Cases increased like Election results appear, vaccines and treatments are advancing, and the accessibility of screening and trauma technology is increasing. Here’s what you should know:
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Cases rise to new highs as Americans wait for election results
In a series of dizzying events, this week’s multi-day elections coincided with record-high coronaviruses in the US. There were 121,888 new cases on Thursday, marking the third time this week the US topped the previous record. Hospitalizations and deaths are also on the rise, especially in the South and the Midwest. Regardless of the election results, Donald Trump will remain in the Oval Office until January 20 and with his track record of the pandemic, public health experts are concerned that 100,000 Americans have could die during that time.
Whoever the next president is, he will face an enormous task of controlling the coronavirus pandemic. Cases are on the rise, masks are back on again and a bleak winter is ahead. But there are still things that the country’s leaders can do now. Mitch McConnell adopted a new stance on coronavirus aid earlier this week, saying Congress should pass a bailout package before the end of the year. And the CDC director has said that now is the ideal time for the US to develop a better strategy to identify asymptomatic cases if this increase is controlled.
Vaccine development and treatment continue to advance
On Thursday, AstraZeneca announced that its vaccine could be made available early in the new year. The drug company plans to analyze Phase III trial data over the next two months. Provided that results look good, it will increase production and ask for government approval. Moderna says its vaccine won’t be ready until spring, while Pfizer may apply for emergency use later this month. A CDC adviser yesterday confirmed that once the vaccine becomes available in the United States, they will almost certainly reach the medical staff first. In order for vaccines to gain widespread approval, experts are also working to build public trust, especially in communities of color, who have long suffered from medical racism. .
Research published yesterday also showed that a nasal spray developed at Columbia University successfully prevented SARS-CoV-2 from entering the weasel’s lungs and nose. The study has yet to be peer reviewed, nor has it tested the spray on humans. But the researchers say it’s non-toxic and, if effective, could act like a daily vaccine. It is also relatively cheap to make and requires no refrigeration. In the UK, aspirin is being investigated as a potential treatment for Covid-19. Researchers believe that the inexpensive and widely available drug may reduce the risk of blood clots forming.
The Covid-19 monitoring and screening technology has been expanded, but not without difficulties
Dozens of US school districts have purchased new technology to help combat the spread of Covid-19 using money from the CARES Pandemic Aid Act. These devices use thermal cameras to check students’ temperatures and facial recognition technology to see if they are wearing a mask. While some people find facial recognition useful even after the pandemic has ended, others worry that bringing it into schools could jeopardize security and privacy. data of children’s biometrics.
Meanwhile, tracing technology in the UK struggled last week when software engineers working on NHS’s Covid-19 app discovered that thousands of people may have been exposed to the virus. error quarantine. The UK government is reportedly in talks with the controversial US firm Palantir over the use of its software to drive a troubled country tracking and inspection program following a series of IT issues.
In the middle of a really bad year, WIRED’s Elena Lacey began raising an old, one-eyed chihuahua named Radish. Turns out, each is just what the other person needs.
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