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‘DYING PEOPLE TOO SLOW TO SEEK HELP’: Darville says patients not seeking medical aid until it is too late

Minister of Health and Wellness Dr Michael Darville.

Minister of Health and Wellness Dr Michael Darville.

By KHRISNA RUSSELL

Tribune Chief Reporter

krussell@tribunemedia.net

HEALTH and Wellness Minister Dr Michael Darville has lamented the country’s rising COVID-19 death toll, saying local health experts believe it is the result of people seeking medical intervention too late in their illness when help is less likely to yield results.

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He also said the government is looking at procuring additional drugs that are currently unavailable in the country to treat people sick with COVID-19.

More than 640 people have died from COVID-19, with 12 new deaths recorded on October 21. The deaths occurred between September 23 and October 14. A 16-year-old boy was among the victims.

Dr Darville is expected to give full details of the health situation tomorrow when he delivers his first speech as health minister in the House of Assembly.

He said with deaths increasing on an almost daily basis and new virus cases seemingly on the decline, the ministry is concerned.

“We’re definitely looking at that. We are very concerned about our death rate and we believe that is directly related to individuals who are COVID positive presenting at our tertiary healthcare facilities at the advanced stages of COVID pneumonia.

“We know that once the body begins to have those low oxygen counts, we start to see areas where there is always the possibility that the lungs itself can now begin to be clogged with mucus plugs and fluid and the transference of oxygen normally could be compromised. “When you put persons on high flow oxygen, they do get some response, but one of the things we’re noticing is that individuals, particularly with this Delta variant, are at home and very ill but because they are stationary, they really don’t know how ill they are.

“They begin to (get) decompensated and have great difficulty breathing. They call the emergency medical facilities and they present to the hospital with advanced stages of the disease and COVID is one of those slippery slopes.

“If you are one of those individuals who are on that slope and the medical emergency team executes medical protocols to save you, there is going to be some individuals who are not going to make it, unfortunately. That is the danger with this variant and it’s not something new to The Bahamas. It’s reflective of COVID throughout the world.

“We’ve seen it in the developed countries. We’ve seen it in India. We’ve seen it all over and our job now is to ensure through public education the importance to respond very quickly when you’re diagnosed with COVID and you are at home in isolation and you start to develop symptoms.

“We have to find a better way to interface the public medical community with those individuals. We have a plan on how we intend to do that because early detection and early treatment is paramount in order for survival with COVID-19.”

On the issue of getting additional drug therapies in the country to fight the disease, he said: “The public healthcare system is now discussing the procurement process for these drugs that will be a very, very important tool and once instituted at the appropriate time I think we’ll have better medical outcomes and see a reduction in the cases of death as a result of COVID.”

He also revealed that free COVID-19 testing will begin in Eleuthera this week as officials zero in on several areas of concern on the island.

Dr Darville told The Tribune if all goes well, beginning tomorrow residents in Harbour Island, Upper and Lower Bogue and other areas of North Eleuthera will be able to take advantage of the free tests.

This comes as health officials last week wrapped up the same initiative in Inagua. While officials have not yet completed the full compilation of test numbers in Inagua, Dr Darville said they were pleased with the turnout.

“If you look at the dashboard you will see that we do have some areas of concern in North Eleuthera and some in the Berry Islands. So, if all goes well on Wednesday, we will be doing free testing in Harbour Island, Upper and Lower Bogue and some other areas of North Eleuthera.

“Similarly with the distribution of masks I have additional police officers there who are policing because we got word that there may have been some breakdowns in the public health protocols and so surveillance is very important, particularly when you have clusters on the Family Islands where there are limited healthcare facilities.

“So, we will be going into North Eleuthera this week to do a similar pilot that we did in Inagua.

“We will definitely be doing a similar thing in North Eleuthera as it relates to the Ministry of Health partnering with the private sector to assist us with the testing and the distribution of free medical grade masks, which is very important to our protective agenda because that in itself is one of our greatest tools particularly when people are interacting in our community.”

Comments

realfreethinker 1 year, 1 month ago

The article was kind of long so i didn't read it in it's entirety. How many times did he blame the previous government?

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joeblow 1 year, 1 month ago

... but if people are coming in too late when medical intervention is not likely to help, why buy more medication that won't help?

