Daily Archives: June 7, 2022

a pox on both your houses

This is kind of hilarious and kind of not.  I noticed last week, per the NY Times, that the CDC had introduced a recommendation that everyone, including in the US, wear masks during travel to avoid monkeypox.  I was surprised at the lack of coverage of this recommendation.  Given that monkeypox, like Covid, is not going away, this was another clear indication of preference of our health overlords for permanent masking.  I guess some Democrats must have felt it might hurt their re-election prospects, because the recommendation was withdrawn the next day.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated its guidance last week for travelers wishing to protect themselves against monkeypox. This was one of its recommendations: “Wear a mask. Wearing a mask can help protect you from many diseases, including monkeypox.”

Late Monday night, that recommendation was deleted.

“C.D.C. removed the mask recommendation from the monkeypox travel health notice because it caused confusion,” the agency said in a statement on Tuesday.

(My read of the original story was that the recommendation was that EVERYONE should wear masks, not just those who wanted to protect themselves.  But I only read the NYTimes story, not the CDC guidance.)

But in briefings with the press and with the general public, health officials have not explicitly addressed the possibility of airborne transmission or the use of masks for protection.

And in interviews, they emphasized the role of large respiratory droplets that are expelled from infected patients and drift onto objects or people.

I kind of feel like Covid showed that the difference between “droplets” and airborne is academic.  Airborne is airborne.  I guess the NY Times picked up on that not-so-subtle point also:

The C.D.C.’s swift about-face on masks for travelers concerned about monkeypox was reminiscent of its early denials that the coronavirus was airborne. In September 2020, the agency published guidance on airborne transmission of the virus and then abruptly withdrew it just days later.

It was not until May 2021 that the agency acknowledged that the coronavirus could “remain suspended in the air for minutes to hours.”

And then there’s this:

“Most people think that smallpox usually is transmitted by large droplets, but it can, for whatever reason, occasionally be transmitted by small-particle aerosols,” said Mark Challberg, a virologist at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

I’d say we can trust the CDC about as far as we can throw them on monkeypox, much like on Covid in the early days months years.



home office

I finally have my IT set up to my satisfaction – laptop plus two 27″ high res screens.  I never bothered doing much with my home office in 2019 since (a) I as mostly doing management and didn’t really need large screens and (b) I was pregnant and felt like crap and “worked” lying in bed with my laptop half the time anyway.

Now all I have to do is do some work!  It amuses me that you can see evidence of my hobbies in the background – English paper piecing, cycling, and skiing.