To Mask Or Not To Mask?

Returning To School

To Mask, Or Not To Mask? As of June 13th, over 300 million COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered in the U.S., with 43.6% of Americans being fully vaccinated. However, alongside these growing numbers, the CDC has been changing their mask and distancing guidelines, currently advising that vaccinated Americans are not required to wear masks and can resume participating in activities they did prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, many schools are returning to fully in-person instruction, eliminating remote and distanced class settings, and many states have lifted their mask mandates as well.

To Mask Or Not To Mask?

To Mask Or Not To Mask?

While many people are abiding by the CDC guidelines and no longer wearing their masks in public, there are many vaccinated individuals who plan on continuing to wear masks and socially distance similarly to how they did before receiving their vaccine. Whatever your choice regarding ongoing use of masks, or even if you don’t plan on getting vaccinated at all, these new guidelines and relaxed expectations will impact all Americans.

It’s important to see where you fall in these categories. According to the CDC, people are considered fully vaccinated two weeks after their final dose (second dose for the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, single dose for Johnson and Johnson’s vaccine). This means that even if you’ve received all the doses you need to help protect yourself against COVID-19, you’re not at full protection until 14 days after the final dose. This rule applies to all individuals, regardless of age. If it has been two weeks since your final dose, you’re allowed to resume regular activities without socially distancing yourself (except for where it’s required by laws, rules, or regulations, such as a workplace or business).

As mentioned before, you can continue to wear a mask and distance yourself if you prefer to do so, since it is still possible to get the COVID-19 virus even with the vaccine.

Get Vaccinated!

If you’re not planning on getting the vaccine or cannot access one, it is imperative to maintain the social distancing and safety precautions you’ve been practicing throughout the pandemic, as outlined by the CDC. Wear your mask in public when around others and/or indoors, and avoid public settings where six feet social distancing isn’t achievable. 

Prepare To Get Vaccinated

Remember that the COVID-19 vaccine has been approved and encouraged by organizations such as the WHO and the CDC, and has been proven to significantly decrease the spread of the COVID-19 virus. While everyone has the right to make their own choices as to getting vaccinated or not, it is crucial to value the safety of others by getting vaccinated ourselves and following other precautions. Doing otherwise would be counter-productive to our shared goal of keeping others, and ourselves, safe in this pandemic.

Check With Your Con

Even as you read this, your con is hard at work examining the data and making decisions about how to plan their next events safely for everyone concerned. Check with your con about their policies and requirements.

Contact UsagiMed

Contact Usagimed

We’re all about improving safety and reducing your con’s liability. Call on us so we can be your event partners. As you plan and prepare, we will answer any questions you may have about your own internal requirements and enforcing the rules for your attendees. Feel free to drop us a question and we will answer you.

Comfort TV

January has so far been the deadliest month of the COVID-19 pandemic (US deaths). There’s lots of optimism on the horizon, but we may still yet be “in the woods” for more months. Physical health and safety isn’t the only important thing, mental health is, too.  As anime lovers and con-goers, we’ve got a big hammer in our toolbox for this: Comfort TV.  

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Punch COVID-19 In The Face

What if I told you that you could punch COVID-19 in the face?

Punch Covid-19 In The Face

COVID-19 has been in the United States for at least eleven months now, and we don’t know when this nightmare will be over. But what if I told you that you can help the United States to get “back to the new normal” faster? If you’re reading this blog post, you probably already volunteer with an anime convention. You know all about how to put on a large event and keep thousands of folks moving and grooving all day and all night. So helping to get shots into the arms of 500 to 10,000 people? That’s small potatoes for you.

That’s right. You can help with vaccinations. Hear me out:

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Keep Your Con Safe in 2021

Keep Your Con Safe in 2021: With COVID-19 cases at all time highs, many conventions have been cancelled or postponed in efforts to keep attendees safe. However, some conventions are still continuing, but with strict safety guidelines and population control to maintain a safe and healthy environment. To keep your convention (or any big event) safe in 2021, here are some mandates you should enforce:

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COVID-19, Vaccination, and What To Do While You Wait

How Could Something So Cozy Be So Dangerous?

Washing Hands Frequently

Here we are in early January of 2021, and the hangover from the 2020 holidays continues to darken our skies. People have grown tired of the 3 W’s: Wearing a cloth mask, Waiting 6 feet apart, avoiding close contact, and Washing hands frequently. Instead, people travelled far and wide to see their loved ones for the holidays, gathered together for meals and lodging with folks they didn’t live with, and didn’t wear their masks. “What could be the harm? It’s just me making this trip the one time.”

The problem is that most people don’t know they’ve been infected with COVID-19 for several days, during which time they are infectious. And humans believe in patterns – if someone has managed to evade the virus for 9 months so far, they may think they are somehow safe now. But the risk has only been going up and up as the prevalence of COVID infection increases. The days are short, the weather has been inclement, and folks don’t want to only meet up outside. They want to celebrate together, and with Americans, that often means food. Food means removing your mask to eat, often sitting down in one place for a while. How could something so cozy be dangerous?

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A Visit From Totoro

(with apologies to Clement Clarke Moore)

‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the con,
No anime stirring, no art was drawn;
COVID-19 hung over everyone there,
We dared not stir–too deadly to share; 
Our people were nestled in costumes they made,
Disappointed pandemic had squashed what they played.

This December

I was going to write out an entire poem like this called “A Visit From Totoro” about COVID avoidance tips for the holidays. But then I read a headline about the Yankee Candle company being bombarded with negative reviews because people are claiming their candles have no scent, and I just couldn’t do the poem thing, anymore. (Loss of the sense of smell is an early sign of COVID-19.)

Look, I know the holidays demand a certain kind of attention and energy. I know people expect that holiday gatherings should happen. That the whole gift-giving and food-sharing thing is a matter of strict tradition. And while I know that a lot of families out there played it safe, it seems clear that a lot of them did not. We should all find this frightening and saddening. 

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COVID-19 May Impact Your Sex Life

We’re all adults here, right?  If you’re not an adult, skip to the last blog post.  But for the rest of us, we need to have a frank talk about how COVID-19 may impact your sex life.  

Protected Sex Is A Necessity

COVID-19 has changed the way we maneuver our public lives, from mask mandates to social distancing. However, it’s crucial to stay safe in our private lives as well, especially when it comes to sexual encounters. Now more than ever, protected sex is a necessity. Whether hooking up or dating, it’s important to be conscious of our decisions when engaging in sexual activity, and remember how we can keep ourselves safer in these trying times.

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Living Life and Staying Safe in the Time of COVID-19

We need to talk about the gorilla in the room… The same gorilla as before, but the guidelines, they keep changing. Why is that?

Because this is a novel disease, something we’ve never seen before. We’re pushing out information as soon as we think we have a handle on it, and then we get schooled by the virus again, and the information changes. Information flows faster now than it ever did before, so you get to see how science itself ebbs and flows. Science has always been this way, but we’ve never before had the ability to communicate it as fast as it happens.

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COVID-19 and You

We’re all concerned about COVID-19.  Whether or not you’re one of the people who are buying out all the toilet paper on the eastern seaboard, we here at Usagi Medical Group would urge everyone to try to put their anxieties in check when it comes to COVID-19 and what it might do to the local convention scene.  Panic seems almost reasonable these days, but panic creates more trouble than it solves.

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