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Coronavirus Cases Now Climbing in the Midwest

Midwestern states are starting to see surges in coronavirus cases, just as Southern and Western states are scrambling to contain their own outbreaks of COVID-19.

Missouri, Montana and Oklahoma are among those witnessing the largest percentage surge of infections over the past week, the Washington Post reported. At the same time, the number of new cases in Florida, Mississippi a...

Schools Can Reopen Safely If Precautions in Place, Australian Study Shows

Safeguards such as contact tracing and swift isolation of cases of COVID-19 could be the key to reopening U.S. schools safely this September, a study from Australia shows.

In the study, which involved thousands of schools or preschools, a total of 27 kids or teachers were determined to have been present in schools while they were infected with the new coronavirus.

But because ...

November Election Can Be Held Safely, Experts Contend

With the 2020 presidential election just three months away, new research suggests an election can be held safely if stringent steps are taken to lower COVID-19 infection risk.

The conclusion follows a U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention investigation that looked at what happened in the city of Milwaukee this past April after Wisconsin became the first state to hold ...

Coronavirus Pandemic Becoming Far More Widespread, Birx Says

The White House coronavirus task force coordinator warned Americans on Sunday that the pandemic has entered a new stage where infections are far more widespread and face masks are crucial to curbing new COVID-19 cases.

"What we are seeing today is different from March and April. It is extraordinarily widespread," Birx told CNN. "So everybody who lives in a rural area, you are n...

Even With PPE, Risk of COVID-19 Still High for Frontline Workers

At the peak of the pandemic in the United States and United Kingdom, frontline health care workers, especially minorities, had much higher risks for COVID-19 than other individuals, a new study finds.

Paramedics, who are often the first to see sick patients, are at far greater risk of testing positive for COVID-19 than others, the researchers said. That's especially true for frontlin...

Kids 'Efficient' Transmitters as COVID-19 Raced Through a Georgia Summer Camp

With school reopenings just a few weeks away, a report on how the new coronavirus spread rapidly through a summer camp in Georgia suggests kids transmit the virus very well.

Nearly 600 young campers and counselors attended the camp in late June, and of the 344 who were tested for COVID-19, 76% tested positive by mid-July. Three-quarters of the COVID-19 cases for which information ...

Another Side Effect of COVID-19 -- Lasting Hearing Problems?

The aftereffects of COVID-19 are numerous, and now British researchers report that many patients recovering from infection with the new coronavirus have lingering hearing problems.

For the study, 120 U.K. patients who had been hospitalized for COVID-19 took part in a phone survey.

When the patients were asked if they had any changes in their hearing, 13% said it was wor...

Top U.S. Health Officials to Testify in Congress About Pandemic Response

As the number of U.S. coronavirus cases passed 4.5 million on Thursday, some of America's top public health officials will return to Congress for another round of questioning on the federal government's handling of the pandemic.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious disease expert, will testify Friday in front of the House's special select committee investigating the Trump ad...

Coma, Paralysis and Rehab: A Long Road to Recovery for Some COVID Survivors

For Ron Panzok and many patients like him, the battle with COVID-19 didn't end when he left the hospital.

From the ambulance ride to North Shore University Hospital on New York's Long Island to the day he finally woke from a medically induced coma five weeks later, Panzok doesn't remember a thing. He missed more than a month of his life.

But emerging from the coma was only t...

Study Reveals How Coronavirus Travels Indoors

A new study explains how the coronavirus hitches a ride on droplets released when you cough, sneeze, talk or speak, and travels around a room.

The University of Minnesota scientists hope their work will help schools and businesses take steps to reduce the chance of COVID-19 transmission as they reopen.

For the study, they created a model of how these aerosols travel in indo...

Pandemic Could Complicate Hurricane Season

As Hurricane Isaias moved toward the east coast of Florida on Friday, one expert warns that the coronavirus pandemic could make preparing for an active hurricane season even more challenging.

The average hurricane season has about 12 named storms, but up to 20 storms are being predicted this season, according to Marshall Shepherd, director of the Atmospheric Sciences Program at the Un...

New Study Sheds Doubt on Notion Kids Aren't COVID-19 Spreaders

Children with COVID-19 carry as much or more coronavirus in their nose as adults, suggesting that they could pose a serious infection risk if schools and day care centers reopen, a new study argues.

Coronavirus testing performed in Chicago in March and April shows that children and teens tend to have as much virus in their nasal passages as adults, according to a research letter publi...

U.S. Coronavirus Death Toll Surges Past 150,000

The U.S. coronavirus death count climbed past 150,000 on Wednesday, a milestone that none had predicted would come so soon.

In April, Dr. Anthony Fauci said he hoped that no more than 60,000 people in the country would die from the coronavirus, The New York Times reported. In May, a renowned research center predicted that number would be just over 70,000 by early August. When t...

