Coronavirus may not be slowed down by warmer weather, scientists warn
PHILADELPHIA — Hoping that we make it to warmer weather before the coronavirus possibly arrives in the United States in force?Don’t bother, scientists say. Unlike with the seasonal flu, the change of seasons may not matter much to the coronavirus.While it is possible that this virus, like many other respiratory viruses, will not survive as readily in warm temperatures, it will be encountering a “completely susceptible” U.S. population, said Maciej F. Boni, an associate professor of biology at Pennsylvania State University.Hardly anyone in this country has been exposed to the new virus (other t...
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Ann McFeatters: We're paying the price for Trump's cuts
WASHINGTON — We’ve suddenly leaped into a real-life thriller movie where the scientists are frantically and futilely warning about a pandemic and the political leaders are pooh-poohing it, determined to squelch fear that might hurt business.One of Donald Trump’s potentially most fateful acts as president in 2018 was firing the scientist in charge of preparing for a pandemic – a disease that sweeps the globe too fast to be contained — and axing the global health team. Unpersuaded that he might face a global disease catastrophe, this year Trump is proposing a 16% cut in the budget of the Centers...
Tribune News Service
Coronavirus masks: Can't find one? Would bandanna work? Does it matter?
Fears of a coronavirus pandemic have spurred a run on face masks worn to reduce chances of inhaling airborne virus from someone else’s coughs and sneezes.Store shelves are empty and so are the stockrooms of online e-tailers, from the mighty Amazon to drug store chains like CVS.Now what? Well, for the record, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention doesn’t recommend face masks for those who aren’t sick or caring for someone with the disease. Instead, just keep your distance (six feet) from others, cover your nose and mouth if you cough or sneeze, wash your hands and stay home if you...
The Mercury News
Widespread coronavirus quarantine would create captive audience for TV stations, Nexstar says
While health officials warn of “significant disruption” and the stock market drops over coronavirus fears, WGN-TV owner Nexstar Media Group sees an economic upside: If people end up hunkered down at home during a widespread quarantine, it could mean more television viewers.At least that’s the take of Perry Sook, the chairman and CEO of Dallas-based Nexstar, which owns WGN in Chicago and nearly 200 other TV stations across the country.“If you’re quarantined in your home and one of the few things you can do is watch television, I think advertisers see the benefit in that,” said Sook during a fou...
Trump taps Pence to lead coronavirus response, says US is 'very, very ready'
President Donald Trump on Wednesday tapped Vice President Mike Pence — who has absolutely no medical experience — to lead the U.S. response to the coronavirus amid mounting concerns that the administration isn’t doing enough to combat the burgeoning epidemic.Speaking to reporters at the White House, Trump sought to downplay the severity of the rapidly spreading virus and said he appointed Pence because he’s “very good on health care,” apparently railroading Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, who has spearheaded the coronavirus task force so far.“He is really an expert in the field,...
New York Daily News
Coronavirus outbreak in US: Not 'if' but 'when,' CDC says
ATLANTA — A coronavirus outbreak in the U.S. is not a question of “if” but “when,” officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Tuesday.“The coronavirus outbreak is rapidly evolving and spreading,” said Dr. Nancy Messonnier, director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases. “Cases are appearing worldwide without a known source of exposure, and successful containment at U.S. borders is becoming problematic.“There is no vaccine or drug available to treat it,” Messonnier said during a media conference call.Before the call, Messonnier recounted a conv...
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
This year's flu shot has cut doctor visits for flu nearly by half, CDC reports
This year’s flu shot is doing a fairly average job of protecting people against the pervasive winter virus, according to the annual interim effectiveness report released Thursday by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.The agency said the shot has been 45% effective overall and 55% effective in children. The vaccine was less effective for influenza A than B and did considerably worse among 18- to 49-year-olds, where it was only 25% effective. Against one type of influenza A, H1N1, it had no proven effectiveness in younger adults. Previous seasons have ranged from 40% to 60% effe...
The Philadelphia Inquirer
How were coronavirus patients evacuated from ship? With Kansas City group's ingenuity
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A Kansas City research institute became part of the international novel coronavirus story this week when a unique, high-tech biocontainment pod it designed was used in the evacuation of more than 300 Americans quarantined on a cruise ship off the coast of Japan.The U.S. State Department owns four of the units created by MRIGlobal, formerly the Midwest Research Institute.The department said 14 of the Americans on the Diamond Princess who tested positive for the virus “were moved in the most expeditious and safe manner to a specialized containment area on the evacuation aircra...
The Kansas City Star
Editorial: Mishaps and mistakes help globalize the coronavirus pandemic
Professionals devoted to preventing global pandemics know best how to do their jobs — when they’re left to do their jobs. The danger comes when politicians and bureaucrats intervene with an eye toward easing human suffering or minimizing political fallout and wind up hastening the spread of the very viruses they’re fighting. One bad decision after another helped make the 2014 Ebola scare far worse than it should have been. The new novel coronavirus pandemic is exposing an entirely new dimension in bad calls.The plight of 380 Americans stuck aboard the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan is a...
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
She made it through two weeks of quarantine. Now it's time for dinner with her husband.
WEBSTER GROVES, Mo. — Ken Warren marches across his own front lawn, places two bags of groceries down on the concrete stoop, pushes the doorbell and retreats 25 feet.Half a minute passes in silence. Did she hear? Warren, 76, cautiously approaches again and has to hustle back as it swings opens.His wife, Tao Jiang Warren, 56, steps into the cold sunlight of Thursday afternoon, smiles and waves.“Heyyy!” she says. “How are you? Aww, thank you, thank you!”“There’s bread pudding in there,” he says, voice raised over the rush of traffic. “And there’s ice cream and extra whipped cream.”Tao Warren has...
St. Louis Post-Dispatch