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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 April 27-May 1.

COVID-19 Case Fatality Rate Increased for Cancer Patients

FRIDAY, May 1, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Cancer patients have an increased case fatality rate from COVID-19, according to a study from a New York hospital system published online May 1 in Cancer Discovery.

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FDA Issues Emergency Use Authorization for Remdesivir

FRIDAY, May 1, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has granted an emergency use authorization for remdesivir to treat hospitalized patients with suspected or confirmed COVID-19, the agency announced Friday.

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Black Patients Overrepresented in Hospitalized COVID-19 Cohort

FRIDAY, May 1, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- In a cohort of hospitalized adults with COVID-19, black patients have a similar probability of receiving invasive mechanical ventilation or dying compared with nonblack patients, but they are disproportionately represented among hospitalized patients, according to a study published online April 29 in the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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Anosmia in COVID-19 Linked to Lower Risk for Admission

FRIDAY, May 1, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with COVID-19, anosmia is strongly associated with a reduced likelihood of being admitted to the hospital, according to a study published online April 24 in the International Forum of Allergy & Rhinology.

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Fear of COVID-19 Keeping Adults From Emergency Care

FRIDAY, May 1, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Adults are avoiding emergency medical care for fear of catching COVID-19, according to a poll released April 28 by the American College of Emergency Physicians.

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Contact Tracing Can Cut Time to Case Isolation in SARS-CoV-2

FRIDAY, May 1, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Contact tracing can reduce the time to case isolation of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, according to a study published online April 27 in The Lancet Infectious Diseases.

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RV Strain on Echocardiogram May ID High-Risk COVID-19 Patients

FRIDAY, May 1, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Right ventricular longitudinal strain is a predictor of mortality in patients with COVID-19, according to a study published online April 28 in JACC: Cardiovascular Imaging.

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Impact of COVID-19 on Oncology Clinical Trials Discussed

FRIDAY, May 1, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The impact of COVID-19 on oncology clinical trials and long-term implications are discussed in a study and recommendations published in JCO Oncology Practice.

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Remdesivir May Accelerate Recovery From Severe COVID-19

THURSDAY, April 30, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Remdesivir may speed time to clinical improvement for patients with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection, although results are conflicting, according to a study published online April 29 in The Lancet and press releases issued regarding a National Institutes of Health-sponsored study.

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Pandemic Disrupting Health Care for 55 Percent of Older Adults

THURSDAY, April 30, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- At least half of older adults report experiencing a disruption to their medical care at one month into social distancing in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a survey released April 27 by NORC at University of Chicago.

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Symptomatic Health Care Staff in U.K. Screened for COVID-19

THURSDAY, April 30, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Screening symptomatic health care workers for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection is feasible during the pandemic, according to a research letter published online April 22 in The Lancet.

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NIH Launches $500 Million Contest to Produce Best COVID-19 Test

THURSDAY, April 30, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- A competition between researchers is part of a $1.5 billion program that seeks to speed development of accurate, quick, and easy-to-use COVID-19 tests, the U.S. National Institutes of Health announced Wednesday.

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Men Have More Serious Disease, Higher Death Rate From COVID-19

THURSDAY, April 30, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with COVID-19, male gender is associated with worse outcomes, independent of age, according to a study published online April 29 in Frontiers in Public Health.

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Large-Vessel Stroke Described in Young Adults With COVID-19

THURSDAY, April 30, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Cases of large-vessel stroke in individuals younger than 50 years are described in patients with COVID-19 in a case report published online April 28 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Rate, Timing of Altered Smell, Taste in Mild COVID-19 Examined

THURSDAY, April 30, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Mildly symptomatic patients with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection often have alterations in smell or taste, according to a research letter published online April 22 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Many Health Care Workers Face Risk for Poor Outcomes With COVID-19

WEDNESDAY, April 29, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- More than one-quarter of health care workers with patient contact are at risk for poor outcomes from COVID-19, according to a study published online April 28 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Almost All COVID-19 Patients Have Diminished Sense of Smell

WEDNESDAY, April 29, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Quantitative smell testing shows that decreased smell function is a major marker for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection, according to a study published online April 17 in the International Forum of Allergy & Rhinology.

