· Indian computer scientists created a mathematical model to predict current trends in COVID-19 disease spread in the United States of America. Using the SIPHERD mode, authors predicted reported cases in the USA are lower than actual cases and relaxation of social distancing measures would increase deaths by 47,000 with an infection to fatality ratio of 0.65%. Although these findings are model-based, authors argue their results emphasize the importance of continued social distancing measures to mitigate the spread of SARS-CoV-2.
· A science journalist describes an investigation conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Florida Department of Health into an outbreak of multidrug resistant Candida auris in a COVID-19 ICU in Florida. A point prevalence survey of 67 patients showed 52% of patients were colonized (n=35) and that providers used multiple gown and glove layers (not recommended) with extended use of the base layer. Because no further C. auris transmission was detected after personal protective equipment practices improved, the author suggests this case highlight the importance of adhering to recommended infection control and PPE practices beyond COVID-19 prevention.
Transmission & Prevention
· The deputy editor of JAMA released guidance suggesting that both doses of the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines are necessary when seeking adequate immunity from SARS-CoV-2 infection. It is argued that the immune response to one dose is not sufficient, and that receiving only once dose may promote the development of vaccine-resistant variants of the virus.
Internists, geneticists, and obstetricians from Indonesia conducted a systematic review and meta analysis of 44 studies (n=36,716) investigating the use of convalescent plasma therapy (CPT) to treat human coronaviruses. They found that CPT reduced mortality (RR 0.57, p < 0.001, I2 = 44%) and increased likelihood of discharge (RR 2.53, p < 0.001, I2 = 3%). Authors suggest CPT has a therapeutic benefit, but since many patients received other treatments, recommend investigating the role of CPT in conjunction with other medications for patients with COVID-19.