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tv   ABC7 News Getting Answers  ABC  August 4, 2021 3:00pm-3:30pm PDT

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building a better bay area. moving forward. finding solutions. this is abc7 news. hi there, i am kristen sze. you are watching getting answers live on abc7. we ask expert your questions every day at 3:00 to get answers in real time. we are bring back mask expert who advocated for masking long before the cdc recommended that. that is because mask mandates are back in the bay area and schools. many viewers have questions about effectiveness, double masking, and making your more effective. and 'rtain opening schools and the push to mandate. and another busy day surrounding covid-19 with variant's booster changes a
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more. let's bring in the professor at standard siegel. >> thank you for the opportunity to speak with you today. >> let's start with the world health organization. it appears to have responded to news that folks heard here on abc7 getting answers this week that san francisco generals allowing people who got the johnson & johnson shot to get a supplemental pfizer or moderna shot. the w.h.o. is asking wealthy nations to hold off on until 10% of every country can be vaccinated. do you agree with that? >> from the standpoint of health and protecting most people, it makes sense to try to spread vaccines as much is possible. from a public health standpoint make sense. we need to give everyone the opportunity to get vaccinated. >> what about the individual standpoint?
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>> even that is a little bit complicated. because it makes sense actually used people, but from a regulatory standpoint, we do not have the results of the tests to see whether or not the booster is safe and efficacious. it is probably going to turn out that it is both. we anticipate that in that it is going to actually more protective. it is more a question of equity. >> reporter: were you surprised when the news came out of sf general about this? >> i was surprised. what they are doing is a little bit different. different than just giving everybody boosters. are offering boosters primarily to people who have the johnson & johnson vaccine. in clinical trials, one dose of johnson & johnson to one dose of pfizer or moderna, it is just that it was licensed as a one dose of
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vaccine. >> i understand. so getting the second shot brings you up to the level of protection you would have had if you had the pfizer or moderna in the first place. what about the debate that the vaccines we have in the u.s. already sitting here and will expire if we do not give them to people. we are hoping more people want it to but meantime, we have the excess supply. why not just allow for this. it does not seem to interfere with us sharing what we get to later with the world, does it? >> the thing is we want to get out to the world as fast as possible. it is true, we know vaccines should not be allowed to sit on the shelf and expire. it's a mystery to me why people don't want to get vaccinated. to meet is like walking along and finding a winning lottery ticket and picking up and saying, i do not really believe in lotteries so i'm not going to cash this in. it is better because you do not have to pay for the lottery ticket and you have the benefit of not only protecting yourself, but other people. >> i never pass up a lottery ticket, even if it is a $2.00
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zero it is all good for me. do you think boosters will become recommended or necessary very soon? >> i think at this point, as long as the virus is not being controlled, as long as delta is moving forward, i think it is almost inevitable that we will be looking at vaccines and boosters. the third doses of the existing vaccines and ideally, updated vaccines that can target delta and other variants more directly. >> since we bring that up, one express spoke to says that getting a third shot now may make the future tailored booster less effective. is that right? >> i do not think that is probably true. right now, what we are seeing is that the people with breakthroughs tend to be correlated with lower levels of antibody to the vaccine. so, a third dose would actually raise your antibody levels, so based on what we know, that
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would actually be protective. now, what a tailored vaccine be more effective, then the answer is almost certainly yes. those vaccines are under clinical trials. the third doses of the existing vaccine and also adding a third dose tailored to delta. >> are we finding fading protection for those who got vaccines 7 months ago, like let's say, doctors? >> the antibody levels are beginning to drop. again, it is not clear whether there is a correlation between how long ago you got vaccinated and whether not you get breakthrough. i think it may be partly the amount of time, but it might be more individually, how could your immune response is in terms of reducing antibodies. so it is more at the antibody level. >> we a question from a viewer. he was not is it possible for someone who is vaccinated to be a carrier of covid but not actually be infected himself or herself? >> in order to be -- in order
