“Increasing Share Say Coronavirus-Related Stress is Negatively Impacting Their Mental Health” Kaiser Family Foundation, July 24, 2020 / Image: KFF Health Tracking Poll: Coronavirus: Reopening, Schools, And The Government Response


U.S. stocks are up as investors anticipate a week of corporate earnings and lawmakers continue coronavirus stimulus negotiations. The $1 trillion GOP coronavirus relief plan will be released Monday, according to Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin. The stimulus is set to include $1,200 checks and will extend the eviction moratorium, White House economic advisor Larry Kudlow said Sunday. Global stocks traded mixed Monday morning as investors monitor the progress of the pandemic worldwide and tensions between the U.S. and China grow. The U.S. consulate in Chengdu closed Monday after Beijing ordered it to shut and last week the U.S. government abruptly ordered the closure of China’s consulate in Houston, Texas. 

Friday marked the end of the current eviction moratorium and the $600 weekly boost in enhanced unemployment benefits ceased over the weekend. In parts of Texas, evictions resuming have already left unemployed renters and undocumented immigrants with few options. An analysis of more than 8,000 evictions filings found that Black and brown Americans are disproportionately on the brink of losing their living quarters. One ProPublica analysis showed the ban on evictions at federally-backed properties that Congress passed in March played a “significant role in shielding the nation’s renters from the risk of losing their homes during the pandemic.”  

The U.S. currently accounts for a quarter of global coronavirus cases as officials work to slow the spread. Florida has surpassed New York City for its tally of coronavirus cases and currently, only California has more, leading with 450,242 cases. As cities work to contain the spread of the virus, some U.S. police say they will resist enforcing coronavirus mask mandates. The pushback surrounding the long-standing contentious topic concerns health officials, who worry a lack of enforcement could undermine what they call a simple step that can be taken to slow the spread. 

The U.S. based drugmaker Moderna was awarded $472 million from the U.S. to support its vaccine development. Moderna said the funding will support its late-stage clinical development including an expanded Phase 3 study of its vaccine candidate. The drugmaker received $483 million from the U.S. federal agency that funds disease-fighting technology in April. As drugmakers and scientists rush to develop a vaccine, experts caution the public to maintain realistic expectations – first-generation vaccines often do not stop the virus entirely, but rather mitigate its damage. Additionally, despite a jump on manufacturing, there will likely not be enough initial supply to address the scale of a global pandemic. 

Federal public health officials recently released a new strategy aiming to improve data collection and take steps to address stark inequalities in how coronavirus is affecting Americans. Officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention emphasized the disportionately high impact on certain minority groups is not driven by genetics, but rather by social conditions – context that is important in order to avoid stigmatizing and victimizing. Coronavirus has sparked a collection of data in a way that’s never been done with an infectious disease, one doctor for the John Hopkins Center for Health and Security said. Another doctor urged individuals to approach everything with skepticism because while data can illuminate trends, it can also be misleading and difficult to interpret. 

Nearly 75% of detainees in U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement custody in a Virginia facility have contracted COVID-19, rising to 268 confirmed cases out of the 360 immigrants. There have been a total of 3,736 confirmed coronavirus cases among those in ICE custody, with over 16,000 tested. Hundreds of migrant parents and children remain detained in facilities with outbreaks nearly a month after a federal court ruled all children must be released. 

As primary elections take place across the country, some states worry about a shortage of poll workers amid the pandemic. Election judges tend to be older, which means they could be more vulnerable to COVID-19. Many are deciding not to risk working the polls this year. Local governments are also scrambling to find people to staff polling centers for the presidential election in November. Recruitment efforts are increasingly targeting younger people, as data shows more than two-thirds of poll workers are over the age of 61. 

Coronavirus: how countries aim to get the vaccine first by cutting opaque supply deals – The Conversation – 7/27/2020
The University of Oxford recently published promising news about the results from the phase one/two trials of the vaccine it is developing for COVID-19. The clinical trials, involving 1,077 volunteers in the UK aged 18-55, showed that the AZD1222 vaccine appeared to be safe and generated the all-important dual antibody and T-cell immune response.

Covid-19 surge helps AI researchers amass lung scans – STAT – 7/27/2020
Little more than six months after the pandemic emerged, a number of researchers and companies are already testing the ability of AI systems to aid diagnosis of Covid-19 from lung images, and with the data on patients flowing more freely, researchers like Cohen say they can begin to build more reliable AI models that seek to predict the severity of disease, gauge patients’ response to various treatments, and determine whether they are likely to need a ventilator or transfer to an intensive care unit.

How The Pandemic Could Force A Generation Of Mothers Out Of The Workforce – FiveThirtyEight – 7/27/2020
Studies have shown that women already shoulder much of the burden of caring for and educating their children at home; now, they’re also more likely than men to have lost their jobs thanks to the pandemic. And the collapse of the child care and public education infrastructure that so many parents rely on will only magnify these problems, even pushing some women out of the labor force entirely.

Some Countries Reopened Schools. What Did They Learn About Kids and Covid? – Wired – 7/27/2020
As school officials try to figure out whether to open classrooms this fall, the science they need to make these tough choices is still evolving. A few things are clear: That most kids don’t become as seriously ill from Covid-19 as adults, and have much lower fatality rates. […] But the question of how likely children are to spread it to teachers, staff and other students still hasn’t been settled.

You Can Soon Own Antiviral Jeans That Could Kill Coronavirus – DesignTaxi – 7/27/2020
Swiss performance textile company HeiQ has developed HeiQ Viroblock, one of the world’s first antiviral technologies proven to curb COVID-19 transmissions through fabrics. Now, the company will be partnering with denim brands DL1961 and Warp + Weft to launch fashion collections using the antimicrobial technology.


ABC News @ABC 27 Jul New technology shows the standard for reopening may be about testing buildings and not just people.

KVUE News @KVUE 27 Jul The U.S. has authorized the first #COVID19 test for people without symptoms. The @US_FDA’s approval is also the second to allow pooled sample testing. #coronavirus

New York Times Opinion @nytopinion 27 Jul Coronavirus tests “are now widely available in many places, but results are often taking so long to come back that it is more or less pointless to get tested,” writes @RosenthalHealth. What is going on, and how can it be fixed?

BakersfieldNow @bakersfieldnow 27 Jul As universities hurry to make plans for virus testing, federal officials are warning that they could overload labs that process tests for hospitals.

CBS This Morning @CBSThisMorning 27 Jul Florida has now surpassed New York as the state with the second largest number of #coronavirus cases. It’s also one of many states where testing is a major issue. Some officials say they have enough tests, but the delay in testing results is the problem. @DavidBegnaud has more.


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