Virginia MacDonald

BirminghamWatch



Virginia MacDonald is a reporter with BirminghamWatch, a nonprofit, independent news site. WBHM and BirminghamWatch collaborate through a content-sharing partnership.

You Know Delta, But Have You Met Mu And The Rest Of The Relatives?

Researchers say there always will be new variant strains of the COVID-19 virus, although all the strains won’t be as deadly as delta.

COVID Infusion Therapy Effective At Reducing Severity Of Disease — If You Get It Soon Enough

Monoclonal antibody therapy does not work unless it is given in the first 10 days of COVID symptoms, according to health experts.

Two Incumbents, Including President, Ousted From The Birmingham School Board Of Education

Incumbent and Board President Daagye Hendricks (D4) was defeated by Derrick Billups. Incumbent Terri Micha (D2) was defeated by Neonta Williams. And District 1 will go to a runoff between incumbent Douglas Lee Ragland and Sherman Collins Jr..

Candidates For Birmingham Board Of Education

There are 22 people running for the Birmingham Board of Education. Elections are Tuesday, Aug. 24.

K-12 Students To Be Tested For COVID In Schools

Cases of COVID-19 in youth are on the rise, according to the state department of public health. A new testing program in Alabama schools hopes to combat that.

As Other States Drew Fire For Passing Restrictive Election Laws, Alabama Skirted The Limelight

National attention fell on Georgia for changes to its election laws earlier this year, but Alabama made changes too.

Alabama Avoids Loss Of Congressional Seat With Slight Population Gain

Alabama avoided the loss of a congressional seat as its population grew from 4.8 million in 2010 to 5.03 million last year, according to figures released Monday by the U.S. Census Bureau.

Alabama Needs More Vaccines To Stop The Spread Of COVID-19, Doctor Says

The number of new daily COVID-19 cases appears to be on a "downward trend" in Alabama, and the statewide hospitalization rate is improving, according to the head of infectious diseases at UAB.

Jones Starts His Post-Senate Life As CNN Contributor

Former U.S. Sen. Doug Jones is taking on a new role as a political commentator at CNN.

COVID-19 Tracking App Available To The Public

All Alabama residents can now use the phone app GuideSafe, which anonymously tracks COVID-19 exposure.

College Entry Testing Shows Less Than 1% Of Students Have COVID-19

Preliminary numbers from a program to test college students returning to campus indicate a low positivity rate. The program has tested about 30,000 students so far.

Health Officer Recommends Virtual Classes For Middle And High Schools, No Contact Sports For Now

Jefferson County's health officer issued strict guidelines about how schools should operate this fall. It's up to schools whether to adopt those recommendations.

Health Inspectors Are Enforcing Coronavirus Rules, Can Close Jefferson County Restaurants And Bars That Do Not Comply

The Jefferson County Health Department is using food inspectors to monitor restaurant and bars’ adherence to COVID-19 orders, and they can immediately close establishments that do not comply.

Fauci Says Alabama Still Could Rein In COVID-19, Even As Cases Spread Among Young People

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, says states that are seeing an outbreak of the virus should mandate masks and close bars.

Alabama Schools To Open In August, But Parents Have Home Education Option

Alabama public schools will reopen in August despite the COVID-19 pandemic, but parents will be given the option of continuing distance learning.

The ‘Old Normal’ Is Making Us Sick Again, UAB Doc Says; NY-Area Bans Alabama Travelers Without A Quarantine

The number of COVID-19 cases in the state rose Wednesday by 954, one of the state’s largest daily increases since the pandemic began, according to the Alabama Department of Public Health.

UAB Treating Its Highest Number Of Coronavirus Patients Since The Pandemic Began, Health Experts Say

Alabama continues to break records as cases of COVID-19 increase at the highest rate yet.

Polling Officials Say Alabama’s July 14 Election Won’t Mirror Georgia’s Snafus

Alabama is prepared for the July 14 primary runoffs, according to Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill.

Beef, Poultry Farm Operations Hit By Coronavirus, But Peaches Are On Their Way

Pricing and processing delays caused by the coronavirus pandemic have made a direct hit on the Alabama cattle and poultry industries.

Volunteers Step Up To Face The Challenges Of The Pandemic

Efforts in Birmingham to thwart the spread of COVID-19 stretch from volunteer organizations that have stitched more than 18,500 cloth face masks to tech companies and businesses using prototyping, fabrication and 3D printers to create face shields and ventilator adaptors, as well as prototypes for portable intensive care units.

Association Protests Plan To Put Recovering COVID-19 Patients In Nursing Homes

The Alabama Nursing Home Association opposes a decision by Jefferson County Health Officer Dr. Mark Wilson to place patients who are recovering from COVID-19 in nursing homes.