Back to top

Two world-renowned medical groups — the European Hematology Association (EHA) and the International Conference on Malignant Lymphoma (ICML) — conducted virtual meetings this month to share advances in the care of blood-based cancers.

In our latest HealthDay Now, Dr. Joshua Richter, assistant professor of medicine at the Tisch Cancer Institute, gave insights on the EHA meeting. Then, Dr. Anastasios Stathis, an oncologist and a member of this year's ICML organizing committee, joined us to discuss ICML.

Watch the in-depth discussion above, and see our past HealthDay Nows and other videos on our YouTube channel.

In our latest HealthDay Now, Dr. Hina Talib, a pediatrician and adolescent health specialist at the Children's Hospital at Montefiore, debunks myths and common concerns parents may have about giving their children Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine, which was recently approved for use in children and teens ages 12 and up.

HealthDay Now's Mabel Jong also speaks with Alan Santee, a high school freshman from Massachusetts, about why he didn't hesitate to get vaccinated, and Ethan Lindenberger, a 20-year-old vaccine advocate from Ohio, about his experience having a mom who is anti-vaccine and how kids and parents can approach these conversations.

Watch the in-depth discussion above, and see our past HealthDay Nows and other videos on our YouTube channel.

Are you having trouble deciding if you should send your kids to camp this summer? Amid the uncertainty of the coronavirus pandemic, parents might wander if camp is safe for kids to go to this year.

Experts at the University of New Hampshire created a tip sheet to help parents make an informed decision, based on available information from state and federal agencies.

The guide includes a list of questions parents should ask when considering potential camps for their children.

Among the recommended questions:

  • How will social distancing be accomplished?
  • How will camp facilities and equipment be cleaned and disinfected?
  • Will camp staff and campers be required to wear PPE?
  • To what extent will people be allowed to come and go from the camp?
  • How will campers and staff be monitored for infection?
  • Do children need to be tested?
  • Will quarantine be expected for out-of-state campers?
  • What happens if a child becomes sick while at camp?
  • How will refunds be handled?

"As stay-at-home orders are being relaxed, it's normal to have concerns around safety when it comes to summer camps," said Jayson Seaman, associate professor of recreation management and policy at the University of New Hampshire in a press release. "Parents — including myself — naturally have questions about how camps will address the coronavirus and how it can affect children's health as well as their camp experience. Current guidelines focus mostly on educating camp directors so we thought parents could benefit from this information since it isn't an easy decision."

Read the full tip sheet.

Regeneron Pharmaceuticals launched clinical trials last week of an antibody cocktail intended to both prevent and treat COVID-19.

The antibody cocktail — called REGN-COV2 — is composed of antibodies, akin to those produced naturally in the body, but selected for maximum potency and strength. When injected, the antibodies protect the body from COVID-19 infection. Unlike vaccines, which are only used preventatively, they can also treat an existing infection. The company created REGN-COV2 using a similar approach to how it created REGN-EB3, a triple antibody treatment for Ebola, which the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is currently reviewing.

According to the press release, the clinical trials will consist of four separate study populations: two for treatment and two for prevention.

The drug will be given to hospitalized COVID-19 patients and non-hospitalized symptomatic COVID-19 patients to assess its safety and efficacy as a treatment.

To test how it works as a preventative measure, the drug will also be given to uninfected people in groups that are at high-risk of exposure (such as healthcare workers or first responders) and uninfected people with close exposure to a COVID-19 patient (such as the patient's housemate).

The trials will be conducted at multiple sites.

Read more about the trials.

Experts discuss how stay-at-home orders and school closings can impact kids' mental health in the short and long terms.

Home Alone: Will Pandemic's Changes Harm Kids' Mental Health Long-Term?

FRIDAY, June 12, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- The isolation of the coronavirus pandemic might be stunting the social growth of young children, experts say.

Since schools closed across the United States this past spring to stem the spread of COVID-19, kids have been deprived of experiences that are essential to their emotional development -- playing at recess, sharing lunch with classmates and learning together in the classroom.

In a recent HealthDay Live! interview, Dr. Dimitri Christakis, director of the Center for Child Health, Behavior and Development at Seattle Children's Research Institute, and Dan Domenech, executive director of The School Superintendents Association, discussed how children might be impacted by the closure of their schools and the disruption of time spent with their peers.

Read the full HealthDay story.

A recent survey of 18,132 people across 50 states and the District of Columbia revealed how a generalized sample of the United States population is feeling about the coronavirus pandemic and how the government has handled it. Responses were collected from May 16 to May 31, and the survey and report were conducted by Rutgers, Harvard, Northeastern and Northwestern.

Among the findings:

  • 46% think the federal government is not taking the pandemic seriously enough.
  • Almost a third of respondents (31%) say they would avoid going to restaurants for as long as possible even after stay-at-home restrictions are lifted.
  • 41% believe all or most of the information they see about COVID-19 is accurate or trustworthy.
  • More than 73% of white participants received a financial relief payment compared to 57% of African-Americans, 56% of Hispanic respondents and 55% of Asian-Americans.

Read the full report and findings.

On Tuesday, an official from the World Health Organization (WHO) said that asymptomatic spread is "a major unknown," and the consensus on whether people can spread coronavirus without symptoms is currently unclear.

An upcoming study intends to help clarify if coronavirus can be spread by asymptomatic people by measuring how many adults in the United States the virus has infected without them knowing or showing symptoms.

The study is being led by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the University of Alabama at Birmingham and the University of Pittsburgh.

Researchers will analyze blood samples from 10,000 adults to see if they have antibodies to the virus — indications of a prior infection, according to a press release. All participants must confirm that they have never been diagnosed with COVID-19.

Results are expected to come back by the end of the summer, and researchers hope that the study will also inform our understanding of "herd immunity," which is when a majority of the population is immune to the virus.

In the press release, Eric Ford, one of the lead researchers and a professor at the University of Alabama School of Public Health, said, "absent a vaccine, we want to reach herd immunity. For most diseases, 50 percent of the population needs to have been exposed; but with the infection rate of COVID-19, 65 to 70 percent of the population needs to be exposed to build up herd immunity."

Read more about the study.

Two studies published Monday in the journal Nature found that pandemic-era policies — such as stay-at-home orders, mandatory business closures and travel bans imposed by governments worldwide — have successfully reduced COVID-19 transmission and deaths, revealing the necessity of aggressive measures in limiting the impact of the virus.

Coronavirus-related shutdowns saved an estimated 3.1 million lives in 11 European countries, according to one study, conducted by epidemiologists at Imperial College London.

Another study, led by researchers from the University of California at Berkeley, looked at the effect of 1,717 policies like stay-at-home orders and travel bans in six countries: the United States, China, South Korea, Italy, Iran and France. They calculated that within these six countries, interventions prevented approximately 62 million test-confirmed coronavirus cases. Because most infections are never confirmed with a test, the actual number of prevented cases is much higher — about 530 million across all six countries.

Both reports provide evidence relevant to countries that are beginning to reopen their economies, as well as countries that have not yet been widely affected by the virus.

Because no country has reached anywhere close to herd immunity, which is when a majority of the population is immune to the virus, experts caution that the reopening of economies without aggressive precautions will likely set off a second wave of infections.

Read the full study from Imperial College London.

Read the full study from the University of California at Berkeley.