The Scoop on Boosters

The Space Shuttle Columbia on its launch pad mounted to its external fuel tank and two solid rocket boosters in 1981. These solid rocket boosters have no connection to the boosters discussed in this post. (Photo credit: US National Archive / public domain)
Thursday, October 21, 2021 Now again, with a flurry of recent news about vaccination options, I present answers to questions I’m frequently asked, or wish I was. Public health officials are talking about “boosters” and “third doses” as if they’re different things. Are they? Those are two bits of jargon that are worth explaining. Then you too can talk like the cool kids at the Department of Health. Additional doses (or third doses in...

Mandate Vaccines, Not Masks

Sunday, August 1, 2021 A couple of months ago I was desperately hoping that my next post about COVID-19 would be a retrospective, summarizing what we had learned and looking forward to a post-pandemic world. I am extremely ready to be done with this microscopic monster, but it is clearly not done with us. In More

The Light at the End of the Tunnel

7-day average of daily LA County COVID-19 cases calculated on Sundays
Wednesday, March 17, 2021

It's been a long dark night And I've been a waitin' for the morning It's been a long hard fight But I see a brand new day a dawning

-- Dolly Parton, Light of a Clear Blue Morning

In medicine, the light at the end of the tunnel is usually the colonoscope, but this time, of course, I’m speaking metaphorically. After a year of death, sickness, loss of work, overflowing hospitals and a complete di...

A New Hope

7-day average of daily LA County COVID-19 cases and deaths calculated on Sundays
How’s it going in Los Angeles with the pandemic? The numbers in LA are absolutely dreadful. Daily new cases, hospitalizations, and deaths are at all-time highs. The current case numbers make the mountain of cases this summer look like a molehill. In July I worried that a COVID death rate in the 40s per day would make COVID a contender for the leading killer in LA...

Influenza Vaccination Frequently Unasked Questions

Tuesday, September 8, 2020 With fall almost upon us, patients are abuzz with questions about this season’s flu shot. Below I try to answer the questions they should be asking. I hear the flu shot is especially important this year because of the coronavirus pandemic. That’s not a question. I thought I was going to be answering questions. Is this a rambling stream of consciousness post, or a question and answer post? Wow. You really need more coffee. OK. Ho...

Our Quandary and Your Queries

7-day average COVID-19 cases and deaths calculated on Sundays
Wednesday, July 22, 2020 In my last post three weeks ago I observed the trend that the number of new daily COVID-19 cases had been increasing for two months in LA County while deaths from COVID had been decreasing. That post generated many questions and responses. (Thanks!) Today I’d like to update us on the situation in LA and answer some of the questions you posed. About two w...