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Guidelines Recommended for ECMO Use in Setting of Pandemic

WEDNESDAY, April 29, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Hospitals should have a formal plan to respond to the increasing need for extracorporeal membrane oxygenation in the setting of a pandemic such as COVID-19, according to a study published online April 15 in the Annals of the American Thoracic Society.

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Thromboembolic Complications in COVID-19 Discussed

WEDNESDAY, April 29, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Prevention, diagnosis, and therapeutic management of thromboembolic complications in COVID-19 are discussed in a report published online April 23 in Radiology.

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Primary PCI Remains Standard of Care for STEMI During COVID-19

WEDNESDAY, April 29, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Primary percutaneous coronary intervention remains the standard of care for patients with ST-elevation myocardial infarction during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a consensus statement published online April 20 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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GI Manifestations Seen for Nearly One in Three With SARS-CoV-2

WEDNESDAY, April 29, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- A considerable proportion of patients with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 have gastrointestinal manifestations, according to a study involving patients at a U.S. hospital published online April 10 in Gastroenterology.

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National Coronavirus Testing Strategy Announced as U.S. Cases Top 1 Million

TUESDAY, April 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- While health experts continued to call for a national strategy to test more Americans for coronavirus, President Donald Trump on Monday announced a "blueprint" for boosting testing capacity as some states began reopening their economies.

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Rare, Serious Illness May Occur in Children With COVID-19

TUESDAY, April 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Abdominal pain, gastrointestinal complaints, and heart inflammation are among the symptoms in children with a rare syndrome that may be linked to COVID-19, British health officials say.

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Most SARS-CoV-2-Positive Pregnant Women Asymptomatic at Screening

TUESDAY, April 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Universal severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 testing of pregnant women presenting for delivery in New York City revealed that most positive patients were asymptomatic, according to a research letter published online April 13 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Patients Aged 60 to 69 Most Often Hospitalized With COVID-19

TUESDAY, April 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Persons aged 60 to 69 years with COVID-19 are the most commonly hospitalized, according to a research letter published online April 24 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Adding High-Dose Chloroquine Not Advised for Severe COVID-19

TUESDAY, April 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- High-dosage chloroquine diphosphate has potential safety hazards when used as adjunctive therapy for patients hospitalized with severe COVID-19, according to a study published online April 24 in JAMA Network Open.

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High Rate of Pulmonary Embolism Found for Patients With COVID-19

TUESDAY, April 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- COVID-19 is associated with a high rate of pulmonary embolism, according to two research letters published online April 23 in Radiology.

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45.4 Percent of U.S. Adults at Risk for Complications With COVID-19

TUESDAY, April 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- An estimated 45.4 percent of U.S. adults may have an increased risk for COVID-19 complications due to chronic conditions, according to a study published in the August issue of Emerging Infectious Diseases.

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Recommendations Developed for Anesthesia Use During COVID-19

TUESDAY, April 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Recommendations have been developed for use of anesthesia during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a joint statement issued by the American Society of Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine and the European Society of Regional Anesthesia and Pain Therapy.

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David Shulkin, M.D., on COVID-19 Financial Consequences for Health Care System

MONDAY, April 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Health care organizations are facing hard financial decisions amid the COVID-19 pandemic, but an end is in sight as some are beginning to slowly open back up around the country, according to David Shulkin, M.D. Shulkin, who served as ninth secretary for Veterans Affairs and is former president and CEO of Beth Israel Medical Center in New York, spoke with HealthDay during a live stream on the HealthDay YouTube channel and live blog.

