This was all about COVID-19, because leading up to the new school year, there’s a lot going on. I talked briefly about Stella Immanuel, M.D., the physician whom President Trump tweeted about, and her support of the use of hydroxychloroquine, zinc, and azithromycin. I didn’t talk about discrediting her, although she has some interesting ideas about spirituality and possession. In terms of her concern about the drugs, the answer is somewhere in the middle. On the one hand, hydroxychloroquine is not supposed to be used to prevent COVID-19 infection, but may be part of a cocktail for a hospitalized patient. It’s not a miracle drug and doctors will be using a variety of therapies based on the patient’s case, which may include this drug. 

On Friday, July 31, 2020 Real Time with Bill Maher aired, and he called out the obese of our nation, and criticized the press and Drs. Fauci and Birx for not promoting the value of exercise and diet for improving the outcome of this pandemic. He thinks that one reason we are not doing well is because as a country, we eat poorly and don’t exercise. This is a very complex issue and didn’t offer thoughtful solutions, so I suggested some. It’s true, we’ve got to eat better and get exercise!

I’m not a fan of large gatherings, like graduation celebrations, weddings, big parties at this time. When people gather to celebrate, even if the intention is to distance and mask, they don’t. Alcohol makes this phenomenon worse. It’s my opinion that large gatherings should be postponed until after the pandemic is over. 

I talked about reopening school. Only 16% of Connnecticut teachers want to return to the classroom. My patients who are teachers and school staff are terrified of returning to school. It’s been my observation over the years that as soon as school starts, people start coming in with colds and coughs. COVID-19 is going to be worse, since it spreads so readily. I’m even nervous for my practice that asymptomatic patients will come in. 

I finished off with the COVID-19 Travel Advisory for Connecticut. As of July 28, 2020, travelers from only 15 states are allowed to enter Connecticut without quarantining for 14 days. Fortunately, many of them are contiguous, all of New England, and then New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. The rest are further west: Michigan, Wyoming, South Dakota, Colorado, and Oregon. But before traveling to any of those state, you need to check THEIR travel advisories!