Apple ordering frequent COVID testing for all corporate, retail employees

Posted:
in General Discussion edited September 17
Apple will reportedly begin requiring regular coronavirus testing for both vaccinated and unvaccinated employees working at its offices or brick-and-mortar stores.

Credit: Apple
Credit: Apple


According to The Verge reporter Zoe Schiffer, the new policy will apply to both corporate and retail staffers. Vaccinated employees will need to get "infrequent tests," while those who are unvaccinated will be subject to more regular testing. It'll take effect in October.

The move follows an Apple ramp-up in Covid-19 testing availability that kicked off in August. Although the company began sending more at-home testing kits to employees and encouraged their use, it did not require staffers to test themselves.

In contrast with other technology companies, Apple has yet to implement any sort of vaccine mandate, citing employee privacy. Earlier in September, the company began collecting voluntary information on the vaccination status of its employees, however.

Apple initially planned to bring workers back to the office at least a few days a week by September, but has delayed that timeline twice. Currently, a return to in-office work has been postponed until January 2022 at the earliest.

Employees at Apple have pushed back against the in-office work requirement, penning letters to Apple executives and using internal channels to advocate for more flexible work arrangements. Apple executives, for their part, are sticking with their plan to have staffers return to offices.

Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 15
    It seems like regular testing is a good approach. It respects natural immunity which appears to be all but ignored now. It also respects individual's concerns about the current vaccines.
    rinosaurcgWerksJWSCcat52muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 2 of 15
    "It respects natural immunity which appears to be all but ignored now."  

    Oh, that's the kind of immunity that 90+% of hospitalized Covid patients have, correct?
    applguytmaydarkvader
  • Reply 3 of 15
    "It respects natural immunity which appears to be all but ignored now."  

    Oh, that's the kind of immunity that 90+% of hospitalized Covid patients have, correct?
    No it’s the immunity after you’ve had it that’s up to 27x better than the vax. 
    designrcgWerksJWSCmuthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 4 of 15
    That's the immunity that comes from having the antibodies as a result of having contracted the virus and recovered.

    This is nothing new. You can read under "Active Immunity" here.
    baconstangrinosaurmuthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 5 of 15
    "No it’s the immunity after you’ve had it that’s up to 27x better than the vax."  
    "
    That's the immunity that comes from having the antibodies as a result of having contracted the virus and recovered."

    Ahhh..  So that's what those 100,000ish souls are doing in the hospital.  They're getting 'Active immunity' so they won't get it again.   Assuming they don't die in the process or develop 'long Covid' symptoms.  Makes purrrfect sense.
    applguybeowulfschmidtdarkvader
  • Reply 6 of 15
    Vaxxed or unvaxxed isn’t the issue here.

    It’s the testing regime itself. How long does these requirements and impost on civil liberties continue? If temporarily justified, how do we ensure they don’t become permanent? 
    If the disease itself is endemic, beyond the point of restraining it effectively, are these actions still justified? And if a high proportion of the population has had the vaccine, does that not count?

    And it isn’t really so much about individual businesses and what they might do, it’s about government restrictions and oversight of the people.

    When and how will this all be wound back, and most importantly, how do we make sure they are? Because if that isn’t actively planned for and governments held to account to make sure they are, liberty will never be given back.
    edited September 17 designrrinosaurmobirdcat52muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 7 of 15
    entropys said:
    Vaxxed or invaded isn’t the issue here.

    It’s the testing regime itself. How long does these requirements and impost on civil liberties continue? If temporarily justified, how do we ensure they don’t become permanent? 
    If the disease itself is endemic, beyond the point of restraining it effectively, are these actions still justified? And if a high proportion of the population has had the vaccine, does that not count?

    And it isn’t so much about individual businesses, it’s about government restrictions and oversight of the people.

    When and how will this all be wound back, and most importantly, how do we make sure they are?
    Very good questions. The power plays during all of this should be very concerning to everyone.
    rinosaurmobirdcat52muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 8 of 15
    cgWerkscgWerks Posts: 2,732member
    designr said:
    It seems like regular testing is a good approach. It respects natural immunity which appears to be all but ignored now. It also respects individual's concerns about the current vaccines.
    The thing is, very good rapid antigen testing has been available since very early on in the pandemic. It costs much less (~$5 per test) and takes minutes (instead of hours or days). Given all the issues with PCR, one very good questions is why it hasn't been widely used. (It's almost a rhetorical question at this point, IMO.)

