential services.  

This is unacceptable. As a community of global health leaders, we have a choice. We can choose to act to reach more people with vaccines. This will keep people safe AND help to sustain critical services and systems for children.  

Today, almost 7 billion doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been administered, less than a year since the first vaccine was approved. And we are now on track to produce enough vaccines to protect the majority of people around the world before the end of next year.  

But will we protect everyone?   

Will we send lifesaving, health-system-saving COVID-19 vaccines to the world’s doctors, nurses, and most at-risk populations?  

Will donors continue to fund ACT-A and COVAX sufficiently to procure and successfully deploy the tests, treatments and vaccines needed to end the pandemic? Or will the costs of in-country delivery fall on struggling economies so that they are forced to cut other lifesaving health programmes such as routine childhood vaccinations? 

Will we stand by as the lowest-income countries, with the most fragile health systems, carry on unprotected – risking high death rates due to shortages of tests, treatments and vaccines? Or will we invest so that community health systems everywhere can withstand further waves of the virus, and bounce back from future shocks?  

Will we allow new variants of the virus to flourish in countries with low vaccination rates? Or, will we reap the benefits of global cooperation to defeat this global problem, together?   

The world has learned that financing for prevention, preparedness and response is insufficient and not adequately coordinated. And that is a vital lesson.  

But even more fundamentally, we have learned that the underlying strength of the health sector in general is a critical factor in a country’s ability to weather a storm like COVID-19.  

After all, what good are vaccines if there is no functioning public health system to deliver them?  

How do we hope to contain outbreaks if there are not enough trained and paid healthcare workers?  

This pandemic has been crippling for high income countries where average spending on healthcare per capita exceeds $5,000. So, it is hardly surprising that it is causing critical strain in lower-income countries where the average per capita expenditure on healthcare each year is less than $100.  

The past 22 months have shown us that even as we battle immediate threats such as a pandemic, we must also ensure continuous access to essential health services. If we do not, there will be an indirect increase in morbidity and mortality.  

As COVID-19 took hold of the world, healthcare workers serving pregnant mothers, babies and children faced unthinkable choices. As COVID patients gasped for breath, desperate for oxygen, mothers and babies needed it too. As wards filled up with virus victims, staff were not free to help the very young. As health budgets were stretched to the breaking point, routine healthcare began to go by the wayside.   

These are some of the reasons why more than twice as many women and children have lost their lives for every COVID-19 death in many low and middle-income countries. Estimates from the Lancet suggest up to nearly 114,000 additional women and children died during this period.  

I greatly fear that the pandemic’s impact on children’s health is only starting to be seen.  

While the pandemic has underscored that vaccination is one of the most cost-effective public health interventions, we have already seen backsliding in routine immunization. In 2020, over 23 million children missed out on essential vaccines – an increase of nearly 4 million from 2019, with decades of progress tragically eroded.  

Of these 23 million, 17 million of them did not receive any vaccines at all. These are the so-called zero-dose children, most of whom live in communities with multiple deprivations.       

Here are some of the most urgent choices we could make to address these problems: 

Governments can share COVID-19 doses with COVAX as a matter of absolute urgency and resist the temptation to stockpile supplies more than necessary.  

Governments can also honour their commitments to equitable access and make space for COVAX and other parts of ACT-A at the front of the supply queue for tests, treatments, and vaccines as they roll off production lines.  

Manufacturers can be more transparent about their production schedules and make greater efforts to facilitate and accelerate equitable access to products. This will help to ensure that COVAX and ACT-A get supplies faster. 

Governments, development banks, business and philanthropy can target strategic, sustainable investments in building robust and resilient primary healthcare services – embedded in each and every community.  

We can and we must choose a path ahead that is equitable, sustainable and rooted in the principle that every human being, young and old, rich and poor, has the right to good health.  

And there is good reason to believe that now is the time to set ourselves upon that path.  

A look back at history shows us that global threats and crises that challenge multiple interests and equities have a way of pulling together diverse partners to solve shared problems. Indeed, it is out of some of the most tragic crises that the world has found some of the best solutions.  

I believe now is such a time. We have a historic opportunity to both end the COVID-19 pandemic and set out on the road towards eradicating preventable diseases, ending avoidable maternal, newborn and child deaths, and building a strong foundation for community health that will serve this generation and the next.  

We can and we must seize this moment together.  

Thank you.  

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  • Remarks by Commissioner Stephen Hahn, M.D. — The COVID-19 Pandemic — Finding Solutions, Applying Lessons Learned - 06/01/2020

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Event Title Remarks by Commissioner Stephen Hahn, M.D. — The COVID-19 Pandemic — Finding Solutions, Applying Lessons Learned June 1, 2020

The COVID-19 Pandemic — Finding Solutions, Applying Lessons Learned

(Remarks as prepared for delivery.  The text and video of this speech are slightly, though not substantively different from the version presented by Dr. Hahn on June 1 to the Alliance for a Stronger FDA, via audio broadcast only.  Because of evolving scheduling challenges, it was not clear whether Dr. Hahn would be able to present the speech live and so it was recorded by video earlier.  Ultimately, he did give the speech live to the Alliance, but only via an audio link. Given the minimal changes in the live version, we are posting the video version and the accompanying text.)

One of the most frustrating challenges each of us can face is the inability to control the events that affect our lives.  Often, we are thrust into situations not of our own making.  It’s no surprise that one of the most familiar adages concerns the best laid plans of mice and men going awry.

And yet, to borrow another often-used saying, necessity is the mother of invention.  History teaches us that crises often lead to accelerated change and innovations and new discoveries. 

This dynamic has been on my mind a great deal recently.  It wasn’t too long ago – last December, to be exact -- that I had the distinction of being confirmed as the 24th Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration. 

This is the greatest honor of my life.  I have long cherished the critical role the FDA plays in protecting and promoting the public health, and I’ve relied on the Agency’s expertise throughout my professional life.

So, I eagerly embraced my new responsibilities and the chance to make a real difference in public health.  I was especially conscious that we live in a time of extraordinary scientific achievement, especially in oncology, with unprecedented opportunities to help make the lives of American patients and consumers healthier and safer. 

I quickly immersed myself in the Agency’s broad and complex responsibilities, seizing every opportunity to learn about the FDA, both those areas with which I’d previously had minimum involvement, such as food policy, and those with which I had more familiarity, like cancer treatments and innovative clinical trial design.

I began to work with, and learn from, the agency’s extraordinary leadership team.  I learned very quickly that the principles that have guided me throughout my life, such as my commitment to relying only on the best medical science and most rigorous data in support of advancing innovation and discovery, and my fundamental belief in promoting integrity and transparency in the scientific process, are the same principles that guide the FDA in both science and regulation.

So, I was in the midst of transitioning from being Chief Medical Executive at MD Anderson Cancer Center to being Commissioner of FDA when our entire world was turned upside down with the appearance of the novel COVID-19 coronavirus.

I certainly did not anticipate a public health emergency of this magnitude when I joined the agency.  And I could not have imagined how significantly my new role would change and be shaped by this pandemic.  I definitely could not have known that discussions about personal protective equipment (or PPE) or face masks or nasal swabs would be central to my work as Commissioner.

One thing was apparent: I would need to manage this evolving situation even as I was still learning about FDA.

From the very start I knew that even in a crisis situation – or perhaps especially because we are in a crisis situation – it is imperative that we maintain FDA’s high standards for evaluating products and making sure that the benefits outweigh potential harms.

To maintain our standard, I pledged to myself and emphasized to my new colleagues at FDA that our decisions would always be rooted in science.  Having spent my entire career as a physician and scientist caring for patients with cancer, I’ve always valued highly a commitment to good data and sound science.  I feel comfortable working with the scientists at FDA because I know they not only share that value, that commitment, but that they will tolerate nothing less. So, it was critical to me, as the pandemic escalated that this be reinforced as the guidepost for all of our decisions.   

It may have been trial by fire, but I have the good fortune to work with an enormous number of talented individuals and teams who are helping guide us through this crisis. Every day they show extraordinary expertise, commitment, and resilience.

I also was able to call on many from outside the agency, including former FDA leaders as well as colleagues from the medical community. 

What struck me was the uniformity of their advice.  Those who formerly worked at FDA urged me to rely upon the FDA staff, many of whom have the experience to help manage a pandemic. My friends from outside the agency urged that we move quickly to make decisions, set direction and to be transparent about what we are doing. I have tried to follow all of this excellent advice. 

Protecting the Food Supply

Since this crisis and the actions of the FDA have evolved so rapidly, let me summarize what we have done.  I am confident that the FDA has measured up to this unprecedented challenge.

I want to start with the first word in the FDA’s name – food.  Most of us take food safety for granted.  But it takes a lot of hard work to maintain a safe food supply.  This was true even before the COVID-19 pandemic but is especially challenging during an ongoing international crisis. 

During the pandemic, through the collaboration of the FDA, the food industry and our federal and state partners, we have been able to maintain the safety of the nation’s food supply.  Our Coordinated Outbreak Response and Evaluation team remained on the job, monitoring for signs of foodborne illness outbreaks and prepared to take action when needed.

And along with our federal partners, including CDC and USDA, we also have provided best practices for food workers, industry, and consumers on how to stay safe and keep food safe.

Diagnosing and Developing Treatments

On the medical side, we immediately committed to facilitating efforts to develop diagnostic tests, treatments and vaccines for the disease. We have helped facilitate increases in our national testing capacity, have helped ensure continued access to necessary medical products, and have sought to prevent the sale of fraudulent products.  

If there’s one thing that’s been reaffirmed during this crisis, it’s the essential role of medical devices, including diagnostics, to countering this pandemic.

From the earliest days of our response, we worked to ensure that we had the essential medical devices, including personal protective equipment, to help treat those who are ill and to ensure that health care workers and others on the front line are properly protected.

To be sure, there were bumps along the road, but today we have an adequate supply of the devices that have been in unprecedented high demand such as PPE, ventilators, and others. 

We’ve reviewed and issued emergency use authorizations for medical devices for COVID-19 at an incredibly fast pace.

And we’ve worked closely with many companies that don’t regularly make medical products but wanted to pitch in by making hand sanitizer, ventilators, or PPE.

There was a special focus on the development and availability of accurate and reliable COVID-19 tests. We need to know who has the disease and who has had it. This is essential if we are to understand this virus and return to a more normal lifestyle. 

Since January, we’ve worked with hundreds of test developers, many of whom have submitted emergency use authorization requests to FDA for tests that detect the virus or antibodies to the virus.

As you have seen reported, early in the crisis we provided regulatory flexibility for developers with validated tests as outlined in our policies because public health needs dictated that we do as much testing as possible.  But as the process has matured, we have helped increase the number of authorized tests, and we have adapted some of our policies to best serve the public need. 

Today, if evidence arises that raises questions about a particular test’s reliability, we will take appropriate action to protect consumers from inaccurate tests.   This is a dynamic process that is continually being informed by new data and evidence.  

We’ve used a similar dynamic process in the search for therapeutic treatments and vaccines. 

We are working closely with partners throughout the government and academia, and with drug and vaccine developers to explore, expedite, and incentivize the development of these products.

More than 90 drugs are being studied, and FDA is actively working with numerous vaccine sponsors, including three sponsors who have announced they have vaccine candidates that are now in clinical trials in the U.S.  More than 144 clinical trials have been initiated for therapeutic agents, with hundreds more in the pipeline.  We don’t have a cure or vaccine yet, but we’re on our way, at unprecedented speed.

Ultimately, of course, the way we’ll eventually defeat this virus is with a vaccine.  FDA is working closely to provide technical assistance to federal partners, vaccine developers, researchers, manufacturers, and experts across the globe and exploring all possible options to advance the most efficient and timely development of vaccines, while at the same time maintaining regulatory independence.

Communicating and Educating

There is much more to do going forward, and that includes research, exploration and discovery, and communicating what we know.

As the country starts to reopen, it’s essential that the public understands what they need to do to continue to protect themselves. There has been a proliferation of information, and misinformation, on the internet and in other sources. Consumers need to understand that this virus is still with us and that we, as individuals and communities working together, need to take steps to continue to contain its spread.

The FDA has an important part to play in communicating public information to all populations in the U.S. FDA has increased outreach by developing and disseminating COVID-19 health education materials for consumers in multiple languages to diverse communities and the public overall. Everyone should have a clear understanding of why hand-washing and social distancing remain essential. Consumers need to think about how to shop for food safely.  People need to know when to call their doctors and when to ask about getting tested. Health care professionals need to know how to manage their patients in this new environment, and how best to apply telemedicine, the use of which is rapidly accelerating. 

I want the FDA to serve as a national resource for the public and health care community.  I regard educating the public and providing accurate, reliable, up-to-date information as not just an Agency priority, but one of my own personal responsibilities as Commissioner.  I will be out in public and in the media talking about how individuals can help us contain and conquer this virus. 

I believe my personal experience with being self-quarantined will make me a better communicator. Being quarantined for 14 days in May was certainly no fun, but because we at FDA were already functioning very effectively virtually, I was able to continue to be fully engaged, and provide direction and leadership. And it made me even more focused on making sure consumers have all the information they need about self-protection.

We now need to look forward. A major strength of the FDA is not just in our response to a crisis, but in our ability to learn from the work we do and apply that experience in the future. 

As this pandemic evolved, it was clear that some FDA processes needed to be adjusted to accommodate the urgency of the pandemic.  I think the entire FDA team has now seen first-hand that we need to look at some of our processes and policies.  I have instructed my staff to identify the lessons learned from this pandemic and what adjustments may be needed, not just to manage this or future emergencies, but to make FDA itself more efficient in carrying out our regulatory responsibilities.

I am committed to making sure that some of the lessons learned from managing this pandemic will lead to permanent improvements at the FDA in processes and policies.

For example, in facilitating the development of new treatments, we streamlined some of our processes.  

We have taken a fresh look at how clinical trials should be designed and conducted.  In a pandemic we knew we needed to get answers more quickly. For instance, early on, the FDA, National Institutes of Health, and industry worked together to facilitate the implementation of a “master protocol” that can be used in multiple clinical trials and allows for the study of more than one promising new drug for COVID-19 at a time. And we have used expanded access to meet the needs of patients who are not eligible or who are unable to participate in randomized   clinical trials.

Many of the permanent changes that we will implement really represent an acceleration of where we were headed before.   For example, the concept of decentralized clinical trials, in which trial procedures are conducted near the patient’s home and through use of local health care providers or local laboratories has been discussed before, and laid the foundation for some of the trials for COVID-19 products.  

Another area where our pre-COVID work has informed our response to the pandemic involves the use of Real World Evidence (RWE).

In recent years, the agency has taken steps to leverage modern, rigorous analyses of real-world data—such as data from electronic health records, insurance claims, patient registries and lab results. 

As the pandemic brought an urgency to these efforts, the FDA advanced collaborations with public and private partners to collect and analyze a variety of real-world data sources, using our Sentinel system and other resources.

Evaluation of real-world data has the potential to provide a wealth of rapid, actionable information to better understand disease symptoms, describe and measure immunity, and use available medical product supplies to help mitigate potential shortages. These data can also inform ongoing work to evaluate potential therapies, vaccines or diagnostics for COVID-19.  The more experience we have with real world evidence, the more confidence we will have in using it for product decisions.

I mention real world evidence, but in reality, we have so many examples of how lessons learned from the pandemic will affect FDA in the future.  

To the extent that the innovations and adaptations we implemented during the pandemic crisis worked and would be appropriate to implement outside of a pandemic situation, we will incorporate them into standard FDA procedures.   And to the extent that we identified unnecessary barriers, we will remove them. This is one of my top priorities. Permanent change where needed will take place, and will make FDA an even stronger agency.    

