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Physician’s Briefing Weekly Coronavirus Roundup

Here is what the editors at Physician’s Briefing chose as the most important COVID-19 developments for you and your practice for the week of Aug. 24 to 28, 2020. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal studies and other trusted sources that is most likely to affect clinical practice.

Model Says COVID-19 Deaths Could Surpass 317,000 by December

FRIDAY, Aug. 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) — A widely cited model for COVID-19 deaths in the United States predicts a total of 317,000 deaths by December.

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FDA Warns of Hand Sanitizers in Food-Like Packaging

FRIDAY, Aug. 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) — A warning about alcohol-based hand sanitizers in packaging that looks like food or drink has been issued by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

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Mortality, Intubation Rates Lower With Anticoagulation in COVID-19

FRIDAY, Aug. 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Among hospitalized patients with COVID-19, anticoagulation is associated with reduced mortality and intubation, according to a study published online Aug. 26 in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

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Early Use of Empiric Antibacterial Therapy Common in COVID-19

FRIDAY, Aug. 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Early empiric antibacterial therapy use is high in patients hospitalized with COVID-19, according to a study published online Aug. 21 in Clinical Infectious Diseases.

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Low Rates of Severe Disease, Death Reported for Children With COVID-19

FRIDAY, Aug. 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Severe disease and death appear to be rare among children and young people hospitalized with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19, according to an observational study in the United Kingdom published online Aug. 27 in The BMJ.

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COVID-19 Infection May Initially Present as Acute Pancreatitis

FRIDAY, Aug. 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Acute pancreatitis may be a gastrointestinal manifestation of COVID-19, according to research published online Aug. 26 in Gastroenterology.

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Maine Summer Camps Identified, Isolated COVID-19 Cases

THURSDAY, Aug. 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Three COVID-19-positive people with no symptoms were successfully identified and isolated at four overnight camps in Maine, according to research published in the Aug. 26 early-release issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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No SARS-CoV-2 RNA Seen on Surfaces in Radiation Oncology Clinic

THURSDAY, Aug. 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Testing of environmental surfaces in the radiation oncology clinic in a tertiary care COVID-19 referral center revealed no detectable severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 RNA, according to a research letter published online Aug. 27 in JAMA Oncology.

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Parents Have Contradictory Views on Childhood Vaccines

THURSDAY, Aug. 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) — The vast majority of parents believe vaccines are the best way to protect their children from infectious diseases, yet two-thirds are still nervous to take their children to their pediatrician’s office during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the results of a survey released by Orlando Health.

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Risk for COVID-19 Hospitalization Follows Usual Pattern in Lupus

THURSDAY, Aug. 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) — For patients with systemic lupus erythematosus, predictors of hospitalization include race, presence of comorbidity, and body mass index, according to a study published online July 26 in Arthritis & Rheumatology.

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Admissions for Stroke, TIA Down Early in COVID-19 Pandemic

THURSDAY, Aug. 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Admissions for stroke and transient ischemic attack have decreased during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a study published online Aug. 26 in Stroke and Vascular Neurology.

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Metabolic Syndrome Linked to Worse Outcomes in COVID-19

THURSDAY, Aug. 27, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Metabolic syndrome is associated with a lethal outcome for patients with COVID-19, according to a study published online Aug. 25 in Diabetes Care.

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U.S. Nursing Home Staff Must Be Tested Regularly for COVID-19

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 26, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Nursing home staff will have to be tested regularly for COVID-19, and facilities that fail to do so will face fines, the Trump administration said Tuesday.

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Changes to CDC COVID-19 Testing Guidelines Trigger Concern

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 26, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Experts are alarmed about revised U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines advising that people who do not have symptoms of COVID-19 do not need to be tested, even if they have recently been exposed to the new coronavirus.

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Mental Health Resilience Tied to Fewer COVID-19 Worries

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 26, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Resilience helps alleviate COVID-19-related worries as well as anxiety and depression, according to a study published online Aug. 20 in Translational Psychiatry.

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Increase in Hospital Bed Use Tied to COVID-19 Deaths in Seven Days

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 26, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Intensive care unit (ICU) and non-ICU bed use as a percentage of a state’s hospital bed capacity is significantly associated with an increase in overall COVID-19 deaths during the next seven days, according to a study published online Aug. 19 in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

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WHO: Plasma Therapy for COVID-19 Still Experimental

TUESDAY, Aug. 25, 2020 (HealthDay News) — The use of blood plasma from COVID-19 survivors to treat patients hospitalized with the disease is still considered experimental, the World Health Organization said the day after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said it would allow emergency use of the therapy.

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Prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 in Asymptomatic Children Identified

TUESDAY, Aug. 25, 2020 (HealthDay News) — The pooled prevalence of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 in asymptomatic children is 0.65 percent and is significantly associated with the incidence of COVID-19 in the general population, according to a research letter published online Aug. 25 in JAMA Pediatrics.

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Nurse Understaffing Common in Hospitals Prior to COVID-19

TUESDAY, Aug. 25, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Many hospital nurses in Illinois and New York were burned out and working in understaffed conditions immediately prior to the first wave of COVID-19 patients, according to a study published online Aug. 18 in BMJ Quality & Safety.

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Return to Hospital Infrequent After COVID-19 Admission

TUESDAY, Aug. 25, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Return to hospital after discharge for inpatients with COVID-19 is infrequent, according to a study published online Aug. 19 in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

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Web Searches Suggesting Acute Anxiety Spiked Early in COVID-19

TUESDAY, Aug. 25, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Internet searches indicative of acute anxiety peaked early in the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a research letter published online Aug. 24 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Care Delayed for Many U.S. Breast Cancer Patients Early in Pandemic

TUESDAY, Aug. 25, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Nearly half of breast cancer patients have experienced delays in care due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a study published online Aug. 9 in Breast Cancer Research and Treatment.

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World’s First Confirmed Case of COVID-19 Reinfection Reported in Hong Kong

MONDAY, Aug. 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) — The world’s first confirmed case of reinfection with the new coronavirus has been reported in Hong Kong.

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Widespread Mask Use Could Save 70,000 U.S. Lives by Dec. 1

MONDAY, Aug. 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) — There could be another 134,000 COVID-19 deaths in the United States by Dec. 1 if no new prevention measures are introduced, and the number of deaths could be much higher if rules are relaxed, researchers report. However, they also said that 70,000 lives could be saved if more people wore masks, CNN reported.

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Pop Concert Held to Learn More About COVID-19 Spread

MONDAY, Aug. 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) — About 1,500 people attended a pop concert in Germany to help researchers learn how the new coronavirus spreads in such situations.

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Staffing, PPE Shortages Continue in U.S. Nursing Homes

MONDAY, Aug. 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) — One in five U.S. nursing homes reports a severe shortage of personal protective equipment and any shortage of staff during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a report published online Aug. 20 in Health Affairs.

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FDA Approves Wider Use of Plasma as COVID-19 Treatment

MONDAY, Aug. 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) — The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Sunday cleared the way for more hospitalized COVID-19 patients to be treated with the blood plasma of COVID-19 survivors.

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Clinical Impact of Remdesivir in Moderate COVID-19 Unclear

MONDAY, Aug. 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Patients with moderate COVID-19 receiving a five-day course of remdesivir have a statistically significant difference in clinical status compared with usual care, according to a study published online Aug. 21 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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RAAS Inhibitors May Benefit HTN Patients With COVID-19

MONDAY, Aug. 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system inhibitors are beneficial for hypertensive patients with COVID-19, according to a study published online Aug. 24 in Current Atherosclerosis Reports.

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