    But exactly, they could easily test in situations where it would be deemed necessary. That's always been an option, for everyone.

    "It respects natural immunity which appears to be all but ignored now."  
    Oh, that's the kind of immunity that 90+% of hospitalized Covid patients have, correct?
    No, those would be the claimed (w/o evidence, as far as I've been able to tell) people who are unvaxxed and haven't yet had Covid. While people who have had Covid already can contract it again, the vaxxed are *much* more likely to do so, and it seems are more likely to spread it than those who have had Covid already (or even those who haven't and are unvaxxed).

    "SARS-CoV-2-naïve vaccinees had a 13.06-fold (95% CI, 8.08 to 21.11) increased risk for breakthrough infection with the Delta variant compared to those previously infected, when the first event (infection or vaccination) occurred during January and February of 2021. The increased risk was significant (P0.001) for symptomatic disease as well. When allowing the infection to occur at any time before vaccination (from March 2020 to February 2021), evidence of waning natural immunity was demonstrated, though SARS-CoV-2 naïve vaccinees had a 5.96-fold (95% CI, 4.85 to 7.33) increased risk for breakthrough infection and a 7.13-fold (95% CI, 5.51 to 9.21) increased risk for symptomatic disease. SARS-CoV-2-naïve vaccinees were also at a greater risk for COVID-19-related-hospitalizations compared to those that were previously infected."

    https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2021.08.24.21262415v1.full.pdf

    - Testing a subset of low-Ct samples revealed infectious SARS-CoV-2 in 15 of 17 specimens (88%) from unvaccinated individuals and 37 of 39 (95%) from vaccinated people 
    - Ct values <25 were detected in 7 of 24 unvaccinated (29%; CI: 13-51%) and 9 of 11 fully vaccinated asymptomatic individuals (82%; CI: 48-97%), and 158 of 232 unvaccinated (68%, CI: 62-74%) and 156 of 225 fully vaccinated (69%; CI: 63-75%) symptomatic individuals.
    - Although few asymptomatic individuals were sampled, these results indicate that even asymptomatic, fully vaccinated people might shed infectious virus.
    - Importantly, we show that infectious SARS-CoV-2 is frequently found even in vaccinated persons when specimen Ct values are low.

    Shedding of Infectious SARS-CoV-2 Despite Vaccination | medRxiv

    designr said:
    That's the immunity that comes from having the antibodies as a result of having contracted the virus and recovered.

    This is nothing new. You can read under "Active Immunity" here.

    Actually, it's even better than that. It includes T-cells and a much broader ability to detect variants, instead of just last-year's virus.

    The downside, is of course, that you'd have to get and recover from Covid. For most healthy, young people, that isn't *usually* that big of a deal. So, there is a risk-calculation here. The problem is that as more data keeps coming in, one side of that calculation is looking more and more scary.

    We'll just all have to hope and pray this guy*** isn't right: https://www.geertvandenbossche.org/post/the-last-post
    Because if he is, Apple might have a bunch of job openings to fill over the next couple of years (as well as a lot of other companies).
    (*** btw, you might want to have a peek at his bio before responding to this with the usual 'conspiracy theory' tripe.)
    edited September 17 designrcat52muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 9 of 15
    JWSCJWSC Posts: 1,022member
    "No it’s the immunity after you’ve had it that’s up to 27x better than the vax."  
    "That's the immunity that comes from having the antibodies as a result of having contracted the virus and recovered."

    Ahhh..  So that's what those 100,000ish souls are doing in the hospital.  They're getting 'Active immunity' so they won't get it again.   Assuming they don't die in the process or develop 'long Covid' symptoms.  Makes purrrfect sense.
    Go do a little reading on the recent Israeli studies then come back.
    cat52muthuk_vanalingamcgWerks
  • Reply 10 of 15
    cgWerks said:
    designr said:
    It seems like regular testing is a good approach. It respects natural immunity which appears to be all but ignored now. It also respects individual's concerns about the current vaccines.
    The thing is, very good rapid antigen testing has been available since very early on in the pandemic. It costs much less (~$5 per test) and takes minutes (instead of hours or days). Given all the issues with PCR, one very good questions is why it hasn't been widely used. (It's almost a rhetorical question at this point, IMO.)

