While testifying at a U.S. Senate hearing on Wednesday, Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, called face masks “the most important, powerful public health tool we have” in the present COVID-19 battle. This tool will likely remain important even when vaccines become available, as those will not serve as virus-proof shields for all.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has said it intends to consider for authorization vaccine candidates that reduce infections in thorough clinical research by at least 50%. The likely upshot is a partially effective vaccine that could make the pandemic more manageable.
Running low on hurricane names
Meteorologists are running through the alphabet to name this year’s Atlantic storms, with Vicky waiting in the wings (cyclones spinning up in the Central Pacific are bestowed with Pacific Island names, including Hawaiian). Then they work their way through the Greek alphabet. In 2005, the count went up to No. 6, Zeta.
It’s the age of climate change, so it could tick up further, but the 24 Greek letters ought to cover it. If that’s not enough, maybe it’s time to think about vacating the planet.