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30 minutes ago, Arielle Popstar said:
33 minutes ago, Luna Bliss said:

Like I said, if you're worried go to a competent medical practitioner who knows where the injection site should be.

Heh well as a result of talents garnered from a misspent youth, I would much rather self administer but thanks for the suggestion.

They key is knowing where the deltoid muscle is on the arm, and hitting it right in the center... but I doubt what you were doing in your misspent youth facilitated knowledge of anatomy...?

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Hi from across the Atlantic Ocean 🙋‍♀️

Around here in Portugal we're a bit behind the US and the UK, but I've got my first Pfizer shot 3 weeks ago and I'm due to get the second one next week.

Because we don't have our own vaccine yet (if at all...), every shot has to be accounted for, and properly registered in the national vaccination database. We all have our vaccines registered on that, but, as you can imagine, only doctors and nurses are allowed access to our medical data.

This posed a problem with mass vaccination. Originally it was thought that we would also be able to get shots at the local pharmacy — which is a great way to mass-distribute vaccines. However, that raised the question about how to give pharmacists access to data that they are not supposed to be able to read. Also, for the same reason, pharmacies are not connected to the national health database systems — because they're not supposed to be able to read any of that data.

In the end, there was just a legal way out: getting doctors and nurses to administer the vaccines. Most are volunteers working for the Civil Protection (the US equivalent would probably be FEMA) anyway — this is important because around here, after a lot of reorganisation (and quite a bit of polemic, too), the Civil Protection service is now a paramilitary operation, and the COVID-19 vaccine rollout was actually organised under the command of a Navy Admiral. This means that these people are used to complex organisation in the middle of an emergency — sure, many of the administrative staff (which take care of the endless paperwork until you actually are able to get a shot...) are volunteer 'civilians', but they have been trained by the Civil Protection to do their job under a paramilitary setup.

Doctors on the vaccination sites actually do the registration (and do a very quick health check in the few minutes they talk to you) and then hand us over for a nurse to vaccinate. I have to say that this was the 'best' shot I have ever had — granted, the last one was eons ago, and, lately, I just need to take blood samples (but not inject anything), which, as you all know, requires a completely different technique.

I'm one of the lucky ones who had not the slightest side-effect. After a few hours I could not even say for sure where the shot had been given; on the morning after, there was nothing to show that I had taken a shot. Not even the slightest bruise or redness. And I had absolutely zero side-effects from the vaccine. I'm curious about the 2nd shot — and I'll be complaining sarcastically that the first shot didn't count, since it clearly had been a placebo with just plain tap water in it 😂 — so I want something stronger this time!

Jokes besides, my point is just that the vast majority of all people won't feel anything and have zero side-effects from taking a shot. If you're unlucky, you'll have some soreness and a small, localised rash; both will disappear within 48 hours, at worst, and you can put some ice on it to reduce the inflammation. Only a very, very small number of people have any symptoms. The sad thing is that if your shot was painful, you're highly likely to swamp your social media with your horrible experience. That's human nature — always eager to complain when we feel the slightest discomfort (and blame it on someone!), while 'feeling nothing' is not worth telling anyone.

did file an official compliment (also rare — complaints are legion, compliments are few), because all those people are doing an amazing job to get us all vaccinated... a task that I'm sure none of them envisioned that they'd be doing in their lifetimes.

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5 minutes ago, Gwyneth Llewelyn said:

the Civil Protection service is now a paramilitary operation, and the COVID-19 vaccine rollout was actually organised under the command of a Navy Admiral. This means that these people are used to complex organisation in the middle of an emergency

It's the same in the UK:  while the NHS has run the vaccination programme here, getting all the vaccines from the factories and warehouses to the right vaccination centres in time has been run by the Army's Royal Logistics Corps.    

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On 6/28/2021 at 10:36 PM, Urathear said:

Overall flu done more damage than Covid at least so far did in Poland. It's curious case to be said.

Sorry for interrupting, but I seriously doubt that. Where did you get that information from?

The European CDC posts data about influenza regularly. If you select the 'flu data for Poland (or any other country, really) from this last season and compare with the previous one, you will see the dramatic difference — the ECDC claims that there have been 99% less cases of influenza detected in Europe. This is not surprising — masks, washing hands, and social distancing work as well for the influenza virus as for the coronavirus. Note that this also applies for a lot of other seasonal viruses — rhinovirus and the endemic human coronavirus that cause the common cold, for example — and this meant that, this past year, we all enjoyed a respite from the usual 'flu and common cold pandemics.

