COVID-19

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19)

7 ways you can help the coronavirus response

A person holds a sign

When a major earthquake beneath the Indian Ocean on Dec. 26, 2004, resulted in a devastating tsunami, people from all parts of the world contributed to one of the largest relief efforts ever.

It’s part of human nature to want to help. Even before being able to talk, infants can recognize a non-related adult in need and offer help. In adults, areas of the brain associated with stress relief and reward have a greater response to giving than they do when receiving something.

COVID-19 treatment: New findings may bring researchers a step closer

Coronavirus

A new study from Cornell University has made a discovery about SARS-CoV-2 that may help researchers develop an appropriate treatment.

Five researchers from Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, set out to learn more about the structure and mechanisms related to two coronaviruses that have created turmoil in the past. These are SARS-CoV, the virus that can lead to severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), and MERS-CoV, which can trigger Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS).

How Scientists Can Volunteer to Help Fight COVID-19

volunteer

Researchers are offering tools, equipment, time, and expertise to help alleviate COVID-19 suffering. Here’s how you can chip in.

Around the world, bench scientists other than those actively studying the pandemic have largely been forced to scale back or even shut down their experiments out of COVID-19 precautions. But that doesn’t mean their skills and expertise can’t contribute to the worldwide effort to address the disease.

I’m an asthmatic: what should I do during the coronavirus pandemic?

asthmatic

The new respiratory coronavirus COVID-19 is particularly worrying for the 2.7 million Australians who already suffer from asthma. That’s roughly one in nine people.

Viral respiratory infections, in particular those that cause the common cold, typically trigger flareups of asthma. They are the main reason for asthma episodes in both children and adults during autumn and winter.

So it’s natural for asthmatics to fear they may be more at risk during the coronavirus pandemic.

Signs of a Flattening Curve?

Flattening the curve

COVID-19 cases are still climbing in hard-hit US states New York, New Jersey and Louisiana—but hospitalizations appear to be slowing, indicating the curve could be flattening, according to Reuters.

New York reported 599 new deaths Monday, close to Sunday’s count of 594 and down from 630 on Saturday.

An updated University of Washington forecasting model from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation also showed a decline in the expected deaths in the US—to 49,431 to 136,401, down from 138,000 to 177,866—during COVID-19’s first wave, the AP reports.

COVID-19 Expert Reality Check

SARS-CoV-2 - electron microscope

As the media swarms the coronavirus story, most news articles focus on numbers of cases and deaths, new locations of cases, etc.

Lost in the shuffle are the important public health insights about how viruses work and humans respond. To help improve understanding of an emerging outbreak’s complex dynamics, GHN has reached out to some of the world’s most respected global health experts for their quick "reality checks" on key issues related to the outbreak.

 

U.S. companies that are working on coronavirus treatments or vaccines

Covid-19 research

A mix of legacy drug makers and small startups have stepped forward with plans to develop vaccines or treatments that target the infection caused by the novel coronavirus.

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), which was first detected in December in Wuhan, China, has sickened more than 1,150,000 people worldwide and killed at least 64,500. There are no approved vaccines or therapies for the disease although the use of hydroxychloroquine sulfate and chloroquine phosphate to treat COVID-19 patients is authorised.

South Africa needs to mitigate the worst of its inequalities in tackling coronavirus

Blikkiesdorp, Cape Town

As South Africa entered its 21-day lockdown, the political message was that South Africans were all in it together. However, it is clear that while society has been united politically to fight COVID-19, there are extreme and persistent economic and social inequalities. The lockdown confines everyone to their home for three weeks. But what does this mean in a country riven with inequalities?

The lockdown has illuminated how the spatial, economic and social inequalities which were characteristic features of the apartheid period have persisted in post-apartheid South Africa. Media coverage has shown inequalities in access to transport, shops, COVID-19 testing, and the very different ways the lockdown has been enforced and policed in different communities.

A small trial finds that hydroxychloroquine is not effective for treating coronavirus

Hydroxychloroquine 200 mg

On Saturday the Food and Drug Administration approved the use of two antimalarial drugs, hydroxychloroquine and a related medication, chloroquine, for emergency use to treat COVID-19. The drugs were touted by President Trump as a “game changer” for COVID-19.

However, a study just published in a French medical journal provides new evidence that hydroxychloroquine does not appear to help the immune system clear the coronavirus from the body. The study comes on the heels of two others - one in France and one in China - that reported some benefits in the combination of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin for COVID-19 patients who didn’t have severe symptoms of the virus.

Coronavirus case counts are going to go up – but that doesn’t mean social distancing is a bust

Empty parking lots show social distancing’s costs

The last few weeks have brought previously unimaginable changes to the lives of people throughout the United States. Americans everywhere are waking up to a new reality in which they can’t go to work or school outside the home and they have to stay six feet away from others. More than 80% of Americans are under such stay-at-home orders.

People are also seeing charts in the news showing rapidly increasing case counts. This is likely to continue to occur. The United States surpassed Italy and China to have the most confirmed cases of any country.

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