New Tx guidelines, more infections

Editor’s Note: Find the latest news and guidance from COVID-19 at Medscape’s Coronavirus Resource Center.

Here are the coronavirus stories that Medscape editors around the world think you need to know today:

US Guidelines Add Dexamethasone Recommendations

The COVID-19 Treatment Guidelines Panel from the National Institutes of Health has added a recommendation to prescribe dexamethasone for patients with COVID-19 who are mechanically ventilated or require supplemental oxygen. Citing the RECOVERY trial for hospitalized patients in the UK, the panel advises using the drug at a dose of 6 mg per day for up to 10 days, with a strong recommendation for patients with mechanical ventilation and a moderate recommendation for patients requiring supplemental oxygen but not mechanically ventilated. The panel says the drug should not be offered to COVID-19 patients who do not require supplemental oxygen.

The Infectious Diseases Society of America also added dexamethasone recommendations to its treatment guidelines for patients with COVID-19 this week.

10x reported COVID-19 infections

Officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate that more than 20 million Americans may have been infected with SARS-CoV-2, Reuters reports, while only a tenth of those have been reported. cases. They based this estimate on serological tests, which identified antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 in an average of 10 people for each known case of COVID-19. More than 120,000 Americans have died from the disease so far.

Texas pauses reopening

The Texas governor temporarily paused the state’s reopening on Thursday as COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations in the state continued to increase. Texas recorded 6,000 new cases on Monday and has experienced record hospitalizations for 13 days in a row.

“Right now, it is clear that the increase in cases is largely due to certain types of activities, including Texans who congregate in bars,” the Texas governor said in a press release. “The actions in this executive order are essential to our mission to quickly contain this virus and improve public health.”

The new executive order ordered bars and similar establishments, as well as rafting and tubing businesses to be closed, and a maximum capacity of 50% for restaurants in indoor restaurants.

Why is the average age of COVID-19 cases decreasing?

The median age of new COVID-19 cases is decreasing in some areas, but what does that mean? Biostatist Natalie E. Dean, PhD, explains three things that could be happening: more testing, better protection for older people, and more infections in younger adults.

“Reality is almost certainly a mixture of all three explanations,” he writes, “and will vary from place to place.”

Vaccine distribution planning

Developing a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine and distributing it to all Americans will be a difficult feat, but experts from the CDC Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices are already beginning to plan, drawing on the lessons learned from the H1N1 influenza pandemic 2009. An example: prioritizing for initial vaccination those with the highest risk of serious illness and health care personnel.

Remdesivir backed in Europe

The European Medicines Agency has recommended conditional approval of remdesivir for COVID-19 patients older than 12 years with pneumonia requiring oxygen. It is the first treatment to be approved in Europe. Remdesivir is supported for seriously ill COVID-19 patients in the United States, India, and South Korea, and is approved in Japan.

The week that was not in COVID-19

This week, in the COVID-19 news, researchers announced a study on how coronaviruses infect bats, technology companies introduced products to promote careful handwashing, and scientists described the prevalence of antibodies to SARS-CoV. -2 in four different populations in Wuhan, China. But you didn’t see these headlines on Medscape. This is why.

The oral COVID-19 vaccine in development

The United States government will fund a non-human primate study of an investigational COVID-19 oral vaccine as part of Operation Warp Speed, its program to accelerate the development of vaccines for the disease. Vaxart, the company that develops the tablet vaccine, announced the news today.

In Memory

As front-line healthcare workers care for patients with COVID-19, they commit to doing difficult and exhausting work and are also at risk of infection. More than 1500 worldwide have died.

Medscape has released a commemorative list to commemorate them. We will continue to update this list as necessary. Please help us ensure this list is complete by submitting names with an age, profession or specialty and location using this form.

If you want to share other experiences, stories or concerns related to the pandemic, join the conversation here.

Victoria Giardina is the editorial intern at Medscape. She has previously written for Dr. Oz Show and is currently a national lifestyle writer for Your campus . She can be contacted at [email protected] or on Twitter @VickyRGiardina .

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