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HealthDay Reports: COVID-19 'Super Spreaders' Quickly Fill Room With Virus — But Masks Help

These so-called super spreaders aren't very common, but if they are engaged in activities like loud speaking or singing, their viral emissions can increase by 1 to 2 orders of magnitude, the researchers said.

COVID-19 'Super Spreaders' Quickly Fill Room With Virus — But Masks Help

MONDAY, July 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Face masks can help prevent the spread of COVID-19 among folks trapped in a room with an infected "super spreader," a new Swiss study claims.

Most infected people with a typical COVID viral load don't flood the air with coronavirus-infected respiratory droplets, and the risk of catching the virus from them tends to be low, estimates show.

But a severely infected person who's coughing frequently can fill a poorly ventilated room with as many as 7.4 million copies of the coronavirus for every cubic meter of air, according to researchers Michael Riediker and Dai-Hua Tsai, from the Swiss Centre for Occupational and Environmental Health in Winterthur.

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HealthDay Reports: More Layers Are Better With Homemade Face Masks

A video recording showed that the 3-ply surgical mask was the most effective, but even a single-layer mask reduced the spread of droplets.

More Layers Are Better With Homemade Face Masks

FRIDAY, July 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- When it comes to homemade face masks, two or three layers of fabric is best, researchers say.

That's what you need to keep droplets from your nose and mouth from spreading the virus, the Australian scientists found.

Several kinds of material have been suggested for making masks, but there's little or no evidence of how effective they are, the team noted.

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HealthDay Reports: CDC Issues Call to Reopen America's Schools This Fall

According to the CDC, just 7% of U.S. COVID-19 cases, and less than 0.1% of related deaths, have occurred in people under the age of 18.

CDC Issues Call to Reopen America's Schools This Fall

FRIDAY, July 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Facing opposition from President Donald Trump and others, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued a document supporting a reopening of the nation's schools this fall.

"As families and policymakers make decisions about their children returning to school, it is important to consider the full spectrum of benefits and risks of both in-person and virtual learning options," the agency said in a document posted on its website Thursday night.

The COVID-19-related health risks to kids are minimal compared to those faced by adults, the CDC said.

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HealthDay Reports: Isolation, Quarantine Impossible in >20 Percent of U.S. Homes

Odds of occupying units being unsuitable for isolation and quarantine increased for racial/ethnic minorities.

Isolation, Quarantine Impossible in >20 Percent of U.S. Homes

FRIDAY, July 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- More than 20 percent of U.S. homes lack sufficient space or plumbing facilities to comply with recommendations to isolate or quarantine to prevent COVID-19 transmission, according to a research letter published online July 21 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

Ashwini R. Sehgal, M.D., from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, and colleagues examined the feasibility of separate rooms for isolation and quarantine for housing units in the United States. Data on residential dwelling units and occupants were obtained from the 2017 American Housing Survey. The proportion of dwellings in which optimal isolation or quarantine was impossible due to unavailability of separate bedrooms and bathrooms was estimated.

The researchers found that in 25.29 million dwellings, isolation or quarantine was impossible, because they lacked sufficient bedrooms, bathrooms, or both; this accounted for 20.8 percent of all residential units. This included about 30 percent of the 88.2 million units that housed more than one occupant. A total of about 81 million persons lived in units that were unsuitable for isolation or quarantine. The odds of occupying units unsuitable for isolation or quarantine were twofold to threefold higher for Native American and Hispanic persons relative to non-Hispanic White persons and 1.7-fold higher for Black and Asian persons.

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HealthDay Reports: COVID-19 Roundup for the Week of July 20-July 24

Each week, HealthDay's Physician's Briefing division rounds up the most important COVID-19 developments in the medical field. See this week's edition below for July 20-July 24.

CDC Issues Call to Reopen America's Schools This Fall

FRIDAY, July 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued a document supporting a reopening of the nation's schools this fall.

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COVID-19 Pandemic Has Had Impact on Parent, Child Well-Being

FRIDAY, July 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The COVID-19 pandemic has had a considerable impact on the physical and emotional well-being of parents and children, according to a study published online July 24 in Pediatrics.

