"Connecting Communities for COVID19 News" 7th Aug 2020
Coronavirus infection rates continued to fall in early stages of lockdown easing, study finds
Coronavirus infection rates continued to drop despite some lockdown restrictions being lifted, a report from the UK's largest testing study has found. The rate of infection throughout the country was halving every eight to nine days during May, according to an initial report released last month by Imperial College London and Ipsos MORI. A second report has now revealed the rate of infection continued to fall in late June and early July, with the virus still halving every eight to nine days.
Colombia's long virus lockdown fuels anxiety and depression
In the Colombian capital of Bogotá, the mayor’s office reports that suicide attempts are up 21% since the start of quarantine, with psychologists also reporting a rise in new patients.
Michelle Obama says she's suffering from 'low-grade depression'
Michelle Obama Podcast" on Wednesday. "I try to make sure I get a workout in, although there have been periods throughout this quarantine, where I just have felt too low." It's a familiar feeling for many Americans.
Leeds researchers find Covid-19 patients can suffer with PTSD months after leaving hospital
Leeds researchers have found that some Covid-19 patients suffer with breathlessness, fatigue and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) for months after they leave hospital. Researchers from the University of Leeds and Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust assessed 100 people who are recovering from the virus after being treated in hospital and identified several longer-term symptoms. Patients were found to have suffered from fatigue, which was the most common symptom, as well as breathlessness and issues with concentration and memory. The researchers also found that almost half of the Covid-19 survivors who had been in intensive care had some of the symptoms of PTSD. More than two thirds (68.8 percent) of the intensive care patients and just under half (45.6 percent) of the people who were treated in other hospital wards told researchers their overall quality of life had deteriorated.
Coronavirus: England's contact-tracing app readies for launch
A second attempt at a Covid-19 contact-tracing app for England will soon be tested by members of the public. Officials hope to confirm the date for the limited roll-out within a few days. It could be as soon as next week. The app will let people scan barcode-like QR codes to log venue visits, as well as implementing Apple and Google's method of detecting other smartphones. But efforts are still ongoing to deliver medical test results within the product. Users will get alerts if others they have recently been close to declare that they have been diagnosed with the coronavirus. The software will provide information about the prevalence of the disease in the local area to encourage people to be more cautious if levels rise.
Denmark Drops Plan to Lift Curbs on Public Gatherings as Infections Spike
Denmark will not raise a limit on public gatherings, originally planned for this month, after seeing a spike in COVID-19 infections, the Danish health ministry said late on Thursday. As part of the Denmark's gradual reopening following a lockdown to curb the spread of the coronavirus, the government had planned to raise the limit on public gatherings to 200 people on August 8, up from the current limit of 100 people. "It is crucial that we maintain the good position Denmark is in, where we have the epidemic under control," health minister Magnus Heunicke said.
Northern Ireland launches UKs first Covid-19 contact-tracing app
Northern Ireland has released its contact-tracing app – the first country in the UK to roll-out the technology. The app, StopCOVID NI, uses Bluetooth technology to notify users if they have come into contact with someone who has tested positive for coronavirus. Those who test positive will be sent a code by SMS, which can then be put into the app. Users will then be asked to share the random IDs their phone has been swapping with other app users over the last 14 days. Once a user agrees, these ‘diagnosis keys’ will allow the app to tell those people that they have been exposed to Covid-19. Northern Ireland health minister Robin Swann urged the public to download the app, which uses the exposure notification APIs developed by Apple and Google. “Deploying this world leading technology can prove a major factor in helping our efforts to curb Covid-19 and prevent its spread. Its potential to be a game changer will, however, be totally dependent on the support of the Northern Ireland public,” he said.
Brussels set to make face masks compulsory in public places
The local Brussels government is preparing to force people to wear face masks in public spaces and in private places accessible by the public, should the recent surge in coronavirus infections continue. According to Rudi Vervoor, the minister-president of the Brussels region, the order will be imposed as soon as the daily number of cases rises above 50 in every 100,000
Germany fights virus uptick with mandatory testing for travellers
Germany announced mandatory tests for travellers returning from high-risk regions after new coronavirus cases breached the 1,000-a-day threshold for the first time since May, fuelling fears of a return to an economically disruptive lockdown. Health Minister Jens Spahn said on Thursday free compulsory testing would be in force from Saturday after the Robert Koch Institute, Germany’s public health agency, reported 1,045 new cases in a single day. Part of the increase was due to more tests taking place, he said, but the impact of holidaymakers returning to Germany and of flagging social distancing discipline was also significant. Germany classifies almost all the world outside the European Union as high risk, as well as some regions within the bloc, including Aragon, Catalonia and Navarre in Spain, and Belgium’s Antwerp province. The compulsory tests mean travellers will not have to quarantine for two weeks. Anyone who refuses to take the test could face a fine of up to 25,000 euros (22,485 pounds).