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to give to somebody else, you have to be infected with of the virus. you don't necessarily have to have symptoms, but you do need to be infected. as we know, there is a huge variation in terms of what happens to people when they get infected. from some people who are vaccinated and asymptomatic, to people who can get quite ill. >> there's a lot of information out there in social media. one that i have seen a lot of recently is being echoed by felix here he says, how do we know that the variants are not mutating because of the vaccines? >> that is a great question and it actually, to a certain extent, is true.'s what we know with the flu is that if everybody got vaccinated with the flu or everybody have flew, only those variants that had mutated would be able to infect people. so we actually drive the
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evolution of the flu. to to a certain extent, the way we can avoid that is to get everybody vaccinated. the dangerous situation is when , in terms of viral evolution, is when there is a lot of virus around and there are also people who are vaccinated, so then it selects the variants. what if people say maybe does better not to vaccinate at all? >> because overall by far, without any doubt, the way to protect to the most people and keep the most people out of the hospital is to vaccinate as many people as possible. so even in the presence of, for now, we are seeing delta in the bay area, but the fact is that the people who end up in the icu or the people who die are people who are not vaccinated, so it is pretty clear that the vaccine is wildly effective. >> can you address two other variants, the delta plus, we first mentioned it a month ago, but it is back in the news after being dissected in south korea, and lambda which was
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detected in houston. talk about those two. >> what we are going to see as each virus changes in mutates, the one that can spread more effectively, the one that produces more virus or the one that has a shorter incubation period is the one that will be in the population. so we will see a progression of these come out until we can get enough people vaccinated that the prevalence drops very low and we need to do that in the u.s., but all around the world. if we have enough vaccine, we need to be producing an effect seen in shipping it to other countries because that is another way to protect ourselves. >> because it could pop up anywhere in the world and then be brought here everywhere. dr. fauci today saying that a variant worse than the delta maybe on the horizon. do you think one will develop that our vaccines will not be able to work against? >> i think that is a real
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possibility. so, we need to at least prepare for that. again, it is kind of a broken record, but the best way to prepare for that is to drop the prevalence of the virus in the best way to drop the prevalence is to get the vaccine to as many people as possible. >> give people an idea. when you talk about how delta is so much more transmissible, for the original strain, one person who had it, they would give it to a certain number of people and the delta, if one person had a, they would give it to so many more people. can you give me the comparison? >> it has been looked at and it turns out that the amount of virus that people are producing is about 100 times as much in the respiratory tract. so things before that did not transmit the virus behaviors are now going to transmit the virus and we will see super spreading events for things that might not have been as dangerous before. so, it is vastly more
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contagious. and so, we really need to worry about that. not only is it spreading faster, but it has a shorter incubation period and it seems to also have somewhat different symptoms. it affects younger people. it can make people sicker who are not vaccinated, so it is worse in almost every way. >> in other words, get vaccinated. dr. robert siegel, that is an important broken record to keep fighting. >> it is important. thank you for having young. coming up, bring back an old friend to the show because there are debates against
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we started the show when the pandemic was first declared. we allow you to ask questions and first real time. one of our first guest was mask expert. jeremy howard is a data scientist started the mask for all movement. he showed how it works, how to make your own, how to make it work better. a two months later, there are renewed questions but masks and efficacy. we asked jeremy howard, who has since moved to australia. how are you. >> i guess i should say good day. >> good day to you. you have been a leading mask advocate. you are fascinated. wearing masks in public in australia? >> here in queensland, australia, right now, there about 10 cases per day and so, by yours standards, it's hundreds of times less than america, but anything
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case per day, the whole country is in masks and in victoria, where my mother lives, they have zero cases per day to people.wear masks. it depends about the transmission here as to whether people are wearing them. >> hope we get to that point where it is just one case per day. how does delta change things in terms of masking and other mitigation and prevention measures? >> it changes it totally. australia is a great test case for this, because recently, in our break started occurring in new south wales. and because there's so little covid as it started and arted an good contact tracing, we actually have cctv footage where we can see the transmission happening. and with delta, we have actually seen that five or 10 seconds passing by, walking past each other is enough to transmit the virus. we can also see from the results happening in australia that even with lockdowns and even with masks, it can be
