What We Now Know About COVID Prevention and Treatment: A Podcast with Monica Gandhi



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We are two and a half years into the COVID pandemic. We’ve lived through lockdowns, toilet paper shortages, mask mandates, hospital surges where ICU’s overflowed, a million COVID deaths, prolonged school closures, development and roll out of novel vaccines, an explosion of social isolation and loneliness, and the invention of the “zoom meeting.”

But what have we really learned over this seemingly endless pandemic other than how to make a quarantini? Well, on today’s podcast we invite Monica Gandhi to sum up the evidence to date about how best to prevent getting COVID (or at least the severe outcomes of the disease) and how to treat it, including the role of Paxlovid in symptomatic disease.

Monica Gandhi is a professor of medicine and associate division chief of HIV, Infectious Diseases, and Global Medicine at UCSF & San Francisco General Hospital. In addition to her research publications, she is a prolific writer both on social media and on media outlets like the Atlantic and the Washington Post. Some call her an optimist or maybe a pragmatist, but I’d call her someone who inherently understands the value in harm reduction when it’s clear harm elimination just ain’t gonna happen.

So take a listen and if you want a deeper dive into some of the references we discuss on the podcast, here is a list:

- Medscape article on how “COVID-19 Vaccines Work Better and for Longer Than Expected Across Populations, Including Immunocompromised Individuals”
https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/974363

- Stat news article about variants/COVID becoming more predictable
https://www.statnews.com/2022/05/03/more-uniformly-infectious-more-treatable-more-genetically-predictable-how-coronavirus-is-getting-closer-to-flu/

- A good twitter criticism of the CDC 1 in 5 COVID survivors have long COVID study
https://twitter.com/walidgellad/status/1529773891631124482?s=20&t=4QmZXt60J_gp-D-YyQponQ

- NIH study about long COVID published the day before in Annals of Internal Medicine
https://www.acpjournals.org/doi/10.7326/M21-4905

- Evusheld and how it works against BA4 and BA5
https://www.astrazeneca.com/media-centre/medical-releases/evusheld-long-acting-antibody-combination-retains-neutralising-activity-omicron-variants-ba4-ba5-according-new-study-university-oxford.html

- Our World in Data COVID graphs
https://ourworldindata.org/covid-deaths
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Health
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