California hospitals were given the go-ahead to force their staff who test positive for Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) but remain asymptomatic to keep working and not go into quarantine in a bid to deal with severe staffing shortages in the state.
According to the latest guidance from the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), COVID-19 positive healthcare workers who remain asymptomatic will no longer be required to undergo quarantine or present a negative COVID-19 test to go back to work if they are fully vaccinated.
They must remain asymptomatic when they return to work. They will be required to wear N95-type respirator face masks at all times and must only work with other patients who have also tested positive for COVID-19.
“The department is providing temporary flexibility to help hospitals and emergency services providers respond to an unprecedented surge and staffing shortages,” wrote the CDPH in a statement. “Hospitals have to exhaust all other options before resorting to this temporary tool. Facilities and providers using this tool, should have asymptomatic COVID-19 positive workers interact only with COVID-19 positive patients to the extent possible.”
This temporary order will be enforced until Feb. 1.
California has struggled with staffing issues in its hospitals and other healthcare facilities as the post-vaccine omicron variant spreads through the highly vaccinated state. About 40 percent of hospitals in the state are expected to face critical shortages.
The state’s vaccine mandates led to thousands of healthcare workers being fired from their jobs, exacerbating the situation. Health giant Kaiser Permanente alone suspended more than 2,000 unvaccinated employees in October and warned that those who remain unvaccinated will be fired this month. (Related: California struggles to control coronavirus infections despite employing strict measures.)
The staffing situation has gotten so bad that Gov. Gavin Newsom has called on the California National Guard to help man stations in over 50 COVID-19 testing sites across the state. He is planning to deploy more in the following days. Healthcare workers assigned to these testing sites will be redeployed to hospitals.
California’s decision sparks outrage
The decision to let asymptomatic healthcare workers keep doing rounds in hospitals has caused intense criticism among healthcare workers, healthcare-related associations and trade unions in the state.
“It’s scary,” said Dennis Anderson, a 20-year veteran medical technologist working in Folsom, near Sacramento. “The thought that we could be transmitting COVID-19 to the people we care for every day.”
“When you step into an ER or walk through the ICU, people are getting that deja vu,” he continued. “The state might be compromising workplace safety precautions at a time when we should be supporting healthcare workers.”
“It’s counter-productive. It’s dangerous, and it’s actually backwards to everything we’re doing right now,” said ultrasound technician Georgette Bradford.
“We are very concerned,” said Sandy Reding, a board member of the California Nurses Association (CNA). “If you have healthcare workers who are COVID positive care for vulnerable populations, we can spread the COVID virus inside the hospital as well.”
“If we are going to set up for the surge, let’s set up protocols to have transmission reduced,” she continued. “Which means not have COVID positive people come to work.”
“Gov. Newsom and our state’s public health leaders are putting the needs of healthcare corporations before the safety of patients and workers,” said Cathy Kennedy, president of the CNA. “We want to care for our patients and see them get better – not potentially infect them. If we get sick, who will be left to care for our patients and community?”
Bob Schoonover, president and executive director of the California branch of the Service Employees International Union, said that California’s new guidance is unscientific.
“Healthcare workers and patients need the protection of clear rules guided by strong science,” he said. “Allowing employers to bring back workers who may still be infectious is one of the worst ideas I have ever heard during this pandemic, and that’s really saying something.”
Watch this video about a hospital in California running out of space to store bodies of dead COVID-19 patients.
Learn more about the catastrophic situation in California at Collapsifornia.com.
Hollywood Producer Ryan Kavanaugh Fleeing L.A. over Crime, Homelessness, High Taxes: ‘It’s Not the Pandemic, It’s Policy’
Hollywood producer Ryan Kavanaugh is fleeing Los Angeles, California, amid rising crime, homelessness, and higher taxes. Flight from the Democrat-run city is trending as “a growing chorus of Hollywood executives are talking about leaving the city,” one entertainment industry insider told The Wrap.
Ryan Kavanaugh, American film financier and founder and CEO of the video-sharing app Triller — who grew up in Los Angeles and has called it home for 47 years — is now getting ready to pick up and move his family and business headquarters to Florida.
Kavanaugh — who’s backed over 200 films, including Limitless, Hancock, Mamma Mia!, and The Social Network — told TheWrap that the main reason why he’s looking to flee L.A. is due to the city’s rising crime, homelessness, and California’s anti-business policies.
“I grew up here, I grew up in Brentwood, and I was allowed to be on the streets,” he said. “I would never let my kids walk (alone) in Brentwood — how many times do you have to be out in Los Angeles and see feces in the streets before you just don’t want to be here anymore?”
A LAPD police officer stands at the corner of Fairfax Avenue and Sunset Boulevard where a body covered in a white sheet lies on the pavement in Los Angeles. (VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images)
Kavanaugh added that he doesn’t blame the Chinese coronavirus pandemic for what he sees transpiring throughout L.A., bur rather, city and state government regulations that he says have made it more difficult to prosecute criminals, and local leaders who have failed to address a homelessness crisis.
“It’s not the pandemic, it’s policy,” he said.
Moreover, the murder of Jacqueline Avant — wife of famed music executive Clarence Avant and mother-in-law of Netflix’s Ted Sarandos — who was killed by an intruder in her Beverly Hills home last month, is contributing to a feeling of insecurity as crime hits closer to home for the elite, experts told The Wrap.
“A new tipping point emerged late last year with the murder of philanthropist Jacqueline Avant in her Beverly Hills home,” Gene Del Vecchio, adjunct professor of marketing at USC’s Marshall School of Business, said.