Dutch PM urges tourists to avoid busy parts of Amsterdam
The Netherlands’ Prime Minister on Thursday called on tourists to avoid busy parts of Amsterdam, following a sharp acceleration in the number of coronavirus cases in the Netherlands. Prime Minister Mark Rutte cut short his summer vacation after the National Institute for Health (RIVM) reported 601 new cases on Thursday, from 426 a day earlier, following weeks of gradual increases. “Very specifically for the city of Amsterdam, I say to tourists foreign and domestic, and partly on behalf of the mayor: avoid the busy parts of the city,” Rutte told reporters in The Hague. Amsterdam’s mayor Femke Halsema on Wednesday began mandating masks in areas including the central Red Light prostitution district, which is a magnet for foreign tourists.
Chessington School students stunning art from lockdown
Schools have been one of most heavily impacted institutions by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, and the Chessington School is no exception. Rather than have the virus stunt her art students' learning, however, Head of Art Miss Kavanagh leaned into the lockdown and encouraged her students to express themselves and learn new techniques in illustration, painting and other visual art forms. "Lockdown came as a shock to everyone. At Chessington School we were very lucky in the fact that we had already taken teacher training in Google Classrooms," she told the Comet.
Struggling Tourist Destinations Pitch Themselves to New Digital Nomads as Remote Work Locales
The dream of living life as a “digital nomad” is not new. The term first entered the popular imagination around 2014, when freelance designers, developers, entrepreneurs, and writers with privileged passports would head to southeast Asia or eastern Europe for a cheaper lifestyle reliant only on Wi-Fi and a little bit of hustle. It was an enviable, if niche, dream for many. But the forces of the pandemic have changed that a bit. With the cultural acceptance of remote work accelerating years in a matter of months, more and more individuals are seeing that not only do they not need to work from an office, but they don’t need to work from home, either. Some tourism destinations are pivoting their offering to cater to this recently-expanded market. And in doing so, they are helping make up for the steep decline in short-term leisure tourism revenue. If travelers are avoiding coming for just a few days due to the headaches of travel restrictions, Covid testing on arrival, and/or quarantine, why not invite them to come for months?
Learning 'pods': a new solution to the coronavirus school crisis
Parents are banding together to form education pods for children to learn in groups, but not everyone can afford them.
Are Berlin locals packing up and leaving the city to flee the coronavirus?
Media reports show that many New Yorkers, Londoners and Parisians are moving to the countryside to escape the pandemic. But what about Berliners?
Lockdown sees Turkish women bear brunt of unpaid work: research
Turkish women did four times as much household and care work as men during lockdowns aimed at curbing the spread of the coronavirus, research supported by the United Nations Development Programme showed on Thursday. A survey conducted in May of more than 2,400 people showed women shouldered most of the unpaid work during lockdown even though men spent substantially more time working in the home. The gender gap in paid work narrowed under lockdown as a result of changes in work patterns and a fall in men’s paid work hours, the research found. But gender gaps in unpaid work and total work time widened: on average women’s workload, including both paid and unpaid work, increased while that of men decreased, the findings said.
This is what coronavirus will do to our offices and homes
One day, the virus will subside. It could be eradicated. But even then, life will not simply return to the way it was before Covid-19. Spurred on by the coronavirus crisis, architects have been rethinking the buildings we inhabit. Scroll down to find out how the future might look.
Widespread Whitehall homeworking to continue | PublicTechnology.net
The number of civil servants returning to government premises in the coming weeks will be “low”, the Cabinet Office has said, as it unveils some of the measures departments are taking to protect staff returning to work. The vast majority of civil servants have been working from home since coronavirus lockdown measures were introduced in March. As of 1 August – from which date the prime minister has said employers will have "more discretion" to ask staff to return – civil servants will begin a phased return to the office, with some continuing to work from home for several months. “There will be some staff who will need to return to the workplace, but the number of people in the workplace will initially remain low compared to our normal capacity numbers,” Cabinet Office guidance published this week stated. “The civil service supports the ability of all our staff to work as safely as possible, whether remotely or in the workplace,” the document, which summarises the government’s Covid-19 workplace risk assessment for departments, said.