    But exactly, they could easily test in situations where it would be deemed necessary. That's always been an option, for everyone.

    "It respects natural immunity which appears to be all but ignored now."  
    Oh, that's the kind of immunity that 90+% of hospitalized Covid patients have, correct?
    No, those would be the claimed (w/o evidence, as far as I've been able to tell) people who are unvaxxed and haven't yet had Covid. While people who have had Covid already can contract it again, the vaxxed are *much* more likely to do so, and it seems are more likely to spread it than those who have had Covid already (or even those who haven't and are unvaxxed).

    "SARS-CoV-2-naïve vaccinees had a 13.06-fold (95% CI, 8.08 to 21.11) increased risk for breakthrough infection with the Delta variant compared to those previously infected, when the first event (infection or vaccination) occurred during January and February of 2021. The increased risk was significant (P0.001) for symptomatic disease as well. When allowing the infection to occur at any time before vaccination (from March 2020 to February 2021), evidence of waning natural immunity was demonstrated, though SARS-CoV-2 naïve vaccinees had a 5.96-fold (95% CI, 4.85 to 7.33) increased risk for breakthrough infection and a 7.13-fold (95% CI, 5.51 to 9.21) increased risk for symptomatic disease. SARS-CoV-2-naïve vaccinees were also at a greater risk for COVID-19-related-hospitalizations compared to those that were previously infected."

    https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2021.08.24.21262415v1.full.pdf

    - Testing a subset of low-Ct samples revealed infectious SARS-CoV-2 in 15 of 17 specimens (88%) from unvaccinated individuals and 37 of 39 (95%) from vaccinated people 
    - Ct values <25 were detected in 7 of 24 unvaccinated (29%; CI: 13-51%) and 9 of 11 fully vaccinated asymptomatic individuals (82%; CI: 48-97%), and 158 of 232 unvaccinated (68%, CI: 62-74%) and 156 of 225 fully vaccinated (69%; CI: 63-75%) symptomatic individuals.
    - Although few asymptomatic individuals were sampled, these results indicate that even asymptomatic, fully vaccinated people might shed infectious virus.
    - Importantly, we show that infectious SARS-CoV-2 is frequently found even in vaccinated persons when specimen Ct values are low.

    Shedding of Infectious SARS-CoV-2 Despite Vaccination | medRxiv

    designr said:
    That's the immunity that comes from having the antibodies as a result of having contracted the virus and recovered.

    This is nothing new. You can read under "Active Immunity" here.

    Actually, it's even better than that. It includes T-cells and a much broader ability to detect variants, instead of just last-year's virus.

    The downside, is of course, that you'd have to get and recover from Covid. For most healthy, young people, that isn't *usually* that big of a deal. So, there is a risk-calculation here. The problem is that as more data keeps coming in, one side of that calculation is looking more and more scary.

    We'll just all have to hope and pray this guy*** isn't right: https://www.geertvandenbossche.org/post/the-last-post
    Because if he is, Apple might have a bunch of job openings to fill over the next couple of years (as well as a lot of other companies).
    (*** btw, you might want to have a peek at his bio before responding to this with the usual 'conspiracy theory' tripe.)
    Very interesting, informative, and a bit scary read. Thanks for sharing.
    cat52cgWerks
  • Reply 11 of 15
    tmaytmay Posts: 5,455member
    rinosaur said:
    "It respects natural immunity which appears to be all but ignored now."  

    Oh, that's the kind of immunity that 90+% of hospitalized Covid patients have, correct?
    No it’s the immunity after you’ve had it that’s up to 27x better than the vax. 
    This is the part where you link your source...

    I'll show mine...

    https://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2021/s0806-vaccination-protection.html

    In today’s MMWR, a study of COVID-19 infections in Kentucky among people who were previously infected with SAR-CoV-2 shows that unvaccinated individuals are more than twice as likely to be reinfected with COVID-19 than those who were fully vaccinated after initially contracting the virus. These data further indicate that COVID-19 vaccines offer better protection than natural immunity alone and that vaccines, even after prior infection, help prevent reinfections.

