Tag: virus

Ex-MLB player finishes medical school, primes to fight virus

Ex-MLB player finishes medical school, primes to fight virus

NEW YORK (AP) — If he wanted, Mark Hamilton could show off his World Series ring at work.

But the fill-in first baseman for the 2011 champion St. Louis Cardinals prefers to keep that prize safe at home.

”The surgical scrub tub, not the most conducive place to wear it,” Hamilton said.

On Friday, under an accelerated schedule prompted by dire circumstances, the former big leaguer is set to graduate a month early from medical school on Long Island.

Next stop for the rookie doc, the first-hand fight against the coronavirus pandemic in one of the world’s hardest-hit areas.

”I could get the call tomorrow, that it’s time to go in,” Hamilton said this week. ”I have had an incredible journey to becoming a doctor over the last four years, and not once did I think that I would find myself entering the field in a time like this.”


Read More
India faces spike in coronavirus cases, says study, in test for health system

SPECIAL REPORT-Drug Trump touts for virus in wide use, without hard evidence it works

(For more Reuters Special Reports, click on)

By Michael Erman and Deena Beasley

NEW YORK/LOS ANGELES, April 6 (Reuters) – The decades-old drug that President Donald Trump has persistently promoted as a potential weapon against COVID-19 has within a matter of weeks become a standard of care in areas of the United States hit hard by the pandemic — though doctors prescribing it have no idea whether it works.

Doctors and pharmacists from more than half a dozen large healthcare systems in New York, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Ohio, Washington and California told Reuters they are routinely using hydroxychloroquine on patients hospitalized with COVID-19. At the same time, several said they have seen no evidence that the drug, used for years to treat malaria and autoimmune disorders, has any effect on the virus.

Use of hydroxychloroquine has soared as the United States has quickly become the epicenter of the pandemic. More than

Read More
How much do retirement homes cost?

Trump Tightens Pressure on Maduro as Virus Threatens Disaster

(Bloomberg) —

President Donald Trump is stepping up his campaign to oust Venezuela’s Nicolas Maduro with the coronavirus pandemic and plunging oil prices threatening to worsen a humanitarian disaster years in the making.

The Trump administration says its restrictions don’t prohibit humanitarian aid from flowing to Venezuela, the same argument it makes when pressed about sanctions on Iran. As a result, it’s holding firm to its policies even as some world leaders, including UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, say it’s time to rethink sanctions to prevent the outbreak from worsening.

U.S. officials argue that any easing would just strengthen Maduro’s seven-year grip on power, since they think he’d divert aid or cash to bolster allies, particularly in the military.

“The problem in trying to help Venezuela is you just don’t have an easy way to get the money to the people without helping the regime,” said Roberto Simon, senior director for

Read More
As virus rages, Berkeley's 'Mother Goose' aids homeless people abandoned by the system

As virus rages, Berkeley’s ‘Mother Goose’ aids homeless people abandoned by the system

Andrea Henson, right, walks with a homeless man who helps her deliver supplies to people living in a homeless encampment along a freeway in Emeryville. <span class="copyright">(Josh Edelson/For the Times)</span>
Andrea Henson, right, walks with a homeless man who helps her deliver supplies to people living in a homeless encampment along a freeway in Emeryville. (Josh Edelson/For the Times)

Roughly 150 or so men and women sleep near the Interstate 80 freeway here, sometimes encountering head-to-toe staph infections or families of rats living inside their mattresses. When that happens, they know who to call.

Andrea Henson’s phone has been ringing for weeks, ever since this bustling university town effectively shut down earlier this month to halt the spread of the coronavirus. With local governments slow to house the homeless, activists such as Henson have stepped into the breach, providing food and other supplies to people sleeping on the street.

“This is the first time I’ve heard people say, ‘Andrea, we’re hungry,’” said Henson, who said that in socially conscious Berkeley, donated food is normally never in short supply.

California had

Read More
Potential vaccine generates enough antibodies to fight off virus, first peer-reviewed study suggests

Potential vaccine generates enough antibodies to fight off virus, first peer-reviewed study suggests

A potential coronavirus vaccine developed by US scientists has been found to produce antibodies capable of fighting off Covid-19 in the first peer-reviewed study of its kind.

The vaccine, which was tested on mice by researchers at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, generated the antibodies in quantities thought to be enough to “neutralise” the virus within two weeks of injection.