Report: American workers don't expect things to return to normal, even if a COVID-19 vaccine is produced
As the coronavirus continues to spread across the US, workers are not confident that a return to work is safe or possible, and 81% expect disruptions, even after a vaccine might be available, according to a new survey.
Report: Working remotely during the pandemic means longer days, more meetings
"Is it working from home or living at work, or both?" Working from home during the COVID-19 epidemic results in more meetings and longer working hours, according to a new study. According to a Bloomberg report on August 4, the study, conducted by researchers from Harvard Business School and New York University, covered more than 21,000 companies in 16 cities in North America, Europe and the Middle East. The researchers compared the behavior of employees who worked at home for more than eight weeks before and after the COVID-19 outbreak. They found that the workday lasted 48.5 minutes longer, the number of meetings increased by about 13 percent, and people sent an average of 1.4 more emails per day to their colleagues.
Covid-19 forces rethink on partnerships, office life and digitalisation
The pandemic has exposed persistent inefficiencies in law firms’ traditional ways of working, which look increasingly out of place as digitalisation takes hold, and triggered a rethink on expensive overheads, such as offices, now weighing on cash-strapped firms. In some cases, the most important innovations for law firms involve a reworking of available technology. Rajah & Tann launched automated digital invoices within weeks of the onset of the pandemic and established a new platform where clients can confidently sign contracts electronically for the first time.
More Than Half of Canada’s Workers Fear Returning to the Office
More than half of Canadians are afraid to go back to their workplaces and 77% are worried their colleagues might show up infected with the coronavirus, according to research from consulting firm KPMG. About six in 10 say they’ll will refuse to go back if they believe their place of work is not safe enough and 57% are concerned about sharing meeting rooms and other common areas. The survey polled more than 1,000 Canadians online and was conducted July 22 to 24. Major Canadian employers including Royal Bank of Canada, Bank of Nova Scotia and Telus Corp. have told many employees to continue working from home for the rest of the year. One potential issue for workers in Toronto’s financial district is its often-crowded subway system. The city has one of the busiest transit networks in North America, trailing only New York City and Mexico City. In the KPMG survey, 71% said they were worried about using public transportation for their commute. In Ontario, the figure was was 78%.
British workers more reluctant to return to office than Europeans, new research reveals
British office workers have returned to their desks at a far slower rate than their European counterparts, new research has revealed. A study, conducted by research unit AlphaWise at US bank Morgan Stanley, found around 34 per cent of British white-collar workers are back in the office, compared to 83 per cent of French office staff. Britain also lagged behind the other major European economies on office returns, with around three-quarters of German, Italian and Spanish workers having returned to the pre-pandemic commuting routine, according to the study.
The working from home experiment has been too successful
Boris Johnson wants Britons to get back to the office this week but companies and employees are proving reluctant to turn their backs on the remote working revolution. The Government needs cities to get back up and running to save cafés, pubs and restaurants that rely on office workers to sustain them. The home working experiment has been so successful that the Prime Minister's call for commuters to get back on buses and trains is being ignored. “In the words of The Specials, I’m sitting in a ghost town,” says Nigel Wilson, boss of Legal & General, from the investment firm’s Moorgate headquarters in the City of London.
Digital capabilities offer a lifeline to small businesses during pandemic
Salesforce surveyed over 3,600 consumers worldwide to gain a pulse check on how small businesses are navigating during the COVID-19 pandemic and what steps they can take to bring customers back.
City Colleges faculty and staff threaten to strike if everyone isn’t allowed to work remotely this fall: ‘I ca
Faculty and staff at City Colleges of Chicago are threatening to hold their first strike in more than a decade if administrators don’t allow all employees to work from home when fall classes begin in late August. While most instructors have been approved to teach remotely next semester, about 450 employees, including academic advisers and technological support and clerical staff, were required to return to campuses on Monday, according to unions representing those workers. Employees deemed essential by the community college network have been working in person since May despite the COVID-19 pandemic. Tony Johnston, president of the Cook County College Teachers Union, said his members plan to hold an emergency meeting on Friday to discuss taking a vote of no confidence in the administration, a move that could potentially escalate into a safety-related strike.
John Hopkins switches to virtual fall semester as pandemic worsens, urges students not to return to Baltimore
Johns Hopkins University will hold its fall semester entirely online for undergraduates, a reversal of plans and the latest sign of the turmoil caused by the coronavirus pandemic. School officials strongly urged students not to return to Baltimore. They also acknowledged the change of plans — coming just weeks before classes resume — would create a real hardship for many families and announced efforts to ease that burden.
