Health

Health
2020-04-09T04:05:39+00:00
Workers at two more Mexican hospitals test positive for coronavirus

Mexican authorities said on Wednesday that about 60 personnel across two more hospitals have tested positive for the coronavirus, adding to a wave of infections among medical workers, according to local authorities and media reports. The coronavirus was first detected at the hospital in Tlanepantla de Baz, in Mexico state just outside the capital, on March 10, the head of Mexico's social security institute (IMSS), Zoe Robledo, said at the president's regular news conference on Wednesday. At least 20 doctors tested positive there.

Health
2020-04-09T03:53:02+00:00
Brazil turns to local industry to build ventilators as China orders fall through

Brazil's health minister said on Wednesday that the country's attempts to purchase thousands of ventilators from China to fight a growing coronavirus epidemic had fallen through and the government is now looking to Brazilian companies to build the devices. "Practically all our purchases of equipment in China are not being confirmed," Minister Luiz Henrique Mandetta said at a news conference. He also said Brazil has hired local unlisted medical equipment maker Magnamed to make 6,000 ventilators in 90 days. Pulp and paper companies Suzano SA and Klabin SA, planemaker Embraer SA, information technology provider Positivo Tecnologia SA and automaker Fiat Chrysler have also offered to help build ventilators, he said.

Health
2020-04-09T03:51:19+00:00
WHO head defends handling of coronavirus pandemic against Trump criticism

The head of the World Health Organization gave a strident defence of his agency's handling of the coronavirus pandemic on Wednesday, in response to U.S. President Donald Trump's criticism and suggestions that Washington could review its funding for the agency. WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus called for unity and a halt to "politicization" of the global health crisis, specifically urging China and the United States to show "honest leadership". Tedros said the WHO had "kept the world informed about the latest data, information and evidence" and noted that Thursday would mark 100 days since China first notified the organization of cases of "pneumonia with unknown cause" on Dec. 31.

Health
2020-04-07T23:40:32+00:00
Amazon testing disinfectant fog at New York warehouse after coronavirus protests

Amazon.com Inc is testing the use of disinfectant fog at a warehouse in Staten Island, New York starting on Tuesday, the company told Reuters, following worker protests over the risk of coronavirus infection at the site. Amazon said it is trying out disinfectant fog as used by airlines and hospitals to further sanitize its facilities. The pilot program follows an announcement last week that the company would check workers' temperature and make masks available at all U.S. and European sites in its operations network.

Health
2020-04-07T08:56:37+00:00
Second potential Covid-19 vaccine has been cleared for human trials in the US

The United States Food and Drug Administration has cleared the INO-4800 DNA vaccine candidate by the company Inovio Pharmaceuticals for human testing. The company has gotten funding from different nonprofits and organizations, including the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Currently, the company is preparing to inject the first test subject with the potential vaccine.

Health
2020-04-05T21:15:04+00:00
Germany surpasses 1 million Covid-19 tests

The German Robert Koch Institute has announced that the country has tested 920,000 people alone in March and reaching the 1 million mark in total. In the last week of March alone over 350,000 people were tested.

Health
2020-03-30T18:34:07+00:00
Engineers develop develop breathing aid that delivers oxygen without ventilator

The Continuous Positive Airway Pressure device has been developed together by engineers from Mercedes Formula One and the University College London as well as clinicians from the college. The approval for using it has already given by the respective authority the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency and the first devices have been delivered to the college and three other hospitals inside London. If the trials are successful Mercedes-AMG-HPP is prepared to produce up to 1,000 devices per day from next week on.

Health
2020-03-27T05:23:07+00:00
United States report over 82,000 Covid-19 cases - most in the world

With China reporting around 81,000 cases and the United States reporting 82,000 confirmed cases, the United States is the country with the most infections worldwide for the first time. In addition, the US has reported 246 new deaths making it a total of 1,195 fatalities due to the coronavirus.

Health
2020-03-27T05:41:36+00:00
Bosch develops Covid-19 test that provides results in 2,5 hours without laboratory

The German engineering company Bosch has developed a rapid Covid-19 test that fulfills the requirements of the World Health Organization (WHO) and has an accuracy of over 95 percent. The rapid test can be used on-site by medical personal not trained for the laboratory and only needs a "Bosch Vivalytic analyzer" device. It takes less than two and a half hours to get the test results after the sample is taken.