The Polish government, via its National Institute of Public Health (PZH), also published similar findings. Note that the first graph, comparing incidence of influenza in the past seasons, is logarithimic, not linear! It actually shows that influenza-related incidence was only about 10% of the baseline of other years — or, if you prefer, ten times less.

The ECDC also reports that the Polish laboratories which have been testing for the several strains of the influenza virus have received around 46.000 samples during the 2020/2021 season... and only found 47 positive cases. 47! 

Number of COVID-19 incidences and deaths for Europe, up to today: https://www.ecdc.europa.eu/en/cases-2019-ncov-eueea

(Poland: around 2.9 million incidences; ±75.000 deaths)

So, on one hand, you have 47 reported cases of influenza incidences in Poland (and zero deaths). On the other hand, you have 2.9 million reported cases of SARS-CoV-2 incidences in Poland, and roughly 75.000 deaths.

Please explain to me how the 'flu causes more damage than COVID-19 in Poland.

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12 minutes ago, Innula Zenovka said:
21 minutes ago, Gwyneth Llewelyn said:

the Civil Protection service is now a paramilitary operation, and the COVID-19 vaccine rollout was actually organised under the command of a Navy Admiral. This means that these people are used to complex organisation in the middle of an emergency

It's the same in the UK:  while the NHS has run the vaccination programme here, getting all the vaccines from the factories and warehouses to the right vaccination centres in time has been run by the Army's Royal Logistics Corps.   

And there you have one big difference from our experience in the U.S.  Because we have a long history of favoring local or regional decision making and have no federal body with the authority to manage public health, we have ended up with a patchwork of systems for distributing and administering the vaccines. The states have different levels of experience with crisis management, different logistical and legal constraints, and of course different political attitudes. While the armed forces are certainly controlled at the federal level, they are limited in their authority to deal with events like floods, droughts, earthquakes, and pandemics.  Those are the responsibility of National Guard units in each state, under the authority of the governor and legislature of each state. The national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention act as a clearinghouse and advisory body, but the states decide what to do.  We don't have a NHS.

Debates about federal vs local control have been part of our history for two and a half centuries, with excellent arguments on both sides.  For a country as large and diverse as ours, there is much to be said for honoring local approaches.  The states can often serve as testing grounds for competing ideas -- incubators for innovation -- so we avoid marching quickly but single-mindedly from crisis to crisis. At the same time, it can be difficult to reach consensus when we are under time pressure, and we can end up competing with ourselves for resources. 

With the advantage of hindsight, we can sometimes agree on things that worked well.  Statistically, our scattergun approach pretty much guarantees that something useful will bubble up from the chaos.  We dust ourselves off, make some efforts to teach each other what we have learned, redistribute some resources, and find some sense of unity. It's a clumsy system, frustrating to watch in action, but it's ours and it works ... after a fashion.

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Just now, Gwyneth Llewelyn said:

Sorry for interrupting, but I seriously doubt that. Where did you get that information from?

For clarification, I should add that it's not a surprise that the influenza incidence is so low, since every precaution taken to reduce the risk of SARS-CoV-2 spread will also not only reduce dramatically the spread of viruses such as influenza, but also of the many strains of the rhinovirus as well as other (harmless) endemic human coronaviruses, which cause the common cold. As such, all the data related to the 'flu for the past season will be seriously skewed (worldwide): we'll have far, far, far less cases of all those respiratory diseases during the period that we're taking precautions against COVID-19.

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Been vaxxed since March. Great to see everyone getting it. For anyone worried about the injection, they use a needle so fine you barely feel it. If you get your first dose, make sure to get the second when it's time.

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1 hour ago, Rolig Loon said:

And there you have one big difference from our experience in the U.S.  Because we have a long history of favoring local or regional decision making and have no federal body with the authority to manage public health, we have ended up with a patchwork of systems for distributing and administering the vaccines. The states have different levels of experience with crisis management, different logistical and legal constraints, and of course different political attitudes. While the armed forces are certainly controlled at the federal level, they are limited in their authority to deal with events like floods, droughts, earthquakes, and pandemics.  Those are the responsibility of National Guard units in each state, under the authority of the governor and legislature of each state. The national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention act as a clearinghouse and advisory body, but the states decide what to do.  We don't have a NHS.

