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Paris Hospitals on Emergency Footing as Virus Cases Rise

October 8, 2020

(Medical Xpress) – Paris region health authorities ordered hospitals to activate emergency measures starting Thursday to cope with fast-rising numbers of COVID-19 patients, who now fill 40% of the region’s intensive care units. 

After a Hospital Stay for Covid, Patients May Face Months of Rehabilitation

October 8, 2020

(New York Times) – Even after surviving Covid-19, many patients who were critically ill face long and arduous recoveries, often requiring extensive physical rehabilitation. The problems they encounter are wide ranging. Some patients suffer muscle atrophy, kidney damage or reduced lung capacity, making it difficult for them to leave their homes or get out of bed. Many struggle with cognitive and psychological issues like memory loss, depression and anxiety. Among the most common problems they face are shortness of breath, fatigue, confusion and body aches.

Hard-Hit Peru’s Costly Bet on Cheap COVID-19 Antibody Tests

October 8, 2020

(Associated Press) – In March, President Martin Vizcarra took the airwaves to announce he’d signed off on a massive purchase of 1.6 million tests – almost all of them for antibodies. Now, interviews with experts, public purchase orders, import records, government resolutions, patients, and COVID-19 health reports show that the country’s bet on rapid antibody tests went dangerously off course.

Eli Lilly Says Its Monoclonal Antibody Cocktail Is Effective in Treating Covid-19

October 7, 2020

(STAT News) – Eli Lilly said Wednesday a monoclonal antibody treatment is effective in reducing levels of the virus that causes Covid-19 in patients, and also appears to prevent patients from visiting the emergency room or hospital. Lilly had previously released results for a similar treatment using one antibody, which experts viewed as promising. But the new results, of a combination of two antibodies, appear, based on limited data provided in a press release, to be more robust.

Saying Human Trials Aren’t Enough, Researchers Call for Comparison of COVID-19 Vaccines in Monkeys

October 7, 2020

(Science) – Primate researchers in the United States have banded together in a push for an ambitious monkey study that would do head-to-head comparisons of the leading COVID-19 vaccine candidates. Although 10 candidates are already undergoing large-scale tests in people, proponents of the monkey plan say those clinical trials may not deliver the comprehensive data needed to choose the safest and most effective vaccines. The comparison trial in monkeys, in contrast, could shed light in a matter of weeks on how the candidates stack up on measures including potential side effects, the strength of immune responses they trigger, and how well they protect against infection and disease.

Getting Health Care Was Already Tough in Rural Areas. The Pandemic Has Made It Worse

October 7, 2020

(NPR) – Even before the pandemic, the health care systems that serve rural Americans were in decline: rural hospitals were closing their doors, and the medical workforce was shrinking. This year, as the coronavirus outbreak has made its way from major cities to rural America, threats to the rural health care infrastructure have only increased. A new nationwide poll shows that one in every four rural U.S households have been unable to get medical care for serious problems. 

Hospitals That Don’t Report COVID-19 Data Daily Will Get Warning Letter

October 7, 2020

(NPR) – The federal government is starting to crack down on the nation’s hospitals for not reporting complete COVID-19 data into a federal data collection system. The enforcement timeline starts Wednesday, said Seema Verma, administrator for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, in a call with reporters Tuesday. CMS issued a rule in early September requiring hospitals to report full, daily COVID-19 data to the federal government, including such information as the number of patients and ventilators they have. On Wednesday, CMS is sending letters to hospitals across America alerting many that they have not been in compliance.

SARS-CoV-2 Viral Load Yields Vital Prognostic Information on Hospital Admission

October 7, 2020

(Medscape) – Higher viral loads are associated with a greater risk of death in cancer and non-cancer patients admitted to the hospital with COVID-19, report researchers in New York City. “Our study showed that above and beyond just knowing whether a patient is infected with SARS-CoV-2, knowing how much virus is in the respiratory tract can be useful at identifying patients at high risk of a poor outcome when they are admitted to the hospital,” Dr. Michael Satlin of Weill Cornell Medicine and NewYork-Presbyterian told Reuters Health by email.

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