Tulane Outbreak Daily – September 3, 2020

Featured Headlines

C.D.C. Tells States How to Prepare for Covid-19 Vaccine by Early November – NYT

As President Trump pushes the possibility of a vaccine this year, the C.D.C. has outlined technical scenarios to state public health officials for an unidentified Vaccine A and Vaccine B.

UNC Researchers Publish Striking Images of SARS-CoV-2 Infected Cells – Univ NC

SARS-CoV-2 virions (red) produced by human airway epithelia. (Ehre Lab, UNC School of Medicine)

The UNC School of Medicine laboratory of Camille Ehre, PhD, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, produced striking images in respiratory tract cultures of the infectious form of the SARS-CoV-2 virus produced by infected respiratory epithelial cells. The New England Journal of Medicine featured this work in its “Images in Medicine” section, published today.







Op/Ed: Op-Ed: That CDC 6% COVID Death Rate, Explained

Fauci urges schools to keep students on campus as outbreaks spread – NBC News

Only a few weeks into fall semester, colleges and universities across the country are urgently trying to control clusters of COVID-19 infections on their campuses. Thousands of cases have been reported nationwide, forcing universities to switch to virtual classes and either quarantine or, in some cases, send students back home whether or not they’re sick.

The summer sun didn’t stop covid-19. Here’s why. – Washington Post

This weekend is the unofficial end of summer, the season when, President Trump had promised, the weather would make covid-19 disappear, like a miracle. Millions of Americans shared that hope and it’s easy to understand why: although many of history’s most dreaded epidemic diseases — cholera, polio, diphtheria — are at their worst in summer, the closest precedents for covid-19 seemed to be the influenza pandemic of 1918, the SARS pandemic of 2002 or the annual seasonal flu, all of which, as with so many respiratory infections, tend to fade away as summer arrives.

Groups Jockey for COVID-19 Vax ‘High Priority’ Status – Med Page Today

The wide swath of groups receiving the highest priority for any potential COVID-19 vaccine should expand to include particular races and ethnicities, as well as certain occupations, advocates told the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine (NASEM) on Wednesday.

Health agency: COVID-19 hitting health workers hard in Americas – CIDRAP

The scale of the COVID-19 pandemic in the Americas is unprecedented, an official with the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) said today in a press conference. And nowhere has its impact been bigger than in the healthcare workforce.

N95 Mask Shortages Still the Rule – MedPageToday

Nurses are increasingly being forced to reuse N-95 masks, sometimes for five days or longer, and growing numbers of nurses said they feel unsafe reusing masks even after they were decontaminated, according to the latest in a series of nursing surveys.

White House’s Birx denies ‘herd immunity’ policy under consideration – Reuters

The White House Coronavirus Task Force coordinator, Dr. Deborah Birx, on Wednesday dismissed the notion that the Trump administration was considering a strategy of allowing Americans to become infected with coronavirus in order to reach “herd immunity.”

How To Protect Yourself From Coronavirus That Can Linger In The Air – NPR

Video at the link – We all know that if someone with the coronavirus coughs or sneezes on you, you’re at risk of catching it. But even when we speak or laugh or breathe, particles come out of our noses and mouths. Big bits of spittle can fly out when you’re shouting and singing, along with respiratory droplets and tiny aerosolized particles that come out in clouds that may linger in the air. And if we’re infected with the coronavirus — even if we don’t have any symptoms — those excretions could contain live, contagious SARS-COV-2 that can make others sick.

Clinical Considerations

Studies, WHO back steroid use in very ill COVID-19 patients – CIDRAP

JAMA today published the results of three randomized controlled trials spanning 12 countries, a prospective meta-analysis, and a commentary, all but one—which had inconclusive results—supporting the use of systemic corticosteroids in critically ill COVID-19 patients, regardless of age, sex, duration of symptoms before treatment, or the need for mechanical ventilation.

Study reveals possible new coronavirus entry points – Cornell

Since the start of the pandemic, scientists have learned that SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, is quite cunning. When the virus enters the body, it’s capable of turning off an entire branch of the immune system, allowing it to spread for days before the immune system can sound the alarm on the intruder. However, researchers still don’t know the full scope of tissues and cell types that are most vulnerable to SARS-CoV-2. Most research has focused on identifying genes and pathways that facilitate the virus’s entry into lung cells – yet both clinical and scientific data indicate that it can cause damage in a wide range of organs.

Official Reporting for September 3, 2020

World Health Organization

Weekly Epi Update 3

Cumulative Cases: 25,884,895

Cumulative Deaths: 859,130


Confirmed Cases: 26,059,065

Deaths: 863,535

Johns Hopkins

Confirmed Cases: 26,198,095

Deaths: 866,598

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Total cases: 6,087,403
Total deaths: 185,092

Surveillance Headlines


South Carolina: USC over 1,000 active student virus cases, nearly double since last week – WLTX

Minnesota: First covid-19 death linked to Sturgis Motorcycle Rally reported in Minnesota – Washington Post

New Orleans: NOLA hospitals discontinued treatment and sent infected patients back to their homes to die – Propublica

San Francisco, California: Deadliest day of the pandemic – Mercury News


Hong Kong: Finds Six Virus Cases From China-Backed Testing Blitz – Bloomberg

Science and Tech


Health Officials Worry Nation’s Not Ready for COVID-19 Vaccine – Kaiser Health Network

Public health departments, which have struggled for months to test and trace everyone exposed to the novel coronavirus, are now being told to prepare to distribute COVID-19 vaccines as early as Nov. 1.

Covid Vaccine Frontrunners Will Soon See Their Moment of Truth – Bloomberg

Drugmakers made big promises for a quick turnaround on coronavirus vaccines. The moment of truth for the front-runners is coming as soon as this month. The first results showing whether a vaccine can stop people from getting the virus could come by mid-September from AstraZeneca Plc, according to Airfinity Ltd., an analytics company that tracks drug trials. The drugmaker has pledged as many as 30 million doses to the U.K. by the end of the month.

Published Research

Chest CT in patients with a moderate or high pretest probability of COVID-19 and negative swab – Chest Radiology

Age-Adjusted Risk Factors Associated with Mortality and Mechanical Ventilation Utilization Amongst COVID-19 Hospitalizations—a Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis – SN Comprehensive Clinical Medicine

Coping in Quarantine

A poem, from 1918

Oh, we are quarantined, I guess
For ‘bout a million years
But if we don’t get out of here
We’ll burst right out in tears

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