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FDA Warns of Bogus Claims by Makers of Hand Sanitizer

MONDAY, April 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Some companies are selling hand sanitizers with unproven claims that they will protect against COVID-19, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration warns.

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WHO: No Evidence COVID-19 Survivors Cannot Be Reinfected

MONDAY, April 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- There is "no evidence" that people who have recovered from COVID-19 cannot be reinfected with the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, according to the World Health Organization.

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Neurologic Features Tied to ARDS in Severe COVID-19 Described

MONDAY, April 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Acute respiratory distress syndrome due to COVID-19 is associated with neurologic features, including encephalopathy, agitation, and confusion, according to a letter to the editor published online April 15 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Recommendations Issued for Imaging Use in Pediatric COVID-19

MONDAY, April 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- In an international expert consensus statement, published online April 23 in Radiology: Cardiothoracic Imaging, recommendations are presented for chest imaging in pediatric COVID-19 patient management.

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Direct Medical Costs of COVID-19 Infection Are Considerable

MONDAY, April 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- A single symptomatic COVID-19 infection results in direct medical costs of $3,045 in the United States, according to a study published online April 23 in Health Affairs.

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SARS-CoV-2 Not Detected in Semen After COVID-19 Recovery

MONDAY, April 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 is not detected in the semen of patients one month after COVID-19 diagnosis, according to a study published online April 17 in Fertility and Sterility.

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Our latest HD Live! discussion is on what could happen this flu season as COVID-19 still rages on across the country. How can we protect ourselves, and what can we and the health care system do to prepare for and potentially prevent a twindemic?

Mabel Jong from our liveblog team speaks with Dr. Nadia Eltaki, director of clinical operations at Sibley Memorial Hospital, on guidance on how to protect yourself and how a twindemic could impact the health care system.

Watch our in-depth discussion above, and see our past HD Lives and other videos on our YouTube channel.

HD Live! Videos

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 August 3-August 7.

U.S. Cancels Blanket Warning for International Travel

FRIDAY, Aug. 7, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- On Thursday, the Trump administration canceled its warnings against international travel because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Associated Press reported.

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300,000 American Deaths Projected by December Without More Face Mask Use

FRIDAY, Aug. 7, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- As the U.S. COVID-19 case count neared 5 million on Thursday, a new model predicted that nearly 300,000 Americans could die of COVID-19 by December if more people do not wear masks or practice better social distancing.

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Telestroke Consultations Down During COVID-19 Pandemic

FRIDAY, Aug. 7, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The median number of weekly consults seen through a telestroke network decreased during the COVID-19 pandemic, with Black patients significantly less likely to present with strokes, according to a study published online Aug. 5 in Stroke.

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SARS-CoV-2 Antibodies Detected in 13.7 Percent of NYC HCPs

FRIDAY, Aug. 7, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Among health care providers in the New York City area, 13.7 percent have severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 antibodies, a rate similar to adults randomly tested in New York state, according to a research letter published online Aug. 6 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Moderna Charging Much More for COVID-19 Vaccine Than Others

FRIDAY, Aug. 7, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Moderna is charging $37 a dose for its experimental vaccine, which is far more than what other companies say they plan to charge for their vaccines, CBS News reported Wednesday. Because two doses of the vaccine are needed to immunize people from COVID-19, total costs could be $74 per person.

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COVID-19 Tied to Higher Risk of Large Vessel Occlusion Strokes

FRIDAY, Aug. 7, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- COVID-19 is associated with large vessel occlusion strokes, according to a study published online July 29 in the American Journal of Roentgenology.

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Scientists Call for Broader Use of Faster COVID-19 Tests

THURSDAY, Aug. 6, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- As COVID-19 cases continue to surge across America, scientists on Wednesday called for widespread adoption of simpler, less accurate tests, as long as they are given often and quickly.

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Johnson & Johnson Makes $1 Billion Vaccine Deal

THURSDAY, Aug. 6, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. government will pay Johnson & Johnson $1 billion for 100 million doses of its vaccine if it is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the Washington Post reported Wednesday.

