Idaho COVID Positivity Drops Dramatically
Governor Little announced a last-minute press conference this morning regarding Idaho’s COVID-19 response, and because it was such a late announcement, there was speculation that this was going to be about vaccines, about how terrible the legislature is this session, or any number of things that he has been criticized about this year. Surprisingly, and lucky for us, Little's update was only about 7 minutes long and it was just long enough to announce that the COV numbers have dropped SO DRAMATICALLY in December and January that he's opening up the state to a Stage 3 status.
Stage 3 Status:
- Gatherings of up to 50 people are now allowed (up from 10 people)
- Sporting spectator plans are still in place from the Idaho State Board of Education's announcement a couple weeks ago (40% capacity now)
- Bars, restaurants and nightclubs still get the shaft, and *should* still continue to operate with seating only
- Masks are still required for long-term care facilities
- Everyone and businesses *should* still follow physical distancing and sanitation recommendations
- Large events with more than 50 people, like conventions, weddings, sporting arenas etc., *may* receive an exemption if the organizer confirms with the public health department that the event will follow "necessary physical distancing and hygiene protocols"
- Above all, this is not the time to let up on our efforts, Idaho MUST stay vigilant because of surrounding states, yadda yadda yadda...
Governor Little opened the speech with a "pat yourself on the back" moment that implied it was because of Idahoans compliance to his tyrannical lockdown rules that Idaho's COV positivity numbers have dropped so dramatically in the months of December and January. He did not, however, mention what the numbers were every other year at this time in relation to the flu, pneumonia, or other respiratory illnesses.
He also mentioned that Idaho hospitalizations are dramatically dropping as well, still maxed out mind you, but at levels that are normal for this time of year. If you remember, Panhandle Health epidemiologist Jeff Lee said the exact same thing at last week's Panhandle Health Board of Directors meeting, saying the hospitals were maxed out due to all the elective procedures, NOT COV-related.
OK now Idaho is "back" to Stage 3, what does that mean for us moving forward?
Nothing. It means that nothing has really changed other than we're still under lockdown, just in different ways. Between the governor and the Panhandle Health board, it is obvious now more than ever that we have to get these people out of office. Continue to send emails to the Panhandle Health board and County Commissioners of the 5 panhandle counties to keep pressure on them to remove the bad apples out of positions of authority.
A few interesting tidbits I've found over the past week that relate to the COV topic and they're good ones.
Merck announced last week that they are stopping development on COV vaccines as they've found the immune systems of those who've received the shot are WORSE than those who haven't received the shot. Merck will be sticking with creating COV therapeutics moving forward. The idea that a COV vaccine can't be made for a cold virus is a topic that we, as the educated few, have known about for A YEAR and it's very interesting that this information is being made public now.
Also, a Twitter thread popped up a few days ago, and this topic seems to be coming up more often: questioning the government's authorization about creating COV vaccines when HCQ and Ivermectin were working just fine.