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tribanon 1 year, 1 month ago

I guess this arse Darville wants us to think he doesn't know about all of the messaging that has been sent to Bahamians by public health officials since March 2020. Very deliberate messaging like the following that has kept sick Bahamians away from the hospitals and clinics:

  • Be warned, the hospitals and clinics are chockablock full of highly contagious COVID-19 patients with no available beds for new patients, i.e. there's simply no room at the inn so just stay away because we will mostly likely have to turn you away any way.

  • The hospitals and clinics have serious shortages of ventilators, oxygen, PPE and properly trained and skilled doctors and nursing staff, so don't expect to get the medical attention you need in a hospital or clinic.

  • The hospitals and clinics are without the essential drugs to treat people sick with COVID-19 because the government, in particular senior public health officials, have failed to procure them (see Darville's own words in the 2nd paragraph of the above news story).

With all of that kind messaging of a scaremongering nature, it's no small wonder most Bahamians are not bothering to seek medical attention at a hospital or clinic on a timely basis when warranted by their ill-health. Truth be told, decades of rampant government corruption and mismanagement of our public health system have made it dysfunctional at best, and a killing machine at worst.

And the past and present wannabe politician doctors like Gomez, Minnis, Sands, Darville and others like the past and present incompetent chief medical doctors, directors of public health, directors of nursing, permanent secretaries, etc. have all done their part to literally destroy our public health system, not to mention the entire system having long ago been overwhelmed by the ever increasing number of illegal Haitian nationals in our country.

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KapunkleUp 1 year, 1 month ago

Well said. Sounds like he wants to shift blame over to the people.

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stillwaters 1 year, 1 month ago

After reading this article, I thought .......he blamed Minnis for the covid deaths, but now that he's the competent authority, it's the people's fault.....they are staying home instead of coming to the hospital they were told has no space. Hmmmmmm......And I don't blame Darville for these deaths either.....I still believe it's the obesity and other chronic diseases these people had before getting covid.

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tribanon 1 year, 1 month ago

You would be shocked to know how many among the well-connected political elite in our country, including both past and present elected and other senior government officials, have a silent partner interest in one or more of the unhealthy fast food establishments that now dominate the Bahamian diet.

Giving 5 or 10% of the profits to 'the right senior goverment or politically connected person' is how the owners of these most unhealthy fast food establishments go about obtaining all of the government permits they need in order to sprout up wherever they want whenever they want, including in many areas that should have remained zoned for residential development only.

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immigrant 1 year, 1 month ago

And last week he went on a blitz saying that there are too many moderately ill people taking hospital beds that should be used for severely ill patients. Which one is it?

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whogothere 1 year, 1 month ago

What he didn’t mention is the increase in non covid hospitalization and deaths…This is the price of panic, lockdowns and travel restrictions…it’s happening everywhere

www.npr.org/2021/10/26/1046432435/ers...

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JokeyJack 1 year, 1 month ago

Exactly. Doctors only know the word covid now. Plus, who wants to go to hospital and get injected with experimental drugs?

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TalRussell 1 year, 1 month ago

The premiership of "Brave" Davis's elementary healthcare and playing exact blame the popoulaces' game and numbers of vaccinated arithmetic's two sums do not carry forward to add up and everything like this and that are as flawed as was the former's.
If the same messaging continues going forward, House-elected MPs will continue attending even that much more funerals than weddings of constituents, — Yes?

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sheeprunner12 1 year, 1 month ago

Darville is making Renward look like a genius right now. This fallacy that a doctor knows best for Covid is being exposed daily. We're in deep trouble this time around.

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carltonr61 1 year, 1 month ago

Civilian researchers on this forum has advocated non WHO PAHO formulas to save lives. Early intervention could begin with just feeling tired for a few days running or sleepy far too often even though well rested. Your body maybe telling you something. But within weeks of of not listening to your body you are at stage three intensity Codid and needing hospitilization. The Ivermectin or hydroxichloroquine are life savers at first pre Covid when you feel a little different of off. Covid virus takes time to build up viral load but while the load is at 5% Ivervectin hydroxichloroquine a 50 year old FDA approved protease inhibitors can stop virus riplication from growing to 90%viril load hospitalization and death due to colon lining attack, lungs totally covered with thick mucus and organ failures especially in overweight and persons with sugar. Even pyzer has presented its version of Protease Inhibitor, a sister of Ivermectin serious deadly Covid prevention. Anything should be worth a try above proven death or hospitilizations as Dr. Darville is advocating same as Florida and elsewhere.

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rosiepi 1 year, 1 month ago

To be blunt: this is a load of hogwash. No country, no hospitals have been successful in using these treatments for Covid-19. Studies have all debunked their use. Indeed many countries have had to treat folks buying into these lies as victims of poisoning w/many resulting in life long health compromises and/or fatal prognosises.

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Bobsyeruncle 1 year, 1 month ago

Why don't YOU prove how HCQ & Ivermectin are life savers. Provide a link to a controlled study that backs up your BS claim. Wait, what's that ? You can't find one? Thought so.

I assume you also know that Protease Inhibitors are a class of anti-viral drugs and not a single specific drug? They are typically used to treat HIV, (and not flu like viruses) by blocking specific proteolytic enzymes.

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FrustratedBusinessman 1 year, 1 month ago

Just to show that this is a non-partisan issue :

https://principia-scientific.com/nyc-...">https://principia-scientific.com/nyc-...

Joe Rogan.

Two widely publicized examples.

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Bobsyeruncle 1 year, 1 month ago

Sorry, but that is not a scientific study. It's just one persons experience, and his recovery could be due to any one of, or a combination of, several other medications he was on as part of his treatment.

Interesting how the article (which incidentally can be found word for exact word on many dubious sites), somehow manages to determine that it was HCQ that helped 'cure' him. Sorry, but I smell an ulterior political motive here.

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whogothere 1 year, 1 month ago

Oh bobby boy - calling you out dude - here are about 60 studies on Ivermectin...HCQ I'm not on that ship. That said the current evidence base concerning the use of ivermectin in the early treatment of covid continues to be positive, but important questions regarding the quality and certainty of many studies remain, however if ivermectin is even just 10% effective against covid, its professional use could already have saved a million people.

https://ivmmeta.com/#fig_fpr">https://ivmmeta.com/#fig_fpr

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Bobsyeruncle 1 year, 1 month ago

About your link:

Different websites (such as https://ivmmeta.com/">https://ivmmeta.com/, https://c19ivermectin.com/">https://c19ivermectin.com/, https://tratamientotemprano.org/estud...">https://tratamientotemprano.org/estud..., among others) have conducted meta-analyses with ivermectin studies, showing unpublished colorful forest plots which rapidly gained public acknowledgement and were disseminated via social media, without following any methodological or report guidelines. These websites do not include protocol registration with methods, search strategies, inclusion criteria, quality assessment of the included studies nor the certainty of the evidence of the pooled estimates. Prospective registration of systematic reviews with or without meta-analysis protocols is a key feature for providing transparency in the review process and ensuring protection against reporting biases, by revealing differences between the methods or outcomes reported in the published review and those planned in the registered protocol. These websites show pooled estimates suggesting significant benefits with ivermectin, which has resulted in confusion for clinicians, patients and even decision-makers. This is usually a problem when performing meta-analyses which are not based in rigorous systematic reviews, often leading to spread spurious or fallacious findings.

Try again bro

And FYI, I have spent a considerable part of my working life in the area of clinical trials in one capacity or another. I don't claim to know everything about trial design and interpretation of data, but I do know when a publication of clinical trial data just doesn't seem right, and that website you posted a link to definitely didn't seem right.

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Bobsyeruncle 1 year, 1 month ago

Also, I don't suppose you noticed that there is nothing on that website about the authors of the website, no homepage, no "About us", absolutely no background information at all. Hmm, to most people that would be a real red flag. The only indication of who posted the information is under the FAQ's section (which you have to search for), where it says they are "@CovidAnalysis". I'll leave you to research them.

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whogothere 1 year, 1 month ago

Bobby you (once again as usual) missed the point I m not interested in this website’s meta-analysis - that irrelevant - it’s the compendium of links to the studies that generally show positive outcomes from IVMs application…which you so asked for and so received - and as I said even if IVM is 10% effective (data is still coming in as it is with vaccines) then yeah alot of lives would be saved - remember they mandated masks for less ;)

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Bobsyeruncle 1 year, 1 month ago

I haven't missed the point, you have. There is no clinical evidence in any of those links (or anywhere else for that matter) to show that it's even 0.00001% effective, let alone 10%. None of those links direct you to the actual place where the CT data was published. Instead, they direct you to another page on the 'ivmmeta' website where they have cherrypicked and summarized the data to fit their needs. Why don't they link the reader to the actual publication where the CT result were published? The answer is pretty obvious, no?

Most of the studies (links) which I clicked on are using Ivermectin in conjunction with other treatments, and none of @CovidAnalysis summaries provide any clear results or conclusions, beyond what THEY want the reader to think..

