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tv   ABC7 News Getting Answers  ABC  May 12, 2022 3:00pm-3:30pm PDT

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kristen: hi, there. you are watching "getting answers" live on abc 7. we always ask experts your questions to get answers for you in real time. the pandemic brought forth something that bike lovers love -- car-free roads. first, we told you earlier this week that covid hit home. the ucsf medical chair and his wife tested positive for the virus after leaving a science writers workshop.
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>> i don't feel great. i have a massive headache. but i feel so lucky that this did not happen two years ago, which is what bob said to me when i got sick. i tested positive yesterday, and he said you are really lucky this did not happen in march of 2020. kristen: that conversation was on monday, again, one day after she tested positive while on a trip to palm springs. thanks for coming on, you guys. same house, separate rooms? x no, i'm at work. -- >> no, i'm at work. >> things. man, i looked terrible the other day. >> i didn't want to tell her. kristen: you look great, but do you feel a lot better compared to monday?
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rex i do. i think it is the paxlovid. i've got to say, it is a miracle drug. then i thought, ok, i feel better. i have been really upset because i cannot go to my daughter's medical school graduation tonight. she is graduating from ucsf. i thought i would take a test. i have not tested since i tested positive for the first time. it is like why bother? but i felt so much better with the paxlovid that i thought to be. stupid, right? i thought maybe i'm not positive anymore, and i was just crushed. kristen: is the line really faint now, though? >> oh, no. within minutes, it was like gigantic. kristen: i'm sorry to hear that, but dr. walker, address that. i think this is day five? >> day for of paxlovid.
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date five or so since her first symptoms. kristen: and testing positive, right? day five? >> something like that. kristen: i know you guys are such sponsor will people and would not want to chance infecting anyone else, but there are some institutions -- universities, for example, where if you test positive, you isolate for five days and after five days, you can exit isolation after which you just have to wear an n95. if you look at it that way, she is close, right around there. >> i think that is wrong. if that line is super positive, she is infectious. it does not matter if it is dave five or six or seven. you could say that if you wear and a 95, even if you are infectious, the chances you will infect anyone are very low. that line being that positive tells you that she still has a lot of virus in her nose and
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therefore is fully capable of infecting other people and i think the right call is staying in isolation. kristen: that meaning the line on the rapid test? >> yes, the rapid test. the pcr line could stay positive weeks. there are some organizations like health care where we need to bring people back to work. we just would not have enough nurses if we did not. there if you feel perfectly well and it has been more than five days, the rules may be that you can come back, where an n95. the patients are all wearing n95's, so it is not like the risk is massively high, but we should not kid ourselves. if the line is still positive, you still have infectious virus and you are capable of infecting someone. kristen: by the way, if you have a question, please put it on our facebook live feed. you talked about for cautions you are going to take to try your best to not get what katie
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has right now while being in the same household, but good news -- whatever you are doing seems to be working, right? did you tweet that you were out in the woods today? >> yes, does it's probably a little premature. there are two different issues. one is the exposure i had to katie before we knew she had covid. i hung out with her the day before and we were in the same bed the night, and then the morning after -- that's as far as i'm going to go. the day after, she tested positive, so i was clearly within feet of her for an entire evening while she was -- she had infectious virus in her nose. that was my main exposure. i'm five days out from that and i still feel perfectly fine, and my rapid test is negative, and i just got my pci that i did yesterday back and it was negative, so i think my chances of getting infected from that exposure are now close to zero.
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not quite zero. every now and then, you see someone pop up positive on day six hour seven, but close to zero. on the other hand, i have been living in the same house with her for the last five days and she still has a lot of infectious virus, so i'm not out of the woods from that standpoint, but since we diagnosed her, we have been superduper careful. she stays upstairs, i stayed downstairs. if she is coming downstairs, she text me -- texts me and i go hide in my room. i think my chance of getting infected is close to zero. kristen: are you cooking your own meals? how do you deal with opening the same fridge? >> i know. i was talking to his mother today, and i burst into tears, i was just so upset about not going to the graduation, but also, i just feel so grateful that he is around and so sweet.