As I mentioned before, anything that enables quicker reviews and authorizations we will seek to make permanent.

But make no mistake. We will not cut corners on safety or effectiveness.  I said this before, and I say it again.  Good science as the basis for decision making has been a hallmark of my career, and is a value that I hold deeply. The American public must have confidence in the products regulated by the FDA.

Speed is important, but so are safety, accuracy and effectiveness.

FDA’s commitment to good science and rigorous data is unwavering, even as we look at how we can learn from this pandemic.

I am hopeful that this is a once-in-a-lifetime experience for all of us.  An unprecedented historic event that has required an unprecedented response from us and everyone around the world.

That said, I am pleased that throughout this crisis the rest of the FDA’s work has continued, with relatively few interruptions. New drugs and devices have been authorized.  Our food safety surveillance has adapted and our outbreak response resources have been maintained. Our oversight of tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, has gone on. The Agency has measured up to the challenge in all ways.

And we are well positioned as we move into a new phase, that is, transitioning back to what has come to be known as the “new normal.”  Our staff has done a phenomenal job of adapting to this new normal.    And I am confident that they are ready to deal with any additional upcoming challenges. 

I will close with something I’ve seen reaffirmed time and time again over the past few months. That is the essential role that the FDA plays in consumer protection and beyond in advancing public health. 

Before coming to the FDA, I had heard about the extraordinary dedication of the agency’s workforce.  Working side by side with my colleagues in response to this pandemic, I’ve seen that characterization validated over and over.

It is my great honor to serve with so many highly skilled and committed professionals.  And the American people can be assured that this agency is working around the clock for them, doing whatever is necessary to fulfill our mission to protect and promote the health of the American public. 

I encourage you all to stay safe, aware, and focused as we continue to respond to the challenges of this public health emergency.

8 Lessons We Can Learn From the COVID-19 Pandemic

BY KATHY KATELLA May 14, 2021

Rear view of a family standing on a hill in autumn day, symbolizing hope for the end of the COVID-19 pandemic

Note: Information in this article was accurate at the time of original publication. Because information about COVID-19 changes rapidly, we encourage you to visit the websites of the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), World Health Organization (WHO), and your state and local government for the latest information.

The COVID-19 pandemic changed life as we know it—and it may have changed us individually as well, from our morning routines to our life goals and priorities. Many say the world has changed forever. But this coming year, if the vaccines drive down infections and variants are kept at bay, life could return to some form of normal. At that point, what will we glean from the past year? Are there silver linings or lessons learned?

“Humanity's memory is short, and what is not ever-present fades quickly,” says Manisha Juthani, MD , a Yale Medicine infectious diseases specialist. The bubonic plague, for example, ravaged Europe in the Middle Ages—resurfacing again and again—but once it was under control, people started to forget about it, she says. “So, I would say one major lesson from a public health or infectious disease perspective is that it’s important to remember and recognize our history. This is a period we must remember.”

We asked our Yale Medicine experts to weigh in on what they think are lessons worth remembering, including those that might help us survive a future virus or nurture a resilience that could help with life in general.

Lesson 1: Masks are useful tools

What happened: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) relaxed its masking guidance for those who have been fully vaccinated. But when the pandemic began, it necessitated a global effort to ensure that everyone practiced behaviors to keep themselves healthy and safe—and keep others healthy as well. This included the widespread wearing of masks indoors and outside.

What we’ve learned: Not everyone practiced preventive measures such as mask wearing, maintaining a 6-foot distance, and washing hands frequently. But, Dr. Juthani says, “I do think many people have learned a whole lot about respiratory pathogens and viruses, and how they spread from one person to another, and that sort of old-school common sense—you know, if you don’t feel well—whether it’s COVID-19 or not—you don’t go to the party. You stay home.”

Masks are a case in point. They are a key COVID-19 prevention strategy because they provide a barrier that can keep respiratory droplets from spreading. Mask-wearing became more common across East Asia after the 2003 SARS outbreak in that part of the world. “There are many East Asian cultures where the practice is still that if you have a cold or a runny nose, you put on a mask,” Dr. Juthani says.

She hopes attitudes in the U.S. will shift in that direction after COVID-19. “I have heard from a number of people who are amazed that we've had no flu this year—and they know masks are one of the reasons,” she says. “They’ve told me, ‘When the winter comes around, if I'm going out to the grocery store, I may just put on a mask.’”

Lesson 2: Telehealth might become the new normal

What happened: Doctors and patients who have used telehealth (technology that allows them to conduct medical care remotely), found it can work well for certain appointments, ranging from cardiology check-ups to therapy for a mental health condition. Many patients who needed a medical test have also discovered it may be possible to substitute a home version.

What we’ve learned: While there are still problems for which you need to see a doctor in person, the pandemic introduced a new urgency to what had been a gradual switchover to platforms like Zoom for remote patient visits. 

More doctors also encouraged patients to track their blood pressure at home , and to use at-home equipment for such purposes as diagnosing sleep apnea and even testing for colon cancer . Doctors also can fine-tune cochlear implants remotely .

“It happened very quickly,” says Sharon Stoll, DO, a neurologist. One group that has benefitted is patients who live far away, sometimes in other parts of the country—or even the world, she says. “I always like to see my patients at least twice a year. Now, we can see each other in person once a year, and if issues come up, we can schedule a telehealth visit in-between,” Dr. Stoll says. “This way I may hear about an issue before it becomes a problem, because my patients have easier access to me, and I have easier access to them.”

Meanwhile, insurers are becoming more likely to cover telehealth, Dr. Stoll adds. “That is a silver lining that will hopefully continue.”

Lesson 3: Vaccines are powerful tools

What happened: Given the recent positive results from vaccine trials, once again vaccines are proving to be powerful for preventing disease.

What we’ve learned: Vaccines really are worth getting, says Dr. Stoll, who had COVID-19 and experienced lingering symptoms, including chronic headaches . “I have lots of conversations—and sometimes arguments—with people about vaccines,” she says. Some don’t like the idea of side effects. “I had vaccine side effects and I’ve had COVID-19 side effects, and I say nothing compares to the actual illness. Unfortunately, I speak from experience.”

Dr. Juthani hopes the COVID-19 vaccine spotlight will motivate people to keep up with all of their vaccines, including childhood and adult vaccines for such diseases as measles , chicken pox, shingles , and other viruses. She says people have told her they got the flu vaccine this year after skipping it in previous years. (The CDC has reported distributing an exceptionally high number of doses this past season.)  

But, she cautions that a vaccine is not a magic bullet—and points out that scientists can’t always produce one that works. “As advanced as science is, there have been multiple failed efforts to develop a vaccine against the HIV virus,” she says. “This time, we were lucky that we were able build on the strengths that we've learned from many other vaccine development strategies to develop multiple vaccines for COVID-19 .” 

Lesson 4: Everyone is not treated equally, especially in a pandemic

What happened: COVID-19 magnified disparities that have long been an issue for a variety of people.

What we’ve learned: Racial and ethnic minority groups especially have had disproportionately higher rates of hospitalization for COVID-19 than non-Hispanic white people in every age group, and many other groups faced higher levels of risk or stress. These groups ranged from working mothers who also have primary responsibility for children, to people who have essential jobs, to those who live in rural areas where there is less access to health care.

“One thing that has been recognized is that when people were told to work from home, you needed to have a job that you could do in your house on a computer,” says Dr. Juthani. “Many people who were well off were able do that, but they still needed to have food, which requires grocery store workers and truck drivers. Nursing home residents still needed certified nursing assistants coming to work every day to care for them and to bathe them.”  

As far as racial inequities, Dr. Juthani cites President Biden’s appointment of Yale Medicine’s Marcella Nunez-Smith, MD, MHS , as inaugural chair of a federal COVID-19 Health Equity Task Force. “Hopefully the new focus is a first step,” Dr. Juthani says.

Lesson 5: We need to take mental health seriously

What happened: There was a rise in reported mental health problems that have been described as “a second pandemic,” highlighting mental health as an issue that needs to be addressed.

What we’ve learned: Arman Fesharaki-Zadeh, MD, PhD , a behavioral neurologist and neuropsychiatrist, believes the number of mental health disorders that were on the rise before the pandemic is surging as people grapple with such matters as juggling work and childcare, job loss, isolation, and losing a loved one to COVID-19.

The CDC reports that the percentage of adults who reported symptoms of anxiety of depression in the past 7 days increased from 36.4 to 41.5 % from August 2020 to February 2021. Other reports show that having COVID-19 may contribute, too, with its lingering or long COVID symptoms, which can include “foggy mind,” anxiety , depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder .

 “We’re seeing these problems in our clinical setting very, very often,” Dr. Fesharaki-Zadeh says. “By virtue of necessity, we can no longer ignore this. We're seeing these folks, and we have to take them seriously.”

Lesson 6: We have the capacity for resilience

What happened: While everyone’s situation is different­­ (and some people have experienced tremendous difficulties), many have seen that it’s possible to be resilient in a crisis.

What we’ve learned: People have practiced self-care in a multitude of ways during the pandemic as they were forced to adjust to new work schedules, change their gym routines, and cut back on socializing. Many started seeking out new strategies to counter the stress.

“I absolutely believe in the concept of resilience, because we have this effective reservoir inherent in all of us—be it the product of evolution, or our ancestors going through catastrophes, including wars, famines, and plagues,” Dr. Fesharaki-Zadeh says. “I think inherently, we have the means to deal with crisis. The fact that you and I are speaking right now is the result of our ancestors surviving hardship. I think resilience is part of our psyche. It's part of our DNA, essentially.”

Dr. Fesharaki-Zadeh believes that even small changes are highly effective tools for creating resilience. The changes he suggests may sound like the same old advice: exercise more, eat healthy food, cut back on alcohol, start a meditation practice, keep up with friends and family. “But this is evidence-based advice—there has been research behind every one of these measures,” he says.

But we have to also be practical, he notes. “If you feel overwhelmed by doing too many things, you can set a modest goal with one new habit—it could be getting organized around your sleep. Once you’ve succeeded, move on to another one. Then you’re building momentum.”

Lesson 7: Community is essential—and technology is too

What happened: People who were part of a community during the pandemic realized the importance of human connection, and those who didn’t have that kind of support realized they need it.

What we’ve learned: Many of us have become aware of how much we need other people—many have managed to maintain their social connections, even if they had to use technology to keep in touch, Dr. Juthani says. “There's no doubt that it's not enough, but even that type of community has helped people.”

Even people who aren’t necessarily friends or family are important. Dr. Juthani recalled how she encouraged her mail carrier to sign up for the vaccine, soon learning that the woman’s mother and husband hadn’t gotten it either. “They are all vaccinated now,” Dr. Juthani says. “So, even by word of mouth, community is a way to make things happen.”

It’s important to note that some people are naturally introverted and may have enjoyed having more solitude when they were forced to stay at home—and they should feel comfortable with that, Dr. Fesharaki-Zadeh says. “I think one has to keep temperamental tendencies like this in mind.”

But loneliness has been found to suppress the immune system and be a precursor to some diseases, he adds. “Even for introverted folks, the smallest circle is preferable to no circle at all,” he says.

Lesson 8: Sometimes you need a dose of humility

What happened: Scientists and nonscientists alike learned that a virus can be more powerful than they are. This was evident in the way knowledge about the virus changed over time in the past year as scientific investigation of it evolved.

What we’ve learned: “As infectious disease doctors, we were resident experts at the beginning of the pandemic because we understand pathogens in general, and based on what we’ve seen in the past, we might say there are certain things that are likely to be true,” Dr. Juthani says. “But we’ve seen that we have to take these pathogens seriously. We know that COVID-19 is not the flu. All these strokes and clots, and the loss of smell and taste that have gone on for months are things that we could have never known or predicted. So, you have to have respect for the unknown and respect science, but also try to give scientists the benefit of the doubt,” she says.

“We have been doing the best we can with the knowledge we have, in the time that we have it,” Dr. Juthani says. “I think most of us have had to have the humility to sometimes say, ‘I don't know. We're learning as we go.’"

Information provided in Yale Medicine articles is for general informational purposes only. No content in the articles should ever be used as a substitute for medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician. Always seek the individual advice of your health care provider with any questions you have regarding a medical condition.

More news from Yale Medicine

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woman with 'long cold' or Long COVID sneezing

The Updated COVID Vaccines Are Here: 9 Things to Know

closeup of arm after receiving an updated COVID vaccine

3 Things to Know About JN.1, the New Coronavirus Strain

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Plan, Prepare & Make the Best Career Choices

2 Minute Speech on Covid-19 (CoronaVirus) for Students

The year, 2019, saw the discovery of a previously unknown coronavirus illness, Covid-19 . The Coronavirus has affected the way we go about our everyday lives. This pandemic has devastated millions of people, either unwell or passed away due to the sickness. The most common symptoms of this viral illness include a high temperature, a cough, bone pain, and difficulties with the respiratory system. In addition to these symptoms, patients infected with the coronavirus may also feel weariness, a sore throat, muscular discomfort, and a loss of taste or smell.

2 Minute Speech on Covid-19 (CoronaVirus) for Students

10 Lines Speech on Covid-19 for Students

The Coronavirus is a member of a family of viruses that may infect their hosts exceptionally quickly.

Humans created the Coronavirus in the city of Wuhan in China, where it first appeared.

The first confirmed case of the Coronavirus was found in India in January in the year 2020.

Protecting ourselves against the coronavirus is essential by covering our mouths and noses when we cough or sneeze to prevent the infection from spreading.

We must constantly wash our hands with antibacterial soap and face masks to protect ourselves.

To ensure our safety, the government has ordered the whole nation's closure to halt the virus's spread.

The Coronavirus forced all our classes to be taken online, as schools and institutions were shut down.

Due to the coronavirus, everyone was instructed to stay indoors throughout the lockdown.

During this period, I spent a lot of time playing games with family members.

Even though the cases of COVID-19 are a lot less now, we should still take precautions.

Short 2-Minute Speech on Covid 19 for Students

The coronavirus, also known as Covid - 19 , causes a severe illness. Those who are exposed to it become sick in their lungs. A brand-new virus is having a devastating effect throughout the globe. It's being passed from person to person via social interaction.

The first instance of Covid - 19 was discovered in December 2019 in Wuhan, China . The World Health Organization proclaimed the covid - 19 pandemic in March 2020. It has now reached every country in the globe. Droplets produced by an infected person's cough or sneeze might infect those nearby.

The severity of Covid-19 symptoms varies widely. Symptoms aren't always present. The typical symptoms are high temperatures, a dry cough, and difficulty breathing. Covid - 19 individuals also exhibit other symptoms such as weakness, a sore throat, muscular soreness, and a diminished sense of smell and taste.

Vaccination has been produced by many countries but the effectiveness of them is different for every individual. The only treatment then is to avoid contracting in the first place. We can accomplish that by following these protocols—

Put on a mask to hide your face. Use soap and hand sanitiser often to keep germs at bay.

Keep a distance of 5 to 6 feet at all times.

Never put your fingers in your mouth or nose.

Long 2-Minute Speech on Covid 19 for Students

As students, it's important for us to understand the gravity of the situation regarding the Covid-19 pandemic and the impact it has on our communities and the world at large. In this speech, I will discuss the real-world examples of the effects of the pandemic and its impact on various aspects of our lives.

Impact on Economy | The Covid-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on the global economy. We have seen how businesses have been forced to close their doors, leading to widespread job loss and economic hardship. Many individuals and families have been struggling to make ends meet, and this has led to a rise in poverty and inequality.

