#5SmartReads - January 3, 2022
Hitha on Omicron, what you didn't learn about the Civil War, and what women really need right now
Scientists Predict Omicron Will Peak in the U.S. in Mid-January But Still May Overwhelm Hospitals (Yahoo! News, originally printed in the NYT)
Before you freak out about the rising case numbers, I want you to approach every single headline with this filter from the incomparable Dr. Vin Gupta:
If we only focus on case totals OR that low fatality rate of COVID but ignore every other key metric (hospitalizations, ICU admissions, MIS-C cases, the number of people still struggling with long COVID) - you’re focusing on a single leaf and missing the entire forest.
That we are expected to reach the Omicron peak soon is somewhat positive news. But it’s also important to remember that much of the country was still in a Delta wave, which is believed to drive more of the hospital admissions and ICU admits than Omicron.
But hospitals are still struggling all over the country. Some of the therapies - like monoclonal antibodies - are ineffective against Omicron. Rising cases will cause incredible stress on businesses and schools and public services.
Please be careful and take precautions, especially in the next few weeks.
A woman's greatest enemy? A lack of time to herself (The Guardian)
“I feel such a sense of loss when I think of the great, unwritten poems that took a backseat to polished floors. And for a long time, I thought the expectation that others be tended to first and the floors be polished and that she was the one who was supposed to keep them that way was what kept those untold stories coiled inside her, compressed, as Maya Angelou writes, to the point of pain. But I wonder if it isn’t also that women feel they don’t deserve time to themselves, or enough of it that comes in unbroken stretches. I wonder if we also feel we don’t deserve to tell our untold stories, that they may not be as worth listening to.”
It is both unsurprising and rage inducing that this article was written 2 1/2 years ago. Things just haven’t changed. They’ve gotten worse.
If there is exactly one goal I have for myself this year, it’s to prioritize time for myself to do what I want to do - not what I feel I have to do - every single day.
I wish the same for you.
January 1, 2022 (Heather Cox Richardson)
Heather Cox Richardson has an incredible talent for teaching us history in an approachable and critical perspective.
Emphasis on the critical. It’s high time we rebrand that word.
January 1st was the 159th anniversary of the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. And while I knew about the significance of that document in our history, there’s a lot I didn’t know about the Civil War and learned in this piece.
It’s very much worth your time.
Do yourself a favor, and send yourself an e-mail every single morning. One that captures your intention and what you’ll get done that day.
Something like this, which I learned about from my very wise friend Amanda.
This is one of those interviews I come back to when I find my focus waning and my distraction surging. I’ve learned so much from her, and I hope you find a nugget or two of wisdom to adopt and add to your life.
This is a very, very, very big deal. And there’s a lot to build upon as the program is formally launched.
But it’s a start.
Making emergency care in a hospital or freestanding ER or at an urgent care surprise billing illegal is massive, considering that most surprise billing occurs in these areas. I do hope that we see this law extended to ground ambulances in time.
Please bookmark this article (or save it to Pocket!) for the action items, in case you or someone you know does receive a surprise bill.