    “If you have had COVID-19 before, please still get vaccinated,” said CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky. “This study shows you are twice as likely to get infected again if you are unvaccinated. Getting the vaccine is the best way to protect yourself and others around you, especially as the more contagious Delta variant spreads around the country.”

    The study of hundreds of Kentucky residents with previous infections through June 2021 found that those who were unvaccinated had 2.34 times the odds of reinfection compared with those who were fully vaccinated.  The findings suggest that among people who have had COVID-19 previously, getting fully vaccinated provides additional protection against reinfection.

    Additionally, a second publication from MMWR shows vaccines prevented COVID-19 related hospitalizations among the highest risk age groups. As cases, hospitalizations, and deaths rise, the data in today’s MMWR reinforce that COVID-19 vaccines are the best way to prevent COVID-19.

    COVID-19 vaccines remain safe and effective. They prevent severe illness, hospitalization, and death. Additionally, even among the uncommon cases of COVID-19 among the fully or partially vaccinated vaccines make people more likely to have a milder and shorter illness compared to those who are unvaccinated. CDC continues to recommend everyone 12 and older get vaccinated against COVID-19.

    Needless to state, I don't believe you source. What was the tell?

    No it’s the immunity after you’ve had it that’s up to 27x better than the vax.
    That's a pretty unbelievable multiple...
    darkvaderbaconstang
  • Reply 12 of 15
    designr said:
    It seems like regular testing is a good approach. It respects natural immunity which appears to be all but ignored now. It also respects individual's concerns about the current vaccines.

    THERE IS NO NATURAL IMMUNITY TO THIS VIRUS.

    It's a new virus.  Humans never encountered it before 2019.  NO ONE has natural immunity to it.

    There is vaccine immunity available now.  All you have to do is get one or two shots, and your immune system will have had exposure to completely harmless proteins that let the virus fool your cells into letting it inside, thus giving you the ability to fight it off.

    Or are you talking about getting sick?  Yeah, that only provides very limited immunity, for a very short time.  Plus there's the frequent permanent damage that getting sick from this virus can cause.  There's good news though:  If you've been sick and get the vaccine you will have significantly better immunity than if you'd only been sick. 

    But natural immunity to SARS-CoV-2?  There is no such thing.
  • Reply 13 of 15
    darkvader said:
    designr said:
    It seems like regular testing is a good approach. It respects natural immunity which appears to be all but ignored now. It also respects individual's concerns about the current vaccines.
    THERE IS NO NATURAL IMMUNITY TO THIS VIRUS.
    That is a bold, extremely stupid claim to make!!! Are you saying that EACH and EVERYONE who was infected with this virus was hospitalized and required treatment (ranging from tablets to ventilator support to be alive)? Even before vaccination drive started, 85% of the people who were infected with COVID-19 did not need any treatment or whatsoever - how did that happen?
    designrcgWerks
  • Reply 14 of 15
    crowleycrowley Posts: 8,816member
    Also developing an immunity through catching the virus and fighting it off is called natural immunity, all caps and indignation non-withstanding.  It can be limited, it seems to vary from person to person, though the vaccine appears to also have limitations when it comes to mutations.
    baconstangdesignrcgWerks
  • Reply 15 of 15
    cgWerkscgWerks Posts: 2,732member
    tmay said:
    I'll show mine...

    https://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2021/s0806-vaccination-protection.html

    No it’s the immunity after you’ve had it that’s up to 27x better than the vax.
    That's a pretty unbelievable multiple...
    Thanks for the link. I'll have to look that one over, because it differs from what has been seen in Israel, UK, Wales, etc. Unfortunately, it looks like the data here (USA/Canada) is starting to swing that direction as well, but I think we're behind those places in terms of the timeline.

