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May 25,  2020 (San Diego's East County) -- Our Health and Science Highlights provide cutting edge news that could impact your health and our future—including the latest on COVID-19.



For excerpts and links to full stories, click “read more” and scroll down.


Study says smoking can double your chances of severe COVID-19 outcomes (Fox KTVU)

Researchers at UCSF published a study Tuesday indicating people with a history of smoking have nearly double the risk of having severe COVID-19 outcomes if they become infected with the new SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus. The UCSF study was a peer-reviewed and published in the Nicotine And Tobacco Research journal. It analyzed 19 studies on tobacco use among COVID-19 patients in the U.S., China and South Korea.

‘Straight-Up Fire’ in His Veins: Teen Battles New Covid Syndrome (New York Times)

Jack McMorrow, 14, awoke in agony, with heart failure. His case may help doctors understand a frightening new affliction in children linked to the coronavirus.

Kidney injury seen in more than a third of hospitalized COVID-19 patients: U.S. study (Reuters)

Over a third of patients treated for COVID-19 in a large New York medical system developed acute kidney injury, and nearly 15% required dialysis, U.S. researchers reported on Thursday.

A Double-Barreled Approach To Antibody Testing Could Improve Accuracy  (Health News) 

Last month the White House issued guidelines suggesting a way to reduce the number of false positive results in antibody tests: Run two tests. But that strategy has not yet been validated for coronavirus testing. And the details matter.

Feds urge extreme caution for reopening nursing homes (10 News)

Federal authorities are urging governors to use “extreme caution” in deciding when to resume visits at nursing homes, saying it shouldn’t come before all residents and staff have tested negative for the coronavirus for at least 28 days. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ criteria for relaxing restrictions at nursing homes come more than two months after the agency ordered homes to ban visitors.

How To Make Sense of All The COVID-19 Projections? A New Model Combines Them (NPR)

More than 82,000 people in the United States have died of COVID-19 as of Tuesday. How many more lives will be lost?

Doctors face pay cuts, furloughs and supply shortages as coronavirus pushes primary care to the brink (CNBC)

Shrinking and disappearing doctors' offices could trigger public health crises as sick patients go untreated and children do not receive important vaccines.


Apple and Google launch digital contact tracing system (ABC)

Apple and Google are getting into the digital contact tracing space, the companies jointly announced Wednesday. Together, the tech giants rolled out a COVID-19 exposure notification system, essentially a unified programming interface that will allow public health departments to create their own contact tracing applications.

Roughly half the Twitter accounts pushing to 'reopen America' are bots, researchers found (Business Insider)

There's been a surge in bot activity in the past month in online discussions about reopening America from COVID-19 shutdowns, researchers at Carnegie Mellon University said this week. The researchers analyzed over 200 million tweets discussing COVID-19 and found that roughly half the accounts were likely bots. They identified the bots by looking for accounts that tweeted more frequently than humanly possible or whose location appeared to rapidly switch among different countries.










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