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Midnasal Swab Done by Patient at Home Detects SARS-CoV-2

FRIDAY, July 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- For detection of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 in symptomatic patients, unsupervised home midnasal swab collection is comparable to clinician-collected nasopharyngeal swab collection, according to a research letter published online July 22 in JAMA Network Open.

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For-Profit LTC Home Status Tied to Extent of COVID-19 Outbreaks

FRIDAY, July 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- For-profit status is associated with the extent of COVID-19 outbreaks in long-term care homes, according to a study published online July 22 in CMAJ, the journal of the Canadian Medical Association.

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Isolation, Quarantine Impossible in >20 Percent of U.S. Homes

FRIDAY, July 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- More than 20 percent of U.S. homes lack sufficient space or plumbing facilities to comply with recommendations to isolate or quarantine to prevent COVID-19 transmission, according to a research letter published online July 21 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Heart Transplant Volumes Decreased in COVID-19 Era

FRIDAY, July 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- In the COVID-19 era, there has been a decrease in heart transplant volumes, according to a study published online July 22 in JAMA Cardiology.

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Mental Health Deteriorated During COVID-19 Lockdown

FRIDAY, July 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Mental health deteriorated in the United Kingdom by the end of April 2020 compared with pre-COVID-19 pandemic trends, according to a study published online July 21 in The Lancet Psychiatry.

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Chimpanzee Adenovirus-Vectored Vaccine Promising for COVID-19

FRIDAY, July 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- A chimpanzee adenovirus-vectored vaccine expressing the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 spike protein has acceptable safety and induces antibody and T-cell immune responses, according to a study published online July 20 in The Lancet.

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Three in Four Americans Favor Face Coverings: Survey

THURSDAY, July 23, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Face coverings should be worn by people when they leave home, three-quarters of Americans say in a new poll.

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U.S. Nursing Homes Get Another $5 Billion to Fight COVID-19

THURSDAY, July 23, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- U.S. nursing homes will receive another $5 billion to help them fight the COVID-19 pandemic, the Trump administration announced Wednesday.

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New Guidelines Released for Recovering COVID-19 Patients to Leave Isolation

THURSDAY, July 23, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Many recovering COVID-19 patients in the United States will now be able to leave isolation without further testing to show they are virus-free, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Wednesday.

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High Prevalence of Americans Have Conditions Linked to Severe COVID-19

THURSDAY, July 23, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The median prevalence of any underlying medical condition that increases the risk for severe COVID-19-associated illness is 47.2 percent among residents in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, according to research published in the July 24 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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Financial Health of Hospitals 'Dire' Due to COVID-19

THURSDAY, July 23, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- COVID-19 continues to cause financial peril for U.S. hospitals, according to a report released by the American Hospital Association.

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Role of COVID-19 Treatments Explored in Patients With Cancer

THURSDAY, July 23, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- For adults with invasive cancer and severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection, treatment with hydroxychloroquine in combination with any other drug is associated with increased mortality, according to a study published online July 22 in Cancer Discovery.

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Most Individuals in U.S. Have Not Been Infected With SARS-CoV-2

THURSDAY, July 23, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- During March to early May 2020, most individuals in the United States had not been infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, although the estimated number of infections seems to have been much higher than the number of reported cases, according to a study published online July 21 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Ad5-Vectored COVID-19 Vaccine Immunogenic in Healthy Adults

THURSDAY, July 23, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The nonreplicating adenovirus type-5-vectored COVID-19 vaccine appears safe and induces immune responses at a dose of 5×1010 viral particles, according to a study published online July 20 in The Lancet.

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COVID-19 Creating Stress, Anxiety Among Emergency Physicians

THURSDAY, July 23, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The COVID-19 pandemic has created substantial workplace and home anxiety among academic emergency medicine physicians, according to a study published online July 21 in Academic Emergency Medicine.

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U.S. Reaches Deal for Nearly 600 Million Doses of COVID-19 Vaccine

WEDNESDAY, July 22, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- A nearly $2 billion contract with pharmaceutical company Pfizer and a German biotechnology firm will provide the United States with up to 600 million doses of a COVID-19 vaccine being developed by the companies, the U.S. government says.

