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Covid Brief - Oct.14 Boosters for Moderna, J-and-J, reviewed by FDA

The Thursday Covid Brief, heard weekly at 9 a.m.

While Covid-19 booster shots are rolling out for those who received the Pfizer inoculation earlier this year, recipients of the Moderna and Johnson-and-Johnson vaccines are still waiting to hear when it will be their turn.

As it happens, the Food and Drug Administration held hearings on that last week, according to Alaska Public Health Nurse Lorne Carroll.

“So we should know something more about that pretty soon,” he said.

Meanwhile, for those who do get ill, Carroll says it’s still a challenge to find hospital care in Alaska’s larger cities.

“There's currently 204 people, statewide, hospitalized with COVID-19, and 26 of those are on a vent,” Carroll said. “And out of all hospitalizations right now the percent of those that have COVID it's about 20 percent or one fifth of all hospitalizations are related to COVID.”

Ferraro said that from June 1 to now, SPH has admitted 58 people infected with Covid-19, and only four have been break-through cases involving someone already vaccinated. But she said that does not affect the quality of care the hospital administers to the patient.

“Other than that just being documented in a person's medical record, simply for the ability for the state of Alaska to track whether the vaccine is remaining effective or not, it does not change how a person is cared for or treated in our hospital,” she said. “There is no way to look at a bed, at a person's wristband of their hospitalization, nothing like that. We do, we do not give different treatment to a person who's vaccinated or not vaccinated. And I verified that with all of our hospitalists that work here at the hospital.

“Please, please do not feel that if you're not vaccinated, that you're going to receive different care.”

She said there are currently 10 inpatients at SPH, two of them occupied by Covid patients.

A caller asked why the hospital does not report deaths, as others do, and Ferraro said it was because the South Peninsula’s population is so small, identities of the deceased could be too easily found out, violating privacy laws. She said the State of Alaska does report deaths for the area, but it shouldn’t be assumed they were all at SPH.