Fearing coronavirus and missed classes, many parents prefer mixing online and in-person school, poll finds
Most American parents think it is unsafe to send their children back to school given the risks of the novel coronavirus, and more than 80 percent favor holding school at least partly online, according to a Washington Post-Schar School survey conducted by Ipsos. But parents also express serious concerns with online schooling and many are drawn to systems that mix the two. The mixed feelings reflect deep and widespread anxiety among parents as they approach the end of a summer break that has produced no national consensus on how to balance the risks of the virus against the academic, social and economic impacts of keeping schools closed.
'Hoping it goes well': Students among first to return offer lessons for reopening schools
Abigail Alexander shuffled through a stack of papers, trying to find instructions for logging in to her school-issued laptop. The 10-year-old chatted with her best friend, a fellow fifth grader, about who is in their classes this year at Head Middle Magnet Prep and what period they have a specific teacher. Their conversation Tuesday sounded like a typical one between excited, anxious students on the first day at a new school – except this year is like no other. Abigail was seated in the dining room of her North Nashville home while her two younger foster siblings played around the table. Her friend was on FaceTime, the phone propped up against the side of Abigail's laptop.
Georgia school starts 1st day of classes, within hours student tests positive for coronavirus
An elementary school in Georgia opened its doors to students on Monday for the first day of the 2020-21 academic year — also the first time since the coronavirus pandemic broke out in March. Hours later, a Grade 2 student tested positive for the coronavirus, forcing the classroom at Sixes Elementary School in Cherokee County to close and the teacher and 20 other students to quarantine for two weeks.
Global recovery will come faster if COVID-19 vaccine available to all: WHO chief
Economic recovery around the world could come faster if any COVID-19 vaccine is made available to all as a public good, World Health Organization Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said on Thursday (Aug 6). He was speaking in an online panel discussion with members of the Aspen Security Forum in the United States moderated by the NBC network. "Sharing vaccines or sharing other tools actually helps the world to recover together. The economic recovery can be faster and the damage from COVID-19 could be less," Tedros said. "Vaccine nationalism is not good, it will not help us," he said in an allusion to the competitive scramble of nations and pharmaceutical researchers to come up with an effective vaccine and order as many doses as possible in advance.
'A matter of when not if': New Zealand begins battle against 'Covid fatigue'
New Zealand has attained the status of one of the world’s safest countries when it comes to the coronavirus; there is no known community transmission in the country and life has largely returned to normal. But with one eye on nations where the virus was once quashed before spiralling out of control again, officials and the government have changed their language in recent days in order to fight a new battle – this time against complacency. “We have to be absolutely on our toes,” Ashley Bloomfield, New Zealand’s top health official, said in a Radio New Zealand interview on Wednesday. “That’s not just the health system … it’s everybody.”
Brazil facing 200,000 virus deaths by October: expert
With Brazil poised to register 100,000 coronavirus deaths, AFP spoke to medical statistician Domingos Alves about what went wrong in the giant South American country and where its outbreak is headed. Alves, coordinator of the Health Intelligence Lab at the University of Sao Paulo's Ribeirao Preto medical school, was scathing in his criticism of President Jair Bolsonaro's government, which he accused of "sacrificing the Brazilian people" in the name of keeping the economy afloat.
N. Korea's escalating virus response raises fear of outbreak
North Korea is quarantining thousands of people and shipping food and other aid to a southern city locked down over coronavirus worries, officials said, as the country’s response to a suspected case reinforces doubt about its longstanding claim to be virus-free. But amid the outside skepticism and a stream of North Korean propaganda glorifying its virus efforts, an exchange between the country and the United Nations is providing new clarity — and actual numbers — about what might be happening in North Korea, which has closed its borders and cut travel — never a free-flowing stream — by outsider monitors and journalists.
Trump again claims Covid-19 will 'go away' as Fauci warns of long road ahead
Donald Trump on Wednesday repeated that he believes coronavirus will “go away”, despite his top public health expert warning that it could take most of 2021 or longer to get the pandemic under control and that it is “unlikely” the virus can ever be eradicated. At a White House briefing, the US president said of Covid-19: “It’s going away, it will go away, things go away, absolutely. No question in my mind, sooner rather than later.” Trump has made numerous versions of this assertion over the more than six months that the US has been battling the outbreak, despite vast evidence otherwise and frequent contradictions from public health leaders. On Wednesday the US had 4.8m recorded cases of coronavirus and has witnessed 157,690 deaths from the disease, according to Johns Hopkins University data. Public health experts in the last few days have praised a gradual decline in new cases in some states that were badly hit while warning that nationwide the pandemic was in a worrying “new phase”.
