The Western US is getting blanketed by snow and rain. The Sierras and their foothills have many areas that are essentially impassable at the moment. Seattle had a white Christmas. Other parts of the US are getting unusual amounts of heat for December. Hundreds upon hundreds of holiday flights were cancelled due to severe weather.
So many homes have been destroyed or damaged in natural disasters in the US that home insurance premiums are now far outstripping inflation. That’s not the only problem–in some areas with repeated disasters, homes are becoming nearly uninsurable.
Habitat for Humanity has begun 3D printing affordable homes for those in need. A family in Virginia is the first to receive a printed home through this program. The family will be able to print replacement parts for the home in the future, too.
Mayonnaise, coffee, soup, snacks, and cheese products are all going to be more pricey than usual in 2022 say food producers, who plan on raising prices. Expect the price of food to go up about 5% in general. The Consumer Price Index is already up by nearly 7% from this period last year.
In good news, 11-year-old Dayvon Johnson of Oklahoma saved two people in one day: he helped save a classmate who was choking by using the Heimlich maneuver and later the same day saved a woman from a housefire.
The world has over 281 million COVID cases. The world has gained 5.3 million cases in the last week. There have been over 5.4 million deaths in total. The US has had about 53.3 million cases cumulatively. The US gained about 1.3 million cases in the last seven days. Over 838,000 Americans have died during the pandemic—about 10,000 in the last week. The US gained over 107,000 new cases on Sunday, and over 55,000 by late afternoon Monday. Not all states are reporting daily anymore, and the holidays will cause the tallies to be underestimated. Daily case gains are likely much, much higher. The US, India, Brazil, the UK, and Russia have had the largest case gains today. When I say case gain in the US is an underestimate, this is what I mean (from a few days ago):
If all states were reporting today, we estimate that the U.S. would've had at least 320,000 new cases, which would've been the biggest one-day increase on record https://t.co/E6t2rNSlnT
— BNO Newsroom (@BNODesk) December 25, 2021
Connecticut is beginning its roll-out of COVID test and mask distribution. The state plans to send out millions of tests and masks over a two-week period. Some of the kits will be sent to health departments serving as a middleman for the program. Some will also be sent to schools.
FEMA still has a program to help families pay for funerals of those who have died from COVID, but the program is under-utilized. The reimbursement program covers “funeral services, cremation and interment, as well as the costs for caskets or urns, burial plots or cremation niches, markers or headstones, transportation or transfer of remains, clergy or officiant services, and the use of funeral home equipment or staff.”
Coinfection with COVID and other pathogens can result in worse health outcomes:
— delthia ricks 🔬 (@DelthiaRicks) December 27, 2021
Omicron might be driving up hospitalizations in young children:
As I’ve mentioned previously, keep an eye on this. There are papers now in review concluding that Omicron is more mild (less likely to hospitalize the infected) but the glaring exception is in children under 5. They seem more prone to hospitalization from Omicron. https://t.co/4GGIPFxDrT
— Dr. Jacob Glanville (@CurlyJungleJake) December 26, 2021
We’ve mentioned this before but it’s one of the first times I’ve seen the stroke fallout of COVID quantified:
Acute confusion, delirium, and fatigue plague those with COVID. 2% have a stroke. And all are chalked up as COVID "survivors".
— Brian Hjelle, virologist (@hjelle_brian) December 25, 2021