Carolina Fear Festival

Carolina Fear Festival has nothing to be afraid of. Usagi Medical Group was happy to provide advisory services to Carolina Fear Festival (CFF) as they plan their reopening this year. With one phone call that took less than an hour, we quickly discussed their concerns and current public health strategy, and some additional considerations for them to make as they plan their upcoming event, scheduled for May 29 and 30 in Raleigh, NC. 

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Returning to Normal?

Vaccines Administered

The U.S. returning to normalcy is seeming much more likely thanks to the rapid influx in COVID-19 vaccinations, with 21.3% of Americans being fully vaccinated as of April 11, 2020 (NPR COVID-19 Vaccine Tracker). As millions of vaccines are administered every day, public events, such as conventions, can be planned under safe conditions. However, most anime conventions haven’t been held in over a year, and while usually one year wouldn’t make much of a difference in the number of people interested in the subject of the convention, 2020 lockdowns give rise to a different story.

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Planning And Preparing For Your Next Convention

Planning And Preparing

All of us are looking at the convention-planning horizon with undisguised optimism. We are all champing at the bit to throw a big party and get back to our cons. But we must continue to exercise caution. None of us want the public humiliation of fostering another outbreak that puts our friends and fans at risk. 

The recommendations and mandates that have been in place for the last twelve months are slowly changing as we get more and more data about rates of infection, hospitalization, and the availability of a vaccine. As the data continues to get updated, Usagi Medical will help your con AT NO COST on an advisory basis. We’ll help you answer some critical questions:

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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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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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COVID-19 for Anime/Fandom Convention-Organizers

By Laura Block, PharmD, NREMT

The only thing that we can predict about COVID-19 is that we can’t predict much.  This is a novel virus, and while the scientific community is discovering an amazing amount of information very rapidly, our society and this virus move even faster. 

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Dealing with Con Crud

Dealing With Con Crud
Atchooo!

So, it finally happened. You attended your favorite show, and despite your best efforts to stay well, you’ve become a member of the infected horde. Con Crud is a convergence of diseases from all around the world, all attempting to trounce your immune system via the promise of having a fun time at a convention. It was bound to happen sooner or later. If you get sick during a con, come see UsagiMed! We’ve got lots of stuff that can help you feel better and keep the con dream alive. But sometimes, maybe it’s just better to cut your losses and go home before you make someone else sick. And sometimes, symptoms don’t even show up until after you’ve made it home.

So what do you do now? How do you get back to that happy place you were in during the convention, where the sun was shining, and you could sing along with Totoro without coughing up a lung? Here are a few tips:

1. Take care of your self at home

Mmmm. Ramen.

Do you have the sniffles, a light cough, a headache? Mild symptoms can be taken care of at home. Catch up on the sleep you missed during that 24 hour Doctor Who marathon. Eat some nutritious food. REAL food, not just Red-Bull and Pocky. Drink a lot of water! Consider taking some over-the-counter medicines if they’ll help you relax and rest better. (Follow the directions on the package.) Take it easy for a while, and hopefully you’ll be feeling better in no time.

2. Head to your regular doctor or urgent care

If you’ve got a sore throat, vomiting, diarrhea, fever, chills and general weakness, it might be time to head to a doctor’s office or urgent care. There are some tests and treatments that can only be done in the first day or two of the flu, so identifying the difference between a cold and something more serious can be important. Your doctor may prescribe you some special medicine to help you feel better faster. The other suggestions above still apply though. Rest up, so your body has the energy it needs to fight off the invaders.

3. If necessary, escalate to the ER

It’s rare, but in some cases people can get really sick from an exposure at a convention. If your symptoms are severe, head to the Emergency Room. If you can’t make it there on your own, call 911 or your local emergency number for help.

4. Don’t share!

After you do everything you can to help yourself get healthy, the second best thing you can do is NOT give the crud to anyone else. Depending on your bugs, you can be contagious for up to a week after you get sick. Follow the CDC’s guidelines to help fight the spread of the crud. Some people are especially vulnerable to disease, especially children, cancer patients, and the elderly. Staying home when you’re sick helps curb germs in the community. Staying home when you’re sick may save someone’s life. You can be sure we will always say THANK YOU when you choose to keep your crud at home. UsagiMed will be ready to continue the party with you next year.

5. Keep it from happening again

Nobody wants to get sick. Certainly nobody wants to get sick twice. So before you head off to your next con, be sure to check out our tips for how to stay healthy.