Asia Today: Central Japan region put under virus emergency
A governor in central Japan announced a state of emergency Thursday because of rising virus cases and asked businesses and people to curb activities, especially during an upcoming holiday. Aichi prefecture has been seeing more than 100 new infections a day since mid-July after an extended period with zero new cases. The prefecture includes Nagoya and the headquarters of Toyota Motor Corp., Japan’s top automaker. Gov. Hideaki Ohmura said businesses are being asked to close altogether or close early, and people are requested to stay home at night to prevent infections from spreading.
Luton placed on Covid symptom app local lockdown 'watch list' and could 'pose a threat’ to London, expert warns
Luton has been identified as a potential hotspot of coronavirus infections that experts fear could "pose a threat" to London. Data collected by Kings's College Covid-19 Symptom tracker app suggests the Bedfordshire town has seen an "increased prevalence" of the virus since last week. According to the researchers' "watch list", over seven days 0.2 per cent Luton's population were suffering from coronavirus symptoms — compared to 0.33 per cent in Blackburn with Darwen, which is subject to local lockdown measures
Government wasted £150m on unusable face masks bought from banker
The government is facing calls to investigate its procurement of personal protective equipment (PPE) during the pandemic, after it emerged ministers spent at least £150m on unusable face masks from a family investment firm. The face masks, which were part of a £252m government contract with investment firm Ayanda Capital signed in April, were deemed unsafe by the NHS and have not been used.
Vietnam turns Danang stadium into field hospital amid virus outbreak
Vietnam is close to completing the conversion of a sports stadium into a 1,000-bed field hospital in its new coronavirus epicentre Danang, the health ministry said on Thursday, as it battles an outbreak that has spread to at least 11 locations. Aggressive contact-tracing, targeted testing and strict quarantining had helped Vietnam halt an earlier contagion, but it is now racing to control infections in the central city and beyond after a new outbreak ended a run of more than three months without domestic transmission.
Bank of England boss Bailey backs end of furlough scheme
The Governor of the Bank of England has backed the government's decision to end its furlough scheme in October. Andrew Bailey told the BBC it was important that policymakers helped workers "move forward" and not keep them in unproductive jobs. He said coronavirus would inevitably mean that some jobs became redundant. The Bank also predicted the economic slump caused by Covid-19 will be less severe than expected, but warned the recovery will also take longer. More than nine million jobs have been furloughed under the government's job retention scheme, but the Bank expects most people to go back to work as the economy recovers.
56 NFL players have tested positive for COVID-19 since reporting to camp
The NFL Players Association says that 56 players have tested positive for COVID-19 since players began reporting to training camps last week. That represents approximately 2 percent of the players currently on NFL rosters. The league would obviously love to see zero players testing positive, something the NBA and NHL have both managed by putting all their players into bubbles. But the NFL is not going to use a bubble, and so a 0 percent rate of infection is all but impossible.
Mental health study ramped up as Covid-19 struggles take toll on farmers
Robert Gordon University (RGU) and the NHS are working with Scottish farmers to improve mental wellbeing across the industry. The study was launched last year after studies showed that, on average, one farmer commits suicide every week in the UK. Those behind the project now fear farmers are facing additional hardship due to Covid-19 and are calling for them to take part in a survey to determine the best ways of offering help. Regional manager at NFU Scotland, Lorna Paterson, urged people to come forward and participate. She said: “Our farmers’ mental health generally is under severe pressure, and this has been escalated due to Covid-19.
Shoppers steer clear of high streets despite lockdown lifting
Shoppers continued to stay away from UK high streets last month despite the reopening of non-essential shops, pubs and restaurants following the lifting of lockdown measures. The number of visitors to UK retail destinations dropped by 39.4% in July compared with the same month a year ago, according to figures from Springboard, a data company that tracks footfall at consumer hotspots. Despite an improvement of almost a fifth from June, in the best month for visitor numbers since February, the figures suggest intense pressure remains for the high street as people continued to stay away from town and city centres amid the ongoing health risks from Covid-19. Non-essential shops began reopening in England and Northern Ireland in mid-June, and in Wales and Scotland later that month. Hotels, pub and restaurants in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland followed suit in July, though customers were only allowed back inside Welsh pubs and cafes this week.
