Administration of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis put the Orange County Health Director, Dr. Raul Pino on leave this week after encouraging his staff to get vaccinated.
Pino had written in a Jan. 4 email to his staff: “I struggle to understand how we can be in public health and not practice it,” reported WMFE, a public radio station in Orlando.
Pino’s email to his staff detailed that only 219 of his 568 staff members had received two doses. “I’m sorry, but in the absence of real and reasonable reasons, it is irresponsible not to get vaccinated. We have been at this for two years, we were the first to give vaccines to the masses, we have done more than 300,000 and we are not even 50% pathetic, ”he wrote.
DeSantis and his state surgeon general, Joseph Ladapo, have questioned the efficacy of masks and vaccines. The state Department of Health has also advised against testing people who do not have symptoms, stating that “testing for COVID-19 is unlikely to have any clinical benefit.”
— frank Gluck, Fort Myers News-Press
Also in the news:
►The singer Adele has postponed his residency in Las Vegas Due to COVID-related production delays, the singer announced a day before her first show was due to start.
►A passenger’s refusal to wear a face mask on board, which is required by federal law, forced an American Airlines flight to London to return to Miami this week. Police did not arrest the woman, and the department spokesman said American Airlines will handle the incident administratively.
► The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services mandated that nursing homes provide COVID-19 vaccinations to on-site residents.
📈Today’s Numbers: The United States has recorded more than 69 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 and more than 860,000 deaths, according to Data from Johns Hopkins University. Global totals: more than 340 million cases and more than 5.57 million deaths. More than 209 million Americans, 63%, are fully vaccinated, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
📘 What we are reading: A national chain of coronavirus testing sites known as the Center for COVID Control is facing increasing scrutiny after USA TODAY reporter Grace Hauck began asking questions. Read more.
The US Department of Homeland Security announced Thursday that essential workers crossing US land borders, such as truck drivers and nurses, will be required to present proof of vaccination against COVID-19 beginning Saturday.
The United States began allowing fully vaccinated foreign nationals to cross its land borders in November for non-essential purposes, such as tourism or visiting friends and family. for the first time since March 2020. The new announcement extends the vaccination requirement to essential workers who are not US citizens or lawful permanent residents.
Unlike those who arrive by plane, those who arrive by land will not have to travel show proof of a negative COVID-19 test for entry
“These updated travel requirements reflect the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to protecting public health while safely facilitating cross-border trade and travel that is critical to our economy,” said DHS Secretary Alejandro N. Mayorkas, in a press release.
Earlier this month, US federal officials warned US travelers to avoid Canada due to its “very high” level of COVID-19, it upgraded its travel health advisory from level 3 to level 4, the highest alert level.
“If you must travel to Canada, make sure you are fully vaccinated before you travel,” the CDC warned on its website. “Due to the current situation in Canada, even fully vaccinated travelers may be at risk of contracting and spreading variants of COVID-19.”
A Massachusetts man and pizzeria owner died while waiting for a hospital bed open after contracting COVID-19
Antonios “Tony” Tsantinis, 68, of East Brookfield, Massachusetts, died on December 10. He had gotten sick just after Thanksgiving, and his longtime partner, Angela DiUlio, was sick, too. During a trip to the emergency room, they both tested positive for COVID-19.
Tsantinis was admitted to a hospital in Southbridge, Massachusetts, after her daughter, Rona Tsantinis-Roy, realized she had become very ill. She needed additional care that the hospital could not provide and she searched for an available hospital bed.
“They called every hospital in a 75-mile radius,” Tsantinis-Roy said, adding that when there was a place for him at a Connecticut hospital, he was too sick to be moved.
While battling COVID-19, her kidneys began to fail and she needed dialysis, according to NPR. A short time later, Tsantinis-Roy and his brother, Andy Tsantinis, saw his father, but it was to say goodbye.
“He literally looked me in the eye and said this didn’t have to happen,” Tsantinis-Roy told NPR when the doctor told him his father had died.
— Asha C. Gilbert, USA TODAY, and Kim Ring, Telegram & Gazette
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism