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The New Bivalent COVID Booster

The FDA and CDC just approved the Bivalent COVID booster. This booster contains strains of the original COVID virus along with Omicron variants BA.4 and BA.5. We are recommending anyone over the age of 18 gets this booster. To qualify, you must have first received a primary series. You also need to be at least 2 months out from either the primary series or your last booster dose.

Our office has placed an order to receive this booster and are waiting to hear from the state. We are tentatively expecting a shipment mid to late September. We are planning a bivalent booster and influenza vaccine clinic in the afternoons the week of September 26. Please be on the lookout for more information, along with a SignUp link, in the coming weeks.


COVID Update

Cases are finally starting to decline in our region. What does that mean for you?

  • Cases should be low in 6-8 weeks but are still high now.

  • Remember, 50% of cases happen after the peak!

  • Targeted masking makes a big difference in your risk.

  • Wear masks when in public places or around sick contacts.

  • A HEPA filter when gathering indoors is almost as effective as wearing an N95 mask if you are not sitting close to one another.

  • We recommend having an air purifier in the room in your home where you gather with friends or family.

  • Small, portable, rechargeable battery-powered HEPA filters can help reduce risk in high-risk situations like plane flights, Uber/cab rides, and indoor dining.


Forever Chemicals

The EPA is designating 2 chemicals, PFAS and PFOS, as toxic. These chemicals, commonly used in non-stick pots and pans, water repellant, coated cardboard, microwave popcorn bags and fast-food packaging, are known as forever chemicals since they are very resistant to breaking down in both people and the environment. It is shown that these chemicals can cause fertility problems and increase your risk of cancer. These chemicals have entered the water supply in many communities. The Post Dispatch published an article stating that in St. Louis County levels were shown to be at 7.4 parts per trillion. This is in compliance with the EPAs standard, but is higher than the 1 part per trillion that environmental groups say is safe.

Ways to avoid PFAS and PFOS:

  • Consider disposing of all non-stick pans and use cast-iron, stainless steel or ceramic instead.

  • Avoid food packaged in cardboard. Don’t reheat food in take-out packaging.

  • Consider a water filter that removes PFAS and PFOS from your drinking water. You can choose one on your tap in your kitchen sink or a pitcher-style filter that you can keep in your fridge.


What is Happening with Polio?

Polio was eradicated in the U.S. 20 years ago but is now being detected again in our sewage.

Why is this happening?

  • There has been waning adoption of the polio vaccine in the U.S.

  • In 1990, due to the one in a million cases of polio in vaccine recipients that the live oral vaccine caused, the U.S. switched to an inactivated polio injection.

  • The injectable polio vaccine prevents severe infection but doesn’t give sterilizing immunity (you don’t get sick, but you can still pass it to others). For sterilizing immunity, vaccines need to be swallowed or sprayed in the nasal passages.

  • While the injectable polio vaccine keeps the recipient from developing polio symptoms, it does not keep them from shedding the virus in their stool, which puts unvaccinated people at risk.

What should you do about polio?

Contact us if you did not receive 3 doses of vaccine in childhood. Remember, we do not have your childhood vaccine records and may not be aware if your parents chose not to vaccinate you.


New Insurance, Address or Email?

Please let us know by email or at your next point of care if your insurance, address, email, or any other demographics such as emergency contact have changed. It's important to keep your chart up to date as we utilize this information for office tasks such as placing outside orders/labs and making referrals. Thank you!


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