Gene Study Shows How Coronavirus Swept Through the <i>Diamond Princess</i>

The fate of more than 3,600 quarantined passengers and crew on the cruise ship Diamond Princess made headlines in the early weeks of the coronavirus pandemic in February.

An outbreak aboard the ship eventually led to nearly 700 infections and seven deaths from COVID-19.

Now, a genetic retracing of events shows the outbreak likely stemmed from just one infected person,...

Child Care Stresses, Hunger Are Harming U.S. Families During Pandemic

With everyday life turned upside down, efforts to prevent the spread of COVID-19 are taking a toll on the well-being and health of American families, a new poll reveals.

More than 1,000 parents nationwide were surveyed in early June.

"Without question, COVID-19 had a sudden and profound effect on families nationwide," said survey leader Dr. Stephen Patrick. He's director of...

One Disease Mosquitoes Don't Spread: Coronavirus

Although scientists haven't nailed down how the new coronavirus jumped to humans, a new study confirms mosquitoes aren't to blame -- and you won't get COVID-19 from a mosquito bite.

"While the World Health Organization has definitively stated that mosquitoes cannot transmit the virus, our study is the first to provide conclusive data supporting the theory," said study author Stephen H...

There May Be 6 Types of COVID-19

COVID-19 may not be just one disease, but six distinct types, a new British study claims.

Each type differs in severity and in the need for respiratory support during hospitalization, the researchers added.

Cough, fever and loss of smell are the usual symptoms of COVID-19, but the range of symptoms can include headaches, muscle pain, fatigue, diarrhea, confusion, loss of a...

Final Coronavirus Vaccine Trials Get Underway

As the U.S. coronavirus case count passed 4.3 million on Monday, companies launched the final phase of testing for two potential COVID-19 vaccines.

In one trial begun on Monday, the first of 30,000 volunteers were either given a vaccine developed by Moderna Inc. and the U.S. National Institutes of Health or a placebo shot, the Washington Post reported.

Pharmaceutical...

In Rush to Publish, Most COVID-19 Research Isn't Reliable, Experts Say

The COVID-19 pandemic has prompted a massive scientific response to the crisis, with more than 1,500 coronavirus studies kicking off between March and mid-May of this year, a new study reports.

Unfortunately, much of this research has sown only confusion, producing precious little scientific evidence of sufficient quality to dramatically improve any understanding of COVID-19, research...

States With Soaring COVID Cases Must Take Action, U.S. Health Officials Say

Coronavirus task force coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx said Sunday that federal health officials are recommending the closing of bars, cutting indoor restaurant capacity and limiting social gatherings to 10 people in states where COVID-19 cases are climbing.

Birx added that "100%" of individuals should wear masks in public or around others, the Washington Post reported, as the...

How to Counter the Anti-Mask Backlash? Empathy.

In the midst of a pandemic, many Americans still view face mask mandates as an assault on their personal freedoms, rather than a means of protecting themselves and others from COVID-19.

But a group of researchers out of Duke University say the mask backlash can be turned around -- as long as efforts to do so are grounded in empathy, not judgment.

As coronavirus cases in the...

Lab-Created Virus Can Help COVID-19 Research, Developers Say

A lab-created virus that's similar to but not as dangerous as the new coronavirus could aid efforts to create COVID-19 treatments and vaccines, according to scientists who created it.

Airborne and potentially deadly, the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19 must be studied under strict safety conditions. Precautions include full-body biohazard suits with pressurized respirators, and ...

CDC Issues Call to Reopen America's Schools This Fall

Facing opposition from President Donald Trump and others, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued a document supporting a reopening of the nation's schools this fall.

"As families and policymakers make decisions about their children returning to school, it is important to consider the full spectrum of benefits and risks of both in-person and virtual learning opt...

Many U.S. Homes Too Cramped to Stop COVID-19's Spread

People with COVID-19 are told to keep their distance from family members to protect them from infection. But a new study finds that one-fifth of U.S. homes are too small for that to happen.

Researchers found that more than 20% of households nationwide lacked enough bedrooms and bathrooms to allow a person with COVID-19 to isolate. That covers roughly one-quarter of the population....

Skeletons May Put Blame on Vikings for Smallpox' Spread

The Vikings had smallpox and may have spread it wherever they ventured, scientists report.

That conclusion stems from an examination of teeth from 1,400-year-old Viking skeletons that contained extinct strains of smallpox. The genetic structure of those strains differed from that of the modern smallpox virus eradicated in the 20th century, the researchers found.

"We already...

U.S. Coronavirus Cases Pass 4 Million, Third Day of Over 1,000 Deaths Logged

America saw its coronavirus case count pass 4 million on Thursday, as health officials across the country reported a third day of more than 1,000 new COVID-19 deaths.

