Coronavirus Update From New York City: May 13, 2021

I start today’s post with another dose of good news: my younger brother is now fully vaccinated!

He got vaccinated last Friday. His side effects were in many ways similar to mine: chills, a headache, fatigue, a sore arm, and nausea (which was something I didn’t have much of, though I had little appetite). And, like me, he started getting those side effects about 12 hours or so after his second dose, and the side effects lasted for 24 hours or less (with him, it was under 24 hours, with the exception of the arm soreness that lasted longer). I share my brother’s side effects (with his permission by the way) to yet again highlight that for all the vaccine hesitancy over side effects, the side effects are very short-term (the very rare blood clots from the Johnson & Johnson notwithstanding) and are child’s play compared to getting the virus (some of whom still suffer certain symptoms for months or over a year after catching the virus).

What this means is that everyone in the household I am in is now fully vaccinated, even if one member of the household (my younger brother) is still off at college. It also means that the risk of any of us catching COVID-19, which we were already all trying to limit through wearing masks and practicing social distancing, is even lower now. It’s a relief to know that all four of us are now vaccinated.

Also a relief is the fact that the test positivity rate for COVID has plummeted both in New York City and in my part of New York City. The test positivity rate citywide is now under 2% and it is just over 3% in my zip code.[2] The days of test positivity well over 10% in my area seem so long ago and yet so short ago at the same time. I am hoping that we continue trending in that direction, and that we can get to a point with this awful pandemic that we can at least have this thing well under control.

The one piece of not-so-good news is that New York City, like many other parts of the United States, are starting to experience slowdowns in the number of people getting vaccinated. In early April, there were over 100,000 people per day getting vaccinated–that number has slowed down significantly since then.[3] My guess as to what is happening here is that many of the people who were enthusiastic about getting vaccines have now been vaccinated (me being among them, as I got my first dose around the time that daily vaccine doses distributed in New York City was about to hit its peak). Now, in many cases, I think we are to the populations that were waiting for the right time to get vaccinated (in terms of work obligations) as well as the vaccine-hesitant.

I will be interested to hear how readers are doing!


[1] https://www1.nyc.gov/site/doh/covid/covid-19-goals.page#viz1607355501127

[2] https://www1.nyc.gov/site/doh/covid/covid-19-data.page

[3] https://www1.nyc.gov/site/doh/covid/covid-19-data-vaccines.page

9 Replies to “Coronavirus Update From New York City: May 13, 2021”

  1. That’s fantastic news about everyone in your family being vaccinated Brendan! How do you feel about the new CDC guidance regarding indoor mask wearing. I’m rather shocked about it myself. As you know, I live in a red state and many people here have never worn masks, so you can’t assume that just because someone isn’t wearing one now means they’ve been vaccinated, especially down here.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My apologies for not replying in the past few days! But anyway, my feeling about the new guidance is that it depends on the infection rate in a particular area and it depends on the variants going around. In some places the CDC guidance might make sense, but in places with higher infection rates and variants where we don’t know how resistant they are to vaccines, I’m a bit more hesitant to have masks off indoors.

      P.S. In indoor spaces, ventilation, from what I hear, is even more important than masks and social distancing.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. So glad you and your entire immediate family are fully vaccinated! I am hoping to get the J&J within the next week or two, but I’m low risk for the virus, since I never go anywhere! Keep safe and well, my friend!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Will do! The incidence of blood clots is so small as to be negligible, and fortunately I’ve heard that the side effects of the J&J are nearly non-existent, so … fingers crossed. I will let you know, though!

        Liked by 1 person

  3. We are celebrating that my son and his wife, both needle phobic (he passes out and finds it truly embarrassing) got Johnson and JOhnson on Saturday making our household all vaccinated. I find myself very cautious about letting everything go.

    Liked by 1 person

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