Impact on Healthcare Systems | The pandemic has also put a strain on healthcare systems around the world. Hospitals have been overwhelmed with patients, and healthcare workers have been stretched to their limits. This has highlighted the importance of investing in healthcare systems and ensuring that they are prepared for future crises.

Impact on Education | The pandemic has also affected the education system, with schools and universities being closed around the world. This has led to a shift towards online learning and the use of technology to continue education remotely. However, it has also highlighted the digital divide, with many students from low-income backgrounds facing difficulties in accessing online learning.

Impact on Mental Health | The pandemic has not only affected our physical health but also our mental health. We have seen how the isolation and uncertainty caused by the pandemic have led to an increase in stress, anxiety, and depression. It's important that we take care of our mental health and support each other during this difficult time.

Real-life Story of a Student

John is a high school student who was determined to succeed despite the struggles brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic.

John's school closed down in the early days of the pandemic, and he quickly found himself struggling to adjust to online learning. Without the structure and support of in-person classes, John found it difficult to stay focused and motivated. He also faced challenges at home, as his parents were both essential workers and were often not available to help him with his schoolwork.

Despite these struggles, John refused to let the pandemic defeat him. He made a schedule for himself, to stay on top of his assignments and set goals for himself. He also reached out to his teachers for additional support, and they were more than happy to help.

John also found ways to stay connected with his classmates and friends, even though they were physically apart. They formed a study group and would meet regularly over Zoom to discuss their assignments and provide each other with support.

Thanks to his hard work and determination, John was able to maintain good grades and even improved in some subjects. He graduated high school on time, and was even accepted into his first-choice college.

John's story is a testament to the resilience and determination of students everywhere. Despite the challenges brought on by the pandemic, he was able to succeed and achieve his goals. He shows us that with hard work, determination, and support, we can overcome even the toughest of obstacles.

Explore Career Options (By Industry)

  • Construction
  • Entertainment
  • Manufacturing
  • Information Technology

Data Administrator

Database professionals use software to store and organise data such as financial information, and customer shipping records. Individuals who opt for a career as data administrators ensure that data is available for users and secured from unauthorised sales. DB administrators may work in various types of industries. It may involve computer systems design, service firms, insurance companies, banks and hospitals.

Bio Medical Engineer

The field of biomedical engineering opens up a universe of expert chances. An Individual in the biomedical engineering career path work in the field of engineering as well as medicine, in order to find out solutions to common problems of the two fields. The biomedical engineering job opportunities are to collaborate with doctors and researchers to develop medical systems, equipment, or devices that can solve clinical problems. Here we will be discussing jobs after biomedical engineering, how to get a job in biomedical engineering, biomedical engineering scope, and salary. 

GIS officer work on various GIS software to conduct a study and gather spatial and non-spatial information. GIS experts update the GIS data and maintain it. The databases include aerial or satellite imagery, latitudinal and longitudinal coordinates, and manually digitized images of maps. In a career as GIS expert, one is responsible for creating online and mobile maps.

Remote Sensing Technician

Individuals who opt for a career as a remote sensing technician possess unique personalities. Remote sensing analysts seem to be rational human beings, they are strong, independent, persistent, sincere, realistic and resourceful. Some of them are analytical as well, which means they are intelligent, introspective and inquisitive. 

Remote sensing scientists use remote sensing technology to support scientists in fields such as community planning, flight planning or the management of natural resources. Analysing data collected from aircraft, satellites or ground-based platforms using statistical analysis software, image analysis software or Geographic Information Systems (GIS) is a significant part of their work. Do you want to learn how to become remote sensing technician? There's no need to be concerned; we've devised a simple remote sensing technician career path for you. Scroll through the pages and read.

Database Architect

If you are intrigued by the programming world and are interested in developing communications networks then a career as database architect may be a good option for you. Data architect roles and responsibilities include building design models for data communication networks. Wide Area Networks (WANs), local area networks (LANs), and intranets are included in the database networks. It is expected that database architects will have in-depth knowledge of a company's business to develop a network to fulfil the requirements of the organisation. Stay tuned as we look at the larger picture and give you more information on what is db architecture, why you should pursue database architecture, what to expect from such a degree and what your job opportunities will be after graduation. Here, we will be discussing how to become a data architect. Students can visit NIT Trichy , IIT Kharagpur , JMI New Delhi . 

Ethical Hacker

A career as ethical hacker involves various challenges and provides lucrative opportunities in the digital era where every giant business and startup owns its cyberspace on the world wide web. Individuals in the ethical hacker career path try to find the vulnerabilities in the cyber system to get its authority. If he or she succeeds in it then he or she gets its illegal authority. Individuals in the ethical hacker career path then steal information or delete the file that could affect the business, functioning, or services of the organization.

Data Analyst

The invention of the database has given fresh breath to the people involved in the data analytics career path. Analysis refers to splitting up a whole into its individual components for individual analysis. Data analysis is a method through which raw data are processed and transformed into information that would be beneficial for user strategic thinking.

Data are collected and examined to respond to questions, evaluate hypotheses or contradict theories. It is a tool for analyzing, transforming, modeling, and arranging data with useful knowledge, to assist in decision-making and methods, encompassing various strategies, and is used in different fields of business, research, and social science.

Water Manager

A career as water manager needs to provide clean water, preventing flood damage, and disposing of sewage and other wastes. He or she also repairs and maintains structures that control the flow of water, such as reservoirs, sea defense walls, and pumping stations. In addition to these, the Manager has other responsibilities related to water resource management.

Budget Analyst

Budget analysis, in a nutshell, entails thoroughly analyzing the details of a financial budget. The budget analysis aims to better understand and manage revenue. Budget analysts assist in the achievement of financial targets, the preservation of profitability, and the pursuit of long-term growth for a business. Budget analysts generally have a bachelor's degree in accounting, finance, economics, or a closely related field. Knowledge of Financial Management is of prime importance in this career.

Operations Manager

Individuals in the operations manager jobs are responsible for ensuring the efficiency of each department to acquire its optimal goal. They plan the use of resources and distribution of materials. The operations manager's job description includes managing budgets, negotiating contracts, and performing administrative tasks.

Finance Executive

Product manager.

A Product Manager is a professional responsible for product planning and marketing. He or she manages the product throughout the Product Life Cycle, gathering and prioritising the product. A product manager job description includes defining the product vision and working closely with team members of other departments to deliver winning products.  

Investment Banker

An Investment Banking career involves the invention and generation of capital for other organizations, governments, and other entities. Individuals who opt for a career as Investment Bankers are the head of a team dedicated to raising capital by issuing bonds. Investment bankers are termed as the experts who have their fingers on the pulse of the current financial and investing climate. Students can pursue various Investment Banker courses, such as Banking and Insurance , and  Economics to opt for an Investment Banking career path.

Underwriter

An underwriter is a person who assesses and evaluates the risk of insurance in his or her field like mortgage, loan, health policy, investment, and so on and so forth. The underwriter career path does involve risks as analysing the risks means finding out if there is a way for the insurance underwriter jobs to recover the money from its clients. If the risk turns out to be too much for the company then in the future it is an underwriter who will be held accountable for it. Therefore, one must carry out his or her job with a lot of attention and diligence.

A career as financial advisor is all about assessing one’s financial situation, understanding what one wants to do with his or her money, and helping in creating a plan to reach one’s financial objectives. An Individual who opts for a career as financial advisor helps individuals and corporations reduce spending, pay off their debt, and save and invest for the future. The financial advisor job description includes working closely with both individuals and corporations to help them attain their financial objectives.

Welding Engineer

Welding Engineer Job Description: A Welding Engineer work involves managing welding projects and supervising welding teams. He or she is responsible for reviewing welding procedures, processes and documentation. A career as Welding Engineer involves conducting failure analyses and causes on welding issues. 

Transportation Planner

A career as Transportation Planner requires technical application of science and technology in engineering, particularly the concepts, equipment and technologies involved in the production of products and services. In fields like land use, infrastructure review, ecological standards and street design, he or she considers issues of health, environment and performance. A Transportation Planner assigns resources for implementing and designing programmes. He or she is responsible for assessing needs, preparing plans and forecasts and compliance with regulations.

Conservation Architect

A Conservation Architect is a professional responsible for conserving and restoring buildings or monuments having a historic value. He or she applies techniques to document and stabilise the object’s state without any further damage. A Conservation Architect restores the monuments and heritage buildings to bring them back to their original state.

Safety Manager

A Safety Manager is a professional responsible for employee’s safety at work. He or she plans, implements and oversees the company’s employee safety. A Safety Manager ensures compliance and adherence to Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) guidelines.

Structural Engineer

A Structural Engineer designs buildings, bridges, and other related structures. He or she analyzes the structures and makes sure the structures are strong enough to be used by the people. A career as a Structural Engineer requires working in the construction process. It comes under the civil engineering discipline. A Structure Engineer creates structural models with the help of computer-aided design software. 

Individuals in the architecture career are the building designers who plan the whole construction keeping the safety and requirements of the people. Individuals in architect career in India provides professional services for new constructions, alterations, renovations and several other activities. Individuals in architectural careers in India visit site locations to visualize their projects and prepare scaled drawings to submit to a client or employer as a design. Individuals in architecture careers also estimate build costs, materials needed, and the projected time frame to complete a build.

Landscape Architect

Having a landscape architecture career, you are involved in site analysis, site inventory, land planning, planting design, grading, stormwater management, suitable design, and construction specification. Frederick Law Olmsted, the designer of Central Park in New York introduced the title “landscape architect”. The Australian Institute of Landscape Architects (AILA) proclaims that "Landscape Architects research, plan, design and advise on the stewardship, conservation and sustainability of development of the environment and spaces, both within and beyond the built environment". Therefore, individuals who opt for a career as a landscape architect are those who are educated and experienced in landscape architecture. Students need to pursue various landscape architecture degrees, such as  M.Des , M.Plan to become landscape architects. If you have more questions regarding a career as a landscape architect or how to become a landscape architect then you can read the article to get your doubts cleared. 

Urban Planner

Urban Planning careers revolve around the idea of developing a plan to use the land optimally, without affecting the environment. Urban planning jobs are offered to those candidates who are skilled in making the right use of land to distribute the growing population, to create various communities. 

Urban planning careers come with the opportunity to make changes to the existing cities and towns. They identify various community needs and make short and long-term plans accordingly.

Orthotist and Prosthetist

Orthotists and Prosthetists are professionals who provide aid to patients with disabilities. They fix them to artificial limbs (prosthetics) and help them to regain stability. There are times when people lose their limbs in an accident. In some other occasions, they are born without a limb or orthopaedic impairment. Orthotists and prosthetists play a crucial role in their lives with fixing them to assistive devices and provide mobility.

Veterinary Doctor

Pathologist.

A career in pathology in India is filled with several responsibilities as it is a medical branch and affects human lives. The demand for pathologists has been increasing over the past few years as people are getting more aware of different diseases. Not only that, but an increase in population and lifestyle changes have also contributed to the increase in a pathologist’s demand. The pathology careers provide an extremely huge number of opportunities and if you want to be a part of the medical field you can consider being a pathologist. If you want to know more about a career in pathology in India then continue reading this article.

Speech Therapist

Gynaecologist.

Gynaecology can be defined as the study of the female body. The job outlook for gynaecology is excellent since there is evergreen demand for one because of their responsibility of dealing with not only women’s health but also fertility and pregnancy issues. Although most women prefer to have a women obstetrician gynaecologist as their doctor, men also explore a career as a gynaecologist and there are ample amounts of male doctors in the field who are gynaecologists and aid women during delivery and childbirth. 

An oncologist is a specialised doctor responsible for providing medical care to patients diagnosed with cancer. He or she uses several therapies to control the cancer and its effect on the human body such as chemotherapy, immunotherapy, radiation therapy and biopsy. An oncologist designs a treatment plan based on a pathology report after diagnosing the type of cancer and where it is spreading inside the body.

Audiologist

The audiologist career involves audiology professionals who are responsible to treat hearing loss and proactively preventing the relevant damage. Individuals who opt for a career as an audiologist use various testing strategies with the aim to determine if someone has a normal sensitivity to sounds or not. After the identification of hearing loss, a hearing doctor is required to determine which sections of the hearing are affected, to what extent they are affected, and where the wound causing the hearing loss is found. As soon as the hearing loss is identified, the patients are provided with recommendations for interventions and rehabilitation such as hearing aids, cochlear implants, and appropriate medical referrals. While audiology is a branch of science that studies and researches hearing, balance, and related disorders.

Healthcare Social Worker

Healthcare social workers help patients to access services and information about health-related issues. He or she assists people with everything from locating medical treatment to assisting with the cost of care to recover from an illness or injury. A career as Healthcare Social Worker requires working with groups of people, individuals, and families in various healthcare settings such as hospitals, mental health clinics, child welfare, schools, human service agencies, nursing homes, private practices, and other healthcare settings.  

For an individual who opts for a career as an actor, the primary responsibility is to completely speak to the character he or she is playing and to persuade the crowd that the character is genuine by connecting with them and bringing them into the story. This applies to significant roles and littler parts, as all roles join to make an effective creation. Here in this article, we will discuss how to become an actor in India, actor exams, actor salary in India, and actor jobs. 

Individuals who opt for a career as acrobats create and direct original routines for themselves, in addition to developing interpretations of existing routines. The work of circus acrobats can be seen in a variety of performance settings, including circus, reality shows, sports events like the Olympics, movies and commercials. Individuals who opt for a career as acrobats must be prepared to face rejections and intermittent periods of work. The creativity of acrobats may extend to other aspects of the performance. For example, acrobats in the circus may work with gym trainers, celebrities or collaborate with other professionals to enhance such performance elements as costume and or maybe at the teaching end of the career.

Video Game Designer

Career as a video game designer is filled with excitement as well as responsibilities. A video game designer is someone who is involved in the process of creating a game from day one. He or she is responsible for fulfilling duties like designing the character of the game, the several levels involved, plot, art and similar other elements. Individuals who opt for a career as a video game designer may also write the codes for the game using different programming languages.

Depending on the video game designer job description and experience they may also have to lead a team and do the early testing of the game in order to suggest changes and find loopholes.

Radio Jockey

Radio Jockey is an exciting, promising career and a great challenge for music lovers. If you are really interested in a career as radio jockey, then it is very important for an RJ to have an automatic, fun, and friendly personality. If you want to get a job done in this field, a strong command of the language and a good voice are always good things. Apart from this, in order to be a good radio jockey, you will also listen to good radio jockeys so that you can understand their style and later make your own by practicing.

A career as radio jockey has a lot to offer to deserving candidates. If you want to know more about a career as radio jockey, and how to become a radio jockey then continue reading the article.

Fashion Blogger

Fashion bloggers use multiple social media platforms to recommend or share ideas related to fashion. A fashion blogger is a person who writes about fashion, publishes pictures of outfits, jewellery, accessories. Fashion blogger works as a model, journalist, and a stylist in the fashion industry. In current fashion times, these bloggers have crossed into becoming a star in fashion magazines, commercials, or campaigns. 

Photographer

Photography is considered both a science and an art, an artistic means of expression in which the camera replaces the pen. In a career as a photographer, an individual is hired to capture the moments of public and private events, such as press conferences or weddings, or may also work inside a studio, where people go to get their picture clicked. Photography is divided into many streams each generating numerous career opportunities in photography. With the boom in advertising, media, and the fashion industry, photography has emerged as a lucrative and thrilling career option for many Indian youths.