Health
2020-03-26T19:01:46+00:00
Dyson designed new ventilator and aims to produce 15,000 until end of April

The billionaire company founder James Dyson has announced that the company managed to design a new ventilator system in 10 days, after receiving an order from the government of the United Kingdom. The company aims to produce 10,000 of the new ventilators for the UK and is planning on donating an additional 5,000 ventilators towards the international fight against the coronavirus by the end of April.

Health
2020-03-26T18:41:46+00:00
101 year old man from Italy has recovered from coronavirus

A man from the Italian city Rimini, who was born in 1919 during the Spanish flu pandemic, has recovered from the coronavirus. The deputy mayor of the town, Gloria Lisi, has announced that the man is back with his family after being tested positive for Covid-19 and admitted to the hospital in the last week.

Health
2020-03-26T20:40:43+00:00
Greta Thunberg states she believes to be infected with Covid-19

On Wednesday, Greta Thunberg stated on her Instagram account that she believed she had gotten infected with the Coronavirus while travelling through Europe. Both Thunberg and her father experienced symptoms related to the virus – fatigue, coughing and a sore throat.
According to Thunberg, they have been isolating themselves in their home in Sweden upon their return. "I have [...] not been tested for COVID-19, but it’s extremely likely that I’ve had it, given the combined symptoms and circumstances.", so Thunberg in her Instagram post.

Health
2020-03-26T10:42:57+00:00
Iceland’s mass testing finds half of carriers show no symptoms of Corona

In an effort to test every citizen in Iceland, authorities claim that they had tested a higher proportion of the citizens than anywhere else in the world. Instead of testing only people with symptoms, Iceland tests everyone. So far they have tested 10,300 people of a total population of 364,000. “Early results from deCode Genetics indicate that a low proportion of the general population has contracted the virus and that about half of those who tested positive are non-symptomatic, the other half displays very moderate cold-like symptoms.” Thorolfur Guðnason, Iceland’s chief epidemiologist said.

Health
2020-03-26T10:43:38+00:00
Indian hospital tests using a robot to deliver food into Covid-19 isolation ward

The Sawai Man Singh Hospital (or SMS hospital) in Jaipur has started a trial run to deliver food and small items into the isolated part of the hospital with a robot. This could reduce the number of times that hospital staff would need to help the coronavirus patients, freeing up capacity to "serve other departments as required", said professor Banerjee, a senior doctor at the hospital.

Health
2020-03-25T13:33:38+00:00
Case of Hantavirus in China sparks fears of a parallel pandemic on twitter

According to the Global Times, an English-language Chinese news paper, a man died of Hantavirus in the Chinese Yunnan province. The corresponding tweet made by the newspaper, tagged #Hantavirus, gained a high number of retweets and comments due to the fear of a pandemic parallel to COVID-19. According to the CDC these fears are unnecessary since the Hantavirus can only be transmitted directly from rodents and cannot be transmitted from one person to another.

Health
2020-03-25T09:05:49+00:00
More than 170,000 volunteer for UK's National Health Service overnight

The wave of responses came within hours of the government's plea for an 'army' of 250,000 volunteers to support paid staff. They will help to deliver important supplies, transport patients and make phone calls to check on those isolated alone.

Health
2020-03-25T07:26:04+00:00
Man in Taiwan fined $33,000 for breaking self-isolation

During a routine police check at a nightclub, the man was caught violating his mandatory 14-day self-isolation after he had returned from Southeast Asia. He got the maximum fine of 1 million Taiwanese Dollar which translates to around $33,000 US Dollar.

Health
2020-03-23T14:44:37+00:00
Apple announces donation of 2 million masks

In order to help fight the coronavirus the company has announced that it'll donate "millions of masks for health professionals in the US and Europe", CEO Tim Cook announced in a tweet. Vice President Mike Pence also confirmed the donation during a White House briefing and specified the number of donated masks to the US as 2 million.

Health
2020-03-22T22:40:06+00:00
Italian company releases 3D printed valve to transform Decathlon snorkeling mask into a ventilator mask

Facing a shortage of ventilators in the fight against the coronavirus, the Italian company Isinnova developed a 3D printable valve that can be attached to a commercially available snorkeling mask from Decathlon. The sports equipment company cooperated with Isinnova by releasing the CAD drawing of the mask, which enabled the development. The company released the plans and instructions on their website for free for non-commercial purposes.

