The Doctor Behind the Disputed COVID Data

Several physicians who worked with Dr. Sapan Desai during his residency at Duke University Medical Center said it became standard practice to double check anything he said about a patient. (Pete Kiehart/The New York Times)
Several physicians who worked with Dr. Sapan Desai during his residency at Duke University Medical Center said it became standard practice to double check anything he said about a patient. (Pete Kiehart/The New York Times)

A college degree at 19. A medical school graduate with a Ph.D. at 27.

By the time he completed training in vascular surgery in 2014, Dr. Sapan Desai had cast himself as an ambitious physician, an entrepreneur with an MBA and a prolific researcher published in medical journals.

Then the novel coronavirus hit, and Desai seized the moment. With a Harvard professor, he produced two studies in May that almost instantly disrupted multiple clinical trials amid the pandemic.

One study’s findings were particularly dramatic, reporting that anti-malaria drugs like hydroxychloroquine, which President Donald Trump promoted, were linked to increased deaths of COVID-19 patients. But that study and another were retracted in June by the renowned

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‘A day of hope.’ Pence visits Miami for launch of COVID vaccine trial.

With President Donald Trump’s poll numbers flagging in Florida and the state continuing to struggle with one of the nation’s highest rates of new COVID-19 cases, Vice President Mike Pence visited the University of Miami’s Miller School of Medicine on Monday to focus attention on one of the pandemic’s few potential bright spots: the rapid development of a vaccine against the disease.

Noting the president’s emphasis on speed, Pence said the federal government has positioned itself through public-private collaborations with drug makers to ramp up mass production of a vaccine at the first sign of its safety and effectiveness.

“We’re actually having these companies produce the vaccines as we speak, and as soon as they’re confirmed to be safe and effective we’ll have tens of millions of doses ready to distribute across the country,” Pence said, after he met with doctors and researchers at UM’s medical campus in downtown

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‘We have to learn how to live with COVID’

Hundreds of messages from parents and educators flooded in as soon as the Chicago Public Schools’ first fall reopening feedback meeting Monday opened up to the audience for questions — many doubting the district’s safety protocols and wanting more detail for what happens when someone in school tests positive for COVID-19.

In response to many of the concerns, CPS officials repeatedly highlighted the district’s proposal to split students into “pods” of 15 to minimize contact with other classmates.

CPS CEO Janice Jackson said coronavirus will likely be a concern “not just for a few months until a magical vaccination appears” but for the next year-and-a-half to two years.

“Even with what we know about COVID and the risk being minimal for children, the thought of one child getting it freaks everyone out, so we want to make sure people understand we take that seriously,” Jackson said. “But I think the

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Pet cat in UK catches Covid from its owners

There is no evidence to suggest that pets directly transmit the virus to humans (and this is not the cat that the virus has been detected in) - AFP
There is no evidence to suggest that pets directly transmit the virus to humans (and this is not the cat that the virus has been detected in) – AFP
Coronavirus Article Bar with counter ..
Coronavirus Article Bar with counter ..

A pet cat has fallen ill with coronavirus in the UK after apparently catching Covid-19 from its owners.

The infection was confirmed following tests at the Animal and Plant Health Agency (Apha) laboratory in Weybridge, Surrey, on July 22, and is the first confirmed case of an animal infection with the coronavirus strain in the UK.

Yvonne Doyle, medical director at Public Health England (PHE), said: “This is the first case of a domestic cat testing positive for Covid-19 in the UK but should not be a cause for alarm.

“The investigation into this case suggests that the infection was spread from humans to animal, and not the other way round.

“At this time, there

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How kids and teens are coping with screen time as they learn during COVID quarantine

Since mid-March, when most schools around the U.S. closed due to COVID-19 precautions, kids and teens have had to quickly adapt to learning virtually — which means more sitting and more screen time. Hanging out with friends after class or on weekends became a thing of the past as health officials called for social distancing measures.

The last pandemic occurred over a hundred years ago, well before “screen-time” became a thing. Though the health implications of increased screen time among young people has been studied over the past decade, the effects of more time spent online as a substitute for in-school learning, hasn’t yet been mined.

Doctors in many fields, however, such as physical medicine, psychology and ophthalmology, are already spotting signs and symptoms that could indicate future trends of how increased screen time for virtual learning, combined with a reduction of in-person interaction, is affecting young people’s lives.