Social Media Manager

A career as social media manager involves implementing the company’s or brand’s marketing plan across all social media channels. Social media managers help in building or improving a brand’s or a company’s website traffic, build brand awareness, create and implement marketing and brand strategy. Social media managers are key to important social communication as well.

Choreographer

The word “choreography" actually comes from Greek words that mean “dance writing." Individuals who opt for a career as a choreographer create and direct original dances, in addition to developing interpretations of existing dances. A Choreographer dances and utilises his or her creativity in other aspects of dance performance. For example, he or she may work with the music director to select music or collaborate with other famous choreographers to enhance such performance elements as lighting, costume and set design.

Copy Writer

In a career as a copywriter, one has to consult with the client and understand the brief well. A career as a copywriter has a lot to offer to deserving candidates. Several new mediums of advertising are opening therefore making it a lucrative career choice. Students can pursue various copywriter courses such as Journalism , Advertising , Marketing Management . Here, we have discussed how to become a freelance copywriter, copywriter career path, how to become a copywriter in India, and copywriting career outlook. 

Individuals in the editor career path is an unsung hero of the news industry who polishes the language of the news stories provided by stringers, reporters, copywriters and content writers and also news agencies. Individuals who opt for a career as an editor make it more persuasive, concise and clear for readers. In this article, we will discuss the details of the editor's career path such as how to become an editor in India, editor salary in India and editor skills and qualities.

Careers in journalism are filled with excitement as well as responsibilities. One cannot afford to miss out on the details. As it is the small details that provide insights into a story. Depending on those insights a journalist goes about writing a news article. A journalism career can be stressful at times but if you are someone who is passionate about it then it is the right choice for you. If you want to know more about the media field and journalist career then continue reading this article.

For publishing books, newspapers, magazines and digital material, editorial and commercial strategies are set by publishers. Individuals in publishing career paths make choices about the markets their businesses will reach and the type of content that their audience will be served. Individuals in book publisher careers collaborate with editorial staff, designers, authors, and freelance contributors who develop and manage the creation of content.

In a career as a vlogger, one generally works for himself or herself. However, once an individual has gained viewership there are several brands and companies that approach them for paid collaboration. It is one of those fields where an individual can earn well while following his or her passion. 

Ever since internet costs got reduced the viewership for these types of content has increased on a large scale. Therefore, a career as a vlogger has a lot to offer. If you want to know more about the Vlogger eligibility, roles and responsibilities then continue reading the article. 

Travel Journalist

The career of a travel journalist is full of passion, excitement and responsibility. Journalism as a career could be challenging at times, but if you're someone who has been genuinely enthusiastic about all this, then it is the best decision for you. Travel journalism jobs are all about insightful, artfully written, informative narratives designed to cover the travel industry. Travel Journalist is someone who explores, gathers and presents information as a news article.

Videographer

Seo analyst.

An SEO Analyst is a web professional who is proficient in the implementation of SEO strategies to target more keywords to improve the reach of the content on search engines. He or she provides support to acquire the goals and success of the client’s campaigns. 

Quality Controller

A quality controller plays a crucial role in an organisation. He or she is responsible for performing quality checks on manufactured products. He or she identifies the defects in a product and rejects the product. 

A quality controller records detailed information about products with defects and sends it to the supervisor or plant manager to take necessary actions to improve the production process.

Production Manager

Reliability engineer.

Are you searching for a Reliability Engineer job description? A Reliability Engineer is responsible for ensuring long lasting and high quality products. He or she ensures that materials, manufacturing equipment, components and processes are error free. A Reliability Engineer role comes with the responsibility of minimising risks and effectiveness of processes and equipment. 

Corporate Executive

Are you searching for a Corporate Executive job description? A Corporate Executive role comes with administrative duties. He or she provides support to the leadership of the organisation. A Corporate Executive fulfils the business purpose and ensures its financial stability. In this article, we are going to discuss how to become corporate executive.

AWS Solution Architect

An AWS Solution Architect is someone who specializes in developing and implementing cloud computing systems. He or she has a good understanding of the various aspects of cloud computing and can confidently deploy and manage their systems. He or she troubleshoots the issues and evaluates the risk from the third party. 

Azure Administrator

An Azure Administrator is a professional responsible for implementing, monitoring, and maintaining Azure Solutions. He or she manages cloud infrastructure service instances and various cloud servers as well as sets up public and private cloud systems. 

Information Security Manager

Individuals in the information security manager career path involves in overseeing and controlling all aspects of computer security. The IT security manager job description includes planning and carrying out security measures to protect the business data and information from corruption, theft, unauthorised access, and deliberate attack 

Computer Programmer

Careers in computer programming primarily refer to the systematic act of writing code and moreover include wider computer science areas. The word 'programmer' or 'coder' has entered into practice with the growing number of newly self-taught tech enthusiasts. Computer programming careers involve the use of designs created by software developers and engineers and transforming them into commands that can be implemented by computers. These commands result in regular usage of social media sites, word-processing applications and browsers.

ITSM Manager

.net developer.

.NET Developer Job Description: A .NET Developer is a professional responsible for producing code using .NET languages. He or she is a software developer who uses the .NET technologies platform to create various applications. Dot NET Developer job comes with the responsibility of  creating, designing and developing applications using .NET languages such as VB and C#. 

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The novel coronavirus, first detected at the end of 2019, has caused a global pandemic.

The Coronavirus Crisis

Reflections on a lost senior year with hope for the future.

Diane Adame

Elissa

Elissa Nadworny

a speech about covid 19 pandemic

East Ascension High School Valedictorian Emma Cockrum at her home in Prairieville, La., on June 1, 2020. Emily Kask for NPR hide caption

East Ascension High School Valedictorian Emma Cockrum at her home in Prairieville, La., on June 1, 2020.

Emma Cockrum was in her second week of quarantine when her father discovered an old bike behind their house.

And that bicycle turned out to be a gift: With school closed at East Ascension High School in Gonzales, La., bike riding for Emma became a way of coping with the loss of the rest of her senior year.

"I would say the first two to three weeks we were out of school, I was not the most fun person to be around. I was a ticking time bomb," says the 18-year-old, who's headed to Northwestern State University in the fall. "One minute, I would be fine and dandy, and then the next minute, I would be crying."

As she pedaled through her neighborhood each day, those bike rides forced her to stop and take in the world around her — and they became the inspiration behind these words in her valedictorian speech:

"I got to see life happening. I saw families spending time together, like children playing basketball on their driveways, or fathers teaching their own kids to ride bikes. When we stop to observe our surroundings, we are oftentimes provided with new perspectives on our situations."

Dear Class Of 2020: Graduation Messages From Front-Line Workers

Dear Class Of 2020: Graduation Messages From Frontline Workers

The coronavirus pandemic has caused many high school graduations to be replaced with virtual, drive-in and other alternative ceremonies. And so, the tradition of valedictorians and salutatorians addressing their classmates at this huge moment in their young lives is a little different this year.

NPR spoke with a few student leaders about their speeches and how a not-so-typical senior year inspired their words for the class of 2020.

Emma Cockrum

Valedictorian, East Ascension High School, Gonzales, La.

a speech about covid 19 pandemic

East Ascension High School Valedictorian Emma Cockrum with her dog Hercules in front of her old play house at her home in Prairieville, La. Emily Kask for NPR hide caption

East Ascension High School Valedictorian Emma Cockrum with her dog Hercules in front of her old play house at her home in Prairieville, La.

Aside from her bike rides, Cockrum was also inspired by a few words from Sol Rexius, a pastor at The Salt Company Church of Ames in Iowa. She says Rexius uses the analogy of a dump truck full of dirt being emptied all over their senior year. Here's how she put it in her address to her classmates:

This may sound harsh, but it's not untrue to how some of us feel. It is easy to feel buried by our circumstances. However, he [the pastor] goes on to paint a picture of a farmer planting a seed. Did the farmer bury the seed? Well, yes, but he also planted it. Instead of feeling buried by our situation, we must realize that the pain and heartache that has been piled upon us is not meant to bury, but to plant us in a way that will allow us to grow and prosper into who we are meant to be. As you stop and take in the circumstances around you, will you allow yourself to be buried or to be planted? 
As we move on from this place and embark on the next big journey of life, whether that's college, the workforce or something else, life will at some point begin to feel like it's going too fast. My bike rides have taught me a new way to handle these times because they allow me to exercise and be among the beauty of nature, which are things that cause me to slow down. When life becomes too much like a race for you, it may not be riding a bike. It may be playing an instrument, sport, creating art or something else entirely. I encourage you to find that one thing that allows you to unwind and refocus when life seems too much to handle.  Now, I'd like to take you on a bike ride with me as we share this experience together in our faces, something that is both exciting and terrifying: freedom. We sit atop our bikes of life as high school graduates and now have the freedom to choose who we are and where we will go.  

Salutatorian, Paducah Tilghman High School, Paducah, Ky.

Chua says he wanted to make his speech something that would provide some happiness to people, even if only be for a little while. Before offering some advice, he began his speech with a personal take on the famous line from Forrest Gump : "Life is like a box of chocolates."

"Life is like a fistful of Sour Patch Kids," Chua says in his speech, recorded on video from his home in Paducah. "Right now things are sour, but eventually they will turn sweet."

The sharing of knowledge is just as important as receiving it because, without sharing, knowledge has no value. The first piece of advice I want to share is to always try new things and challenge yourself, even if you think it's a bad idea in the process. Always attempt to answer questions and solve problems. Find new ways to do the same tasks. Wear all white to black out. Take that ridiculously difficult course load. Buy that oversized $30 pack of UNO that is literally impossible to shuffle just so you can say you own it. Just spend responsibly, kids. All in all, just make life spicy. Make life something you want to reminisce on.  The second lesson is simple. Just be nice to people. Trust sows the seeds of freedom, and a little respect truly does go a long way. It could even solve a few of the world's problems. You never know when you'll need to fall back on someone, so build strong connections early and maintain them.  Lastly, the phrase "I don't know" is powerful. By admitting ignorance, you are asking to learn. Inevitably, I know I will come upon a hard stop, and I hope that when I do, I'll remind myself to pause and ask for a hand of enlightenment, so that I might come back from that hard experience knowing more than when I started. Life rarely hands you a golden opportunity, so make one. Just as the tornado creates a path in the wake of its destruction, this class of 2020 will, too, create their own, hopefully without the whole destruction part.

Kimani Ross

Valedictorian, Lake City High School, Lake City, S.C.

a speech about covid 19 pandemic

Valedictorian Kimani Ross leads the Lake City High School parade through downtown Lake City, SC. Taylor Adams/SCNow hide caption

Ross says she wanted to remind her class that they can get through any obstacle. She recalls the adversities they've gone through together — like the death of a beloved coach — and the people that doubted her.

Ross says she'll attend North Carolina A&T State University in the fall, where she plans to study nursing.

Many people didn't, and probably still don't believe that I have worked hard enough to be where I am now. I've had people tell me that I don't deserve to be where I am now, and that really made me contemplate, "Do I really deserve this? Should I just give up and let them win?" But look at where I am now. I'm glad that I didn't stop. I'm glad that I didn't let them get to me.  I'm especially glad that I earned this position so that all of the other little girls around Lake City and surrounding areas can look and say that they want to be just like me. I want those little girls to know that they can do it if no one else believes in them, I will always believe in them. Classmates, when we're out in the real world, don't get discouraged about the obstacles that will approach you. As Michelle Obama once said, you should never view your challenges as a disadvantage. Instead, it is important for you to understand that your experience facing and overcoming adversity is actually one of your biggest advantages.

a speech about covid 19 pandemic

Valedictorian Kimani Ross and her family at the Lake City graduation in Lake City, SC. Taylor Adams/SCNow hide caption

Valedictorian Kimani Ross and her family at the Lake City graduation in Lake City, SC.

Lindley Andrew

Salutatorian, Jordan-Matthews High School, Siler City, N.C.

Andrew says her mind flooded with high school memories as she tried to write her speech. This inspired her to get her fellow seniors involved. With the help of her class, she strung together a timeline of national events and local victories.

"Sometimes it's the small, seemingly pointless experiences that leave the most lasting and impactful memories," she says.

Some of us lost our senior sports seasons, our chances to be captains and team leaders. Some lost our final chances to compete for clubs that we've given our all to for the last four years. Some of us lost our final opportunities to perform or display our art, and all of us lost the chance to have all of the fun and closure that we were promised would come in the last three months of our senior year.  Losing the last third of our senior year to a virus was not what we had planned, but it's definitely an experience that will affect our lives forever and a memory that we will never, ever forget. We are made up of our experiences and memories. All of the things that we have been through up to this point make us who we are, and the best part is, we're not done yet. We'll continue to experience things and make memories every day that mold us here and there and to who we truly are and who we are meant to become.  What kind of experiences will you create for yourself? What kind of memories will you make? When things don't go quite as planned, like our senior year, how you handle the disappointments and challenges that you face will determine the experience that you have and the memory you walk away with. 

Favio Gonzalez

Valedictorian, Central Valley High School, Ceres, Calif.

Gonzalez says there were many other events besides the pandemic that helped his class develop their character. In his speech, he highlights the election of President Donald Trump and the prevalence of school shootings. Despite what was happening in the world, he says his class never victimized themselves.

Gonzalez will be attending the University of California, Riverside, where he plans to study biology.

The real test came our senior year with the current pandemic. Although society has developed a higher level of understanding, comprehension and acceptance in years prior, self-victimization has become a common occurrence and is a major impediment in achieving our goals. We expect others to find the solutions to our problems and to provide excessive help, since we truly are powerless in stopping the external factors that impact us constantly, whether it'd be natural disasters, terrorism or disease.  Yet, what many people don't realize is that the impact these unfortunate events have on our lives can be nullified by the effort we place in improving our condition. Learning this from past experiences, our class did not victimize itself. Studying and mastering new material is difficult enough with the help of our amazing teachers, with the added responsibilities of helping more at the house, working an essential job and other challenges that come with being at home, it seemed impossible to keep up with schoolwork. We had to face a multitude of barriers with our unrelenting will to succeed. Standing here today, despite all of the setbacks and obstacles, because of our drive, our perseverance, our willpower to endure is stronger than any deterrent.  Now, as we step into adulthood and start to reach our goals, there will be harder challenges to overcome. But our willpower has been proven irrevocable. Never forget classmates, that as long as you use your unrelenting well, you're an unstoppable force.

Barrie Barto

Valedictorian, South High School, Denver

Barto says when her school closed, she tried ignoring some of the emotions she was processing. "I realized that you need to take the time to acknowledge what we have lost and celebrate how we have grown and how this is going to change us as a class," she says.

This inspired her to write the speech she felt that she needed to hear.

To be honest with everyone, when I sat down to write this speech, I really wanted to avoid talking about everything we miss as a class. It would be way easier to reminisce about when the homecoming bonfire was in the back parking lot. But when people told me they were sorry that my whole senior year was turned upside down, I shrugged it off and said it's not a big deal. It's a hard thing to talk about, and not talking about it seems less painful. But it is a big deal. We missed senior prom and graduation and our barbecue and awards. I would even go back for one more class meeting in the auditorium just to sit in South for one more Thursday. This pandemic was not the defining event for our class. Don't let it be. We had monumental events occur every year we were at South. We have supported our teachers when they rallied for themselves. They've supported us when walking into school was harder than it was any other day. We supported each other through the pains of block day, and air conditioning only working in the winter time, but also shifts in friendships and hard times with family. South brought us all together to teach us something about ourselves that we didn't know before.

Haylie Cortez

Valedictorian, Bartlett High School, Anchorage, Alaska

Cortez says she feels lucky to still be able to give a message and was inspired by what has been helping her cope.