Health
2020-03-21T17:06:53+00:00
UN announces: over 210,000 cases of Covid-19 have been reported

While it took three months between the first reported case of the coronavirus and reaching 100,000 reported cases, only 12 days have been needed to reach over 200,000 reported cases, according to the World Health Organization. In addition over 9,000 people worldwide have died so far from the coronavirus.

Health
2020-03-21T12:24:02+00:00
Volkswagen announces donation of 200,000 masks

In a press release, the Volkswagen Group has announced that it'll donate around 200,000 FFP-2 and FFP-3 protective masks. The donation is coordinated with Jens Spahn, the German Federal Minister of Health. In addition to this Wolfsburg, the hometown of the Volkswagen Group will receive medical material donations from the company.

Health
2020-03-21T09:21:03+00:00
WHO announces that over 20 vaccines for the coronavirus are in development

According to the World Health Organization, just 60 days after the gene was first sequenced, over 20 vaccines are under development worldwide. Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove said at a press conference that "The acceleration of this process is really truly dramatic in terms of what we’re able to do, building on work that started with SARS, that started with MERS and now is being used for COVID-19" and that the first vaccines are already in clinical trials. Even though the process is done in record time, it will take several more months to develop and then produce.

Health
2020-03-21T08:42:46+00:00
World Health Organization encourages people to stay at home, but stay in contact

The WHO has announced that it recommends using the term "physical distancing" over "social distancing". People should stay at home, but keep in contact with friends and family.

Health
2020-03-20T15:56:48+00:00
Over half of US counties not equipped with ICU beds

According to an analysis by the Kaiser Health Foundation, more than half of US counties are not equipped with ICU beds. In the highly endangered group of citizens 60 and above, around 4.5 million live in counties that have hospitals but no ICU and an additional 2.7 million reside in counties with no hospital at all. Even in the top 10% counties for ICU bed count there might be as many as 450 older people per bed. While the United States have more than three times the amount of beds as Italy, this doesn't say much about the amount of ventilators available and the distribution over all counties.

Health
2020-03-20T12:11:23+00:00
Video shows Bergamo hospital from inside

In a video published on March 18th, the insides of a Bergamo hospital are shown. The cameraperson is walking around and shows multiple people attached to venting machines in rooms, but also in the hallway between rooms and a doctor in full protection gear.

Health
2020-03-19T22:12:11+00:00
Netflix reduces streaming quality in Europe

Following the coronavirus outbreak, more and more people in different European countries are voluntarily staying at home or forced due to movement restrictions. With this comes a higher internet usage throughout the whole continent. After talks between Thierry Breton, the European Commissioner for Internal Market and Services, and the Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, the streaming service has announced that it would reduce the data consumption by 25% by lowering the picture quality and therefore "preserve the smooth functioning of the internet during the Covid-19 crisis".

Health
2020-03-19T20:19:14+00:00
"Food distribution workers" classified as emergency workers in Minnesota and Vermont

The new status as "essential tier 2 workers" has been given to jobs like store clerks and stockers in Minnesota and Vermont. With the spread of the coronavirus, these jobs are vital to the food supply chain. As a direct consequence, the workers now receive free child care.

Health
2020-03-19T17:07:42+00:00
Amidst coronavirus outbreak N95 masks priced at $7 instead of 50 cents per mask

In a CNN interview Scott Steiner, the CEO of Phoebe Putney Health System, said that while the N95 masks normally cost 58 cents per piece, they are now priced at $7 per mask by a company out of Mexico that has one million of them in stock. Even though the prices are twelve times higher than normal the company is "probably going to take them at $7 each because we are that desperate", Steiner said.

Health
2020-03-19T14:42:59+00:00
COVID-19 might cause reduced lung function in patients after recovery

According to Dr Owen Tsang Tak-yin, director of Infectious Disease Centre at Princess Margaret Hospital, Hong Kong, follow-up appointments of COVID-19 patients after recovery revealed that some patients showed a reduction in lung function of around 20 to 30 percent. Long-term outcome was still unclear and patients could do cardiovascular exercise to increase their lung function.

Health
2020-03-19T14:40:40+00:00
Following Covid-19 diagnosis Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson have been released from hospital

Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson have transferred from the hospital to their home in Queensland, Australia and will stay in self-quarantine there. Both had been diagnosed positive with the coronavirus.