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 FSPH In The News

FSPH In The News - for the week of April 25, 2021 - 12:00am

Week of: 
April 25, 2021 to May 1, 2021

FEATURES (COVID-19 broadcast)

COVID-19: Los Angeles County Reports 500 New Cases, but Lowest Positivity Rate

KCBS-TV (May 1) interviewed Dr. Anne Rimoin, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of epidemiology, about the current risk levels of the pandemic, including the risks of air travel and public venues. “It is getting safer and safer to fly; the thing we all have to remember is that there is no zero-risk scenario,” Rimoin said. “If I were going to the (Santa Monica) Pier, I would wear a mask.” It also ran on KCAL-TV and a related item ran on KNX-AM.

COVID-19: Young Americans are Hesitant About Getting a COVID-19 Shot

KPCC-FM (April 29) interviewed Dr. Timothy Brewer, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of epidemiology, about how to persuade younger Americans to get immunized. “Younger individuals, people between the ages of 18 and 34, are really driving on-going transmission right now,” Brewer said. “Even people who have mild COVID disease or asymptomatic COVID disease can have long-term sequelae … the way to protect yourself from having these long-term health consequences is to get vaccinated to avoid having the disease.” It also ran on the LA Report.

COVID-19: Los Angeles Heads Into Yellow Tier - Should We Be Worried?

KPCC-FM (April 29, begins at 23:40) interviewed Dr. Robert Kim-Farley, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of epidemiology and community health sciences, about Los Angeles County entering the least restrictive yellow tier. “It’s our lowest tier in California, so that’s good news; it means we’re going to be at less than two cases per 100000,” Kim-Farley said. “It means we’re going to be able to do a lot more things.”

COVID-19: Podcaster Spreads 'Irresponsible' False Info About Vaccines

Inside Edition (April 29) interviewed Dr. Anne Rimoin, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of epidemiology, about comments by comedian Joe Rogan, who told listeners that healthy, young people do not need to get the vaccine. “This kind of comment is very irresponsible, and it’s not really taking into consideration the reasons that we’re getting vaccinated, which are not only to prevent illness and death in individuals, but also to stop chains of transmission,” Rimoin said. The story also ran on MSN, and Rimoin was also quoted by New Kerala (India), and referenced by the Watertown (CT) Town Times.

COVID-19: The CDC’s Updated Mask Restrictions

KTLA-TV (April 28) interviewed Dr. Anne Rimoin, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of epidemiology, about the CDC’s updated mask restrictions. “If you are fully vaccinated, you can ditch that mask outdoors, you can run, you can walk, you can hike,” Rimoin said. “But the key is outside, not inside, and with other fully vaccinated people.

COVID-19: California, Los Angeles County Align With new CDC Guidance on Mask-Wearing

KNX-AM (April 27) interviewed Dr. Anne Rimoin, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of epidemiology, about revisions to state and local guidelines on safety to match those of the CDC. “As we learn more, we are going to update the guidance. This is an evolving science,” Rimoin said. "The guidance is really based on science and moving us in the right direction. The things that we know is that, for example, that the vast majority of transmission is happening indoors rather than outdoors.” Rimoin was quoted in a second KNX-AM segment, as well.

COVID-19: “Get Vaccinated, Stay Safe, and Enjoy the Oscars”

ABC (April 25) broadcast remarks by Dr. Anne Rimoin, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of epidemiology, about the safety protocols for the 2021 Academy Awards, where she served as a public health consultant. “I'm a professor of epidemiology at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health and a huge movie fan; the number of experts who collaborated to ensure everyone's safety tonight is bigger than the cast of most blockbuster moves," Rimoin said. "By implementing health protocols, wearing masks, social distancing, and continually testing right up until show time, so many people — scientists, doctors, unions and more — worked tirelessly to make tonight's Academy Awards possible. But the work is far from over; the path back to the moments we miss is for us to all be vaccinated, and it's free. So please get vaccinated, stay safe, and enjoy the Oscars."