"One of the things that pushes me through everything is knowing that things will go on and stuff will change," she says. "I just want to remind everyone that the future is still there and it's still coming to us."

Cortez plans on attending the University of Alaska Fairbanks in the fall, where she wants to study civil engineering.

We all deserve to celebrate and be proud of ourselves. It's upsetting that we won't have a traditional graduation ceremony and sadly, we cannot control the circumstances that we face today.  What we can do is choose how we respond to it as we take these next steps in life. It can be hard to imagine what life could look like as time progresses. The only certainty we have is that time goes on and the future will arrive. We can use the pandemic as an excuse for why we can't move on in life, or we can use it as a motivator to find our purpose. Whether we plan to go to college, trade school, the military or straight into the workforce, there is no denying that society will gain something worthwhile. The situation we are living through shows how valuable everyone in society is. The world is finally realizing the importance of the jobs of janitors, cashiers, teachers, politicians, first responders and more. Whatever we plan on doing after we graduate, it will impact society. I invite everyone to look to who you can't thank, and take your time to do so, although the door for high school has abruptly shut for us. I would like to remind everyone that another has opened and we can do with it what we want.

The pandemic changed the way we understand speech

A new study examines how certain now-common words influence what we expect to hear.

Our brains are great at filling in the blanks.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve been inundated with words and situations that were uncommon to many people before then. We’ve been in lockdowns, maintained social distance, worn masks, and taken vaccines and boosters, and have been talking about these topics seemingly nonstop. Life has looked very different for most people since the start of the pandemic, and new research suggests it has even altered the way we understand certain words.

Our study , 1 recently published in PLOS ONE, shows how likely we are to perceive these newly common words as a result of the pandemic — to the point that we expect to hear words like “mask” and “isolation,” even when a different but similar-sounding word is actually spoken. What word do you hear in these clips?

Now that we’ve lived through multiple years of the pandemic, you probably thought that the speaker is saying “lockdown,” “infection,” and “testing.” In reality, each recording is only a partial word: “--ockdown,” “in--ection” and “te--ing,” with a cough replacing the missing sound in each word.

The pandemic presented a once-in-a-generation opportunity to study rapid changes in the way we process language, as those changes were in the process of occurring. The abrupt change to everyone’s lives, and to the words that were on everyone’s lips, gave us a naturalistic way to study how the human brain understands speech and engages in statistical language learning. It also allowed us to study how the brain perceives words in noisy situations — like in a bar or on a train — where it’s not always clear exactly what word someone is saying. This research both helps us understand how our brains perform the highly complex task of understanding language, and may also help to better train AI models tasked with understanding human speech.

From April 2020 through February 2021, a total of 899 subjects participated in four experiments, conducted on Amazon Mechanical Turk, testing how they understood words like “mask” and “isolation” — words that did not feature prominently in our speech before COVID, but have now become extremely common. We found drastic, long-lasting cognitive effects in the way our brains understand these words.

What was that you said? What our 10-minute experiments taught us over 10 months

As cognitive psychologists, we love thinking about language and human interaction, and what happens in the brain when we talk to one another. As it became obvious that the sudden, massive societal shift caused by COVID was also changing the frequency with which we heard certain words, we wondered if it would cause any lasting changes to how our brains process language — a critical component of what makes us human.

At the time, we had no idea how the pandemic would unfold or that it would still be with us two and a half years later. This made the fact that we ran our first experiment just weeks after the start of the soon-to-be-commonly referenced “lockdowns” all the more prescient.

First, we decided on a set of 28 words which had become much more frequent after the onset of COVID – words such as “mask” and “lockdown.” To determine both the pre-pandemic frequency of these words (how often they were spoken between January and December 2019), and the post-pandemic-onset frequency of those same words (how often they were used between January and December 2020), we used the News on the Web ( NOW ) corpus — a dataset of thousands of newspaper and magazine articles containing billions of words, which, critically, includes when the articles were published and thus the date that each word was used. It was striking to see how much the frequency of individual words changed in such a short period of time: COVID-related words like “mask” were used three times as frequently during 2020 as they had been during 2019, even though similar-sounding words, like “map”, didn’t change at all.

Our experiments used the phonemic restoration task to test what words listeners understand when they hear something ambiguous. This works by recording a full word — for example, “knockdown” — and then removing one sound from the recording (here, the initial “kn” sound). Then, we replaced the deleted “kn” sound with a noise, as you can hear in the sound clip at the top of the post. We asked participants what word they heard when they listened to this now-incomplete and ambiguous recording. All the words we recorded were one sound away from a COVID-related word, such as "knockdown" instead of “lockdown,” and “task” instead of “mask.” And all of the recorded words were equally common in English as their COVID-related counterparts in 2019, but were much less commonly spoken in 2020.

The roughly 10-minute-long experiments presented each qualified participant with ambiguous auditory inputs. For example, a participant would hear a spoken word accompanied by an overlapping cough, much in the same way we might hear a word spoken in a crowd.

The pandemic changed the ranking of certain words we perceive

We ran a set of four experiments over the course of 10 months, and found that people now understand a slew of spoken words differently. For example, now that “mask” is more common, an ambiguous recording of a similar-sounding word “task” is misunderstood as “mask” three times as often as an ambiguous recording of the word “tap” is misunderstood as “map.” Our study is the first to demonstrate the presence of long-lasting changes in lexical accessibility induced by rapid changes in real-world linguistic input.

More research will be needed over time to confirm whether these pandemic-related words will recede to their pre-pandemic frequencies in our mental lexicons. But the implications are clear: Our brains rapidly adapt to the changing linguistic statistics of the world around us, and we predict and expect more common words compared to less common ones.

This research helps us to better understand how the brain processes language input, and adds to a growing body of research – including from our IBM Research colleagues studying other forms of sensory input – which may eventually inform the building of new AI models structured like our own brains. For example, this understanding of the brain's ability to rapidly adapt to changing word frequencies in real-world input could be applied to help digital assistants adapt to individual users' speech more effectively as well.

  • Rachel Ostrand

Kleinman, D., Morgan, A.M., Ostrand, R., Wittenberg, E. Lasting effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on language processing . PLOS ONE. June 15, 2022. ↩

a speech about covid 19 pandemic

COVID-19 pandemic drives increase in children's speech delays

a speech about covid 19 pandemic

If you're a parent, you know the excitement of waiting for your child's first words, typically somewhere between 12 and 18 months. But since the pandemic, some children have been taking longer to start talking and that's leading to a spike in requests for evaluations by speech pathologists.

It's a trend reporter Lindsey Banks wrote about for the Charlotte Ledger Business Newsletter , and she joins us now to talk more about it.

Marshall Terry: So, Lindsey, what did Charlotte's speech pathologists tell you they're seeing? And how much longer is it taking for some toddlers to speak their first words?

Lindsey Banks: So, since the pandemic, speech pathologists across the country have been reporting a higher percentage of children who need therapy, which they test by a speech evaluation. So they've seen an increase in children who are basically failing their speech evaluations. By failing, I mean they aren't talking and forming words at their age level.

So I spoke with the executive director of the Charlotte Speech and Hearing Center , which is a nonprofit practice in Charlotte that serves Union and Mecklenburg Counties. Her name is Shannon Tucker, and she told me that in 2019, which is pre-pandemic, they screened 2,200 children and saw an average 20% failure rate, which again is referring to those children who aren't speaking at their age level.  

And then in 2022, coming out of the pandemic, they screened around the same number of children and they saw a 50% failure rate. They saw a 65-70% failure rate in those higher poverty areas of Charlotte and Union County.

And then regarding your second question about how much longer it's taking toddlers to speak their first words, it obviously depends on the child. But I spoke with a Charlotte mother who had her son right before the pandemic. He was around five weeks old when the whole world essentially shut down and around nine months (old) when he should have at least been, you know, baby babbling and trying to form words. Her son wasn't making any sounds, and then when he reached 20 months that was still the case — he wasn't talking. They took him in to be screened and they got him into speech therapy.

Terry: So what's leading to this increase in speech delays?

Banks: So stimulation, I learned, outside of the home is so important to children's speech development, and the pandemic shut down everything. So that meant no story time at the library, no play dates, no playing with other children on playgrounds and no trips to the grocery store even. And because these children were staying at home, their only social interactions were with their parents. Maybe their grandparents, maybe a babysitter, but basically adults that knew the child and knew the child's nonverbal cues — the adults were able to anticipate the child's needs before they were able to ask. So for some children, they just essentially were like, ‘Why learn how to speak when, you know, I don't need to. Whenever I need something, it's given to me before I even know I need it myself.’

Terry: Now, not being around other children and adults, as you mentioned is one aspect of this. But what about the wearing of masks, and not being able to see people talk? Did that have an effect?

Banks: Yes, and that's a great question. Another thing that I learned is that lip-reading and watching mouth movement is also an important factor in a child's speech development. And lip-reading usually begins around eight months of age. So they start looking at mouth movements and mimic when they're trying to form words. And so the limited times that young children were leaving the home, you know, during the pandemic, maybe to go to the doctor — or once quarantine restrictions were lifted and parents started to venture out more with their children — they were hearing people talk to them, but they weren't able to see their mouths because they were covered by a mask.

But for (children in) speech therapy, the mother that I spoke to, she told me that her child's therapist during the pandemic wore a clear mask during their in-person session so that (the child) could see her mouth movements. They also offered Zoom therapy sessions as well, which obviously means they didn't have to wear masks. So they were able to see the mouth movement. But if your child had not been evaluated and, you know, they weren't in speech therapy, then any interaction they had outside of the home with adults or other children was behind a mask.

Terry: You report the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association recently sent out a survey to speech pathologists around the country. What did it find?

Banks: They sent out that survey earlier this year. And of the 858 language pathologists that responded, 80% said they believe the pandemic affected the referrals and requests for evaluation of young children. 69% said they were getting more referrals and requests for evaluation of young children than they did before the pandemic began. And then 64% say the main cause for the increase in evaluations after the pandemic is limited opportunities for social interaction or to play with peers, which we talked about earlier.

Terry: So what does all this mean in the long run for children? Are they likely to catch up and even out?

Banks: So Shannon Tucker, the executive director of Charlotte Speech and Hearing Center, she's also a speech pathologist. She told me that language development of children is highly predictive of third-grade reading levels — and even high school graduation — which is why it's so important to have your child evaluated if they are not communicating at the level that they should be. Like with most things, the earlier you diagnose the problem, the easier it is to fix.

Charlotte Speech and Hearing Center has not seen numbers of children being evaluated and failing return to pre-pandemic numbers yet — but they expect it will. Day cares are open, story time with kids, and music classes are, you know, up and running again. And masks aren't really required anymore.

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White House lifting its COVID-19 testing rule for people around Biden, ending a pandemic vestige

President Joe Biden walks towards Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, Friday, March 1, 2024, to travel to Camp David, Md., for the weekend. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

President Joe Biden walks towards Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, Friday, March 1, 2024, to travel to Camp David, Md., for the weekend. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

a speech about covid 19 pandemic

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WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House on Monday lifted its COVID-19 testing requirement for those who plan to be in close contact with President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris and their spouses, bringing to an end the last coronavirus prevention protocol at the White House.

The White House said the change aligns its policies with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance. The agency last week relaxed its recommendation that those who test positive for COVID-19 isolate for five days. Now, the agency says people can return to work or regular activities if their symptoms are mild and improving and it’s been a day since they’ve had a fever.

The White House testing protocol was instituted shortly after the pandemic began in 2020 when former President Donald Trump was in the White House. It was further strengthened by Biden’s administration when he took office amid the pandemic in January 2021.

Both Trump and Biden contracted the virus while in office. Trump required hospitalization after falling seriously ill weeks before the 2020 presidential election; Biden had minimal symptoms after catching it in the summer of 2022 after having been vaccinated.

President Joe Biden speaks to members of the media before boarding Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, Friday, March 1, 2024, to travel to Camp David, Md., for the weekend. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

More than 1.18 million people in the U.S. died from COVID-19, according to CDC data and 6.85 million were hospitalized over the past four years. More than 270 million people have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine in the U.S. The vaccines have helped dramatically reduce instances of serious disease and death since their widespread availability in early 2021.

ZEKE MILLER

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The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW Washington, DC 20500

Remarks by President   Biden on the Anniversary of the COVID- ⁠ 19   Shutdown

8:01 P.M. EST

THE PRESIDENT: Good evening, my fellow Americans.

Tonight, I’d like to talk to you about where we are as we mark one year since everything stopped because of this pandemic.

A year ago, we were hit with a virus that was met with silence and spread unchecked.

Denials for days, weeks, then months that led to more deaths, more infections, more stress, and more loneliness.

Photos and videos from 2019 feel like they were taken in another era. The last vacation. The last birthday with friends. The last holiday with the extended family.

While it was different for everyone, we all lost something.

A collective suffering. A collective sacrifice. A year filled with the loss of life — and the loss of living for all of us.

But, in the loss, we saw how much there was to gain in appreciation, respect, and gratitude.

Finding light in the darkness is a very American thing to do. In fact, it may be the most American thing we do.

And that’s what we’ve done.

We’ve seen frontline and essential workers risking their lives — sometimes losing them — to save and help others. Researchers and scientists racing for a vaccine. And so many of you, as Hemingway wrote, being strong in all the broken places.

I know it’s been hard. I truly know.

As I’ve told you before, I carry a card in my pocket with the number of Americans who have died from COVID to date. It’s on the back of my schedule. As of now, the total deaths in America: 527,726. That’s more deaths than in World War One, World War Two, the Vietnam War, and 9/11 combined.

They were husbands, wives, sons and daughters, grandparents, friends, neighbors — young and old. They leave behind loved ones unable to truly grieve or to heal, even to have a funeral.

But I’m also thinking about everyone else who lost this past year to natural causes, by cruel fate of accident, or other diseases. They, too, died alone. They, too, leave loved ones behind who are hurting badly.

You know, you’ve often heard me say before, I talk about the longest walk any parent can make is up a short flight of stairs to his child’s bedroom to say, “I’m sorry. I lost my job. We can’t be here anymore.” Like my Dad told me when he lost his job in Scranton.

So many of you have had to make that same walk this past year.

You lost your job. You closed your business. Facing eviction, homelessness, hunger, a loss of control, and, maybe worst of all, a loss of hope.

Watching a generation of children who may be set back up to a year or more — because they’ve not been in school — because of their loss of learning.

It’s the details of life that matter most, and we’ve missed those details.

The big details and small moments.

Weddings, birthdays, graduations — all the things that needed to happen but didn’t. The first date. The family reunions. The Sunday night rituals.

It’s all has exacted a terrible cost on the psyche of so many of us. For we are fundamentally a people who want to be with others — to talk, to laugh, to hug, to hold one another.

But this virus has kept us apart.

Grandparents haven’t seen their children or grandchildren. Parents haven’t seen their kids. Kids haven’t seen their friends.

The things we used to do that always filled us with joy have become the things we couldn’t do and broke our hearts.

Too often, we’ve turned against one another.

A mask — the easiest thing to do to save lives — sometimes it divides us.

States pitted against one other instead of working with each other.

Vicious hate crimes against Asian Americans, who have been attacked, harassed, blamed, and scapegoated. At this very moment, so many of them — our fellow Americans — they’re on the frontlines of this pandemic, trying to save lives, and still — still — they are forced to live in fear for their lives just walking down streets in America. It’s wrong, it’s un-American, and it must stop.

Look, we know what we need to do to beat this virus: Tell the truth. Follow the scientists and the science. Work together. Put trust and faith in our government to fulfill its most important function, which is protecting the American people — no function more important.

