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Real-time tracking of an epidemic
The work uses a transmission model, data on daily COVID-19 confirmed deaths from PHE (by NHS region and age group) and published information on the risk of dying and the time from infection to death, to reconstruct the number of new COVID-19 infections over time; estimate a measure of ongoing transmission (R); and predict the number of new COVID-19 deaths in different regions and age groups.
Millions in UK smoking more amid coronavirus crisis, study suggests
About 2.2 million people in the UK may be smoking more than usual during the coronavirus crisis despite the serious harm it does to respiratory and immune systems, a survey has suggested. A further 4.8 million are approximated to be smoking the same amount as before the pandemic, while 1.9 million are believed to have cut down, according to estimates calculated from a representative study of about 2,000 people over 30 April to 13 May in YouGov’s Covid-19 tracker.
Early insight into the impacts of COVID-19 on care for people with long-term conditions
Before this crisis, around 85% of the burden of disease in the UK was from long-term conditions which are not passed from person to person, such as cancer, heart disease and depression. Most NHS services were under considerable pressure before the pandemic. Since the outbreak took hold, the NHS has diverted resources to hospitals so they could manage high numbers of COVID-19 patients – rising from virtually no admissions in early March to a peak of just under 21,000 patients in UK hospitals with COVID-19 by mid-April. Accommodating the surge in admissions has led to redeploying staff and facilities and suspending most planned care for patients with pre-existing health care needs. But there are growing concerns about the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak, and the policy response to it, on the health care needs of those with longer term health conditions.
"Immunity passports" in the context of COVID-19
WHO has published guidance on adjusting public health and social measures for the next phase of the COVID-19 response. Some governments have suggested that the detection of antibodies to the SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, could serve as the basis for an “immunity passport” or “risk-free certificate” that would enable individuals to travel or to return to work assuming that they are protected against re-infection. There is currently no evidence that people who have recovered from COVID-19 and have antibodies are protected from a second infection.
What policy makers need to know about COVID-19 protective immunity
About a third of the world is under lockdown as a public health measure to curb the spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Policy makers are increasingly pressed to articulate their rationales and strategies for moving out of lockdown; the process of re-emergence is already cautiously starting in Austria, Switzerland, Denmark, Wuhan, and some US states. As the counterpoise between further disease spread and socioeconomic costs is debated, it is essential that policy makers in all affected countries have the best possible data and understanding to inform any course of action.
Covid-19: a remote assessment in primary care
This article will present some guiding principles on how to choose between telephone and video appointments, how to conduct a “query covid” consultation remotely, and considerations when arranging follow-up and next steps. It does not cover remote triage or how to set up video consulting in your practice...
NHS England takes over CCG powers
NHS England is taking on extensive powers — normally held by clinical commissioning groups — to buy services from the private sector and to support the coronavirus effort as [it] “deems appropriate”.
In a national directive published today, the Department of Health and Social Care says the covid-19 crisis is “an emergency”, and it has legally directed NHSE to exercise key functions normally held by CCGs....
China’s aggressive measures have slowed the coronavirus. They may not work in other countries
Chinese hospitals overflowing with COVID-19 patients a few weeks ago now have empty beds. Trials of experimental drugs are having difficulty enrolling enough eligible patients. And the number of new cases reported each day has plummeted the past few weeks
These are some of the startling observations in a report released on 28 February from a mission organized by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Chinese government that allowed 13 foreigners to join 12 Chinese scientists on a tour of five cities in China to study the state of the COVID-19 epidemic and the effectiveness of the country’s response.....
Effective leadership communication amid a crisis
The responsibility of governments to communicate public health information in response to the coronavirus pandemic is clear. Business leaders also have a role in communicating to a broad range of stakeholders, including staff, consumers, suppliers, and investors.
In larger companies, leaders can rely on a crisis communications team for advice, but they will still be expected to take key roles in communicating important messages.
What will it take to develop a vaccine for COVID-19?
This week, the National Institutes of Health announced that Kaiser Permanente has begun the first clinical trial of a COVID-19 vaccine, called mRNA-1273. Scientists estimate that it will take at least one year to make a COVID-19 vaccine available to the general public.
To understand the steps required to develop, test, and produce a COVID-19 vaccine, Sarah LaFave, a PhD candidate at the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing, spoke with Ruth Karron, a professor in the Department of International Health at the Bloomberg School of Public Health....
A role for CT in COVID-19? What data really tell us so far
Radiologists have watched the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic unfold, wondering if and how imaging could be useful for diagnosis. Perhaps imaging could aid in screening or accelerate the speed of diagnosis, especially with shortages of RT-PCR.
Some radiology literature suggests a pivotal role for CT. Ai and colleagues1 report on 1014 patients who received both RT-PCR and CT in Wuhan, China, during their epidemic. They found that 97% of cases with RT-PCR-confirmed diagnoses had CT findings of pneumonia, and conclude, “CT imaging has high sensitivity for diagnosis of COVID-19”.