And why they should be working in overdrive to do the opposite.
Speaking as someone who is immunocomprimised, I am beyond frustrated will all the people who refuse to get updated vaccines. I guess I will be wearing masks and spending lots of time by myself and it is getting very old. Oh and I live in Alabama.
When I lived and worked in Oklahoma, the State was active in managing PH data, to the chagrin of the State's own epidemiologists, whom I was working with for the organization I was supporting. Excess death reports had to be vetted by the Governor's office. Misinformation sponsored by elected officials is a serious problem.
Omg. They told you what you could and could not say? The fact that censorship and propoganda are becoming so normalized is scary.
Both Rick Scott and DeSantis declined the Medicaid expansion under the ACA for all Floridians and they continue to undermine public health and Healthcare at every possible opportunity. We cannot count on our state government to protect us. Florida is a GOP occupied state due to 20+ years of GOP gerrymandering and voter suppression and it will not get better as long as the GOP remains in charge.
Vaccine and mask mandates are illegal in Florida. Scientists and professionals are told to lie or they cannot speak. We are NOT okay.
It would be useful when showing graphs to identify what the colors in the graph refer to in order to interpret it.
Speaking as someone who worked in Florida public health for 20 years, pre-COVID: Florida's population can be divided into several groups demographically: broadly, pepole who were born in Florida and have pretty much always lived there; people who were born elsewhere in the US and moved there later in life, most often upon retirement; and people who were born in other countries. The people who moved from elsewhere in the US have relatively good health status that reflects where they grew up and lived most of their lives. So they have disease patterns more like those of the upper Midwest or the Northeast. The health status of people born in Florida is more like that of those born in the Deep South -- Alabama and Georgia, for example. So health measures like life expectancy put Florida above most of the southern states, but below the rest of the country, because of the mix of Florida-born and migrant populations.
People who were born outside the US and later migrated to Florida also bring the disease patterns of their home countries, which may include some risks like tuberculosis that are otherwise rare in the US now; but they also benefit from a 'healthy migrant' effect -- the people who are healthy and vigorous enough to immigrate are healthier than the people who stay home, on average.
So Florida's statewide health status measures reflect the beneficial effects for many residents of having grown up in healthier places than Florida. The Florida public health system can't really take credit for the resulting relatively good health.
As I resident of TN I accept your efforts and very much appreciate them. I also predict that your conclusions will be dismissed by many. Facts are a small influence on beliefs. Still articulating the science remains important in the discourse. Thank you.
All of the links shared from CDC are now retired. They stopped tracking excess deaths on 9/27 (which means we only have reliable data through ~early August), and they stopped tracking vaccines on May 11th. I don't know how to interpret this any other way than the CDC no longer considers Covid a pressing issue.
So it seems it's not just Tennessee and Texas which aren't taking Covid seriously, it's the CDC, California, South Korea, and pretty much the rest of the world.
California ranks #2 on the excess death chart posted - yet doesn't get mentioned any further. Why?
How could the state that had the longest lockdowns, the longest school closures, wore masks longer than any other state, one of the highest vaccination rates ranks #2 in excess deaths? And this is despite entering the pandemic at one of the lowest annual death rates in the country (#3 lowest at 6,832 deaths per million per year). Uncovering that mystery of why California did so poorly could advance our knowledge more than another dunk on Florida (entered 2020 with 9,739 deaths per million per year).
When the CDC stopped tracking excess deaths on 9/27, for the 31 weeks reported in 2023 Tennessee is only +8% total mortality compared to 2019, while California is +9% (and this doesn't account for the fact California population has slightly decreased while Tennessee increased).
I don't see how we argue that Tennessee's lack of covid vaccine messaging has any bearing on excess deaths.
Amy Maxmen's piece goes on and on about Florida, Lapado, DeSantis, etc - but ignores the obvious question:
if only 5% of the population so far has got the latest booster, that means best case scenario for the "good guys" (Democrats like me, obviously) - only 10% of Democrats have gotten the latest booster.
How could that have anything to do with Tennessee politicians or DeSantis.
Almost no one is taking the latest booster. Not in Texas, not in California, not in Germany, not anywhere.
Maxmen is sticking her head in the sand ignoring the public at large has moved on.
Besides saying that it’s counterintuitive, why do you think the excess death rate was higher after the Covid vaccine in Florida? AFTER the vaccine?
Thanks for the heads up, Katelyn. This is why I like waste water readings. Poop and pee do not lie.
Told you what you were allowed to say??
This RN CIC (certified Infection Preventionist) is outraged!
I hope you ignored, "I was told what I could and could not say," and did not hold back the facts. When I was asked by our local NPR radio station to participate in a panel discussion of human embryonic stem cells, which was (and still is) highly controversial, the PR folks at University of Kansas Medical Center gave me the same cautionary speech, lest my words endanger the state funding of the university. Kansas is a red state and is still very anti-embryonic stem cell research. I wanted to express my own expert viewpoint and the work around was for me to make a declaration on air that my views were my own and not necessarily those of the University of Kansas.
Let's place blame where it belongs, which is on the MAGA Republicans, who in their complete irrationality decided that vaccinations were an oppressive instrument of the federal government, along with masks and any other attempts to control covid, while at the same time promoting misinformation such as the use of ivermectin along with a long list of other ineffective treatments.
We need to be clear on this. It is their fault that there were deaths that could have been prevented.
I live in Tennessee, where you might recall they fired the state health director for promoting vaccinations for teenagers. The legislature is controlled by MAGA Republicans, and this was their doing.
Again, there's no evidence that the covid vaccines "save lives" The Pfizer Phase III trial didn't show a mortality benefit. We have absolutely no clue what effect on overall health these latest covid shots have.
What did you do about the attempt to pre-edit your speech?
Can you please do a deep dive into the Vermont data? Is there a mistake? Do the residents of Vermont strongly prefer a brand of vaccine? This seems to be a paradox that needs to be explained. Thanks.