Day: June 16, 2020

Virginia Will Not Enter Phase 3 Of Reopening This Week: Northam

RICHMOND, VA — Virginia will not enter phase 3 of its coronavirus reopening plan on Friday, Gov. Ralph Northam said Tuesday at a news conference in Richmond. The governor noted, however, that the rate of positive coronavirus cases and the number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 continue to decline in the state.

Northam said he plans to release more specifics about what phase 3 of the reopening plan will look like at his news conference on Thursday.

“Our numbers continue to look favorable. Our total case numbers have been trending downward,” the governor said. “The number of hospital beds occupied by COVID patients is trending down, as is the number of patients hospitalized with a positive or pending COVID test.”

The percent of tests that are positive has dropped to 7.4 percent as of June 12. “I want to have more time to see how the numbers look before we

Read More

B.C. warns ‘it only takes one person’ to spread COVID-19, U.S.-Canada border to remain closed

As cases of COVID-19 continue to spread around the world, Canadians seem to be increasingly concerned about their health and safety

Check back for the latest updates on the coronavirus outbreak in Canada.

For a full archive of the first month of the pandemic, please check our archive of events.

Dr. Bonnie Henry, British Columbia’s provincial health officer, commented on the recent COVID-19 outbreaks in Beijing, connected to a wholesale food market, and New Zealand, linked to people who travelled from the U.K.

“Once this virus is anywhere, it’s a risk everywhere,” Dr. Henry said. “We all need to continue to be aware that this is going to be in our communities for some time.”

Related to Beijing in particular, Dr. Henry said she is watching the situation “very carefully” and although transmission has not been linked to a food product directly, it has been linked to the people who … Read More

UV sterilizers that can help you kill all the germs

It seems the COVID-19 nightmare isn’t going to conclude anytime soon, since we’re months into the pandemic and are projected to have months, if not years, left to go. Given the uncertainty of what lies ahead, many people have begun investigating how best to protect themselves from whatever biological threats may await them in a world that’s more scared of germs and bacteria than ever before. One solution people are gravitating toward is ultraviolet light.

UV light is used as part of a process called ultraviolet germicidal irradiation, or UVGI for short. The idea is that short-wavelength emissions of UV light can kill bacteria, viruses, and other potentially harmful microorganisms. For that reason, simply waving a UV wand’s light over a surface for a brief period of time is enough to sterilize it and eradicate the most potential threats to your health.

So, now that you

Read More

Boris Johnson says ‘watch this space’ as he hints at reduction to 2m rule

Boris Johnson has hinted that there will be an reduction of the two metre rule which has been in force since the start of lockdown.

Speaking at today’s press briefing, the Prime Minister said that “we hear you” in response to public demand for relaxing of social distancing, adding: “watch this space.”

He was backed up by Patrick Vallance, the chief scientific advisor, who said that two metres is not an “absolute cut off that never changes” and that as the number of infections fall, so too does the need to strictly distance from everyone at two metres.

Mr Johnson went on to give reassurances about schools to worried parents, many of whom have kept their children home rather than allowing them to go back to primary school classes.

“It is safe. There is no need for your kids to miss out on their education. I hope they will go … Read More

Steroid drug hailed as ‘breakthrough’ for seriously ill COVID-19 patients

By Kate Kelland and Alistair Smout

LONDON (Reuters) – A cheap and widely used steroid called dexamethasone has become the first drug shown to be able to save the lives of COVID-19 patients in what scientists said is a “major breakthrough” in the coronavirus pandemic.

Trial results announced on Tuesday showed dexamethasone, which is used to reduce inflammation in other diseases such as arthritis, reduced death rates by around a third among the most severely ill COVID-19 patients admitted to hospital.

The preliminary results, which have not been peer-reviewed, suggest the drug should immediately become standard care in patients with severe cases of the pandemic disease, said the researchers who led the trials.

