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  • Virtual health care (#3)
  • COVID and warm weather (#16)
  • Long-term social distancing (#9)
  • Wastewater virus detection (#19)


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Reuters

It was early spring when British scientists laid out the bald truth to their government. It was “highly likely,” they said, that there was now “sustained transmission” of COVID-19 in the United Kingdom.


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The Globe and Mail

A 2006 report co-written by Dr. Theresa Tam – now the face of Canada’s COVID-19 response – predicted our current situation, and the steps needed to get out of it, with eerie accuracy. But the actual response has been very different.


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The Lancet

Patients are under lockdown and health workers are at risk of infection. Paul Webster reports on how telemedicine is being embraced like never before. In the face of a surge in cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), physicians and health systems worldwide are racing to adopt virtualised treatment approaches that obviate the need for physical meetings between patients and health providers. But many doctors are watching warily.


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COVID has struck the medical system, but in more ways that just treating those with the disease and trying to prevent its spread. Huge amounts of the work of medicine has now been transferred online. Here Paul Webster speaks to researchers around the world about how things have changed, including IT problems.

The Conversation

Pangolins, not snakes, may be the missing link for transmission of the new coronavirus from bats to humans.


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Science

In college in the 1990s, Alix Timko wondered why she and her friends didn’t have eating disorders. “We were all in our late teens, early 20s, all vaguely dissatisfied with how we looked,” says Timko, now a psychologist at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Her crowd of friends matched the profile she had seen in TV dramas—overachievers who exercised regularly and whose eating was erratic, hours of fasting followed by “a huge pizza.”


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Vice

Roby Mitchell claims that ketamine can cure autism symptoms—and has been boasting on social media that he’s persuaded a family to try it on their six-year-old.


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Esquire

Twelve months? Eighteen months? Two years? Whatever happens, a vaccine will arrive later than we need, but sooner than ever before


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The Conversation

As the COVID-19 epidemic continues to ravage the American public, an unsurprising story emerges: Poor communities are hot spots for COVID transmission. The death rate from COVID-19 appears to be staggeringly high among African Americans compared to whites. The Washington Post reports, for example, that while 14% of the Michigan population is black, 40% of COVID-19 deaths are among blacks.


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UPI

Some level of social distancing may need to remain in place, at least intermittently, well into 2022, Harvard researchers suggest in an analysis published Tuesday.


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Science

The world is holding its breath. After the novel coronavirus made its way from China around the world, one country after another adopted harsh measures to stop SARS-CoV-2 from spreading and overwhelming hospitals. They have hit the pause button on their economies and their citizens’ lives, stopping sports events, religious services, and other social gatherings. School closures in 188 countries affect more than 1.5 billion students. Borders are closed and businesses shuttered. While some countries are still seeing daily case numbers increase, others—first in Asia but increasingly in Europe—have managed to bend the curve, slowing the transmission of COVID-19.


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The Conversation

Scientists don’t conduct research just to satisfy their own curiosity. Research is meant to benefit society by raising public awareness and creating products and innovations that enhance development. For research to serve its full purpose, the results must leave the confines of research laboratories and academic journals. As researchers, we need to do more to ensure that our findings end up in the hands of those who are affected by them. This is especially true in African countries, where disciplines often exist in silos and many researchers come in from other continents. The people who share their lives with researchers seldom see the results of their efforts.


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The Hill

Most of the U.S. has state-mandated shelter in place orders to mitigate the COVID-19 pandemic. Yet, most of us are already asking when will life return to normal? We must understand that the current shelter in place orders cannot have a firm end date and may not be lifted until deep into summer. Resuming work, school and social activity will depend on a sharp and sustained reduction in new COVID-19 cases and the ability to identify, monitor and treat new cases. The hard truth is that normal, like handshakes, might be a thing of the past and a new normal will govern our lives going forward.


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Deseret News

SALT LAKE CITY — University of Utah biomedical researchers received a $200,000 federal grant to study mucus’ role in spreading coronaviruses to potentially open the door to a treatment for COVID-19.


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While the whole world is watching, research of course happens on the local level with scientists and doctors at particular institutions. Here the local newspaper Deseret News spotlights what researchers in Salt Lake City are doing, focusing on mucus.

The Hindu

Dr. Soumya Swaminathan, Chief Scientist at the World Health Organisation, tells The Hindu in an interview that the fight against COVID-19 is likely to be long-term, and lockdowns alone cannot be effective unless combined with other public health measures.


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The Star (Malaysia)

THE Covid-19 pandemic has focused the world’s attention on the potential dangers of human-animal interactions at traditional wet animal markets.


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Washington Post

A panel convened by the National Academies of Sciences reported to the White House on Tuesday that the novel coronavirus is unlikely to wane substantially with the arrival of summer, though there are many uncertainties remaining.


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Dhaka Tribune

After all that they have gone through, the Rohingya are, like the rest of us, facing a killer even deadlier than the Myanmar military: The Covid-19 epidemic. And it won’t do Bangladesh any good to allow Cox’s Bazar to become an epicentre of infectious disease.


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Australian Financial Review ($)

The cell then grows this protein, but not its genetic material, meaning it takes on the appearance of the virus without actually causing any illness.


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Vice

Looking for the new coronavirus in wastewater could give us a heads up about where the outbreak is spreading — and when it has started to dissipate.


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Most of our knowledge about where coronavirus has spread is from its presence in human patients. Here Shayla Love looks at another method that is being touted, the use of wastewater to detect the virus.

CNN

Coronavirus lockdowns across the globe should not be completely lifted until a vaccine for the disease is found, according to a study based on China’s outbreak published in medical journal The Lancet.


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UPI

Researchers this week began experimenting with use of a tuberculosis vaccine in the fight against COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus, but a viable shot is still likely months away, experts said.


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Deccan Herald

With India now reporting thousands of COVID-19 cases, up from a handful just days ago, there is huge concern about the consequences of the pandemic in India and what lies ahead. DH’s Kalyan Ray spoke to Prof T Jacob John, one of the country’s leading experts and a retired professor of clinical virology at the Christian Medical College, Vellore, on the pandemic’s progress in India.


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Science

With a vaccine for the novel coronavirus still likely 1 year or more away, the first weapon against the virus could be one of the drugs now in clinical trials with COVID-19 patients. A new analysis out today shows that many of these drugs, which are currently manufactured or in development to treat other diseases, can be made for $1 a day per patient, or less. If any prove effective against the novel coronavirus, a coordinated international effort will be needed to ensure they are made affordable for people worldwide, the researchers argue.


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Nature

Bats and rodents are considered high-risk viral reservoirs — a source for diseases that can hop over to humans, and sometimes lead to epidemics. Some scientists have even argued that the animals have certain traits that increase the likelihood of spillover events from animal to people, and that they should be monitored more closely as a result. But a new analysis suggests that bats and rodents are “unexceptional” in their propensity to host viruses that infect humans.


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CBS News

In the face of the data and calls for a federal response, Adams acknowledges that African Americans are much more vulnerable to COVID-19 due to health disparities and historic racism around housing, education and employment. Adams says he is now focusing on formulating a federal response to address the problem.


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