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really difficult to get the virus under control. so with delta, we need to wear masks more often. we need to where better masks and we need to be very vigilant about airborne controls, but making sure that we have clean air. >> yes. you always talk about wearing a mask correctly. that is just as important as the type of mask. i'm going to get to some questions. alex wants to know, is there a wrong way to wear a n95 mask. my office is requiring that we take a training. >> this is an n95 mask. there is the right way to wear them. it's not as complicated as people are making it sound. the key thing is the metal strip. this is stiff. you have tried these, kristen. they are very strong . you need to make sure that this is right firmly around your nose. then the two straps on the top, that goes over the top of your head and one goes back lower down on your head and you just
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make sure that there is no gap around that. that is really all it takes. just make sure that when you breathe in and out, there is nothing escaping. if you are glasses and it is fogging up, that is a bad sign. >> i will look for that. alexis has a question, can anti- masters, and i would think just others as well, who do not want to wear any masks, where only face shields? we looked at the cdc guidance for schools and face shields was an option for kids who cannot wear a mask. but what we talk about the efficacy of that. >> sure, so the efficacy of face shields is pretty close to zero. so because airborne, there are tiny particles that float in the air and a face shield does not stop them. just makes them go around it. you so just as many particles out and around you as you would either way so it does not protect people from you if you
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are sick. it also does not stop you from getting sick because as you breathe in, the air goes around the face shield with no filtering whatsoever so i don't think that face shields are really much help at all. >> n95s are pretty expensive. at least now you can get them. but there's like $5.00. people go to kn95's, which are cheaper. i found that fit is a problem. so can he talk to us about the fit on a kn95, to improve it? >> the key difference between the kn95 and this one here and the n95, is that the kn95 has your loop straps to go around your ears rather than around your head. also come the nose piece metal is often less strong. the key thing actually to remember is that with the kn95 is that there are lot of fraudulent once in the u.s. so you should look up on the internet, there is a list of which ones are fraudulent. try to make sure yours is real. purchase it from a reputable outlet and you are likely to
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get a proper one. something from amazon likely is not. around the bottom of it, there will be a gap so one thing you can do is you can put something like a cloth mask over the top of the kn95 and often the cloth masks, you can see here, it is and adjustable ear loops he can make it tighter. that can help you close some of the gaps. >> okay. now, nora wanted to know if kn95 will protect you from the delta virus. doesn't work as well as the n95? >> if you have a good fit, works pretty much as well as long as it is not a fraudulent one. kn95 and n95 should be stopping about 95% of the very small particles which can pass it on. new mask will protect you if both you and the other person around you are both wearing masks, certainly decreases the probability of transmission a
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lot, but it does not stop it. there is no single silver bullet . if you're vaccinated and the other person's mast and vaccinated, the probability of transmission is way lower. but you can never just say that everything is safe need to worry about it. >> at ask you since most of us, including kids going back to school, they have to wear a mask, especially in california. they'll be going with surgical, which is what i have here. but i often find that there is a gap and with kids, smaller faces, that is more likely to be a problem. how can we make them fit better? >> even with adults. it is terrible, especially someone like me with a big nose. does not great. so obviously, close up the gap at the top is much as you can. but better soon still, take this and fold it edgewise i know that we have done this on your show before, but for those who have missed it, just go corner to corner to touch each other and then tie a knot.
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if you do that on both sides, and then you just push through the flap to the other side, and so, you will end up with something which actually, it has surprisingly good fit. let me see if i can put this on without messing up my headset if i can. okay. >> you will see that actually goes under my chin, there is no gap and i can squish in my nose and that is a pretty good fit. it is definitely not as good as an n95. when i wear glasses, i still get fogging, but it has actually been some testing, university testing, done of this, it's about twice as good of protection as surgical mask on its own. >> okay. i did it. it took me a while. >> that was pretty fast. >> kn95's only co ou$1.0 i would go with these.