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he brings these trays to the door with, like, oreos, things he likes. kristen: i love this, so, honey, here, have it. >> there's other food other than oreos, but it is funny, i bring it upstairs and lay this tray down by her door, and it is thought of a fantasy if he ever commits a felony and goes to jail, it will sort of be like that, too. you drop the trade-off. -- you drop the tray off. >> like that seen in "better call saul" where they dropped the food off. that is how i have been feeling. kristen: hopefully just a few days of that. there has been a lot of support but also some criticism, and i want to address that. on twitter, some people were saying that you encourage your wife to go to a super-spreader
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event. how do you respond to that? >> i usually don't read the comments. i think we are all trying to navigate the current moment, and the current moment is there is a fair amount of covid around, and yet, the hospitals are not filling up. the deaths have not gone up at all, and i suspect that this is about where we will be for the next several years. there are choices, and when they go badly, it is always easy to look at it retrospectively and say i should not have done that, but to me, for katie last week to have gone to a conference that she has been wanting to go to for a couple of years, teaching science writing, something she enjoys, with a number of other science writers, all of whom were vaccinated, and she was wearing a mask when she was indoors, others were not -- i think it was all perfectly reasonable. i know she feels a little guilty
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about eating indoors with them. you could make an argument -- she and i did not talk about that. i think i would not have done that. i think it is reasonable if you are going to be eating in a big crowd, you should probably eat outside unless you really don't care, unless you would be ok getting covid because i think the risk is relatively high, and the fact that it turned into a super-spreader event, you can always look back and say, you know, you sent your wife to a super-spreader event. no, i didn't. i told her it was ok to go teach at this conference. it turned out in retrospect it was a super-spreader event, but there was no way to know that at the time. k■risten: how manypeople were there? how many people tested positive? x there were 60 students and
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five instructors and almost half of the group, 23 out of 50, has test -- you can tell my brain is not quite there. kristen: they call that brain fog. >> it is really interesting, one thing that came up on twitter, i have been reading some of these criticisms. one of the things i said -- someone said you were just so careless. i said, you know, i actually was in retrospect. eating indoors, not wearing big mask all the time, but i was in this weird state of denial. then other people piped up and said i have felt that sort of denial, too. it is this bizarre kind of magical thinking, a feeling of well, i have not gotten it in two years, so i'm invulnerable, which is obviously untrue.
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and then, it is like, here i am. i'm having a good time, so you are really suddenly disinhibited about taking the precautions, and it was really dumb. kristen: despite your brain fog, you are still using bigger words that i have ever used, so not that dumb.
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remove your mask? >> if the windows are open, i will wait a few minutes and then i will. kristen: ok. we are back with the ucsf department of medicine chair and his wife who is several days into covid and who is doing better now thanks to paxlovid. i wanted to talk about that
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because a lot of people are asking about it. you were eligible. what was it you were eligible for? >> i think it is my age. is that right? >> yes, your age makes you eligible. i forget if there's any other risk factors that you have. kristen: how old do you have to be? >> i have forgotten if it is 50 or 60. i don't think it is 65. also, when you look at the list of comorbidities, they are pretty generous. for example, obesity is on the list, but it is a body mass index that probably 70% or 80% of the u.s. public meet that definition of obesity. for a 25-year-old healthy person, it is going to be hard to get.
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kristen: did you start to like the metal taste you get from paxlovid? >> he totally misquoted me. imagine he is on the others of the door. i've got the mask on. he says twitter wants to know how you feel. i said i think i've come to appreciate -- there is a difference between appreciate, as in i'm so in awe of the power of this drug that a little bit of metal tells me it is working. but, bob, you're completely forgiven. >> i told her appreciate is like five more letters than like and i could not fit it into twitter. >> but seriously, backs to the paxlovid, and a lot of people actually do not know about it, so you should talk about it. kristen: oh, my gosh, are you my
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producer? that actually is what is coming up next. i have read something like 10% to 15% may get a rebound where a few days after treatment, they may get hit by the virus again, so talk about that. katie and i both demanded to know how real is that? >> we are hearing about cases of people who have taken it a course of paxlovid, feel better immediately, which it seems katie certainly did the next day, finish their five-day course, feel fine, test negative, and then several days or a week later, begin feeling crummy again and begin testing positive again. if they are testing positive rapid, they are infectious again. we know of a case where someone had that and did infect other people during the rebound. the 10% to 15%, i'm not sure where that comes from because i don't think you know exactly what the probability is. i don't think it will be that high. i think it is being amplified by
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twitter and other places because it is newsworthy. when they tested paxlovid in clinical trials, it was about 2%. i'm guessing it is a little higher than that, it might be 5%. i don't think it is has highest 10%. it seems like the rebounds are milder cases. we do not know for sure what to do about them, if you should take another course up paxlovid. that is not indicated right now. it is not approved for that reason. it certainly is not a reason not to take ask livid. i have heard people say they don't want to take it because they are worried about rebound. i think that is absolutely wrong. the benefits in the clinical trials is the rate of hospitalization was decreased 90% in people who took it compared to people who did not and there were no deaths in the paxlovid group, whereas there were i think 10 or 15 deaths in the placebo group. it is massively effective and if you have a chance to take it and it is indicated for you, you
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should, notwithstanding the small risk of rebound. kristen: i don't know what your plans are for masking after you are fully recovered, but that is another question viewers want to know. are you going to mask up after you get out of this? >> oh, yeah. i'm going to think really carefully before i eat indoors again, especially if it is a small restaurant and not well ventilated. and, yeah, i'm going to mask indoors pretty much for the foreseeable future. kristen: but do you need to? >> we have not had that conversation yet. the answer is probably she does not need to. >> oh, really? oh, ok. kristen: i'm glad i'm facilitating this conversation.