Also, if you haven't noticed the same people have a hydroxychloroquine website 'hcqmeta.com' that makes the same claims about HCQ based on their identical meta-analysis. From what I gather, they had to backtrack on what they initially posted because they were called out for astroturfing and making up terms like 'Country Randomized Trials' (which there is no such thing in the world of Clinical Trials).

You come across as a reasonable and intelligent person, so please get your info from a reputable scientific source, not from a shadowy website.

In closing, I'm not saying Ivermectin (or HCQ) couldn't be effective in treating COVID but until peer reviewed data from a full blown, professionally designed and executed Clinical Trial has been published in a reputable journal, I will not be getting on board.

Peace. Have a good weekend.

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whogothere 1 year, 1 month ago

Bobbser. bud. you're getting lost in the weeds -they provide the source documents (come on buddy you re a smart guy) but I guess it's possible don't you know how to actually use the site I posted - you're clicking on "discussion tab"(oops) - which does go to their blah blah blah but ignore their meta analysis - who gives a whiff about that...simply hold the mouse over the cited study and you will be given several options (bear mind thats my link not the one you shared) - simply click on the "source field" and you'll get to the original paper it's not that hard...and from there you can evaluate the data yourself - it's hit or miss but again even if there is some success it seems to be systematically ignored because the threat to vaccination program...and well thats just not good science or journalism..

here I'v collected a few you (some crap some not so much) keep an open mind bobbsers it suits you better ;) :

https://ejmo.org/10.14744/ejmo.2021.1...">https://ejmo.org/10.14744/ejmo.2021.1...

https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1...">https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1...

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science...">https://www.sciencedirect.com/science...

https://www.thelancet.com/journals/ec...">https://www.thelancet.com/journals/ec...

https://journals.library.ualberta.ca/...">https://journals.library.ualberta.ca/...

https://www.dovepress.com/clinical-bi...">https://www.dovepress.com/clinical-bi...

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/arti...">https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/arti...

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science...">https://www.sciencedirect.com/science...

https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama...">https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama...

https://www.dovepress.com/clinical-bi...">https://www.dovepress.com/clinical-bi...

PS have a good weekend? too - happy reading ;)

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whogothere 1 year, 1 month ago

Oh i forgot, in case I'm not clear - I'm by no means putting all my chips in on IVM as the miracle cure - quite the contrary...but there is room for 'good' research to be done - unfortunately the political landscape of that potential research is divisive and explosive which has caused supreme bias on both sides of the debate. The Church of the Vaccine will not stand for alternatives...And the clergy of the Anti vax will embrace and glorify any and alll alternatives... either way objective science is sacrificed on both alters...

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Bobsyeruncle 1 year, 1 month ago

Yes, you're right I was clicking on 'discussion' instead of 'source', my bad.

However, if you've read the results and conclusions from the 'sources', you will see that none of them say conclusively that Ivermectin works. Additionally, most also say 'further studies are required'. This is NOT what you say when reporting the results of a clinical trial. I would also point out that these are NOT Clinical Trials, they are studies only, a sort of 'proof of concept'. There is no way in hell a treatment would get approval anywhere in the world from these studies, which are essentially just publications.

The problem here is that most people don't understand what it takes to have any regulatory body, anywhere in the world, approve a drug or medical device. You can't just do a study, publish your results in a journal and then magically say a drug works and expect it to be available to the general public. What is to stop someone falsifying the data ? Did they really actually do the study ? That is why the discussion of results and conclusions in these links are vaguely worded and use the 'catch all' statement that further studies are required. That stops them from getting into trouble with the regulatory bodies.

I'm sure you're aware of the recent Theranos scandal and how people and investors were duped ? Go back further in time to Barr Laboratories, Thalidomide etc. These failures were why strict regulations were put in place, and regulatory bodies were formed in order to get approval of drug treatments.

Clinical Trials require regulatory approval of the trial design & protocols, before they can even be started. All the results and raw data have to be submitted and verified by regulatory authorities, and then it is the regulatory authority that determines if the drug treatment is suitable for human use.

Hopefully you can now see what I'm getting at in my above posts. Just because a study is published in a journal, does not mean it is accurate and therefore suitable for human use. Otherwise we would all be making our own Ivermectin (or any drug for that matter) in our garages, designing our own studies, making up our own results, and then telling everyone on social media how great Ivermectin (or our new drug) is. Sort of like the black market and counterfeit drugs that come in from China.