Debates about federal vs local control have been part of our history for two and a half centuries, with excellent arguments on both sides.  For a country as large and diverse as ours, there is much to be said for honoring local approaches.  The states can often serve as testing grounds for competing ideas -- incubators for innovation -- so we avoid marching quickly but single-mindedly from crisis to crisis. At the same time, it can be difficult to reach consensus when we are under time pressure, and we can end up competing with ourselves for resources. 

With the advantage of hindsight, we can sometimes agree on things that worked well.  Statistically, our scattergun approach pretty much guarantees that something useful will bubble up from the chaos.  We dust ourselves off, make some efforts to teach each other what we have learned, redistribute some resources, and find some sense of unity. It's a clumsy system, frustrating to watch in action, but it's ours and it works ... after a fashion.

And the US is simply so much larger and more populous than both the UK and Portugal.    

The UK has about 20% the population of the the US, all of us living in a land area about the size of the state of Oregon.     Vaccinating that population has one set of challenges, while vaccinating the whole of the US must present a very different set of issues.

Though, having said that, I shudder to think where we'd have been without the NHS and the Army.

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2 minutes ago, Innula Zenovka said:

And the US is simply so much larger and more populous than both the UK and Portugal.    

The UK has about 20% the population of the the US, all of us living in a land area about the size of the state of Oregon.     Vaccinating that population has one set of challenges, while vaccinating the whole of the US must present a very different set of issues.

Size is certainly a confounding factor.  No question about that.  Still, the UK is far from being culturally or politically monolithic. Setting size to one side for a moment, you might expect that there would be just as much variety in vaccination policy and practice across the UK as there is in the U.S.  I'm sure there is, to a degree, but within living memory the people of the UK have become comfortable with the idea of a National Health Service, National Railways, and all sorts of other nationwide systems that would be shouted down as "creeping socialism" here in the U.S.  I think that's what has allowed the UK to be a bit more nimble in its CoVid response than we have.  (I'm not making judgements about how effective we have each been, and I'm certainly not meaning to make comments about how our public officials have managed things.  Those topics invoke their own balls of wax.)

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25 minutes ago, Innula Zenovka said:

And the US is simply so much larger and more populous than both the UK and Portugal.    

The UK has about 20% the population of the the US, all of us living in a land area about the size of the state of Oregon.     Vaccinating that population has one set of challenges, while vaccinating the whole of the US must present a very different set of issues.

Though, having said that, I shudder to think where we'd have been without the NHS and the Army.

In some ways, the US as a whole, compared to the States, is sort of like the EU compared to the individual countries.  Not an exact comparison to be sure, but similar.  The larger bodies provide a framework for some things and do have some global rules/laws, but the individual country/state does most things on its own the way it wants to.

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1 hour ago, LittleMe Jewell said:

In some ways, the US as a whole, compared to the States, is sort of like the EU compared to the individual countries.  Not an exact comparison to be sure, but similar.  The larger bodies provide a framework for some things and do have some global rules/laws, but the individual country/state does most things on its own the way it wants to.

Germany, of course, is a federal republic, too.    I'm not sure how they've organised their vaccination programme.

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2 minutes ago, Rolig Loon said:

With the advantage of hindsight, we can sometimes agree on things that worked well.  Statistically, our scattergun approach pretty much guarantees that something useful will bubble up from the chaos.  We dust ourselves off, make some efforts to teach each other what we have learned, redistribute some resources, and find some sense of unity. It's a clumsy system, frustrating to watch in action, but it's ours and it works ... after a fashion.

Oh, I totally agree; there is merit in both approaches, and it's hardly guaranteed that a 'centralised' approach will always have good results! Sometimes it does... but that's not a given, which applies in all situations.

Here's another good example. By now, we've almost forgotten the Great Recession. Around here in Europe, there was a 'centralised' approach to deal with a financial catastrophe, because, well, the European Union is rooted in all things economics, and these tend to work reasonably well at a supranational level. Because neoliberalism and technocracy were the driving forces back then in 2009/2010, the 'cure' for the Great Recession was — austerity. When things went from bad to worse, what was the solution? More austerity. That left the big thinking economic minds looking at their formulas and scratching their heads, because, well, economics is a science since at least Adam Smith, and it should work well to predict the future — notably, it should predict correctly the consequences of economic decisions.

