As people who follow Jesus Christ, we remember his words, “As you did it unto one of the least of these, you did it to me.” Jesus connects the way we respond to the most vulnerable among us as the way we respond to Jesus. In this time of pandemic, we continue to hold and protect the health of those who are immuno-compromised or health-compromised in other ways. We do this out of Christian love and we do this as a way of following and worshipping Emmanuel, God with us. With these thoughts in mind, here are our latest COVID-19 updates.
Omicron continues to ravage the state of North Carolina. Omicron is generating many more cases than previous variants. Although only a small percentage of the total infected will become extremely ill, because of the immense numbers of those who are becoming or will become infected, we can expect that more people in our congregations and communities will experience serious illness. One significant outcome of this is that hospitals are overwhelmed by COVID patients and are then unable to provide immediate acute care for trauma, heart attacks, strokes, and other emergency care. In protecting ourselves through vaccinations, masking, distancing, and virtual gatherings, we protect our neighbors, and thus, do the will of Christ.
All masks are not created equal. Cloth masks are much less effective at preventing infection from the Omicron variant. Dr. Wesley Wallace, our resident Disaster medicine physician, offers the following for updated mask information:
“Several of you have asked for information on more protective masks now that the incredibly infectious Omicron is upon us. Here is some information you might find helpful. In this video, Aaron Collins, a chatty aerosol engineer talks about effective masks and names some of his favorites. You can find a compilation of his data here. There is a lot to look at, primarily you want a mask that has a high filtration efficiency and a low-pressure drop. It also needs to fit you well. At the far right-hand side of the spreadsheet are sources for these masks. Be cautious about ordering from Amazon or eBay—lots of problems with counterfeits on these sites. If this all gets to be too much just follow the recommendations in the Collins video.”
To see Dr. Wallace’s Monday COVID-19 update, follow this link using your nccumc.org email address: 2022-01-03 Faith Community COVID-19 Update.