Alabama posted a record-setting 2,390 new cases on Thursday, while four other states -- Hawaii, Indiana, Missouri and New Mexico -- also hit their single-day peak for new cases, The New York Times reported. Meanwh...

With Safety Steps, Moms Unlikely to Pass COVID-19 to Newborns: Study

Mothers are unlikely to pass COVID-19 to their newborns if they follow recommended precautions, a small study suggests.

"We hope our study will provide some reassurance to new mothers that the risk of them passing COVID-19 to their babies is very low. However, larger studies are needed to better understand the risks of transmission from mother to child," said co-leader Dr. Christine S...

Rheumatoid Arthritis Drug May Fight Severe COVID-19, Early Data Show

In a small study from France, an immune-dampening drug used by people battling rheumatoid arthritis showed promise in patients hospitalized with severe COVID-19.

The drug, called anakinra, targets pro-inflammatory responses that kick into high gear in advanced COVID-19 -- the so-called "cytokine storm."

A team led by Dr. Gilles Kaplanski, of the Public Assistance Hospital in...

Steroids Other Than Dexamethasone May Also Help Battle COVID-19

The steroid medication dexamethasone has been proven to help people severely ill with COVID-19. Now a new study hints that other drugs in the same class may also work -- in the right patients.

The findings are from a review of one hospital's experience, not a clinical trial. So researchers said the results should be interpreted with some caution.

But the study suggests that ...

U.S. Coronavirus Cases Near 4 Million as Death Toll Tops 1,000 for Second Day

As America neared the milestone of 4 million coronavirus cases on Thursday and the daily death toll topped 1,000 for the second day running, states across the country scrambled to contend with the spread of COVID-19.

California recorded new highs in both coronavirus cases and deaths on Wednesday, The New York Times reported. With more than 422,000 cases, California's case tally...

For Cancer Patients, Getting COVID-19 Raises Death Risk 16-Fold

COVID-19 is no joke for tens of thousands of ill Americans, but a new report shows just how dangerous it can be for those already fighting cancer.

The study was based on an analysis of the health records of 212,000 people living with cancer. It found that a COVID-19 diagnosis raised a patient's odds of death 16-fold, compared to cancer patients without the coronavirus.

Cance...

Antibodies Fade a Few Weeks After Mild COVID-19, Study Finds

Hopes for robust, long-term antibody protection after a bout of COVID-19 have been dampened by a new study that finds the protection may only last a few months.

Still, experts noted that the body's immune system has more than one way to defend against viruses it has already encountered, so the findings don't dash hopes for a vaccine.

"Infection with this coronavirus does not...

Coronavirus Death Toll Tops 1,000 as Trump Warns the Worst is Still to Come

For the first time in nearly two months the daily U.S. coronavirus death toll topped 1,000 on Tuesday, with President Donald Trump acknowledging that the country's outbreak will likely "get worse before it gets better."

Trump's comments came during the first coronavirus task force briefing he's held since April, as he conceded there were now "big fires" in the country, particularly in...

Straight Talk From Front-Line Experts on Wearing a Mask

On the front lines of the war against COVID-19, masks have become a flashpoint.

How well do they protect against the new coronavirus -- if at all? To separate facts from fiction, two experts from Penn State Health weigh in to clear up common misconceptions.

They laid to rest the claim that no studies have investigated the effectiveness of masks.

"Several observa...

Pandemic Has ER Docs Stressed Out and Weary: Survey

The coronavirus pandemic has left many U.S. emergency doctors with high levels of anxiety and emotional exhaustion, a new study finds.

The research included 426 emergency doctors (median age: 35) in seven cities in California, Louisiana and New Jersey who were surveyed during the early stages of the outbreak.

The doctors reported having moderate to severe anxiety at work and...

Congress Begins Talks on Coronavirus Aid Package as Cases Pass 3.8 million

With U.S. coronavirus cases surging past 3.8 million on Tuesday, Congress is negotiating yet another pandemic relief package for cash-strapped Americans.

The package is likely to include a payroll tax cut, along with funding that would be tied to whether schools fully reopen, the Washington Post reported. Although local and state officials have said they desperately need more ...

Immunotherapy Safe for Cancer Patients with COVID-19: Study

Immunotherapy for cancer patients with COVID-19 appears safe, a preliminary study suggests.

The treatments activate a person's immune system against cancer.

Researchers have been wary, because many COVID-19 complications result from an overactive immune response that leads to increased production of proteins called cytokines that can cause issues such as respiratory failur...

British, Chinese COVID-19 Vaccine Trials Show Promise

The highly anticipated results of two early-phase clinical trials of candidate COVID-19 vaccines suggest they are safe and may protect recipients, although the duration of the effect is still unknown.

"We are rapidly moving to an era in which a vaccine against the novel coronavirus is becoming a reality," noted Dr. Amesh Adalja, an infectious disease specialist and senior scholar at t...

