White House, a coronavirus hot spot, is cold on contact tracing despite Donald Trump’s Covid-19 diagnosis



a man holding a sign: Wearing protective suits, masks and gloves, demonstrators call attention to the outbreak of coronavirus in the White House. Photo: AP


© AP
Wearing protective suits, masks and gloves, demonstrators call attention to the outbreak of coronavirus in the White House. Photo: AP

The Trump administration’s resistance to contact tracing since the president tested positive for Covid-19 reflects a calculation that there’s little political upside in highlighting this close to the election the number of people at the pinnacle of US power potentially exposed to the virus by him, say health experts and political analysts.

Masks and contact tracing – used effectively in China, Taiwan, South Korea, Singapore and elsewhere – are proven tools in breaking the chain of infection in lieu of a vaccine, medical experts say. But their success can depend on many other factors.

Public health experts have traditionally focused on the profile of the virus and therapies to combat it.

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“But it turns out the most important thing in fighting it seems to be effective political leadership, and in the US we don’t have that,” said Ronald Waldman, a global health professor at George Washington University and former investigator at the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). “If your primary priority is getting elected, that’s great for the virus.”

Analysts say President Donald Trump and aides appears to have concluded that robust tracing of hundreds, even thousands, placed at risk by his inner circle would only spotlight the virulence of a disease he has repeatedly downplayed, claimed would disappear or decried as a hoax.

It also could highlight his controversial policies and behaviour, and the particular vulnerability of top Republicans central to his legacy and re-election effort, they add, hardly a good look for a president losing support in the polls.

“From the White House point of view, it probably doesn’t make sense to pursue contact tracing,” said Charles Franklin, director of the Marquette Law School Poll. “A stricter testing regime risks showing second- and third-order infections. That’s not something you want to expose.”

Who in Trump’s orbit tested positive for coronavirus

But the president’s doctors’ and spin doctors’ apparent disregard for the basics of crisis management – disclose bad news fast and fully – has have been badly undercut by a drumbeat of daily headlines detailing new infections and quarantines hitting the White House, Congress, the Pentagon, presidential press corps and Secret Service.

Among the latest, the US Marine Corps’ No 2 general, Gary Thomas, said on Thursday that he had tested positive after huddling with top military leaders a week earlier.



Donald Trump wearing a suit and tie: Recent news is ensuring that public attention remains focused on President Donald Trump's management of the pandemic until the November 3 election. Photo: Abaca Press/TNS


© Provided by South China Morning Post
Recent news is ensuring that public attention remains focused on President Donald Trump’s management of the pandemic until the November 3 election. Photo: Abaca Press/TNS

This drip drip of news not only ensures that public attention remains intently focused on Trump’s management of the disease until the November 3 election. It also hampers the ability of top advisers to carry out policy or craft damage control as

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Home Improvement: The secrets to cold weather entertaining – Salisbury Post

Metro Creative

Upon the arrival of cold weather, people tend to move indoors and limit their time spent in the elements. For those who live in places where there are restrictions placed on indoor entertaining and gatherings, it may be challenging to find ways to spend time safely together as temperatures drop. The COVID-19 virus as well as other respiratory viruses are spread from person to person through respiratory droplets released into the air while coughing, talking or sneezing, states the Mayo Clinic. A person is more likely to inhale these droplets from an infected person while indoors, especially when they’re in close contact with that person. When outdoors, there is a lower risk of contraction.

Outdoor entertaining in winter may be challenging, especially in regard to keeping everyone warm. The following are some solutions that can help people stay warm and have fun outside.

• Invest in fire pits: Fire pits are an affordable way to heat a patio or another outdoor area. They can be great places for friends and family to gather around and enjoy special occasions. They’re readily available from garden centers and home improvement retailers at a variety of price points. Permanent fire pits can be built by a homeowner or professionally built by masonry experts.

• Install an outdoor fireplace: A step up from a fire pit, outdoor fireplaces not only add warmth, but also improve the ambiance and value of an outdoor entertaining area. Set up outdoor furniture right next to an outdoor fireplace and you have a cozy alternative living room where everyone can gather.

• Explore outdoor heating systems: Few things are more effective at warming up outdoor entertaining areas than patio heaters and infrared heaters. These devices are far more effective than average fire pits or fireplaces. One or two heaters will be enough to keep a large entertaining area warm.

• Keep cozy options available: Guests should dress warmly, but having a basket of throw blankets, scarves and parkas available for extra warmth while mingling is helpful. Use outdoor rugs to insulate from the cold from the ground up.

• Serve hearty foods and beverages: Stews, chilis, soups, and other hot foods can help guests warm themselves up from the inside out. Warmed cider, hot chocolate and mulled wines also can be served to help people stay warm.

• Get moving: Incorporate activities that encourage guests to move around and stay warm. Beanbag tosses, dancing and even sports like flag football can keep guests’ blood flowing. Entertaining outdoors doesn’t have to stop when the weather cools. Find ways to stay comfortable and safe when entertaining outside in the cold.

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How to protect your plants from the snow and cold in Colorado

With an early September cold front on the way, here are some tips on how to prepare your late-summer garden for the snow and cold.

DENVER — Just as our fight with the Japanese beetles is coming to an end this season, Mother Nature is giving us a temporary, but damaging cold snap. Don’t let all of your hard work and dedication to your garden be for nothing.

Take the time to do things to protect your tender plants so when the weather does warm back up at the end of the week you’ll still have flowers to enjoy this fall.

Trees and shrubs

Trees, shrubs and perennials will be fine. The soil is still warm so, while they might take a little hit with their blooms, the plants themselves will survive.

Vegetables

Harvest and cover your vegetables.

If your vegetable plants are too big to cover, harvest the vegetables and let them ripen inside. 

Annuals and flowers

Cover tender annuals, patio pots, herbs and veggies. Frost cloths, bed sheets, or even a larger pot turned upside down on top of the plant will all work as covers.

Do what you can to give plants protection. If you need to, move patio pots into the garage just in case.

Sprinklers

Make sure to disconnect all of your hoses and turn your sprinkler system clock to the off position.

You’re not going to need to water for a while, but do not winterize your sprinkler system yet. Warmer weather is going to return so you’re not done watering for the season.

If you’re concerned about protecting your backflow preventer, go ahead and cover that with a blanket as well. Better to be safe than sorry!

Don’t give up hope, gardeners! In Colorado we have to be as hardy as the plants to survive our crazy weather. So once the storm settles in, enjoy time inside in your fuzzy pj’s with a warm cup of tea. This too shall pass.

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