But clearly all that was failing.

By contrast, the US opted for the exact opposite approach, meaning infusing the economy with 'free money'. That got the conservative Republicans into a frenzy, but it meant saving big corporations, whole industries, and millions of jobs, by simply putting more money in circulation, not less. And the result was that the US started recovering quickly... while Europe was in its biggest mess since WWII.

(Hint: how did Europe recover from WWII? By having the US drop 'free money' on all countries affected by the war. The French still call the ensuring golden age The Glorious Thirty, in reference to the three decades of unmatched prosperity that followed WWII.)

Eventually, what happened was that in most European countries, people voted to get new governments that were against austerity and proposed 'other ways' to deal with the economic crisis. One by one, countries independently started their own recovery programmes, uncoordinated among themselves, leaving 'austerity' behind, and dealing neoliberalism/technocracy a huge blow. In some cases, the solution was a turn to the left, in most it was a turn to the right, but all had in common the rejection of austerity that worked so well for the US — and, after a while, it was more than clear that it worked for Europe as well (why shouldn't it work?).

With COVID-19, the approach was different. Because the EU is not very good at coordinating social issues, it didn't manage to do an unified approach to dealing with the pandemic: each member state adopted their own measures and their own strategy to deal with the pandemic. Some benefited from the experience of dealing with the H1N1 influenza pandemic of 2009/2010 and applied similar measures; others tried different approaches; all feared a total collapse of the economy (which, thankfully, did not happen, although it's more than obvious that hundred of millions lost their jobs world-wide — think about all tourism-related industries!). At the end of the day, it became rather clear that if there had been a coordinated effort among all countries (preferably world-wide... but at least per continent), we could have limited the spread much earlier and much better. Fortunately for Humankind, SARS-CoV-2 is a deadly virus, but not as deadly as, say, Ebola, or none of us would be around to tell the story...

So, aye, sometimes central coordination is good; sometimes it just points everybody in the wrong direction. A mix of both seems to be able to avoid some pitfalls and allow the best choices to 'bubble up', as you so well put it.

(Also note that my country is quite small — lots of geography packed in a small space, though — with a population of about 10 million, mostly spread among two very large urban areas where 70% of the people live. Centralisation at such a scale is much more practical. Nevertheless, the country is divided among 300 or so municipalities, each with its own locally elected government and representative assembly, and having a reasonable amount of autonomy, financially and administratively; but dealing with a global pandemic is beyond the resources of any of those municipalities, at least without substantial central support & organisation; still, there are differences among each of them, each having a reasonable large degree of autonomy, even when actually implementing a plan which had been centrally designed... this comes from historical reasons: almost all the municipalities have enjoyed a certain degree of self-rule for at least a thousand years — take a century or so — and even when there was a central ruler such as a King of the combined realm, he or she had to be acknowledged by the population in general, or, well, the monarch would never be respected or their orders executed... the clergy and nobility lived outside the towns and cities across the land and rarely had any authority over them. In fact, we have traditionally little inherent respect for any authority — they must earn the right to be respected in order to be obeyed. As the Romans said when they finally conquered this territory, two thousand years ago: 'a population which is unable to govern themselves but utterly refuses to be governed by others'. Lisbon, the capital, has had continuous self-rule for over three thousand years, being one of the oldest cities in Europe outside Greece — when Rome was still a village of fishermen, long before the mythical date of its foundation, Lisbon had already been around for centuries and was a major trading post between the Phoenicians and the Greek... so we view any 'external' authority with deep suspicion. Obviously, things change, and today we often boast that we're the 'most European member of the European Union', mostly because we do comply with all the silly rules, even against our own good, simply because we tend to believe in the overall grand project, irrespectively of current conditions and confusions...)

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That's a fascinating synopsis.  The lesson, I suppose, is that no approach is always right in all circumstances.  We muddle through somehow.  Personally, I find that a little unsettling, but that's because I have a scientist's confidence that there have to be some basic, discoverable principles at work somewhere.  

 

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8 hours ago, Arielle Popstar said:

Heh well as a result of talents garnered from a misspent youth, I would much rather self administer but thanks for the suggestion.