 

FEATURES (COVID-19 text and online)

COVID-19: California’s secret weapon? We are not Skeptical About Vaccines

The Los Angeles Times (May 1) interviewed Dr. Robert Kim-Farley, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of epidemiology and community health sciences, about Californians’ general embrace of COVID-19 vaccines, although some counties lag behind. “We cannot hide behind what the average number is (statewide),” Kim-Farley said. “We have to look at our pockets.” It also ran on MSN, Yahoo, SFGate, and the Sacramento Bee, Modesto Bee Fresno Bee, Bakersfield Californian, Santa Rosa (CA) Press-Democrat, and Merced Sun-Star, as well as the Olympia (WA) Olympian, Hastings (NE) Tribune, Janesville (WI) Gazette, Lexington (KY) Herald-Leader, Hagerstown (MD) Herald-Mail, Charlotte (NC) Observer, Raleigh (NC) Herald-Sun, Myrtle Beach (SC) Sun, Bluffton (SC) Island Packet, Columbia (SC) The State, Marietta (GA) Daily Journal, Bradenton (FL) Herald, Newton County (IN) Enterprise, the World News, and Archy’s World.

COVID-19: Research Calling India the Origin of Coronavirus Flawed

OpIndia (April 30, India) quoted Dr. Marc Suchard, UCLA Fielding School professor of biostatistics, about the validity of a study suggesting the SARS-CoV-2 virus originated in India. “Picking the viral sequence that appears to have the least number of differences to the others in an arbitrary collection is unlikely to yield the progenitor,” Suchard said.

COVID-19: How Texas Forgot Renters During the Pandemic

The Fort Worth Star-Telegram (April 29) cited research by Dr. Frederick Zimmerman, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of health policy and management, in a piece about Texas state policies regarding pandemic-related evictions. “The result has been thousands of evictions filed against Texans who would have been protected in other states — all at a time when their elected officials described them as a top priority,” the authors wrote. “Public health has faltered, too, with a UCLA study projecting nearly 4,500 excess deaths and 150,000 excess coronavirus cases in Texas because evicted people were forced to move in with friends and family or into homeless shelters.”

COVID-19: Epidemiologists Think About the Vaccine

Municipios (April 29, Mexico) quoted Dr. Karin Michels, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor and chair of the Department of Epidemiology, about life in the aftermath of the pandemic. “It would probably take many years to return to the lifestyle we had,” Michels said. “We have to settle for living with the virus.” It also ran in Panorama, Sureste, DiarioPuebla, Presenscia en Puebla, Monitor Poblano, and Revista Derecho, also in Mexico.

COVID-19: In-person Fall Quarter met With Mixed Feelings

The Daily Bruin (April 29) interviewed Dr. Pouran D. Faghri, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of environmental health sciences, about UCLA’s planned transition back to in-person instruction. “For a while, we may continue to be cautious about social interactions – touching each other, handshaking, using public transportation or gathering in large crowds outside our homes – because we are worried about being exposed,” Faghri said. Also quoted was Dr. Kristen Choi, Fielding School assistant professor of health policy and management: “Levels of loneliness were really high, which was a huge problem for a lot of students across UCLA, so getting to be back on campus again and attending classes, even in hybrid format, is going to be really important,” Choi said.

COVID-19: “The Pandemic Remains Strong Around the World"

Revista Siete (April 28, Colombia) quoted Dr. Michael Rodriguez, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of community health sciences, about the state of the pandemic globally. “Unfortunately, the situation of the pandemic due to COVID-19 remains strong throughout the world,” Rodriguez said. “There is an urgent need for practices that reduce contagion, such as physical distancing, use of a mask and hand washing, as well as avoiding crowds.”

COVID-19: Reasons not to Skip Your Second Dose of the Vaccine

Well+Good (April 28) interviewed Dr. Timothy Brewer, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of epidemiology, about the risks of skipping the second vaccine shot. “If you look at the mRNA vaccines—the Pfizer and the Moderna—the efficacy after one dose ranges somewhere between 40 and 80 percent, so the protective effect of the vaccine is 40 to 80 percent, depending on how far out you are from when you got the dose,” Brewer said. “If you get the second dose of either of those two vaccines the protective effect goes up to 95 percent—so you do get a substantial boost by getting that second dose.” It also ran on MSN.