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Elective Services in Pulmonary, Sleep Medicine to Resume During COVID-19

WEDNESDAY, July 22, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- In a guidance document issued by an American Thoracic Society-led international task force, published online July 14 in the Annals of the American Thoracic Society, recommendations are presented for the resumption of elective in-person clinical services in pulmonary and sleep medicine.

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Glaucoma Patients Worry About Managing Disease During Pandemic

WEDNESDAY, July 22, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Glaucoma patients are concerned about managing their condition during the COVID-19 lockdowns, according to the results of a survey released by the Glaucoma Research Foundation.

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Inpatient Imaging Volumes Down During COVID-19 Pandemic

WEDNESDAY, July 22, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- During the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a decrease in inpatient imaging volumes, according to a study published online June 18 in the Journal of the American College of Radiology.

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11.8 Percent of Household Contacts of Index Patients Have COVID-19

TUESDAY, July 21, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Overall, 11.8 percent of household contacts of index COVID-19 patients in South Korea have COVID-19 compared with 1.9 percent of nonhousehold contacts, according to a study published online July 16 in Emerging Infectious Diseases, a publication of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Rise in Avoidable Cancer Deaths Expected Due to COVID-19

TUESDAY, July 21, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- An increase in the number of avoidable cancer deaths is expected in England as a result of diagnostic delays due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a study published online July 20 in The Lancet Oncology.

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More Online Advance Directives Completed During COVID-19

TUESDAY, July 21, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- There has been an increase in completion of advance directives during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a research letter published online July 20 in JAMA Network Open.

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Even Mild Obesity Tied to Significantly Worse COVID-19 Outcomes

TUESDAY, July 21, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Obesity is a strong, independent risk factor for poor outcomes among COVID-19 patients, according to a study published July 1 in the European Journal of Endocrinology.

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Blood Type Not Linked to Progression to Severe COVID-19

TUESDAY, July 21, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- For COVID-19 patients, blood type is not associated with the risk for progression to severe disease, according to a study published online July 12 in the Annals of Hematology.

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Review: In-ICU Mortality for COVID-19 Down to 41.6 Percent

TUESDAY, July 21, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The in-intensive care unit mortality from COVID-19 is lower than initially thought, with a combined mortality of 41.6 percent based on 24 studies, according to a review published online June 30 in Anaesthesia.

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Pooled Sampling Approved for COVID-19 Test

MONDAY, July 20, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- An emergency use authorization has been issued for the Quest Diagnostics Quest SARS-CoV-2 real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction test for use with pooled samples containing up to four individual swab specimens collected under observation, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said Saturday.

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Demographic, Clinical, Hospital Factors Tied to COVID-19 Death

MONDAY, July 20, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- For COVID-19 patients in the intensive care unit, demographic, clinical, and hospital-level risk factors are associated with death, according to a study published online July 15 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Surgical Delay Worsens Survival for Some Gastrointestinal Cancers

MONDAY, July 20, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Surgical delay is associated with an increased risk in some gastrointestinal malignancies, and understanding the impact on outcomes may assist surgeons in triaging patients whose surgeries were delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to research published online June 30 in the Journal of Gastrointestinal Surgery.

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28-Day Mortality in COVID-19 Lower With Dexamethasone

MONDAY, July 20, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Dexamethasone lowers 28-day mortality in patients hospitalized with COVID-19 who are receiving invasive mechanical ventilation or oxygenation alone, according to a study published online July 17 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Reducing Testing Delay Crucial for Slowing COVID-19 Transmission

MONDAY, July 20, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Minimizing testing delay has the largest impact on reducing onward transmission of COVID-19, according to a study published online July 16 in The Lancet Public Health.

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Guidance Issued for Elective Orthopedic Surgery During COVID-19

MONDAY, July 20, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- In new guidelines from the International Consensus Group, published in the July 15 issue of The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery, recommendations are presented for the reintroduction of elective orthopedic surgery during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Psychiatric Disorders, Loneliness Common During the Pandemic

MONDAY, July 20, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- There are high prevalence rates of general psychiatric disorders and loneliness in the general U.K. population during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a study published online June 30 in Psychiatry Research.

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