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  • Writer's pictureReese Phillips II

Latest Updates on Coronavirus: Older Americans Urged to Continue ‘Distancing’

Latest Updates on Coronavirus: Older Americans Urged to Continue ‘Distancing’

A new study published May 28 in The Lancet shows that many cancer patients are dying from COVID-19 at a higher rate than people without cancer. Researchers found that mortality was 6 percent for cancer patients younger than 65, 11 percent for those 65 to 74 and 25 percent for those older than 75. Males with cancer also had a higher death rate than females. Patients with progressive cancer and those with an impaired performance status “fared much, much worse,” one of the study’s corresponding authors notes.

Nearly half of adults (48 percent) say they or someone in their household have postponed or skipped medical care due to the coronavirus outbreak, according to a new poll from the Kaiser Family Foundation. However, most of those who avoided the doctor’s office during the first few months of the pandemic (68 percent) plan to make up for the delayed care as stay-at-home restrictions ease.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has added new guidance on when people with COVID-19 can end home isolation. Infected individuals can be with others when the following criteria are met: They go three days without a fever; their symptoms have improved overall; and 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared. Those who tested positive for COVID-19 but remained symptom-free can be with others once 10 days have passed since the test was taken.

A preliminary report published in the New England Journal of Medicine shows that remdesivir — an antiviral drug that received emergency use authorization from the Food and Drug Administration on May 1 — shortened recovery time in adults hospitalized with a coronavirus infection. “Given the strength of the results about remdesivir, these findings were deemed to be of immediate importance for the care of patients still participating in the trial as well as for those outside the trial who might benefit from treatment with remdesivir,” the study’s authors write.

The CDC released new resources to assist states, communities and businesses with reopening plans so they can “operate as safely as possible during the COVID-19 pandemic.” The 60-page document also offers guidance for summer camps, schools and restaurants and bars. “Decisions and strategies about how to operate are implemented at the state, tribal, local, and territorial levels because every locale is different, and individual jurisdictions have the authority and local awareness needed to protect their communities,” the CDC said in a news release.

The CDC released a health alert on May 14 to U.S. doctors, urging them to be on the lookout for a multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children that has been linked to the coronavirus. The syndrome, which the CDC says has Kawasaki disease-like features, has been seen in cases throughout Europe and the U.S. Experts warn parents and grandparents to keep an eye out for persistent fever, serious abdominal pain, trouble breathing, a sudden rash and an overall ill feeling in children.

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