COVID-19: New CDC Mask Guidance Draws Clear Line Between Vaccinated and Unvaccinated Americans

The Los Angeles Times (April 27) interviewed Dr. Timothy Brewer, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of epidemiology, about the CDC’s efforts to get unvaccinated Americans immunized. “There’s always been a push to get people vaccinated,” Brewer said. “(This is) more of a carrot approach.” It also ran in the Bakersfield Californian and the Keene Sentinel.

COVID-19: Have a Vax, go Outside Without a Mask

The Daily Beast (April 27) interviewed Dr. Timothy Brewer, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of epidemiology, about the latest CDC guidelines regarding wearing masks. “There’s really very limited evidence to suggest that outdoor transmission plays any significant role in SARS-CoV-2 transmission,” Brewer said. “We’re 75 percent lower than where we were at the beginning of January, but things have kind of leveled off, and I think the task force is kind of grappling with what to do about that.” It also ran in the Daily Magazine.

COVID-19: Democratic Lawmaker Pushes for Federal Paid Leave

Yahoo (April 27) referenced research by the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health's WORLD Policy Analysis Center, led by Dr. Jody Heymann, a UCLA distinguished professor of public health, public policy, and medicine, in a report about a proposal by House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal (D-MA) for up to 12 weeks of paid federal family and medical leave for workers, as a result of the pandemic.

COVID-19: Biden’s Coronavirus Success Threatened by Political Divisions he Pledged to Heal

The Los Angeles Times (April 27) interviewed Dr. Robert Kim-Farley, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of epidemiology and community health sciences, about the impact of politics on the pandemic response. “We are very fortunate in the United States to have access to the life-saving vaccines and we should take advantage of having that access,” Kim-Farley said. It also ran on Yahoo, the Sacramento BeeFresno BeeModesto Bee, and the Merced Sun-Star.

COVID-19: Vaccinating Children, Vigilance Next Phase of California’s COVID-19 Battle

The Los Angeles Times (April 26) interviewed Dr. Robert Kim-Farley, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of epidemiology and community health sciences, about California’s continuing fight against the pandemic. “We probably will not be able to approach true herd immunity by the end of the year — unless people dramatically change in terms of their willingness to take (the) vaccine,” Kim-Farley said. “We probably will not achieve zero, which is what you would hope to achieve with true herd immunity. There’ll be probably then-isolated outbreaks that would be occurring around the country, especially in any pockets of persons who tend to be vaccine-hesitant, or in groups of young children.” It also ran on Yahoo and MSN.

COVID-19: Oscars 2021 - You can Mourn (If you Know How)

Vanity Fair (Aug. 26) quoted Dr. Anne Rimoin, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of epidemiology, about the safety protocols for the 2021 Academy Awards, where she served as a public health consultant. “Hello, this is Dr. Anne Rimoin, professor of epidemiology at UCLA and also a big fan of the cinema,” Rimoin said, before discussing safety precautions at the event. Similar items ran on YahooKIIS-FMHollywoodLifeLatestLY, and ANI.

COVID-19: Program Will Feature Dr. Anthony Fauci on 'Life Beyond the Pandemic'

Greenwich Time (April 26) advanced a May 2 panel discussion hosted by Connecticut Public Television and including Dr. Anne Rimoin, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of epidemiology. Also on the panel are Dr. Anthony Fauci, chief medical advisor to President Joe Biden; Dr. Kavita Patel, of the Center for Health Policy at the Brookings Institution; and Dr. Michael T. Osterholm, of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy, University of Minnesota. It also ran in the Ridgefield (CT) Press and Darien (CT) Times.

COVID-19: Oscars Kickoff Amid Strict Safety Measures

People (April 25) quoted Dr. Anne Rimoin, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of epidemiology, about the safety protocols for the 2021 Academy Awards, where she served as a public health consultant. “By implementing health protocols, wearing masks, social distancing and continually testing right up until show time, so many people — scientists, doctors, unions and more — worked tirelessly to make tonight's Academy Awards possible,” Rimoin said during the introduction to the Oscars’ telecast, which also functioned as a public service announcement regarding the vaccination campaign. “The path back to the moments we miss is for us to all be vaccinated, and it's free. So please get vaccinated.” Similar stories ran on more than 70 outlets, including ABC NewsMSNYahoo and WHTZ-FM (NY), among others. A separate sidebar, focused on the safety issue, also ran in People.