“It so shocked the protected community that even the liberal Beverly Hills city council voted to recall the liberal Los Angeles district attorney George Gascón,” Del Vecchio added. “When crime hits home, it becomes personal, and people act by either fighting, as with the Gascón recall, or by leaving.”
And Kavanaugh is not the only one among Hollywood’s wealthy residents who have recently decided to leave the city.
Veteran network TV executive Ted Harbert — most recently chairman of NBC Broadcasting — not only fled Los Angeles, but the United States altogether, telling The Wrap that he has moved to Portugal, where he is building a house because, “#americatoocrazy.”
UFC commentator and podcaster Joe Rogan also moved from California to Texas last year.
California has seen a surge in homicides in recent years as the state continues to buckle under high crime that has been allowed to fester under Democrat rule. In 2020, the state saw 2,202 homicides, up a colossal 31 percent from 2019, making it the deadliest year in the state since 2007, according to the California Department of Justice.
EXCLUSIVE: Syrian, Russian Migrants Apprehended at West Texas Border
EAGLE PASS, Texas — Border Patrol agents arrested two significant interest aliens at one of the busiest migrant crossing points on the southwest border Wednesday, along with hundreds of mostly Central and South American family units.
According to a source within Customs and Border Protection, the Syrian and Russian migrants are single adult males and their purpose for entering is still under investigation. The source says the Syrian adds to the nearly 50 special interest aliens apprehended in the area since October 2021.
Although not a country on the Department of Homeland Security’s list of special interest countries, Russia is designated as a Country of Particular Concern by the Department of State. Under the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998, the President is required to annually review the status of religious freedom in every country and designate those engaged in or tolerating “particularly severe violations of religious freedom.”
The law defines particularly severe violations as “systematic, ongoing, egregious violations of religious freedom,” including violations such as: torture, prolonged detention without charges, forced disappearance, or other flagrant denial of life, liberty, or security of persons.
Russia was designated by the State Department in November 2021. The source says the increase in apprehension of Special Interest Aliens (SIA) and those from CPC countries is cause for concern. The intent of such migrants, according to the source, is more difficult to determine than those who enter for mostly economic reasons.
The designation of SIA is related to the travel pattern and conditions within the home country, rather than specific threats. According to DHS, the designation of SIA is different than the designation of an individual migrant known or suspected of terrorism. The terms “Special Interest Alien” and “Known or Suspected Terrorist” (KST) are not interchangeable.
This fiscal year, the source says migrants from Eritrea, Uzbekistan, Iran, Afghanistan, India, Pakistan, Syria, and Russia have been encountered crossing the Rio Grande near Eagle Pass. The source says the migrants within this grouping usually attempt to elude apprehension as the Border Patrol contends with processing, transportation, and caring for nearly a thousand migrants who chose to surrender daily within the sector.
As reported by Breitbart Texas, the Del Rio Sector has led the eight other southwest sectors in migrant apprehensions in January.
Until recently, the Rio Grande Valley Sector held the top position in migrant apprehensions since 2013.
Randy Clark is a 32-year veteran of the United States Border Patrol. Prior to his retirement, he served as the Division Chief for Law Enforcement Operations, directing operations for nine Border Patrol Stations within the Del Rio, Texas, Sector. Follow him on Twitter @RandyClarkBBTX.
Poll: Just 33.7 Percent of Georgians Approve of Joe Biden
Just 33.7 percent of Georgians approved of Joe Biden, a Thursday Atlanta Journal-Constitution/University poll revealed.
As 33.7 percent approved and 61.5 percent disapproved of Biden, in May, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution poll showed Biden with a 51 percent approval rating among Georgians, a 17.3 drop in eight months.
In 2020, Biden won the state of Georgia by less than one percent or 12,670 votes.
Broken down demographically, only 28 percent of men approved of Biden, and 66 percent disapproved. Among women, 38 percent approved, while 58 percent disapproved.
(AJC – Georgia) Do you approve/disapprove of Biden?
18-29 yrs old: 36/56
65+ yrs old: 40/57
— Ryan James Girdusky (@RyanGirdusky) January 27, 2022
Black individuals also gave Biden poor marks.
Just 59 percent approved of Biden and 36 percent disapproved. Only eight percent of black voters in May disapproved of Biden, a 28 point increase. Historically, Democrat presidents after Lyndon Johnson have polled significantly better.
Among independents, 33 percent approved of Biden. Sixty percent disapproved.
Georgians’ opinion of Biden is similar to nationwide polling. In mid-January, Biden’s overall approval rating was pegged at 33 percent, while 53 percent disapproved.
President Joe Biden speaks to a crowd at the Atlanta University Center Consortium, part of both Morehouse College and Clark Atlanta University on January 11, 2022 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Megan Varner/Getty Images)
According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution/University poll, a majority of Georgians also believe Biden’s 40 year high inflation and sagging economy are issues resulting from “government policies and won’t change until we change the political leadership.”
Biden’s term ends in 2024 and has stated he intends to campaign for reelection.
The polling for Biden comes as radical activist and failed gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams did not attend Biden’s visit to Georgia in January due to a “scheduling mix up.”
According to a new AJC poll, only 33.7% of Georgians approve of Biden while 61.5% disapprove.
No wonder Stacey Abrams had a “scheduling mix up” when Biden went to Atlanta.
— Tommy Pigott (@TommyPigott) January 27, 2022
When Biden was asked if he was insulted by Abrams’ absence, Biden told reporters he was “insulted that you asked the question.”
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