U.S. Coronavirus Case Counts Continue to Break Records, Pooled Testing Approved

As yet another record for the seven-day average of new coronavirus cases in the United States was broken on Sunday, federal health officials prepared to start pooled testing for COVID-19.

The strategy could speed results, stretch lab supplies further, reduce costs and expand testing, the Associated Press reported.

On Sunday, Kentucky, Louisiana, Oregon and South Caro...

U.S. Air Quality Got Better During Pandemic: Study

U.S. air quality improved after businesses closed to reduce the spread of the new coronavirus, researchers say.

For their new study, they compared air pollution data for 122 U.S. counties between March 13 and April 21, to the same dates and locations going back to 2017.

"It has been shown that high air pollution may play a role in exacerbating respiratory diseases, including...

Masks, Video Calls: Pandemic Is Hampering Communication for Those With Hearing Problems

Face masks help prevent the spread of COVID-19, but they have a huge downside for people with hearing problems: They muffle sound and prevent lip-reading.

But that's only one of several ways that pandemic-related safety precautions are making communication more challenging for those who are deaf or have hearing problems, researchers say.

Limits on visitors in medical set...

U.S. Breaks Another Daily Record for New Cases, With More Than 75,000 Infections

Yet another daily record for new U.S. coronavirus cases was shattered on Thursday, with 75,600 new infections reported.

It's the 11th time in the past month that the daily record had been broken, The New York Times reported. The previous single-day record, 68,241 cases, was reported last Friday. The number of daily cases has more than doubled since June 24.

Things wi...

COVID-19 Deaths Have Already Left 1.2 Million Americans Grieving

Each COVID-19 death in the United States leaves an average of nine close family members to grieve, researchers say.

With more than 137,000 deaths so far in the pandemic, that means about 1.2 million Americans have lost a grandparent, parent, sibling, spouse, child or other close relative.

"In just a few short months, over 1 million Americans have experienced an irreplaceable...

Placenta May Help Shield Fetus From COVID-19

Some key molecules used by the new coronavirus to cause infection aren't found in the placenta, which may explain why the virus is rarely detected in fetuses or newborns of women with COVID-19.

U.S. government researchers found that placental membranes lack the messenger RNA (mRNA) molecule required to make the ACE2 receptor. SARS-CoV-2 -- the virus that causes COVID-19 -- uses that c...

Coronavirus May Have Come From Bats; Could They Also Hold Clues to Treatments?

Bats have been blamed as a possible source of the new coronavirus pandemic ravaging the globe. But they might also point to possible ways out of it.

Scientists say the winged mammals' immune systems may offer clues on how to fight the new coronavirus and other dangerous viruses in humans.

"Humans have two possible strategies if we want to prevent inflammation, live longer a...

More States, Retailers Turn to Face Mask Mandates as U.S. Cases Top 3.5 Million

As the number of U.S. coronavirus cases topped 3.5 million on Wednesday, more states, cities and major retailers turned to face mask mandates to try to stem the spread of COVID-19.

Increasingly seen as a last hope to slow soaring infection rates across the country, Alabama, Montana and the city of Tulsa on Wednesday moved to make face coverings required in public settings, the Wash...

Have Lockdown Measures Worked to Control Coronavirus? Here's the Evidence

Lockdown measures helped reduce the number of COVID-19 cases in countries around the world, a new study finds.

Moreover, earlier stay-in-place restrictions such as closing schools and workplaces were tied to a greater reduction in cases, according to British researchers.

The findings, published July 15 in the BMJ, were based on data from 149 countries and regions.

More COVID-19 Patients in ICUs Are Surviving Now: Study

Even as new coronavirus infections soar in the United States, a new study offers one piece of good news: Severely ill COVID-19 patients are significantly more likely to survive now compared to a few months ago.

In fact, deaths for COVID-19 patients in intensive care units have fallen by nearly a third in North America, Asia and Europe since the start of the pandemic, researchers repor...

Infusion of Certain Immune Cells May Help in Severe Coronavirus Cases

An infusion of cells that dampen the body's immune response might help people with severe cases of the new coronavirus recover more quickly, a new report suggests.

Two patients so sick with COVID-19 that they'd been put on a ventilator improved quickly when given an infusion of regulatory T-cells, which are cells that check the immune system and prevent it from overreacting to an infe...

Pets Provide Comfort for 'Ruff' Quarantine Time

For New York lawyer Roseann Schuyler, her family's pets -- a dog (Jackie), two cats (Hudson and Winter) and a fish (Atticus fish) -- eased the long, lonely days of lockdown during the coronavirus pandemic this spring.

"Those early days were so surreal. There was not a lot to do other than to sit in the house and worry," Schuyler said. "The fact that we had pets -- Jackie in particular...

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