Teacher sends Gov. Abbott warning on Twitter saying she got COVID-19 scare first week in classroom
A Houston educator says the first week she came back to the classroom, she had a serious COVID-19 scare. Arnetta Murray is a special education teacher at Avondale Houston. She chose to reach out to Gov. Greg Abbott via Twitter and wrote, "I went back to the classroom and you guessed it, I'm now in a 14-day quarantine. Pray for our special needs students."
Italy threatens to ban Ryanair over alleged Covid-19 guideline violations
Italy’s aviation regulator has threatened to ban Ryanair from its skies, alleging that the airline has not complied with rules brought in to tackle the coronavirus pandemic. The Italian civil aviation authority Enac accused the Dublin-based airline of “repeated violation of anti-Covid-19 health measures drafted by the Italian government and in force to protect passengers’ health”. Continued violation of the rules by the airline could mean it is banned from flying to or from Italy, or the regulator could impose a limit of 50% capacity on Ryanair flights to give passengers more space.
Covid-19 may spread more easily among children than thought, report warns
A report by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) into an outbreak at a summer camp in Georgia suggests children – even asymptomatic cases – may play an important role in community transmission of Covid-19. The claim contradicts a number of earlier studies where the consensus appeared to be that children rarely transmit the virus between themselves or to other people. This week 260 employees in one of Georgia’s biggest school districts were barred from entering their schools to plan for reopening because they either had the virus or had been in contact with an infected individual.
AstraZeneca in first COVID-19 vaccine deal with Chinese company
Shenzhen Kangtai Biological Products will produce AstraZeneca Plc’s potential COVID-19 vaccine in mainland China, the British drugmaker said on Thursday, its first deal to supply one of the world’s most populous countries. The deal underscores Astra’s frontrunner position in a global race to deliver an effective vaccine, given that Chinese ventures are leading at least eight of the 26 global vaccine development projects currently testing on humans. Under the agreement Shenzhen Kangtai, one of China’s top vaccine makers, will ensure it has annual production capacity of at least 100 million doses of the experimental shot AZD1222, which AstraZeneca co-developed with researchers at Oxford University, by the end of this year, AstraZeneca said.
Human Trials of Coronavirus Vaccine Set to Begin in Indonesia
Human trials on a potential coronavirus vaccine are due to start in Indonesia next week as part of a collaboration between state-owned pharmaceutical company Bio Farma and China's Sinovac Biotech Ltd, a senior researcher said. The launch of the vaccine trial comes as Indonesia has struggled to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus, with a consistently escalating number of cases. The phase 3 clinical trial is set to begin on Aug. 11 and will involve 1,620 volunteers aged between 18 and 59, Professor Kusnandi Rusmil, head researcher at Bandung’s Padjadjaran University, told reporters. Half of the participants will receive the vaccine over a six-month period, while the rest will receive a placebo, he said, noting 800 volunteers had been signed up so far. "We want to have our vaccines so we can use it for our people," Rusmil told reporters.
Coronavirus: Vaccine may be less effective in obese adults
Previous studies have found that vaccines for the fu and hepatitis B are less effective in obese adults than non-obese adults. Some theorize this is because those who are obese have an impaired T-cell response, a type of immune system cell, to immunizations. Researchers fear that a similar event could occur when a coronavirus vaccine finally becomes available. This puts 42.4% of the US adult population, who are obese, at risk of severe infection or complications such as death.
Nation’s Leading Vaccine Authorities Urge Thorough Review of Safety and Efficacy of COVID-19 Vaccines
COVID-19 vaccines should be made widely available only after the Food and Drug Administration has been able to evaluate safety and efficacy data from completed Phase 3 clinical trials, according to the nation’s leading vaccine authorities. Nearly 400 experts in virology, epidemiology, vaccinology, clinical care, and public health are calling on FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn to ensure a thorough, transparent process that will give experts and the general public alike reassurance that the candidate vaccines are safe and effective.
COVID-19 and cancer insights revealed in new European study | Imperial News
A large Imperial-led study has revealed valuable insights into the impact and risk factors for cancer patients with COVID-19. The findings, from almost 900 cancer patients diagnosed with SARS-CoV-2 infection in the UK, Spain, Italy and Germany, highlight a number of key clinical insights, including: The average mortality rate among cancer patients with SARS-CoV-2 was 33.6% - Patients who were male, older aged and had pre-existing conditions were more likely to have worse outcomes from COVID-19 - Continued chemotherapy and immunotherapy treatment had little impact on the severity of COVID-19, or survival rates