They said they would work to publish the full details of the trial as soon as possible, and many scientists said they hope to be able to review the evidence for themselves soon, especially given the recent

Read More

Reward for missing Fort Hood soldier raised to $50,000

The reward to help find missing Fort Hood, Texas soldier Vanessa Guillen has doubled to $50,000, nearly two months after she disappeared. The search for Guillen has attracted nationwide attention, including support from Texas Congresswoman Sylvia García and actress Selma Hayek. 

The Army Criminal Investigation Command said Guillen, 20, has not been heard from since April 22. She was last seen in the parking lot of her military unit’s headquarters in Fort Hood, wearing a black T-shirt and purple fitness-type pants. Her car and room keys, identification card and wallet were found in an armory room where she was working earlier in the day.

Congresswoman García, who represents part of the Houston area, announced in a Zoom press conference on Tuesday that her office has asked the FBI for further help and opened a congressional inquiry with the Department of Defense. 

“We need to get to the bottom of this,”

Read More

Two million people forced to shield from Covid-19 to be released at ‘end of July’

Boris Johnson
Boris Johnson

More than 2 million people who are under orders to stay home and be fully “shielded” will be told they can stop isolating at the end of next month, it has emerged.

After being forced to “cocoon” themselves at home since the beginning of lockdown, members of the public classed as extremely vulnerable to Covid-19 are reportedly to be released from self-isolation at the end of July.

Whilst Downing Street insisted that no final decision had been made, other Government sources said reports that the policy will be relaxed in July were accurate.

Separately, senior Cabinet members indicated that two other major lockdown relaxations – cutting the two-metre social distancing rule and the creation of air bridges for British holidaymakers – were expected to be finalised by the “end of next week”.

Speaking to The Telegraph, a senior minister said a Downing Street review of the two-metre rule

Read More

Dog-like robots now on sale for $75,000, with conditions

You can now buy one of those unnerving animal-like robots you might have seen on YouTube — so long as you don’t plan to use it to harm or intimidate anyone.

Boston Dynamics on Tuesday started selling its four-legged Spot robots online for just under $75,000 each.

The agile robots can walk, climb stairs and observe their surroundings with cameras and other sensors. But people who buy them online must agree not to arm them or intentionally use them as weapons, among other conditions.

“The key goal for us is to make sure people trust robots,” Michael Perry, the company’s vice president for business development, said in an interview with The Associated Press. “Somebody wanted to use Spot for a haunted house and we said no to that. It frames the robot in a negative context.”

The terms and conditions state that “Spot is an amazing robot, but is not

Read More

High-Volume MD Coronavirus Testing Site Opening

MARYLAND — One week after Gov. Larry Hogan told protesters to get tested for the coronavirus, the state will open up a high-volume testing site at the Baltimore Convention Center. It will start operating Wednesday, and people can now schedule appointments online.

Those who get tested at the convention center will receive their results in two to five days, according to the University of Maryland Medical System, which is overseeing scheduling at the site.

It will be open from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday, June 17, and Friday, June 19, at 1 West Pratt Street in Baltimore.

“Our health experts are strongly encouraging anyone who attended any of the protests or gatherings in Maryland over the past two weeks to immediately get tested for the coronavirus,” Hogan said at a news conference Wednesday, June 10, as he announced the lifting of restrictions on indoor dining and starting Friday,

Read More

A glimmer of hope

Hola pandemic pals,

It’s the middle of June and COVID-19 is still here. In fact, the data indicates it’s just getting started. We’re seeing the largest daily spikes of new cases since scientists began tracking the disease back in December of 2019. At the rate we’re going, experts figure about one in every five people could end up contracting a “serious” case of the disease.

Credit: Worldometers

That’s the bad news. But, as you can see above, there’s some good news. The number of cases have gone up with the number of tests performed, but the number of deaths is trending downward. This means, in most places, medical professionals are doing a better job identifying and treating the most severe cases.

Now for the best news: there’s a new “breakthrough” treatment that’s experimentally shown to improve outcomes in the worst COVID-19 cases. It’s not a vaccine or cure, but preliminary

Read More