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stillwaters 1 year, 1 month ago

The dashboard is still reporting a steady zero cases for Inagua since they started the free testing...they didn't find one extra case of covid in Inagua?

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stillwaters 1 year, 1 month ago

Sorry.....they found two....this past week...I self corrected

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rosiepi 1 year, 1 month ago

If only they'd publish the list of the sick who've been and who continue to be refused hospital beds in Nassau & Freeport. Most especially those on Family Islands where their only means of diagnosis is discounted due to the use of rapid tests the MOH distributed! So their diagnosis, even their death from Covid isn't recorded. People are dying because there isn't enough beds and cutting edge treatments ie.mononuclear antibodies, easily given in one IV treatment which doesn't even have to be done in hospital. The only thing in abundance is callousness, ineptitude and stupidity.

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Bobsyeruncle 1 year, 1 month ago

Sorry to burst your bubble, but the article states that it is only in Phase 1 of development where you typically study safety & tolerability in normal healthy volunteers. The only anti-viral activity that has been demonstrated so far was in in-vitro studies (in a petri dish).

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jus2cents 1 year, 1 month ago

Is there a Bahamas Gov website with a quick list of instructions on what to do if you test positive for covid, and a mobile unit that goes around with medical supplies that can help those at home.

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sheeprunner12 1 year, 1 month ago

Ventilators don't work, esp not at PMH. Cheaper taking bush medicine and stay at home. Ppl need to take better care and stop living bad lifestyles, esp obesity.

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ThisIsOurs 1 year, 1 month ago

No. Ventilators do work. The problem is people in white coats who dont know how to use ventilators will kill you faster than COVID. i am told the ventilators that PMH uses are invasive and that there are less intrusive devices available.

Still holding the theory that a vast number of persons who died in "early" COVID worldwide were actually killed haphazardly. I recall quite clearly nurses on Msnbc talking about "everybody" being pulled from everywhere to assist with ICU cases.

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ThisIsOurs 1 year, 1 month ago

According to Dr Chetty, bush medicine like regular cold medicine will work for the first week. I remember when Italy was locked down, the guy who films Bahamas undersea life spoke about how eerie the empty streets were. He spoke about his grandmother? walking him through some natural medication that made him feel better then wham, 1 week later it came back with a vengence. Thats exactly the scenario Dr Vhetty described and It sounds like a good explanation for our results.

People stay home using bush medicine and it works for 7 days. For "some" people thats it, infection done. For others, they enter a 2nd phase of the disease where they need to be treated with antihistamine steroids and a 3rd class of medication that I dont recall. It seems like the large percentage of these persons are obese. Im told obesity is a chronic inflammatory disease and the receptors that would normally slowdown COVID are preoccupied fighting obesity so COVID runs wild. (Those are my words and my non scientific interpretation of what I was told)

The accounts in the paper all say the same thing, the person cant breathe and their relatives try to rush them to the hospital. Some people die trying to get to the car, some die waiting for air transport or in flight.

The solution is, when that 2nd phase kicks in you need immediate and aggresive medical attention. The bush medicine will not work

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TalRussell 1 year, 1 month ago

Comrades Sheeprunner and ThisIs, should you two bush scientists run across a for-sure bush medicine treatment against Covid, I'd most strongly advise you take your bush-cure discoveries up to the Guardian's Most Eminent Talkie, Comrade Juan, who thrills in incorporating onto his shows, someone's' as his special bush medicines guests aka paid info-commercial sponsors and everything else like from the various kinds of outdoor bushes which you two be delving in behind.
The more secondhand is your bush medicine cures is the more thrilling for him to rush to brung you two live-on-air, — Yes?

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ThisIsOurs 1 year, 1 month ago

lol. My knowledge is second hand and I may have lost some things in my interpretation, also unlike Dr Minnis I am not a doctor. not even "of the bush"

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carltonr61 1 year, 1 month ago

A 4th Vax now. What a petpetual race to the bank for pharma. Once criminal child Vax going ING into permanent cycle one can guess a declaration of pandemic over in certain states. The goal posts will continue to move backwards for the vaccinated in order to remain certified seeming every 5to 6 months due to Vax efficacy weak data. Will insurances fall in line for Vax certifications three times a year or annually. Creeping everything Vax is a reality as money digitalization with Credit Card use may come with Vax QRcoding.

https://www.rt.com/usa/538543-cdc-fou...">https://www.rt.com/usa/538543-cdc-fou...

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