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Can You Get COVID Again? It’s Very Unlikely, Experts Say

Megan Kent near her home in Salem, Mass., on July 17, 2020. (Kayana Szymczak/The New York Times)
Megan Kent near her home in Salem, Mass., on July 17, 2020. (Kayana Szymczak/The New York Times)

The anecdotes are alarming. A woman in Los Angeles seemed to recover from COVID-19 but weeks later took a turn for the worse and tested positive again. A New Jersey doctor claimed several patients healed from one bout only to become reinfected with the coronavirus. And another doctor said a second round of illness was a reality for some people, and was much more severe.

These recent accounts tap into people’s deepest anxieties that they are destined to succumb to COVID over and over, feeling progressively sicker, and will never emerge from this nightmarish pandemic. And these stories fuel fears that we won’t be able to reach herd immunity — the ultimate destination where the virus can no longer find enough victims to pose a deadly threat.

But the anecdotes are just that

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Social media firms let misinformation spread ‘virulently’ on their platforms during Covid, say MPs


Social media giants allowed misinformation about coronavirus to spread “virulently” across their platforms because duty of care laws are still not in place to regulate them, MPs say today.

The Commons culture committee cited evidence of a range of harms from dangerous hoax treatments and anti-vaccination propaganda to conspiracy theories that led to attacks on 5G engineers.

It said an online harms regulator must be appointed now to hold social media platforms to account and warned that until the proposed duty of care was introduced, internet companies would not be compelled to act.

MPs also accused the platforms of using business models which disincentivise action against misinformation while affording opportunities for some to monetise misleading content.

Julian Knight, chair of the committee, said: “We are calling on the Government to name the regulator now and get on with the ‘world-leading’ legislation on social media that we’ve long been promised.

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Covid Leaves Its Mark on Three Health Giants

(Bloomberg Opinion) — Health-care earnings season is firmly here, with reports now in from three pillars of the sector: pharmacy giant Walgreen Boots Alliance Inc., health insurer UnitedHealth Group Inc. and drug-and-device conglomerate Johnson & Johnson. Against the backdrop of a global pandemic, each had a singular quarter. And while experiences varied given the different niches each of the companies occupy, taken together they present a comprehensive picture of the outbreak’s impact on the industry and the risks it still poses.

Walgreens, the first to report on July 9, was the hardest hit in many respects because its pharmacy counters are surrounded by retail offerings that were affected by economy-slowing efforts to contain the virus. The results also point to big trans-Atlantic differences in dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic. A stringent U.K. lockdown led to enormous sales declines at the company’s stores there. Varied and often shorter U.S. shutdowns kept

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COVID Fear Is Keeping Chronically Ill People From Getting Medical Care

The novel coronavirus pandemic is keeping Americans away from the doctor’s office. For most people, that means little more than postponing a dental checkup or enduring a minor illness at home. 

But those with chronic medical conditions ― especially ailments that make them more susceptible to infections like COVID-19 ― face a nerve-wracking choice between staying home and letting their health deteriorate or taking their chances with the virus to get their regular care.

An estimated 45% of Americans, or about 133 million people, have some kind of chronic medical condition, like diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease and arthritis, according to an analysis published in 2018.

These ailments require ongoing care in the form of frequent doctor visits, lab tests, scans, and medications administered in medical facilities. But these facilities are also places where people can contract the coronavirus, making life-or-death decisions about other health care more complicated. 


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As COVID closure drags out, AerialCLT is among the Charlotte gyms trying to hang on

AerialCLT, a Charlotte studio known for its aerial silks and trapeze classes, is teetering on the potential of a permanent closure due to the COVID-19 crisis — but the owner isn’t giving up.

In an Instagram announcement on Tuesday, the studio wrote: “AerialCLT Family, we have had 8.5 years of serving you, our community. It is because of you that we have strived to do our very best to get through the past 3.5 months. With your support, we made it further than we thought we would be able to in the beginning of quarantine. We are still applying for grants, loans, rent forgiveness and any other bits of help. To be clear, we are not giving up. We just don’t know what’s next.”

After North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper announced that gyms would not be able to reopen in June, the studio announced its — hopefully temporary — closure.

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