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Early Use of IL-6 Inhibitors May Improve COVID-19 Outcomes

THURSDAY, Aug. 6, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with severe COVID-19, administration of an interleukin-6 receptor inhibitor earlier in the disease course is associated with improved outcomes, according to a study published online July 25 in the International Journal of Infectious Diseases.

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ED Visits Decreased in Five States From January Through April 2020

THURSDAY, Aug. 6, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- As the COVID-19 pandemic intensified, there was a decrease in emergency department visits in five states from January through April 2020, according to a study published online Aug. 3 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Seven States Join Pact to Speed COVID-19 Testing

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 5, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- As the daily U.S. COVID-19 death toll averaged more than 1,000 for the ninth straight day on Tuesday, governors from seven states banded together to shorten turnaround time for COVID-19 test results.

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Experimental COVID-19 Vaccine Shows Encouraging Results

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 5, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Maryland-based Novavax said Tuesday that preliminary trials of an experimental COVID-19 vaccine were promising.

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COVID-19 Case Fatality Rate 29 Percent in Multiple Myeloma Patients

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 5, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with multiple myeloma and COVID-19, the case fatality rate is 29 percent among hospitalized patients, with increased odds of adverse outcomes among racial/ethnic minorities, according to a study published online July 30 in Blood Cancer Discovery.

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Study Looks at Optimal Strategy for Reopening Schools in U.K.

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 5, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Population-wide testing and effective contact tracing are necessary to prevent an epidemic rebound following school reopening in the United Kingdom; and severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 transmission rates were low in an educational setting in Australia, according to two studies published online Aug. 3 in The Lancet Child & Adolescent Health.

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President Says Medicare Should Expand Telehealth Services

TUESDAY, Aug. 4, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- President Donald Trump signed an order on Monday that will broaden the role of telehealth for Medicare patients, the Associated Press reported.

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Trump's Plan Limits Free Nursing Home COVID-19 Tests

TUESDAY, Aug. 4, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The plan to give every nursing home a fast COVID-19 testing machine has a catch, the Associated Press reported Tuesday. The catch is that under the Trump administration plan, the government will not give kits to check staff and residents more than a couple of times.

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Number of Newly ID'd U.S. Patients With Cancer Dropped During COVID-19

TUESDAY, Aug. 4, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- During the COVID-19 pandemic period, there was a significant decline in newly identified U.S. patients with six common types of cancer, according to a research letter published online Aug. 4 in JAMA Network Open.

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Burnout High Among Nonphysician Frontline Health Care Workers

TUESDAY, Aug. 4, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- More than 40 percent of nurses on the front lines during the pandemic may be experiencing burnout, according to a research letter published online Aug. 4 in JAMA Network Open.

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Risk for Positive COVID-19 Test Up for Health Care Workers

MONDAY, Aug. 3, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Frontline health care workers have an increased risk for reporting a positive test for COVID-19, according to a study published online July 31 in The Lancet Public Health.

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Obesity Ups Risk for Intubation, Death With COVID-19 in Adults <65

MONDAY, Aug. 3, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Obesity is associated with an increased risk for intubation or death among hospitalized adults with COVID-19, with the association observed in adults younger than 65 years but not in older adults, according to a study published online July 29 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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Risk for Acute Cerebrovascular Events Low in COVID-19 Patients

MONDAY, Aug. 3, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- For hospitalized COVID-19 patients, the risk for acute cerebrovascular events is low, according to a study published online July 20 in Stroke.

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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 27-July 31.

Plenty of COVID-19 Vaccine Coming, Fauci Says

FRIDAY, July 31, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- When a COVID-19 vaccine is approved, there should be plenty of it available, Anthony Fauci, M.D., infectious diseases chief at the U.S. National Institutes of Health, told a House panel Friday, the Associated Press reported.

