Weekly Update – September 16th 2021

The recent announcement by the Biden administration of a plan that mandates COVID vaccinations or weekly testing has drawn both phrase and critizim from the business community.   Some business leaders applaud the plan as a way to keep the surge in COVID cases from hurting the economy, although smaller employers may find the mandate difficult to enforce. Expanding testing may not be possible unless capacity is also significantly increased. Some business leaders…  Read more

Weekly Update – August 26th 2021

The FDA has now granted Pfizer and BioNTech full approval of their COVID-19 vaccine for persons aged 16 and up. This means this vaccine has met the agency’s standards for safety, effectiveness, and manufacturing quality. This approval was based on close examination of six-months of follow-up which revealed no additional long-term safety concerns. This approval may now spur major companies to require employees to be vaccinated. Based on clinical studies, this vaccine…  Read more

Weekly Update – August 12th 2021

What sets the Delta variant apart from other strains of the COVID-19 coronavirus is the amount of virus produced by those infected, a measure called viral load. One recent study found that people with the Delta variant had viral loads up to 1,260 times as high as the original strain. Higher viral loads make the Delta variant more transmissible and can also make infected people sicker. However, the CDC has also…  Read more

Weekly Update – August 5th 2021

The Delta variant is more contagious than other virus variants, which is changing the public-health advice on preventing its spread. With the previous strains, a rule of thumb was that it took 15 minutes of close contact with an infected person to become infected. With the Delta variant, infection may happen in less than five minutes, and possibly with only fleeting contact, such as in an elevator. Recent studies show the…  Read more

Weekly Update – July 22nd 2021

Three weeks ago, new COVID-19 cases were averaging about 11,300 new cases a day, but that rate has now doubled to 23,000 cases per day. According to the CDC, nearly all recent COVID-19 cases and deaths have been among unvaccinated people. The more contagious Delta variant is now the dominant strain in the US, and appears to be more severe. A Scottish study found that the hospitalization rate is about…  Read more

Weekly Update – July 15th 2021

In the wake of the pandemic, many families may find themselves with medical debt from COVID-related hospitalizations. This article from Acorns has four steps to take to reduce damage to credit scores from medical debt. First, review the bill to make sure it’s accurate. See if you can set up a payment plan with the provider. Try to negotiate with the provider to accept rates that are closer to Medicare…  Read more

A Season of Takeaways

Originally published in the June 2021 Nassau/Suffolk Chapter of NCCPAP Newsletter.   I wanted to share my recently published article as I feel so strongly about the message being more far reaching than my immediate accounting community. Message from the Educational Foundation President A Season of Takeaways By Andrea Parness It has been a while since we included our MAP meeting Take-A-Ways in our quarterly newsletters. The great content always made…  Read more

Weekly Update – July 1st 2021

As the pandemic recedes and businesses reopen, millions are quitting their jobs rather than return to their pre-pandemic routine. Some are seeking out positions where they can be fully remote, while others, particularly in the leisure and hospitality sector, are seeking better work-life balance, higher pay, or a less stressful work environment. The lengthy experiment with remote work has changed what people think about where and how they want to…  Read more

Weekly Update – June 24th 2021

Is there a perfect number of hours to work each day? Research shows that five hours seems to be the maximum that people can focus and be creative. The constraint of a shorter workday can also increase productivity as people are forced to find ways to get their work done in less time. While a shorter workday gives people more time for other pursuits, it also has several downsides. People have…  Read more

Weekly Update – June 9th 2021

As we create our new normal, we look to the summer with warm weather allowing us to meet outside and even begin doing those things we love, like  attending graduations, hosting and attending Bar-B-Ques, hiking, biking, going to the park to play sports or just get out & toss a frisbee around. I’ve shared the story of my daughter who is foster failure, when she “broke down” and adopted her…  Read more

Weekly Update – June 2nd 2021

How will the COVID-19 pandemic end? Scientists who study global pandemics of the past observe that previous pandemics have subsided over time, generally in 18 months or so. The virus itself seems to become less deadly, and becomes more of an endemic seasonal illness. At the same time, our immune systems become better able to fight them off. At least that has been the pattern in the past. It is…  Read more

Weekly Update – May 19, 2021

Starting this week I am renaming this weekly blog and newsletter.  For now you will still be able to find it in the “Latest Updates” in our Covid-19 Resources and our Blog. For many people, large, life-shattering events can provide break point for making dramatic life changes that improve life going forward. Arthur Brooks, writing for The Atlantic, suggests that the pandemic provides all of us with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – April 21st 2021

As the pandemic wears on, many people have been reporting a sense of “brain fog.” Memory problems and an inability to think clearly or to concentrate in meetings may be the brain’s response to the stress of the pandemic, our isolation, and the sameness of our days, according to neuroscientists interviewed by The Guardian. Our brains are wired to respond to novel situations, but the repetitive nature of working from…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – April 14th 2021

We’ve been spending more of our time staring at electronic screens all day, and rumors abound about the possible negative consequences of that, as this piece in Lifehacker explains. Eyestrain is real, but the blue light from our screens won’t damage eyes. Simply holding your device a bit further from your eyes may reduce just as much blue light as expensive blue-light-blocking glasses. Practicing the 20-20-20 rule may help alleviate…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – March 10th 2021

Today could be the day! Congress is expected to vote on the 1.9 trillion Covid-19 relief bill today, Wednesday March 10th, just before the expanded unemployment insurance benefits end.  As per the Associated Press morning wire : A dominant feature of the bill is initiatives making it one of the biggest federal thrusts in years to assist lower- and middle-income families. Included are expanded tax credits over the next year for children,…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – February 17th 2021

Keeping people safe in the pandemic requires a comprehensive approach, as explained by Aaron E. Carroll, a pediatrics professor at Indiana University. By taking the pandemic seriously, “far from posing a risk to its host city or town, a university could become—by supplementing behavioral measures such as masking and social distancing with widespread surveillance testing—a model for detecting and suppressing the virus.” By the time IU’s 87,000 students return to…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – January 27th 2021

For many of us, it was our networks that helped us get through the last year. That was one of the lessons that Ivan Meisner, founder of BNI, an international business networking group learned from 2020. He also learned the value of limiting exposure to bad news by picking up what he needed to know from news apps. One business owner struggled with the stress of working from home while overseeing remote…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – January 20th 2021; Looking Forward to Another Historic Inauguration Day!

Vaccines for the coronavirus are now being administered around the country, but that may not mean an end to wearing a mask. This article from Kaiser Health News lists five reasons to keep wearing a mask, even after receiving the vaccine. The top two reasons are that no vaccine is 100% effective and that vaccines don’t provide immediate protection. According to one of the experts cited the best way to end the…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – December 31st 2020

With votes counted and the Covid-19 Relief bill now signed into law the fun begins.  I am hoping you have something safe, but special planned for this evening and the rest of this three day weekend, and will not have time to re-read our post from last week detailing all of the provisions but please feel free to click through here for our December 23rd post which has been updated.…  Read more

COVID-19 Weekly Update – December 23rd 2020

Hoping that you are busy, making holiday plans, while scanning the news about the COVID-19 Relief Bill we’re keeping this issue extra short. Just in time for Christmas, Jupiter and Saturn appear in close alignment this week, forming what some have called a ‘Christmas Star.’ The last time this happened was in the spring of 1226, when Notre Dame cathedral was under construction. Their closest connection will be on the Winter’s…  Read more

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