We need to remember the government isn’t some foreign force in a distant capital. No, it’s us. All of us. “We the People.” For you and I, that America thrives when we give our hearts, when we turn our hands to common purpose. And right now, my friends, we are doing just that. And I have to say, as your President, I am grateful to you.

Last summer, I was in Philadelphia, and I met a small-business owner — a woman. I asked her — I said, “What do you need most?” I’ll never forget what she said to me. She said — looking me in the eye, she said, “I just want the truth. The truth. Just tell me the truth.” Think of that.

My fellow Americans, you’re owed nothing less than the truth.

And for all of you asking when things will get back to normal, here is the truth: The only way to get our lives back, to get our economy back on track is to beat the virus.

You’ve been hearing me say that for — while I was running and the last 50 days I’ve been President. But this is one of the most complex operations we’ve under- — ever undertaken as a nation in a long time.

That’s why I’m using every power I have as President of the United States to put us on a war footing to get the job done. It sounds like hyperbole, but I mean it: a war footing.

And thank God we’re making some real progress now.

On my first full day in office, I outlined for you a comprehensive strategy to beat this pandemic. And we have spent every day since attempting to carry it out.

Two months ago, the country — this country didn’t have nearly enough vaccine supply to vaccinate all or near all of the American public. But soon we will.

We’ve been working with the vaccine manufacturers — Pfizer, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson — to manufacture and purchase hundreds of millions of doses of these three safe, effective vaccines. And now, at the direction and with the assistance of my administration, Johnson & Johnson is working together with a competitor, Merck, to speed up and increase the capacity to manufacture new Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which is one shot.

In fact, just yesterday, I announced — and I met with the CEOs of both companies — I announced our plan to buy an additional 100 million doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccines. These two companies — competitors — have come together for the good of the nation, and they should be applauded for it.

It’s truly a national effort, just like we saw during World War II.

Now because of all the work we’ve done, we’ll have enough vaccine supply for all adults in America by the end of May. That’s months ahead of schedule.

And we’re mobilizing thousands of vaccinators to put the vaccine in one’s arm. Calling on active duty military, FEMA, retired doctors and nurses, administrators, and those to administer the shots.

And we’ve been creating more places to get the shots. We’ve made it possible for you to get a vaccine at nearly one — any one of nearly 10,000 pharmacies across the country, just like you get your flu shot.

We’re also working with governors and mayors, in red states and blue states, to set up and support nearly 600 federally supported vaccination centers that administer hundreds of thousands of shots per day. You can drive up to a stadium or a large parking lot, get your shot, never leave your car, and drive home in less than an hour.

We’ve been sending vaccines to hundreds of community health centers all across America, located in underserved areas. And we’ve been deploying and we will deploy more mobile vehicles and pop-up clinics to meet you where you live so those who are least able to get the vaccine are able to get it.

We continue to work on making at-home testing available.

And we’ve been focused on serving people in the hardest-hit communities of this pandemic — Black, Latino, Native American, and rural communities.

So, what does all this add up to? When I took office 50 days ago, only 8 percent of Americans after months — only 8 percent of those over the age of 65 had gotten their first vaccination. Today, that number is [nearly] 65 percent. Just 14 percent of Americans over the age 75, 50 days ago, had gotten their first shot. Today, that number is well over 70 percent.

With new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — the CDC — that came out on Monday, it means simply this: Millions and millions of grandparents who went months without being able to hug their grandkids can now do so. And the more people who are fully vaccinated, the CD [CDC] will continue to provide guidance on what you can do in the workplace, places of worship, with friends, and as well as travel.

When I came into office, you may recall, I set a goal that many of you said was, kind of, way over the top. I said I intended to get 100 million shots in people’s arms in my first 100 days in office. Tonight, I can say we are not only going to meet that goal, we’re going to beat that goal. Because we’re actually on track to reach this goal of 100 million shots in arms on my 60th day in office. No other country in the world has done this. None.

Now I want to talk about the next steps we’re thinking about.

First, tonight, I’m announcing that I will direct all states, tribes, and territories to make all adults — people 18 and over — eligible to be vaccinated no later than May 1.

Let me say that again: All adult Americans will be eligible to get a vaccine no later than May 1. That’s much earlier than expected.

Let me be clear: That doesn’t mean everyone’s going to have that shot immediately, but it means you’ll be able to get in line beginning May 1. Every adult will be eligible to get their shot.

To do this, we’re going to go from a million shots a day that I promised in December, before I was sworn in, to maintaining — beating our current pace of two million shots a day, outpacing the rest of the world.

Secondly, at the time when every adult is eligible in May, we will launch, with our partners, new tools to make it easier for you to find the vaccine and where to get the shot, including a new website that will help you first find the place to get vaccinated and the one nearest you. No more searching day and night for an appointment for you and your loved ones.

Thirdly, with the passage of the American Rescue Plan — and I thank again the House and Senate for passing it — and my announcement last month of a plan to vaccinate teachers and school staff, including bus drivers, we can accelerate the massive, nationwide effort to reopen our schools safely and meet my goal, that I stated at the same time about 100 million shots, of opening the majority of K-8 schools in my first 100 days in office. This is going to be the number one priority of my new Secretary of Education, Miguel Cardona.

Fourth, in the coming weeks, we will issue further guidance on what you can and cannot do once fully vaccinated, to lessen the confusion, to keep people safe, and encourage more people to get vaccinated.

And finally, fifth, and maybe most importantly: I promise I will do everything in my power, I will not relent until we beat this virus, but I need you, the American people. I need you. I need every American to do their part. And that’s not hyperbole. I need you.

I need you to get vaccinated when it’s your turn and when you can find an opportunity, and to help your family and friends and neighbors get vaccinated as well.

Because here’s the point: If we do all this, if we do our part, if we do this together, by July the 4th, there’s a good chance you, your families, and friends will be able to get together in your backyard or in your neighborhood and have a cookout and a barbeque and celebrate Independence Day. That doesn’t mean large events with lots of people together, but it does mean small groups will be able to get together.

After this long hard year, that will make this Independence Day something truly special, where we not only mark our independence as a nation, but we begin to mark our independence from this virus.

But to get there, we can’t let our guard down.

This fight is far from order — from over. As I told the woman in Pennsylvania, “I will tell you the truth.”

A July 4th with your loved ones is the goal. But a goal — a lot can happen; conditions can change.

The scientists have made clear that things may get worse again as new variants of the virus spread.

And we’ve got work to do to ensure everyone has confidence in the safety and effectiveness of all three vaccines.

So my message to you is this: Listen to Dr. Fauci, one of the most distinguished and trusted voices in the world. He has assured us the vaccines are safe. They underwent rigorous scientific review. I know they’re safe. Vice President Harris and I know they’re safe. That’s why we got the vaccine publicly in front of cameras so — for the world to see, so you could see us do it. The First Lady and the Second Gentleman also got vaccinated.

Talk to your family, your friends, your neighbors — the people you know best who’ve gotten the vaccine.

We need everyone to get vaccinated. We need everyone to keep washing their hands, stay socially distanced, and keep wearing the masks as recommended by the CDC.

Because even if we devote every resource we have, beating this virus and getting back to normal depends on national unity.

And national unity isn’t just how politics and politicians vote in Washington or what the loudest voices say on cable or online. Unity is what we do together as fellow Americans. Because if we don’t stay vigilant and the conditions change, then we may have to reinstate restrictions to get back on track. And, please, we don’t want to do again.

We’ve made so much progress. This is not the time to let up. Just as we are emerging from a dark winter into a hopeful spring and summer is not the time to not stick with the rules.

I’ll close with this.

We’ve lost so much over the last year.

We’ve lost family and friends.

We’ve lost businesses and dreams we spent years building.

We’ve lost time — time with each other.

And our children have lost so much time with their friends, time with their schools. No graduation ceremonies this — this spring. No graduations from college, high school, moving-up ceremonies.

You know, and there’s something else we lost.

We lost faith in whether our government and our democracy can deliver on really hard things for the American people.

But as I stand here tonight, we’re proving once again something I have said time and time again until they’re probably tired of hearing me say it. I say it foreign leaders and domestic alike: It’s never, ever a good bet to bet against the American people. America is coming back.

The development, manufacture, and distribution of the vaccines in record time is a true miracle of science. It is one of the most extraordinary achievements any country has ever accomplished.

And we also just saw the Perseverance rover land on Mars. Stunning images of our dreams that are now a reality. Another example of the extraordinary American ingenuity, commitment, and belief in science and one another.

And today, I signed into law the American Rescue Plan, an historic piece of legislation that delivers immediate relief to millions of people. It includes $1,400 in direct rescue checks — payments. That means a typical family of four earning about $110,000 will get checks for $5,600 deposited if they have direct deposit or in a check — a Treasury check.

It extends unemployment benefits. It helps small businesses. It lowers healthcare premiums for many. It provides food and nutrition, keeps families in their homes. And it will cut child poverty in this country in half, according to the experts. And it fi- — and it funds all the steps I’ve just described to beat the virus and create millions of jobs.

In the coming weeks and months, I’ll be traveling, along with the First Lady, the Vice President, the Second Gentleman and members of my Cabinet, to speak directly to you, to tell you the truth about how the American Rescue Plan meets the moment. And if it fails at any pa-, I will acknowledge that it failed. But it will not.

About how after a long, dark years — one whole year, there is hope and light of better days ahead.

If we all do our part, this country will be vaccinated soon, our economy will be on the mend, our kids will be back in school, and we will have proven once again that this country can do anything — hard things, big things, important things.

Over a year ago, no one could’ve imagined what we were about to go through, but now we’re coming through it, and it’s a shared experience that binds us together as a nation. We are bound together by the loss and the pain of the days that have gone by. But we’re also bound together by the hope and the possibilities of the days in front of us.

My fervent prayer for our country is that, after all we have been through, we’ll come together as one people, one nation, one America.

I believe we can and we will. We’re seizing this moment. And history, I believe, will record: We faced and overcame one of the toughest and darkest periods in this nation’s history — darkest we’ve ever known.

I promise you, we’ll come out stronger with a renewed faith in ourselves, a renewed commitment to one another, to our communities, and to our country.

This is the United States of America, and there is nothing — nothing — from the bottom of my heart, I believe this — there is nothing we can’t do when we do it together.

So God bless you all.

And please, God, give solace to all those people who lost someone.

And may God protect our troops.

Thank you for taking the time to listen.

I look forward to seeing you.

8:27 P.M. EST

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BBC

Covid-19 memorial a time to 'reflect and speak'

A memorial service has taken place to remember lives lost and families affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The service was organised by Covid-19 Families UK, and held at the Church of the Cornerstone in Milton Keynes on Sunday.

The charity's founder, Deborah Lewis, said she hoped it would help "future generations learn from the pandemic".

She said it would help people "reflect and speak about their own worries about death dying and grief".

Ms Lewis, who lives in the city, said the event was for "all lives lost during Covid and giving thanks to those who carried on".

Her father died during the pandemic, and she was unable to be with him, so started the Milton Keynes-based group to help others.

"Many of the bereaved were unable to gather at funerals and to be with their loved ones and for many it will be the first time they will be able to come together with others who understand what that grieving process was," she said.

Chinwe Osaghae, a special needs teacher and community artist in Milton Keynes, said she had "seen extensively" the impact the pandemic has had on the community.

"Adults are living with fear, depression and hopelessness,"she said.

"That hung like a cloud over people in the pandemic, and that has been passed on to the younger people."

Sisters Claire Line and Karen Arundle came to honour their 84-year-old mother, who died during the first Covid-19 lockdown.

Ms Line said they made the 45-minute journey to the service to "be there" for her.

Ms Arundle also wanted to remember her 42-year-old friend who died in the pandemic.

Sam Royston, a director for policy and research at Marie Curie, said: "The Covid pandemic was such a traumatic experience for us all but for the millions of people who were bereaved over the course of the pandemic, the impact of that is likely to be lifelong.

"Taking a moment to commemorate, through events like the one we're holding today, is so important to not just acknowledge those that have died but to acknowledge their lives.

"To remember they lived - and to give the time and space for us all to reflect on the signification of that."

Follow East of England news on Facebook , Instagram and X . Got a story? Email [email protected] or WhatsApp 0800 169 1830

A choir performed at the event, which also had speeches and gave people time to "reflect" Deborah Lewis said

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White House lifting its COVID-19 testing rule…

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White house lifting its covid-19 testing rule for people around biden, ending a pandemic vestige.

a speech about covid 19 pandemic

By ZEKE MILLER (AP White House Correspondent)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House on Monday lifted its COVID-19 testing requirement for those who plan to be in close contact with President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris and their spouses, bringing to an end the last coronavirus prevention protocol at the White House.

The White House said the change aligns its policies with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance. The agency last week relaxed its recommendation that those who test positive for COVID-19 isolate for five days. Now, the agency says people can return to work or regular activities if their symptoms are mild and improving and it’s been a day since they’ve had a fever.

The White House testing protocol was instituted shortly after the pandemic began in 2020 when former President Donald Trump was in the White House. It was further strengthened by Biden’s administration when he took office amid the pandemic in January 2021.

Both Trump and Biden contracted the virus while in office. Trump required hospitalization after falling seriously ill weeks before the 2020 presidential election; Biden had minimal symptoms after catching it in the summer of 2022 after having been vaccinated.

More than 1.18 million people in the U.S. died from COVID-19, according to CDC data and 6.85 million were hospitalized over the past four years. More than 270 million people have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine in the U.S. The vaccines have helped dramatically reduce instances of serious disease and death since their widespread availability in early 2021.

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Nursing Home Staffing Shortages and Other Problems Persist, U.S. Report Says

Infection control lapses, severe staffing shortages and lowering vaccination rates have continued to plague many facilities beyond the pandemic.

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An empty wheelchair in the empty hallway of a nursing care facility.

By Andrew Jacobs

Many Americans prefer to believe the Covid pandemic is a thing of the past. But for the nation’s nursing homes, the effects have yet to fully fade, with staffing shortages and employee burnout still at crisis levels and many facilities struggling to stay afloat, according to a new report published Thursday by federal investigators.

The report, by the inspector general’s office at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, found that the flawed infection-control procedures that contributed to the 170,000 deaths at nursing homes during the pandemic were still inadequate at many facilities. And while the uptake of Covid vaccines was initially robust when they first became available, investigators found that vaccination booster rates among staff workers and residents have been badly lagging.

The findings were directed at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the agency under the department’s jurisdiction that oversees 1.2 million nursing home residents whose care is provided mainly by the federal government. The inspector general’s report described the staffing problems as “monumental,” noting high levels of burnout, frequent employee turnover and the burdens of constantly training new employees, some of whom fail to show up for their first day of work. For nursing homes, the inability to attract and retain certified nurse aides, dietary services staff and housekeeping workers is tied to federal and state reimbursements that do not cover the full cost of care.

Rachel Bryan, a social science analyst with the inspector general’s office, said the report sought to ensure that key lessons from the pandemic were not lost, especially now that the acute sense of urgency has faded.

“Just as airplanes cannot be repaired while in flight, nursing home challenges could not be fully repaired during the pandemic,” she said. “We feel very strongly that as we come out of emergency mode, we take the time to reflect, learn and take real steps toward meaningful change.”

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services declined to discuss the recommendations, and instead directed a reporter to comments the agency provided for the report. Those comments were largely noncommittal, neither agreeing or disagreeing with the recommendations, but agency officials asked that some of the proposed recommendations be removed from the report, saying improvements were already in the works.