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U.S. Puts Up Another $2.1 Billion for Potential COVID-19 Vaccine

FRIDAY, July 31, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. is buying up another potential COVID-19 vaccine, the Associated Press reported Friday.

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Telemedicine Use Explodes During COVID-19 Pandemic

FRIDAY, July 31, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The emergence of telemedicine has accelerated during the coronavirus pandemic. HD Live! sat down with Rujuta Saksena, M.D., an oncologist at Overlook Medical Center in Summit, New Jersey, and Ateev Mehrotra, M.D., associate professor of health care policy at Harvard Medical School in Boston, to discuss the future of telemedicine and its impact on health care.

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COVID-19 Testing Needed Every Two Days to Reopen Colleges

FRIDAY, July 31, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Symptom-based screening alone is not sufficient to contain a COVID-19 outbreak on college campuses, according to a study published online July 31 in JAMA Network Open.

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Pandemic Causing Increased Anxiety Among MS Patients

FRIDAY, July 31, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The COVID-19 pandemic is having an impact on the psychological health of patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis, according to a study published online July 21 in Multiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders.

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Bacterial, Fungal Coinfection Uncommon in COVID-19 Patients

FRIDAY, July 31, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Bacterial and fungal infections are uncommon in hospitalized COVID-19 patients, but coinfection is associated with high mortality and antibiotic use is widespread, according to a study published in the July issue of Infection Control & Hospital Epidemiology.

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Global Epidemiology of COVID-19 Reported for Prepandemic Era

FRIDAY, July 31, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Many of the first COVID-19 cases reported from affected countries outside of mainland China involved recent travel to affected countries, according to a study published online July 29 in The Lancet Infectious Diseases.

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School Closures Linked to Decreased COVID-19 Incidence, Death

THURSDAY, July 30, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- School closures in the United States were temporally associated with decreased COVID-19 incidence and mortality, according to a study published online July 29 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Young Children Have Higher Amounts of SARS-CoV-2 RNA

THURSDAY, July 30, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Young children with mild-to-moderate COVID-19 have higher amounts of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 viral RNA in their nasopharynx than older children and adults, according to a research letter published online July 30 in JAMA Pediatrics.

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Remdesivir Shortages Plague Some Hospitals, Pharmacists Say

THURSDAY, July 30, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- One-third of pharmacists say they do not have enough remdesivir to treat all COVID-19 patients who are eligible for it, according to the results of a survey released by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists.

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Most Gynecologic Cancer Therapy Not Tied to Higher COVID-19 Risk

THURSDAY, July 30, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- For gynecologic oncology patients with COVID-19, the case fatality rate is 14.0 percent, and chemotherapy and recent major surgery do not predict COVID-19 severity or mortality, according to a study published online July 30 in Cancer.

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More Diabetic Foot Amputations Seen During COVID-19 Lockdown

WEDNESDAY, July 29, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Patients with diabetes admitted to a tertiary care center for diabetic foot ulceration during the COVID-19 lockdown in Italy had a more than threefold risk for amputation versus patients seen in 2019, according to a study published online July 23 in Diabetes Care.

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Cancer-Related Encounters Down Since Start of COVID-19

WEDNESDAY, July 29, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- There has been a decrease in cancer-related encounters and in cancer screening since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a study published online July 27 in JCO: Clinical Cancer Informatics.

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Latino Communities at Higher Risk for COVID-19

WEDNESDAY, July 29, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Factors linked to structural racism and social determinants of health are associated with an increased risk for COVID-19 in Latino communities, according to a study published online July 23 in the Annals of Epidemiology.

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Nearly Half of Hispanics, Blacks Scared to Go to Hospital During COVID-19

WEDNESDAY, July 29, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Hispanics and blacks are most likely to stay home if experiencing medical emergencies, like a heart attack or stroke, to avoid the risk of contracting COVID-19 at the hospital, according to a poll released by the American Heart Association.