    I haven't seen that 27x figure, but if you look at my earlier post, you'll see an ~13x figure. That isn't really unexpected either, and is common sense when you think about it a bit. The mRNA is designed to instruct your body to produce one small aspect of the original variant of the virus. Your immune system, when exposed to the real virus, is very likely to 'map' it much better. The vaccine primarily produces antibodies, where as natural immunity involves a T-Cells and another similar sounding one I can't remember right now. As expected, this is a much more robust immunity.

    The other problem is that we're now dealing with the Delta variant (mainly) which wasn't the target of the vaccines. It seems somewhat effective, but much less than it was for the original version. We'll be facing Lambda, Mu, and others in the future, which it might do little to nothing for, whereas the natural immunity is much more likely to be effective against. And, there is the possibility of ADE (antibody dependent enhancement) which they hopefully have thwarted, or we'll have a lot more people lost, but vaxxed this time.

    Also, here is what Dr Robert Malone (inventor of the the mRNA vaccination technology) had to say a little while back at a panel discussion on mass vaccination, herd immunity, and escape mutants, etc.:

    "In order to get to herd immunity, you have to have a vaccine that is generally more than 80% effective in preventing infection, not preventing disease - Ok - to block the spread. In the CDC slide deck that was leaked to the Washington Post, they showed clearly, even with Delta - let alone Lambda and Mu - we cannot stop the spread of Delta. If we were to vaccinate with these 'leaky' vaccines, which efficacy in terms of prevention of infection is something between 40 an 60%, we can arm wrestle.

    You could vaccinate the whole world with that and you still won't stop the spread. What you will do, is select for even more potent escape mutants that are going to blow through those vaccines. And who is going to die? The people that we wanted to protect in the first place: the elderly, the morbidly obese, the immunocompromised. Those are the ones that are going to suffer from this inappropriate universal vaccination strategy."

    https://globalcovidsummit.org/news/san-juan-panel-undertreatment-cited-as-a-cause-for-hospitalizations-long-haul-covid (43m30s in)

    darkvader said:
    THERE IS NO NATURAL IMMUNITY TO THIS VIRUS.

    It's a new virus.  Humans never encountered it before 2019.  NO ONE has natural immunity to it.

    There is vaccine immunity available now.  All you have to do is get one or two shots, and your immune system will have had exposure to completely harmless proteins that let the virus fool your cells into letting it inside, thus giving you the ability to fight it off.

    Or are you talking about getting sick?  Yeah, that only provides very limited immunity, for a very short time.  Plus there's the frequent permanent damage that getting sick from this virus can cause.  There's good news though:  If you've been sick and get the vaccine you will have significantly better immunity than if you'd only been sick. 

    But natural immunity to SARS-CoV-2?  There is no such thing.
    First of all, your system develops immunity when you get sick. So, in that sense, I suppose you're a bit correct in that we don't have pre-existing natural immunity to this particular virus variation. However, there is some data that due to past corona virus exposure, the immune systems of some people are able to better mount a defense against this one and it's variants. How do you think we got through past SARS (and other) viruses before we had vaccines?

    And, that isn't how it works. The mRNA instructs your cells to produce the spike protein of the original SARS-CoV-2 virus. Your body responds by producing antibodies against that spike protein. Those proteins aren't necessarily harmless, and there is some evidence that they are in fact the cause of some of the 'long-covid' symptoms.

    Yes, there is absolutely a risk to going unvaccinated. Fortunately, if you're not really old or have other major health issues, it is relatively low. The debate isn't over whether the vaccines are effective (though that is decreasing with each variant, again, as one would expect), it is over the potential side effects and whether individuals should be allowed to run that risk-calculation and decide for themselves. Here, you can calculate your odds: My Covid Odds

    If there was strong social benefit to being vaccinated, I'd *personally* have an issue with it, as I have some concerting autoimmune conditions that it seems to dramatically inflate in some people, but I'd be supportive of it on the whole. The problem, as Dr Malone lays out above, is that the social benefit is next to nothing, if not negative (I'd say almost certainly... this is how evolution works). About the only argument for social benefit I've heard that holds water, is by reducing symptoms (as far as that works, again the variants might be a different story... then it is a game of whack-a-mole between evolution and big-pharma) we might keep the ICU levels lower. That's kind of it, though (and the big problem in ICUs is staffing, not beds/equipment, on the whole).
    muthuk_vanalingam
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