The agency, for example, cited a new federal program that will provide $75 million in scholarships and tuition reimbursement for those pursuing careers in nursing.

The report, based on interviews with two dozen nursing home administrators from across the country, paints a picture of an industry in deep turmoil. Many nursing homes are still reeling from the traumas wrought by the pandemic, when shortages of personal protective equipment and widespread fear of infection drove away seasoned employees and forced nursing home operators to bar outside visitors, compounding the fear and isolation of their residents.

At the pandemic’s peak in 2020, two in five Medicare beneficiaries in nursing homes were infected with Covid and more than 1,300 nursing homes had infection rates of 75 percent or higher during surge periods, according to a previous report by the inspector general. In April 2020, for example, there were 1,000 additional deaths per day among Medicare nursing home beneficiaries than in April 2019. Death rates were higher at for-profit nursing homes, investigators found.

At Bethany Home , a nonprofit nursing facility in Lindsborg, Kan., a third of employees quit during the pandemic, many of them driven by their opposition to vaccine mandates or by the nationwide shortage of P.P.E . that forced caregivers to use trash bags as gowns and cotton underwear for masks, said Kris Erickson, Bethany’s chief executive.

“There were days during the pandemic when I measured success by how long I’d gone without crying in my office,” said Mr. Erickson, whose father is a Bethany resident. “It was that tough.”

Bethany has yet to recover. Mr. Erickson said the facility has had to eliminate about 20 of its 85 beds because it’s been unable to hire new staff. For the first time in its 100-year history, Bethany has a waiting list, he said.

The biggest challenge in recruiting workers is the $13.50 hourly pay that Bethany offers to entry-level nurse’s aides — a rate dictated by the reimbursements provided by the federal and state government, he said. “We’re going to need base rate in the $16 to $20 range if we want to compete against McDonald’s in the town next to us,” he said.

The recruitment problems have been exacerbated by private staffing agencies that charge nursing homes as much as 50 percent more for workers, some of whom were described by administrators as less reliable than their permanent employees. “Agency staff comes in and talks about how much money they’re making and our own staff gets upset because agency staff aren’t working as hard,” the report quoted one operator as saying.

Katie Smith Sloan, president of LeadingAge, an association of nonprofit nursing homes, said that higher federal reimbursement rates would help but that the staffing challenges were best addressed by mobilizing a number of government agencies. For example, she said, the Department of Homeland Security could include nursing aides in the temporary worker visa programs that bring in farm workers from abroad, and the Department of Education, with support from Congress, could make Pell grants available to nursing assistant students and culinary worker trainees.

Ms. Sloan and other nursing home advocates have criticized a Biden administration proposal that would require the most thinly staffed nursing homes to hire more workers or face fines. The proposal does not include increased funding that would help facilities meet the new mandates.

“This is bigger than C.M.S.,” Ms. Sloan said, referring to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. “We have to figure out how to creatively apply the things that work to this intractable work force issue.”

There were some bright spots in the inspector general’s findings. Many nursing home administrators said the dire shortages of P.P.E. had eased since 2021. And the report highlighted creative solutions that some nursing homes successfully used to retain staff, among them hiring bonuses, free staff meals and the decision of many institutions to take advantage of licensing waivers that allowed them to provide nursing assistant students with on-the-job training.

And despite the early stumbles, many experts say the initial vaccine rollout was a success, though the spread of vaccine misinformation has significantly reduced the uptake of Covid boosters for nursing home staff workers and residents. Only 41 percent of residents and 7 percent of employees are up to date with vaccines, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention .

But many experts say the nation’s system of caring for its aging population is fundamentally broken. It is a problem that is only becoming more urgent as the demographic bulge of boomers grows older.

Elizabeth White, a professor at Brown University School of Public Health and an expert in long-term care, said the problem reflected a lack of political will to spend what it takes to support Americans in their golden years.

“The pandemic helped highlight the challenges facing nursing homes but it’s still the elephant in the room,” she said. “The financing system is broken, and the problem is just so enormous that it’s very hard to get the political motivation to do anything about it.”

Andrew Jacobs is a health and science reporter, based in New York. He previously reported from Beijing and Brazil and had stints as a metro reporter, Styles writer and national correspondent, covering the American South. More about Andrew Jacobs

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Public trust and confidence underpin success in government’s COVID-19 responses

December 7, 2021.

Ha Noi, 7 December 2021 – The COVID-19 pandemic has been causing more severe impact in 2021 than in 2020. Citizens showed great concern about their personal health (68% of the respondents) and their children’s education (76%). COVID-19 has had created negative impact on employment and income, with 77% of respondents reported income reduction, especially for the poor, ethnic minorities, unskilled, non-agricultural self-employed laborers, those work in the service sector and those living in longer lockdown periods.

These are among the key findings of the sociological survey: “Citizens' Opinions of and Experiences with Government Responses to COVID-19 Pandemic in Viet Nam: Findings from 2 nd Round Phone-Based Survey, 2021”. The survey was conducted by the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the Mekong Development Research Institute (MDRI), with the support and partnership from the Australian Government’s Department for Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).

Citizens’ assessment of government response showed high but declining positive assessment of government performance in handling the pandemic from 2020, with 84% of the respondents rating the responses from the Central Government as good or very good (compared to 97% in 2020), 89% rating the response from their provincial governments’ responses as good or very good (94% in 2020). Citizens showed strong support for strict containment measures; less support for closing open markets and schools.

On the accessibility and effectiveness of the Government’s 26 trillion VND cash aid package, the survey showed that the proportion of people receiving the aid package was low. The poorer had less access than the wealthier. Information about the aid package not well provided for more disadvantageous people. Ethnic minorities, rural and poor people were less likely to know about the package than others. For those who have received the cash aid, delivery was regarded as timely and as informed, but administrative procedures to get access to the cash aid package was not simple.

In the meantime, electronic public administrative services not yet utilized during the 4th wave. Many still had to submit COVID-19 test results to be admitted to healthcare facilities. One of the key issues that the Viet Nam Provincial Governance and Public Administration Performance Index or (PAPI) has pointed out over the past decade has been the suboptimal performance of public hospitals at the district level which are now an important element in the response to the public health crisis.

The survey also reflects citizens’ preference and expectation. Despite significant economic impacts, most respondents clearly prioritized health over economy. As many as 83% of the respondents agreed that “The government’s highest priority should be saving as many lives as possible, even if it means the economy will sustain more damage and recover slowly”. 

“ The Vietnamese experience has demonstrated to the world that public trust and confidence underpin success in government responses .” said UNDP Resident Representative in Viet Nam Caitlin Wiesen . “ The year 2022 is coming with unforeseen challenges ahead of us because the pandemic is still with us and surging in many parts of the world. But with the fast and impressive delivery of COVID-19 vaccination in Viet Nam in recent months, together with citizens’ support for mask mandates and the Government’s agile responses, I believe that Viet Nam is well positioned to overcome the pandemic challenges and to recover soon ”.

Moving forward, the survey suggested that:

  • Citizens’ feedback and preferences on crisis responses are important for the government to review solutions moving forward.
  • Aid packages should target the poor, the unskilled and seasonal laborers, those working in the service and tourism sectors.
  • Community-based support and support from NGOs, social organizations and charity groups and individuals and during the pandemic and similar crises should be appreciated and recognized formally. Simplification of administrative procedures for cash aid packages will make the aid timelier accessed.
  • E-public services should be reassessed and upgraded to be more user-friendly for higher utility of contactless means to interact with the government

Ms. Cherie Russell, Development Counsellor, Australian Embassy Viet Nam: “Through these survey results, we have an important opportunity to hear the voices and experiences of Vietnam’s citizens. This evidence then informs policy decisions and builds more trust within communities for the delivery of these policies.”

Using the Computer Assisted Telephone Interviews (CATI) method, this intensive telephone survey was conducted from 17 September to 15 October 2021 with the participation of 1,501 respondents randomly selected from the 2019 population sample of the Viet Nam Provincial Governance and Public Administration performance Index (PAPI). The aim was to compare views and experiences of permanent residents in all 63 provinces in 2021 with those in 2020 to understand changes before and during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Dr. Phùng Đức Tùng , President, Mekong Development Research Institute: “ This is very timely and important survey that could provide a clear picture about experience, major concerns of households during the lockdown time and the efficiency of the government interventions and policies. The survey results are the guidance for designing the better interventions and policies for the future pandemics”.

Link to the presentation in English and Vietnamese:  https://www.vn.undp.org/content/vietnam/en/home/library/PAPICOVID.html    

The full report to be published in January 2022 and will be posted at  https://papi.org.vn/eng/thematic-research-reports/ .

Media contact: Nguyen Viet Lan, email:  [email protected] , phone number: 0914436769 

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September 9, 2021: remarks on fighting the covid-⁠19 pandemic, about this speech.

September 09, 2021

As the Delta variant of the Covid-19 virus spreads and cases and deaths increase in the United States, President Joe Biden announces new efforts to fight the pandemic. He outlines six broad areas of action--implementing new vaccination requirements, protecting the vaccinated with booster shots, keeping children safe and schools open, increasing testing and masking, protecting our economic recovery, and improving care of those who do get Covid-19. 

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THE PRESIDENT: Good evening, my fellow Americans. I want to talk to you about where we are in the battle against COVID-19, the progress we’ve made, and the work we have left to do.

And it starts with understanding this: Even as the Delta variant 19 [sic] has—COVID-19—has been hitting this country hard, we have the tools to combat the virus, if we can come together as a country and use those tools.

If we raise our vaccination rate, protect ourselves and others with masking and expanded testing, and identify people who are infected, we can and we will turn the tide on COVID-19.

It will take a lot of hard work, and it’s going to take some time. Many of us are frustrated with the nearly 80 million Americans who are still not vaccinated, even though the vaccine is safe, effective, and free.

You might be confused about what is true and what is false about COVID-19. So before I outline the new steps to fight COVID-19 that I’m going to be announcing tonight, let me give you some clear information about where we stand.

First, we have cons—we have made considerable progress

in battling COVID-19. When I became President, about 2 million Americans were fully vaccinated. Today, over 175 million Americans have that protection. 

Before I took office, we hadn’t ordered enough vaccine for every American. Just weeks in office, we did. The week before I took office, on January 20th of this year, over 25,000 Americans died that week from COVID-19. Last week, that grim weekly toll was down 70 percent.

And in the three months before I took office, our economy was faltering, creating just 50,000 jobs a month. We’re now averaging 700,000 new jobs a month in the past three months.

This progress is real. But while America is in much better shape than it was seven months ago when I took office, I need to tell you a second fact.

We’re in a tough stretch, and it could last for a while. The highly contagious Delta variant that I began to warn America about back in July spread in late summer like it did in other countries before us.

While the vaccines provide strong protections for the vaccinated, we read about, we hear about, and we see the stories of hospitalized people, people on their death beds, among the unvaccinated over these past few weeks. 

This is a pandemic of the unvaccinated. And it’s caused by the fact that despite America having an unprecedented and successful vaccination program, despite the fact that for almost five months free vaccines have been available in 80,000 different locations, we still have nearly 80 million Americans who have failed to get the shot. 

And to make matters worse, there are elected officials actively working to undermine the fight against COVID-19. Instead of encouraging people to get vaccinated and mask up, they’re ordering mobile morgues for the unvaccinated dying from COVID in their communities. This is totally unacceptable.

Third, if you wonder how all this adds up, here’s the math: The vast majority of Americans are doing the right thing. Nearly three quarters of the eligible have gotten at least one shot, but one quarter has not gotten any. That’s nearly 80 million Americans not vaccinated. And in a country as large as ours, that’s 25 percent minority. That 25 percent can cause a lot of damage—and they are.

The unvaccinated overcrowd our hospitals, are overrunning the emergency rooms and intensive care units, leaving no room for someone with a heart attack, or pancreitis [pancreatitis], or cancer.

And fourth, I want to emphasize that the vaccines provide very strong protection from severe illness from COVID-19. I know there’s a lot of confusion and misinformation. But the world’s leading scientists confirm that if you are fully vaccinated, your risk of severe illness from COVID-19 is very low. 

In fact, based on available data from the summer, only one of out of every 160,000 fully vaccinated Americans was hospitalized for COVID per day.

These are the facts. 

So here’s where we stand: The path ahead, even with the Delta variant, is not nearly as bad as last winter. But what makes it incredibly more frustrating is that we have the tools to combat COVID-19, and a distinct minority of Americans –supported by a distinct minority of elected officials—are keeping us from turning the corner. These pandemic politics, as I refer to, are making people sick, causing unvaccinated people to die. 

We cannot allow these actions to stand in the way of protecting the large majority of Americans who have done their part and want to get back to life as normal. 

As your President, I’m announcing tonight a new plan to require more Americans to be vaccinated, to combat those blocking public health. 

My plan also increases testing, protects our economy, and will make our kids safer in schools. It consists of six broad areas of action and many specific measures in each that—and each of those actions that you can read more about at WhiteHouse.gov. WhiteHouse.gov.

The measures—these are going to take time to have full impact. But if we implement them, I believe and the scientists indicate, that in the months ahead we can reduce the number of unvaccinated Americans, decrease hospitalizations and deaths, and allow our children to go to school safely and keep our economy strong by keeping businesses open.

First, we must increase vaccinations among the unvaccinated with new vaccination requirements. Of the nearly 80 million eligible Americans who have not gotten vaccinated, many said they were waiting for approval from the Food and Drug Administration—the FDA. Well, last month, the FDA granted that approval.

So, the time for waiting is over. This summer, we made progress through the combination of vaccine requirements and incentives, as well as the FDA approval. Four million more people got their first shot in August than they did in July. 

But we need to do more. This is not about freedom or personal choice. It’s about protecting yourself and those around you—the people you work with, the people you care about, the people you love.

My job as President is to protect all Americans. 

So, tonight, I’m announcing that the Department of Labor is developing an emergency rule to require all employers with 100 or more employees, that together employ over 80 million workers, to ensure their workforces are fully vaccinated or show a negative test at least once a week.

Some of the biggest companies are already requiring this: United Airlines, Disney, Tysons Food, and even Fox News.

The bottom line: We’re going to protect vaccinated workers from unvaccinated co-workers. We’re going to reduce the spread of COVID-19 by increasing the share of the workforce that is vaccinated in businesses all across America.

My plan will extend the vaccination requirements that I previously issued in the healthcare field. Already, I’ve announced, we’ll be requiring vaccinations that all nursing home workers who treat patients on Medicare and Medicaid, because I have that federal authority.

Tonight, I’m using that same authority to expand that to cover those who work in hospitals, home healthcare facilities, or other medical facilities–a total of 17 million healthcare workers.

If you’re seeking care at a health facility, you should be able to know that the people treating you are vaccinated. Simple. Straightforward. Period.

Next, I will sign an executive order that will now require all executive branch federal employees to be vaccinated—all. And I’ve signed another executive order that will require federal contractors to do the same.

If you want to work with the federal government and do business with us, get vaccinated. If you want to do business with the federal government, vaccinate your workforce. 

And tonight, I’m removing one of the last remaining obstacles that make it difficult for you to get vaccinated.

The Department of Labor will require employers with 100 or more workers to give those workers paid time off to get vaccinated. No one should lose pay in order to get vaccinated or take a loved one to get vaccinated.

Today, in total, the vaccine requirements in my plan will affect about 100 million Americans—two thirds of all workers. 

And for other sectors, I issue this appeal: To those of you running large entertainment venues—from sports arenas to concert venues to movie theaters—please require folks to get vaccinated or show a negative test as a condition of entry.

