“Coronavirus vaccine tracker: how close are we to a vaccine?” – The Guardian / July 21, 2020 / Data: World Health Organization (WHO)


U.S. futures rose early Tuesday following gains as the European Union agreed on a $2.06 trillion aid package that will dole out billions in the form of grants and loans. The agreement is unique in that the stimulus funds will be raised by selling bonds collectively, rather than individually, and for the fact that the money will go to member nations hit hardest by the pandemic as grants rather than loans.

Coca-cola has reported a 28% plunge in revenue due to the closure of stadiums and theaters across the U.S., although company executives say that revenue began to improve last month with some reopenings. Disney World fully reopened its theme parks in Florida last week, notifying potential visitors with a disclaimer on its website that any visitors are voluntarily assuming the risks associated with COVID-19. Many of the theme park’s thousands of employees have expressed concern for their safety, especially as Florida’s soaring cases make it a new virus hotspot. 

Microsoft’s professional networking site LinkedIn will lay off 960 employees as the pandemic flattens hiring and recruiting efforts. Amazon has confirmed the company will delay Prime Day, a two-day summer sale, amid continued heightened demand for delivered goods. 

Public health officials are citing “infinite” demand for COVID-19 testing across the U.S. as cases and hospitalizations continue to climb, an issue they say will not be contained until virus numbers are reduced to more manageable numbers. In the meantime, two early COVID-19 vaccine trials – a University of Oxford study and a small study in Wuhan – are showing promise. If the Oxford vaccine proves effective, the U.S. could be equipped to mass produce it by the end of the year. Still, specialists warn of the high likelihood that a successful vaccine will require more than one shot, which could complicate the effort to immunize billions around the globe. Congress will meet with vaccine developers this morning to discuss pricing and contracts. In Houston, clinics are searching for volunteers to receive the experimental Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, advertising a payment of $2,000 for participating.

While crime in major U.S. cities has dropped by as much as 30% in some places, experts cite a “ troubling rise” in homicides and shootings. Local leaders say a variety of factors stemming from the pandemic could be causing the peculiar trend, such as fewer people going through the criminal justice system and increased poverty and situational frustrations that lead to violence. In Mexico, homicides have similarly grown, especially killings of women.   

German scientists will host a pop concert at the end of August to explore how the coronavirus spreads at large gatherings. The experiment will use fluorescent hand sanitizer and other precautions to determine if there is the potential for organizers to hold a safe event that minimizes infection.

What happens if a child has coronavirus when schools reopen, and how can districts prevent stigma? – cleveland – 7/20/2020
The way that children respond to chronic conditions is varied — some children are exceedingly transparent while others want to keep their information private. But COVID-19 does open up some opportunities for bullying, like threatening to spread germs through physical touch.

The hazards of “heroism” in the time of COVID-19 – World Economic Forum – 7/21/2020
When I praise someone as a hero, it serves my needs, not the needs of the “hero”. Calling someone else a hero – a nurse, a politician, a factory worker – can make us feel better. In a time of uncertainty and danger, imagining that someone else has special powers lets us feel a bit less helpless and vulnerable. Many of us are desperate to find this kind of relief.

What Coronavirus Job Losses Reveal About Racism in America – ProPublica – 7/20/2020
For some groups of Black workers, the situation is even worse. Before the pandemic hit, the unemployment rate among young Black workers, which has historically been high, was 16%. That’s worse than the national unemployment rate in April, which prompted almost $3 trillion in emergency relief from lawmakers.

Single-use masks could be a coronavirus hazard if we don’t dispose of them properly – The Conversation – 7/21/2020
The effect on the environment is an important but separate issue to the health risks we’re discussing here. Alarmingly, from what we’ve observed, people are discarding masks in communal rubbish bins and even leaving them in empty shopping trolleys.

How the coronavirus outbreak is roiling the film and entertainment industries – Vox – 7/20/2020
On July 20, with case numbers rising around the US and most theaters remaining closed, Warner Bros. announced that  Tenet’s release would be delayed indefinitely. Mulan  is now set to open on July 24, 2020, while Jungle Cruise, which had been set to release that day, moved to July 30, 2021. An untitled  Indiana Jones film moved from July 9, 2021, to July 29, 2022.


Dr. David Samadi @drdavidsamadi 21 Jul President Trump has said that he will be resuming his Coronavirus Task Force briefings once again today. Look for it around 5:00pm. Your best bet is to find a good place to watch on Youtube as most of the major networks do not carry him live anymore.

Slate @Slate 21 Jul John Oliver explains why people are so susceptible to believing misinformation about the virus—and how to stop the spread.

Jerry Daykin @jdaykin 20 Jul Anti-mask Facebook group suspended for spreading coronavirus misinformation via @mashable

Apoorva Mandavilli @apoorva_nyc 20 Jul @CNN: Please, for the love of all T cells, correct this. Antibodies wane after a few weeks is not the same as “immunity wanes.”

Mun-Keat Looi @munkeatlooi 21 Jul “I do not trust the police. I don’t trust the media. I don’t trust doctors. And I don’t trust the government. I trust my friends and my family.”


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