COVID-19: Film Production Starting to Rebound in Los Angeles

The Los Angeles Business Journal (April 25) interviewed Dr. Shira Shafir, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health associate professor of epidemiology and community health sciences, about the entertainment industry’s strict protocols, including California’s state-mandated rules for testing, mask wearing and social distancing on set, as well as polymerase chain reaction, or PCR, testing prior to employment. “It’s challenging on a film or television set where you’ve got actors who have to go to hair and makeup, and you have the grips and all the different people who are sort of mixing and in the same physical space,” Shafir said. Shafir was also quoted in Facility Executive.

COVID-19: Safety Measures Remain Important for Students

The Daily Bruin (April 25) interviewed Dr. Jody Heymann, a UCLA distinguished professor of public health, public policy, and medicine, about the importance of basic precautions regarding the pandemic, even as the vaccination campaign moves s forward. “Each of us, when we minimize our risk of getting and transmitting it … we’re also helping protect others who may be at much higher risk of severe disease,” Heymann said. ““Even in the absence of a surge, people are still getting sick … people are still getting hospitalized and having long-term consequences.” Heymann’s work was also referenced in the Pleasanton Weekly and the Compton Bulletin.

 

FEATURES (Other)

UCLA Fielding School of Public Health efforts spotlighted in ASPPH Friday Letter

The ASPPH Friday Letter (April 30) reported eight items related to UCLA Fielding School of Public Health faculty and staff experts, FSPH efforts related to the pandemic, or other news. These included items about Dr. Anne Rimoin and a vaccination PSA she presented at the Academy Awards and an upcoming panel with Dr. Rimoin and Dr. Anthony Fauci. The Letter also spotlighted Dr. Robert Kim-Farley on herd immunity; Dr. Michael Jerrett in the New York Times; Dr. Jack Needleman in the Los Angeles Times; Dr. Richard Jackson on post-pandemic return to work strategies; Dr. Beate Ritz on Parkinson’s disease; and Dr. Harvey Fineberg at the annual Breslow Lecture.

Cancer in Children: A Possible Consequence of Pesticide Exposure During Pregnancy

KMEX-TV (April 29, Los Angeles Univision affiliate, Spanish) interviewed Dr. Beate Ritz, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of epidemiology and environmental health sciences, about her research that shows increased risk of brain tumors in children, estimated as much as twice to 2.5 times higher for some pesticides, even if the mother is not a farmworker. “This study is special because we were able to link the birth records of women who gave birth all over California to the cancer registry,” Ritz said. “In California we are actually using almost a quarter of all the pesticides that are being used in the U.S.”

Can Pesticide Residues Promote Parkinson's?

CuerpoMente (April 28) referenced research by Dr. Beate Ritz, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of epidemiology and environmental health science, about links between pesticide exposure and Parkinson’s disease. It also ran on MSN.

Housing Advocates Work to Address Disparities for BIPOC, LGBTQ Seniors

The Bay Area Reporter (April 28) cited data from the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health’s UCLA Center for Health Policy Research California Health Interview Survey on LGB adults between the ages of 50 to 70. The late Dr. Steven Wallace, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of community health sciences and an associate director at UCLA CHPR, was quoted. “We found gay men were more likely to have hypertension, diabetes, psychological distress and chronic condition, a series of chronic conditions,” Wallace said. “Lesbians did not have the chronic physical conditions; and high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease were basically the same. But when you look at psychological distress, that was higher, along with physical disability and poor self-image. The gay men and lesbians were more likely to say their health was fair or poor.”

Breaking Down Barriers to Care for Metastatic Breast Cancer Patients

Mirage News (April 28) ran an article on new fact sheets released by the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health’s UCLA Center for Health Policy Research and the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center on barriers to metastatic breast cancer care. The work was led by CHPR’s AJ Scheitler, and co-authored by Dr. Ninez Ponce, and Dr. Beth Glenn, both Fielding School professors of health policy and management. A similar piece ran in Healthy Life Zone.

An Asset That Keeps on Giving

Polk County Itemizer-Observer (April 28, Oregon) cited information from the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health’s UCLA Center for Health Policy Research, led by Dr. Ninez Ponce, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of health policy and management, on the role of food banks in the pandemic for a feature story on the Ella Curran Food Bank.