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now you need to make sure that you push through the side pets so that they are inside rather than outside. >> which bits? this? >> you have yours sticking out. you need to stick them in. >> jeremy, i think i need a lot more time than we have. >> your mouth has to be closer. >> grow quickly, i read in science magazine masks can have a penetration rate in terms of the particles as high as 30% to 70%. is that true? >> it depends a lot on the surgical mask. i hate the fact that surgical masks have become the default, because they don't really have good controls around them. that bad fit, as we have discussed. much the worst option. there are good surgical masks out there but knowing how to find them and how to test them, it is not easy. i would avoid them and go with these. but these are so easy to put on
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and they are so cheap. the 95th are a glad that you do need them in australia right now. >> a cloth mask with a filter is a good option. >> we are out of time you need to come back. we have questions for you and people mr. please come back soon. good to see you. all right. should they be testing and vaccine mandates for schools? we speak with the superintendent about this and i we bring on a local perspective,
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this unplugged device is protecting our beautiful coastlines and more. put off chores and use less energy from 4 to 9 pm to help keep our state golden. welcome back.'s should vaccines be that mandated before anyone can return to school? that is what issue being debated run the country and here in the bay area. mark, thank you for your time today. >> thank you. you think that what is
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happening now, with kids going back to school in person is reckless and wrong. why, what is it that you want? >> i said that the delta variant has been a game changer, this spreading quickly. vaccinated as well as that unvaccinated people can spread it and without mandatory vaccine in the school, we are setting up a horrendous situation with kids, especially at the elementary level which, none of them are vaccinated at this point. spreading amongst themselves, to staff, and taking it home for their families. this is going to cause a huge spike in oakland, and anywhere schools open, covid is going to spike. we can avoid that. we can act and along with masking and the other measures, it is really the way to do
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that. that is our best tool. >> when you say you want vaccine for all in schools, you mean teachers who are eligible for a long time, since the beginning of the year. not all teachers have chosen to get vaccinated. are you saying that you want the cta to tell all members to be vaccinated? are you saying that teachers such as yourself should be faced with a mande as well? >> i want a national, federal mandate. what the cdc to mandate that all public schools, all staff and all students be vaccinated before returning to school. we have, in california, something like a dozen, we have the chickenpox mandate, measles vaccine, we need to add the covid vaccine to that list. >> look, -- >> you cannot stop it. >> understand what you're trying to get up. but until that happens, are you
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saying we should go back to remote learning, even though we know it has been very hard for the kids in terms of learning loss and mitigation member like masking. you are saying that despite all that, that is what school should do? >> i completely think that we need schools to go back to distance-learning until we have a vaccine or ski everyone. and you cannot have a future if you are not alive. >> on that note, we are going to h hey, i just got a text from my sister. you remember rick, her neighbor? sure, he's the 76-year-old guy who still runs marathons, right? sadly, not anymore. -what, you mean-- -mhm. -just like that. -wow. so sudden. um, we're not about to have the "we need life insurance" conversation again, are we? no, we're having the "we're getting coverage
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to bring down the big headlines. we will tonight, the new alarming covid forecast from the cdc. the agency now warning hospitalizations in the u.s. could more than triple by the end of the month. dr. anthony fauci also predicting daily infections may double in the coming weeks, soaring to as many as 200,000 cases per day. the relentless delta variant now accounting for 93% of all cases in the u.s., driving case numbers to levels not seen in months. serious concerns for young people. pete ya trick covid cases nearly doubling in the past week. louisiana reporting the nation's highest infection rate. doctors in the state exhausted. >> it's exploding. skyrocketing through the roof. >> tonight, our marcus moore inside one of the hospitals on the front lines. new york governor andrew cuomo defying gro

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