If you are going to "tap up a vein" to give yourself the vaccine, you'll kill yourself. 

Unless you were giving out black market vaccines to your classmates... 

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In the UK, we're coming out of lockdown completely, or almost completely, on July 19, despite the fact that infections are rising because the Delta variant has almost entirely taken over, because our vaccination programme is so far advanced that we seem to have broken the link between infections and hospitalisation/death.

I just hope that the government's confidence proves justified, and that with the continuing vaccination programme  (now for all adults 18 and over) and booster shots starting September for over 50s, we'll get the infection rate down, too.

 

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11 hours ago, Drake1 Nightfire said:

If you are going to "tap up a vein" to give yourself the vaccine, you'll kill yourself. 

Unless you were giving out black market vaccines to your classmates... 

From the video I posted at https://community.secondlife.com/forums/topic/471662-vaccination/?do=findComment&comment=2314971

the idea is that when vaccinating, one should flag (aspirate) ie, pull back on the plunger when the needle tip is in position to be sure the tip is NOT into a blood vessel before pushing the plunger in to deliver the vaccine into the muscle. In this case it is the vaccine getting into a blood vessel that seems to be the cause of blood clotting and other problems some are experiencing.

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8 minutes ago, Arielle Popstar said:

From the video I posted at https://community.secondlife.com/forums/topic/471662-vaccination/?do=findComment&comment=2314971

the idea is that when vaccinating, one should flag (aspirate) ie, pull back on the plunger when the needle tip is in position to be sure the tip is NOT into a blood vessel before pushing the plunger in to deliver the vaccine into the muscle. In this case it is the vaccine getting into a blood vessel that seems to be the cause of blood clotting and other problems some are experiencing.

the needle should be in muscle... 

 

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Awhile back I researched how medical practitioners are trained to give vaccinations correctly.  Apparently differently sized needles should be used for differently sized arms (longer ones when an arm has more fat on it so that the needle will reach through the fat into the muscle, and shorter needles when an arm has little fat on it).

I didn't notice if the practitioners where I had my vaccinations took this into consideration, or if they simply had a 'once size fits all' approach.

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10 hours ago, Rowan Amore said:

I had none from the first and mild on the second.  The woman who administered the first did remind me to relax my arm which I did not do on.the second.  A couple of days and I was good as new.

I long ago learned to relax for shots. I get a flu shot every year, and two injections to counteract bone loss from my oral chemo, plus two blood draws. I never feel anything from those shots, and didn't from my two Covid shots. I rarely feel much discomfort from blood draws, either. I can't recall a shot being more than a minor discomfort as it happened since I learned not to fear them over 40 years ago. The only painful ones I've had are tetanus booster shots, which make my arm sore the day after. I usually forget I've had a shot until I take a shower and feel something on my arm and wonder what it is. It's the little dot band-aid.

I've friends who say they have a hard time relaxing for shots. As a result, they often have arm pain afterwards. I think that creates a feedback loop that dooms them to sore arms. I've had such a long history of painless injections that I really do nothing to relax these days. I even watch the needle go in.

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7 minutes ago, Madelaine McMasters said:

I long ago learned to relax for shots. I get a flu shot every year, and two injections to counteract bone loss from my oral chemo, plus two blood draws. I never feel anything from those shots, and didn't from my two Covid shots. I rarely feel much discomfort from blood draws, either. I can't recall a shot being more than a minor discomfort as it happened since I learned not to fear them over 40 years ago. The only painful ones I've had are tetanus booster shots, which make my arm sore the day after. I usually forget I've had a shot until I take a shower and feel something on my arm and wonder what it is. It's the little dot band-aid.

I've friends who say they have a hard time relaxing for shots. As a result, they often have arm pain afterwards. I think that creates a feedback loop that dooms them to sore arms. I've had such a long history of painless injections that I really do nothing to relax these days. I even watch the needle go in.

I don't typically have any issue with shots, but I'm pretty sure that I didn't relax much for my first covid shot.  It might have been because I was in my car rather than in a doctor's office -- hell, I might have even left my hand up on the bottom edge of the steering wheel.  Anyway, that first one resulted in a super sore arm, starting about 12 hours after the shot and lasting about 48 hours.  It hurt to move my arm at all the next day.

I made sure that I relaxed my arm fully when I went back for the second one.

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