And to the nation’s family physicians, pediatricians, GPs—general practitioners—you’re the most trusted medical voice to your patients. You may be the one person who can get someone to change their mind about being vaccinated. 

Tonight, I’m asking each of you to reach out to your unvaccinated patients over the next two weeks and make a personal appeal to them to get the shot. America needs your personal involvement in this critical effort.

And my message to unvaccinated Americans is this: What more is there to wait for? What more do you need to see? We’ve made vaccinations free, safe, and convenient.

The vaccine has FDA approval. Over 200 million Americans have gotten at least one shot. 

We’ve been patient, but our patience is wearing thin. And your refusal has cost all of us. So, please, do the right thing. But just don’t take it from me; listen to the voices of unvaccinated Americans who are lying in hospital beds, taking their final breaths, saying, “If only I had gotten vaccinated.” “If only.”

It’s a tragedy. Please don’t let it become yours.

The second piece of my plan is continuing to protect the vaccinated.

For the vast majority of you who have gotten vaccinated, I understand your anger at those who haven’t gotten vaccinated. I understand the anxiety about getting a “breakthrough” case.

But as the science makes clear, if you’re fully vaccinated, you’re highly protected from severe illness, even if you get COVID-19. 

In fact, recent data indicates there is only one confirmed positive case per 5,000 fully vaccinated Americans per day.

You’re as safe as possible, and we’re doing everything we can to keep it that way—keep it that way, keep you safe.

That’s where boosters come in—the shots that give you even more protection than after your second shot.

Now, I know there’s been some confusion about boosters. So, let me be clear: Last month, our top government doctors announced an initial plan for booster shots for vaccinated Americans. They believe that a booster is likely to provide the highest level of protection yet.

Of course, the decision of which booster shots to give, when to start them, and who will give them, will be left completely to the scientists at the FDA and the Centers for Disease Control.

But while we wait, we’ve done our part. We’ve bought enough boosters—enough booster shots—and the distribution system is ready to administer them.

As soon as they are authorized, those eligible will be able to get a booster right away in tens of thousands of site across the—sites across the country for most Americans, at your nearby drug store, and for free. 

The third piece of my plan is keeping—and maybe the most important—is keeping our children safe and our schools open. For any parent, it doesn’t matter how low the risk of any illness or accident is when it comes to your child or grandchild. Trust me, I know. 

So, let me speak to you directly. Let me speak to you directly to help ease some of your worries.

It comes down to two separate categories: children ages 12 and older who are eligible for a vaccine now, and children ages 11 and under who are not are yet eligible.

The safest thing for your child 12 and older is to get them vaccinated. They get vaccinated for a lot of things. That’s it. Get them vaccinated.

As with adults, almost all the serious COVID-19 cases we’re seeing among adolescents are in unvaccinated 12- to 17-year-olds—an age group that lags behind in vaccination rates.

So, parents, please get your teenager vaccinated.

What about children under the age of 12 who can’t get vaccinated yet? Well, the best way for a parent to protect their child under the age of 12 starts at home. Every parent, every teen sibling, every caregiver around them should be vaccinated. 

Children have four times higher chance of getting hospitalized if they live in a state with low vaccination rates rather than the states with high vaccination rates. 

Now, if you’re a parent of a young child, you’re wondering when will it be—when will it be—the vaccine available for them. I strongly support an independent scientific review for vaccine uses for children under 12. We can’t take shortcuts with that scientific work. 

But I’ve made it clear I will do everything within my power to support the FDA with any resource it needs to continue to do this as safely and as quickly as possible, and our nation’s top doctors are committed to keeping the public at large updated on the process so parents can plan.

Now to the schools. We know that if schools follow the science and implement the safety measures—like testing, masking, adequate ventilation systems that we provided the money for, social distancing, and vaccinations—then children can be safe from COVID-19 in schools.

Today, about 90 percent of school staff and teachers are vaccinated. We should get that to 100 percent. My administration has already acquired teachers at the schools run by the Defense Department—because I have the authority as President in the federal system—the Defense Department and the Interior Department—to get vaccinated. That’s authority I possess. 

Tonight, I’m announcing that we’ll require all of nearly 300,000 educators in the federal paid program, Head Start program, must be vaccinated as well to protect your youngest—our youngest—most precious Americans and give parents the comfort.

And tonight, I’m calling on all governors to require vaccination for all teachers and staff. Some already have done so, but we need more to step up. 

Vaccination requirements in schools are nothing new. They work. They’re overwhelmingly supported by educators and their unions. And to all school officials trying to do the right thing by our children: I’ll always be on your side. 

Let me be blunt. My plan also takes on elected officials and states that are undermining you and these lifesaving actions. Right now, local school officials are trying to keep children safe in a pandemic while their governor picks a fight with them and even threatens their salaries or their jobs. Talk about bullying in schools. If they’ll not help—if these governors won’t help us beat the pandemic, I’ll use my power as President to get them out of the way. 

The Department of Education has already begun to take legal action against states undermining protection that local school officials have ordered. Any teacher or school official whose pay is withheld for doing the right thing, we will have that pay restored by the federal government 100 percent. I promise you I will have your back. 

The fourth piece of my plan is increasing testing and masking. From the start, America has failed to do enough COVID-19 testing. In order to better detect and control the Delta variant, I’m taking steps tonight to make testing more available, more affordable, and more convenient. I’ll use the Defense Production Act to increase production of rapid tests, including those that you can use at home. 

While that production is ramping up, my administration has worked with top retailers, like Walmart, Amazon, and Kroger’s, and tonight we’re announcing that, no later than next week, each of these outlets will start to sell at-home rapid test kits at cost for the next three months. This is an immediate price reduction for at-home test kits for up to 35 percent reduction.

We’ll also expand—expand free testing at 10,000 pharmacies around the country. And we’ll commit—we’re committing $2 billion to purchase nearly 300 million rapid tests for distribution to community health centers, food banks, schools, so that every American, no matter their income, can access free and convenient tests. This is important to everyone, particularly for a parent or a child—with a child not old enough to be vaccinated. You’ll be able to test them at home and test those around them.

In addition to testing, we know masking helps stop the spread of COVID-19. That’s why when I came into office, I required masks for all federal buildings and on federal lands, on airlines, and other modes of transportation. 

Today—tonight, I’m announcing that the Transportation Safety Administration—the TSA—will double the fines on travelers that refuse to mask. If you break the rules, be prepared to pay. 

And, by the way, show some respect. The anger you see on television toward flight attendants and others doing their job is wrong; it’s ugly. 

The fifth piece of my plan is protecting our economic recovery. Because of our vaccination program and the American Rescue Plan, which we passed early in my administration, we’ve had record job creation for a new administration, economic growth unmatched in 40 years. We cannot let unvaccinated do this progress—undo it, turn it back. 

So tonight, I’m announcing additional steps to strengthen our economic recovery. We’ll be expanding COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan programs. That’s a program that’s going to allow small businesses to borrow up to $2 million from the current $500,000 to keep going if COVID-19 impacts on their sales. 

These low-interest, long-term loans require no repayment for two years and be can used to hire and retain workers, purchase inventory, or even pay down higher cost debt racked up since the pandemic began. I’ll also be taking additional steps to help small businesses stay afloat during the pandemic. 

Sixth, we’re going to continue to improve the care of those who do get COVID-19. In early July, I announced the deployment of surge response teams. These are teams comprised of experts from the Department of Health and Human Services, the CDC, the Defense Department, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency—FEMA—to areas in the country that need help to stem the spread of COVID-19. 

Since then, the federal government has deployed nearly 1,000 staff, including doctors, nurses, paramedics, into 18 states. Today, I’m announcing that the Defense Department will double the number of military health teams that they’ll deploy to help their fellow Americans in hospitals around the country. 

Additionally, we’re increasing the availability of new medicines recommended by real doctors, not conspir-—conspiracy theorists. The monoclonal antibody treatments have been shown to reduce the risk of hospitalization by up to 70 percent for unvaccinated people at risk of developing sefe-—severe disease. 

We’ve already distributed 1.4 million courses of these treatments to save lives and reduce the strain on hospitals. Tonight, I’m announcing we will increase the average pace of shipment across the country of free monoclonal antibody treatments by another 50 percent.

Before I close, let me say this: Communities of color are disproportionately impacted by this virus. And as we continue to battle COVID-19, we will ensure that equity continues to be at the center of our response. We’ll ensure that everyone is reached. My first responsibility as President is to protect the American people and make sure we have enough vaccine for every American, including enough boosters for every American who’s approved to get one. 

We also know this virus transcends borders. That’s why, even as we execute this plan at home, we need to continue fighting the virus overseas, continue to be the arsenal of vaccines. 

We’re proud to have donated nearly 140 million vaccines over 90 countries, more than all other countries combined, including Europe, China, and Russia combined. That’s American leadership on a global stage, and that’s just the beginning.

We’ve also now started to ship another 500 million COVID vaccines—Pfizer vaccines—purchased to donate to 100 lower-income countries in need of vaccines. And I’ll be announcing additional steps to help the rest of the world later this month.

As I recently released the key parts of my pandemic preparedness plan so that America isn’t caught flat-footed when a new pandemic comes again—as it will—next month, I’m also going to release the plan in greater detail.

So let me close with this: We have so-—we’ve made so much progress during the past seven months of this pandemic. The recent increases in vaccinations in August already are having an impact in some states where case counts are dropping in recent days. Even so, we remain at a critical moment, a critical time. We have the tools. Now we just have to finish the job with truth, with science, with confidence, and together as one nation.

Look, we’re the United States of America. There’s nothing—not a single thing—we’re unable to do if we do it together. So let’s stay together.

God bless you all and all those who continue to serve on the frontlines of this pandemic. And may God protect our troops.

Get vaccinated.

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    Speeches / Detail / WHO Director-General's opening remarks at the media briefing on COVID-19 - 20 March 2020 ... As I keep saying, solidarity is the key to defeating COVID-19 - solidarity between countries, but also between age groups. ... Unlike any pandemic in history, we have the power to change the way this goes. ...

  11. 8 Lessons We Can Learn From the COVID-19 Pandemic

    The CDC reports that the percentage of adults who reported symptoms of anxiety of depression in the past 7 days increased from 36.4 to 41.5 % from August 2020 to February 2021. Other reports show that having COVID-19 may contribute, too, with its lingering or long COVID symptoms, which can include "foggy mind," anxiety, depression, and post ...

  12. 2 Minute Speech on Covid-19 (CoronaVirus) for Students

    The first instance of Covid - 19 was discovered in December 2019 in Wuhan, China. The World Health Organization proclaimed the covid - 19 pandemic in March 2020. It has now reached every country in the globe. Droplets produced by an infected person's cough or sneeze might infect those nearby. The severity of Covid-19 symptoms varies widely.

  13. Speech by Governor Bowman on the pandemic's effect on the economy and

    But that picture was dramatically altered with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Efforts to contain the spread of the virus caused a sudden stop in economic activity during March and April. While the extent of the closures and shutdowns varied widely throughout the country, the sudden loss of employment and the contraction in output were like ...

  14. Graduation Speeches During The COVID-19 Pandemic : NPR

    Graduation Speeches During The COVID-19 Pandemic NPR spoke with a few student leaders about their graduations speeches and how a not-so-typical senior year inspired their words for the class of 2020.

  15. Sept. 9, 2021, Biden speech and Covid-19 vaccine news

    President Biden announced that all federal workers must be vaccinated during a speech today on the next phase of his pandemic response.; Covid-19 cases have been on the rise in much of the US, and ...

  16. The pandemic changed the way we understand speech

    A new study examines how certain now-common words influence what we expect to hear. Our brains are great at filling in the blanks. During the COVID-19 pandemic, we've been inundated with words and situations that were uncommon to many people before then. We've been in lockdowns, maintained social distance, worn masks, and taken vaccines and ...

  17. Language acquisition in a post-pandemic context: the impact of measures

    The COVID-19 pandemic context and, especially, the measures against the virus adopted worldwide might have had an impact on children's language development. On the one hand, the generalised use of masks diminishes the quality of linguistic input, since masks distort the acoustic speech signal and, besides, they reduce visual cues to speech.

  18. Impact of COVID-19 on the Speech and Language Therapy Profession and

    Introduction: The UK's response to the COVID-19 pandemic presented multiple challenges to healthcare services including the suspension of non-urgent care. The impact on neurorehabilitation professions, including speech and language therapy (SLT), has been substantial. Objectives: To review the changes to SLT services triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic with respect to referral rates, service ...

  19. COVID-19 pandemic drives increase in children's speech delays

    Since the COVID-19 pandemic, speech pathologists across the country have been reporting a higher percentage of children who need therapy. If you're a parent, you know the excitement of waiting for ...

  20. The White House lifts its last COVID-19 prevention protocol

    The White House has lifted its COVID-19 testing requirement for those who plan to be in close contact with President Joe Biden, ... The White House testing protocol was instituted shortly after the pandemic began in 2020 when former President Donald Trump was in the White House. It was further strengthened by Biden's administration when he ...

  21. Remarks by President Biden on the Anniversary of the COVID-19 Shutdown

    19. Shutdown. THE PRESIDENT: Good evening, my fellow Americans. Tonight, I'd like to talk to you about where we are as we mark one year since everything stopped because of this pandemic. A year ...

  22. Covid pandemic may have been started by scientists, professor tells UN

    Covid pandemic may have been started by scientists, professor tells UN Dr Filippa Lentzos calls for better regulation after saying coronavirus may be from 'research-related incident'

  23. Covid-19 memorial a time to 'reflect and speak'

    A memorial service has taken place to remember lives lost and families affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. The service was organised by Covid-19 Families UK, and held at the Church of the ...

  24. CDC drops 5-day isolation guidance for Covid-19, moving away from key

    The change ends a strategy from earlier in the pandemic that experts said has been important to controlling the spread of the infection. People who test positive for Covid-19 no longer need to ...

  25. WHO Director-General's keynote speech at the Global Pandemic

    But of course, COVID-19 will not be the last Disease X. Epidemics and pandemics are a fact of nature, exacerbated in our time by urbanization, encroachment on habitats, the climate crisis and insecurity. There can be no health without peace, and no peace without health - and that is true everywhere, from Ethiopia to Syria, Yemen and Ukraine.

  26. White House lifting its COVID-19 testing rule for people around Biden

    More than 1.18 million people in the U.S. died from COVID-19, according to CDC data and 6.85 million were hospitalized over the past four years. More than 270 million people have received at least ...

  27. Nursing Home Staffing Shortages and Other Problems Still Persist

    At the pandemic's peak in 2020, two in five Medicare beneficiaries in nursing homes were infected with Covid and more than 1,300 nursing homes had infection rates of 75 percent or higher during ...

  28. Public trust and confidence underpin success in government's COVID-19

    But with the fast and impressive delivery of COVID-19 vaccination in Viet Nam in recent months, together with citizens' support for mask mandates and the Government's agile responses, I believe that Viet Nam is well positioned to overcome the pandemic challenges and to recover soon". Moving forward, the survey suggested that:

  29. September 9, 2021: Remarks on Fighting the COVID-⁠19 Pandemic

    September 09, 2021. Source The White House. As the Delta variant of the Covid-19 virus spreads and cases and deaths increase in the United States, President Joe Biden announces new efforts to fight the pandemic. He outlines six broad areas of action--implementing new vaccination requirements, protecting the vaccinated with booster shots ...

  30. Milton Keynes Covid-19 memorial a time to 'reflect and speak'

    A choir performed at the event, which also had speeches and gave people time to "reflect" Deborah Lewis said. ... Claire Line and Karen Arundel lost their mother during the Covid-19 pandemic.