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Depression, Anxiety May Be Signs That COVID-19 Is Attacking Brain

WEDNESDAY, July 29, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Depression and anxiety exhibited in COVID-19 patients may be a sign that the virus impacts the central nervous system, as these symptoms are closely associated with a loss of smell and taste rather than more severe manifestations of the virus, according to a study published online July 2 in The Laryngoscope.

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FDA Warns Again About Dangers of Methanol-Based Hand Sanitizers

TUESDAY, July 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is warning consumers not to use alcohol-based hand sanitizers containing methanol, or wood alcohol, which is used in fuel and antifreeze and is toxic if absorbed through the skin or life-threatening if ingested.

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Myocardial Injury Seen in Many Early in Recovery From COVID-19

TUESDAY, July 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Many patients recently recovered from COVID-19 infection have cardiac involvement, according to a study published online July 27 in JAMA Cardiology.

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One-Third of Individuals Stopping PrEP Meds During Pandemic

TUESDAY, July 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- According to the results of a survey, presented at this year's International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2020: Virtual), one-third of respondents stopped using preexposure prophylaxis medication during a COVID-19 shelter-in-place order.

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CDC to Address Inequalities in COVID-19 Reporting

MONDAY, July 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention plans to take steps to improve how it collects COVID-19 data for blacks, Hispanics, and Native Americans, the Associated Press reports.

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COVID-19 Vaccine Candidate Now in Final Phase Testing

MONDAY, July 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- A vaccine developed by the U.S. National Institutes of Health and Moderna has entered the final phase of testing, the Associated Press reported Monday.

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COVID-19 Can Result in Prolonged Illness Even in Milder Cases

MONDAY, July 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Even among persons with milder outpatient illness, COVID-19 can result in prolonged illness, according to research published in the July 24 early-release issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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Perinatal Transmission of COVID-19 Unlikely With Correct Hygiene

MONDAY, July 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- If correct hygiene procedures are undertaken, perinatal transmission of COVID-19 is unlikely to occur, according to a study published online July 23 in The Lancet Child & Adolescent Health.

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Large Proportion of COVID-19 Studies Have Low-Level Evidence

MONDAY, July 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- A large proportion of studies on COVID-19 have a low level of evidence, according to a research letter published online July 27 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Impact on Glucocorticoids in COVID-19 Varies With CRP Levels

MONDAY, July 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The impact of glucocorticoid treatment on patients with COVID-19 varies according to C-reactive protein levels, according to a study published online July 22 in the Journal of Hospital Medicine.

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Using a mix of symptoms, body weight and other factors, the researchers developed a model that predicts which patients will need to be hospitalized and need breathing support.

There May Be 6 Types of COVID-19

TUESDAY, July 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- COVID-19 may not be just one disease, but six distinct types, a new British study claims.

Each type differs in severity and in the need for respiratory support during hospitalization, the researchers added.

Cough, fever and loss of smell are the usual symptoms of COVID-19, but the range of symptoms can include headaches, muscle pain, fatigue, diarrhea, confusion, loss of appetite, shortness of breath and more.

Read the full HealthDay story.

Both vaccines require two doses, spaced several weeks apart. Then researchers will have to wait to see whether people get infected or sick with COVID-19.

Final Coronavirus Vaccine Trials Get Underway

TUESDAY, July 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- As the U.S. coronavirus case count passed 4.3 million on Monday, companies launched the final phase of testing for two potential COVID-19 vaccines.

In one trial begun on Monday, the first of 30,000 volunteers were either given a vaccine developed by Moderna Inc. and the U.S. National Institutes of Health or a placebo shot, the Washington Post reported.

Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer also announced Monday that it was starting a 30,000-person final phase vaccine trial, to be conducted at 120 sites globally.

Read the full HealthDay story.

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.

Read the full HealthDay story.

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.

Read the full HealthDay story.

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.

Read the full HealthDay story.

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.

Read the full HealthDay story.