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July 1 | Daily COVID-19 LST Report

Epidemiology

· Investigators in Sweden studied the logistics for distributing and collecting SARS-CoV-2 tests via drones and discuss how statistical modeling suggests that testing as little as 3.3% of the population through this method daily could effectively help to flatten the curve.

· A multivariable analysis of 220 hospitalized and 311 non-hospitalized cases of confirmed COVID-19 found that age greater than or equal to 65 years, black race, a history of diabetes mellitus, lack of insurance, male sex, smoking, and obesity were all independently associated with hospitalization.



Transmission & Prevention

· A social psychology survey of 704 participants concluded that people who held individualistic values, in contrast to those with collectivist attitudes, were more likely to harbor feelings of powerlessness and believe in conspiracy theories, and were also less likely to take action to reduce the spread of COVID-19.


Management

· Review of the impact of COVID-19 on immunocompromised patients found that patients with cancer and solid organ transplant may have a higher risk for severe COVID-19, greater use of antiviral and corticosteroid medication, and higher overall mortality rates, though the evidence is unclear for patients who are immunosuppressed for other reasons.


Adjusting Practice During COVID-19

· Guidelines and recommendations for practice during the pandemic include:

o Cancer radiotherapy

o Risk stratification and guidance for thalassemia patients

· A group of Canadian physicians recommend that psychiatrists ensure continuity of care during COVID-19 via telepsychiatry but still offer in-person interventions such as electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) to patients with severe psychiatric disease.


R&D: Diagnosis & Treatment

· In order to meet the demand of COVID-19 tests ordered in Portugal, hundreds of volunteers with various skill sets have been trained to help run RT-PCR tests. Through this, Portugal has been able to hugely expand its testing capacity and is now among the top 10 countries in testing per capita with 15% of testing being completed at institutions consisting primarily of volunteers.

· A retrospective study of 802 hospitalized patients with clinical symptoms and/or CT imaging indicative of COVID-19 found that