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>> wait, are you serious? >> i am serious. you have had four shots and now an infection. you have what is known as hybrid immunity and you are as immune as anybody in the universe now. how long that lasts we don't know, but it certainly last a month or two, and i think for the next month or two, you have a get out of jail free card. you can be footloose and fancy free. i would say starting a couple of months from now, you could start acting like everyone else, assume that you are now a few months out from your second booster, you cannot count on the immunity from this infection lasting for more than a couple of months but for the next couple of months, i think you are fine. in terms of people around you, again, probably for the risk of rebound -- first of all, i'm staying with masks in general, but i will be careful around you for probably another week or 10 days just to be on the safe side. if you get a rebound, the first thing that will happen is you
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will feel funny and then test positive. i think it is probably prudent to be a little careful for another week or 10 days. >> what i hear there is no kisses for you for a few more days. >> not from me at least. kristen: in the meantime, lots of oreos, i hope. thank you so much. always great talking with you. we wish you well on your path to recovery. coming up next, they are terrific, our best wishes to katie and thanks to dr. walker for that great information. coming up, the car-free fight coming up, the car-free fight zeros after my car accident, coming up, the car-free fight zeros i wondered what my case was worth. so i called the barnes firm. when that car hit my motorcycle, insurance wasn't fair. so i called the barnes firm. it was the best call i could've made. atat t bararnefirmrm, our r inry a attneysys wk hahard i could've made. atat t bararnefirmrm, to get you the best result possible. call us now and find out what your case could be worth.
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wow! agm are the only kitchen and bathroom renovations specialists i recommend. ♪ ♪ [announcer] call now and get $3,000 off! kristen: bike advocates in san francisco are looking to keep a good thing rolling. jfk became permanently car-free, and now all eyes are on the great highways on the city's western edge.
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our media partners at the san francisco public standard just published a piece. the author joins us now. catch us up on the car-free movement. you know, within the golden gate highway.a, jfk drive n, the grea what is it bike advocates and car-free advocates are trying to do there? clips they are looking for a similar closure as on, but it is a little more complicated this time. the great highway is a major artery for people to get north and south throughout the city, so -- but during the pandemic, it was a wonderful spot for kids to play and will to enjoy the beach, so they are trying to advocate for that space to become car-free permanently. kristen: during the pandemic,
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there were reasons for the closure, right? can the argument be made, and i think some are making it, that they need is no longer there? >> yes, and that is exactly what is happening. the supervisor whose district has been covering the parkway has been leading the conversation, so he initially advocated for the full closure of the road ring the pandemic, but once people started going back to work, going back to school in august 2021, he and the mayor announced they would reopen it during weekdays and keep it closed on the weekends, but the key there is that that is tied to the state of emergency due to covid, so if the mayor lifts that state of emergency at any point, the road will go back to being full of cars again, so right now, gordon mar is advocating for a solution to keep the current status in place, at least for the next two years, while he and others have
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more time to plan for the total future. kristen: what do businesses in the sunset think about this? >> i would say people are split. there's a lot of energy on both sides. we actually partnered with some journalists at san francisco state who went out and interviewed a bunch of those residents, and they found that people are really passionate about the issue, as you can imagine. some could not even imagine seeing that space go away, but others are really worried about traffic spilling over into their neighborhoods are just the effect of turning that space into a park and how they will get to work or get around the city. kristen: is there a traffic safety angle to this? >> definitely. advocates for the closure of the road say it makes moving around on the ocean a lot safer for kids, for people with mobility issues who are maybe using scooters or wheelchairs, but
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then there's the flip side of that, of course, which is as soon you introduce people intermingling with cars, it can sometimes get dangerous, and there's a couple of proposals on the table. last year, a study was done on this, and the sf cta, which is the county transportation agency, laid out two recommendations. one of them was a full closure, and the other one had to do with a single lane open to cars and a single lane closed to cars, but i have been hearing from advocates that they are worried about having people share that space because it could become dangerous. kristen: right. what is the timeline? >> gordon mar is working right now in his proposal to keep the current weekend closure in place, but then he is looking toward 2023 as the next big
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deadline. if you know about this little southern slice of the great highway between the zoo and fort funston, you will know that that area has had significant erosion. right now actually, there's plans to close that section permanently, create a walkway in order to protect a wastewater treatment plant that is there, so that is happening in 2023. that is the big deadline for public comment, for everyone to sort of get involved to decide the entire future of the whole road. kristen: thank you so much. mo
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kristen: thank you so much for joining us today on this interactive show, "getting answers


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