A video interview with Dr. Thomas Lawrence, our outside Medical Director, is currently featured on the Kendal website. It’s well worth spending the 39 minutes it takes to watch it. To reach the video, click on “Read more” below Dr. Lawrence’s photo, then click the underlined link labeled “Click here for the video.”
The following are a few of the items Dr. Lawrence mentions that I found interesting. But please: watch it yourself to make sure you get the message directly from Dr. Lawrence himself.
Around the 3:00 minute mark, he talks about the declining numbers of cases at area hospitals. He says, “Many of us believe that the strain of virus that’s currently circulating is not as aggressive as it was three and four months ago.” But the decline in cases could also be due to warmer weather or just that we know more about how to prevent and treat the disease. There is no clear answer.
Around 10:00, Dr. Lawrence talks about testing. The antigen tests that are starting to be available in quantity are not as sensitive as the standard PCR tests, but they can be quick, providing answers within minutes. Doctors are still figuring out the best way to use them.
Around 13:00, he discusses the reason you might not want to start a program of routinely testing everyone in a retirement community repeatedly. “Residents of retirement communities are actually at lowest risk,” he says, because of all the precautions that have been taken. Testing of low-risk populations “actually creates more problems because when the risk is very low you can get what are called ‘false positive’ tests…. And really, the person does not have infection.” But since you don’t know it is a false positive, it is treated like a true positive and that triggers new restrictions on other residents and new rounds of testing.
Around 28:00, he discusses the risks of travel. He is particularly cautious about air travel. At 29:10, he makes this comment: “Probably the last thing we’ll be able to say it’s safe to resume is air travel. Having said that, I’ll say this: I don’t think anybody is going to be flying on an airplane without a face mask in the next 30 years. One of the things that’s probably here to stay is probably wearing face masks on airplanes.”
These are just a few of the items that caught my attention. The interview covers a wide variety of other Covid-related issues. I encourage you to check it out.