The study’s authors are now set to apply to the US Food and Drug Administration for investigational new drug approval ahead of phase one human clinical trials planned to start in the next few months.

Scientists across the globe are racing to develop a vaccine to protect against coronavirus, which has infected more than a million people worldwide and claimed 50,000 lives.

The first human trial of a vaccine began at a lab in Seattle last month after a team of US researchers skipped animal testing, which is

Read More
Germany scores early against virus

Germany scores early against virus

BERLIN (AP) — Late last year — long before most people had heard of the new coronavirus now sweeping the globe — scientists in Germany sprang into action to develop a test for the virus that was causing an unusual respiratory disease in central China.

They had one by mid-January — and labs around the country were ready to start using it just weeks later, around the same time that Europe’s most populous country registered its first case.

“It was clear that if the epidemic swept over here from China, then we had to start testing,” said Hendrik Borucki, a spokesman for Bioscientia Healthcare, which operates 19 labs in Germany.

That quick work stands in stark contrast to delays and missteps in other countries. Coupled with Germany’s large number of intensive care beds and its early social distancing measures, it could explain one of the most interesting puzzles of the

Read More
Can face masks protect you from catching deadly virus?

Can face masks protect you from catching deadly virus?

On 2 April the World Health Organisation announced a panel of advisers would be assessing whether more of us should be wearing face masks outside.​

The group will consider research on whether coronavirus can be projected further than previously thought and whether this means unwell people should wear the masks.

The outcome will determine whether WHO revises advise around face masks for people who could spread the virus.

But if you are walking outside to exercise or to travel into work as a key worker, does wearing a face mask reduce your risk of catching the virus?

Surgical masks were first introduced into hospitals in the late 1700s but they did not make the transition into public use until the Spanish flu outbreak in 1919.

The masks are designed for use in a clinical setting, such as a hospital ward or theatre, where they are primarily meant for preventing visible

Read More
Can latex gloves protect you from catching deadly virus?

Can latex gloves protect you from catching deadly virus?

Due to the coronavirus outbreak Boris Johnson has told the public they should now only leave the house for several key reasons.

These include travelling to work as a key worker, shopping for food or medicine and taking one form of exercise per day.

Those with underlying health conditions should be self-isolating at home for a period of 12 weeks.

Since the outbreak began in January it has spread around the globe with the World Health Organisation (WHO) announcing that Europe is now the centre of the outbreak.

So what can people do to keep safe? Are there practical steps you can take to reduce the risk of contracting the illness like wearing a face mask or latex gloves?

A shop in Brighton, which became a hot-spot for the early spread of the virus in the UK after one resident became a “super-spreader”, said all customers must wear face masks

Read More
US virus deaths may top 80,000 despite confinement: study

US virus deaths may top 80,000 despite confinement: study

Paris (AFP) – COVID-19 could lead to more than 80,000 deaths in the US and overwhelm hospital capacity nationally as soon as early April even if social distancing measures are respected, new research showed Thursday.

The US death toll for the pandemic has already soared past 1,000, with 68,000 confirmed infections.

Forecasters at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) at the University of Washington’s School of Medicine analysed the latest COVID-19 data at a local, national and international level.

These include hospitalisation and mortality rates, as well as patient date in terms of age, gender and pre-existing health problems.

Specifically, they looked at the time lag between the first fatal cases and public interventions such as shuttering schools and businesses.

They then looked at each American state’s ICU bed and ventilator capacity.

The analysis warned that based on current trends, demand for both would far exceed capacity for

Read More
Scientists find virus similar to Covid-19 in pangolins

Scientists find virus similar to Covid-19 in pangolins

Viruses similar to the pathogen fuelling the current global pandemic have been found in trafficked pangolins, as scientists warned that the scaly mammal needs to be banned from animal markets to prevent another coronavirus outbreak in the future.

A study from the University of Sydney has shown that Sars-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19, bears genetic similarities to a different strain of coronavirus currently infecting the Malayan pangolin population of southern China.

The research, published in the journal Nature, warns that “handling these animals requires considerable caution”.

Professor Edward Holmes, an evolutionary virologist who led the study, said: “The role that pangolins play in the emergence of Sars-CoV-2 is still unclear. However, it is striking that the pangolin viruses contain some genomic regions that are very closely related to the human virus.

“The most important of these is the receptor-binding domain that dictates how the virus is able to

Read More