Coronavirus Infection Rate Rising but Scope for More, Indian Survey Shows | World News

BENGALURU (Reuters) – Coronavirus infection rates among adults in India have risen sharply, a survey showed on Tuesday, although a large percentage of the population has not yet been exposed, suggesting there is scope for cases to rise much further.

In the serological survey conducted in August and September, blood samples were tested for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies. If a person tests positive for the antibodies, it means they were infected with the virus at some point.

Blood samples collected from more than 29,000 adults between Aug. 17 and Sept. 22 showed that the prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies increased to 7.1% compared to 0.73% in a previous survey between May 11 and June 4, the director general of the Indian Council of Medical Research, Balram Bhargava, told a press briefing.

“However, a large percentage of the population is still unexposed, and the susceptibility of a considerable section of people getting infected exists,” he added.

The second survey was conducted in the same 700 villages and wards from 70 districts in 21 states as the first survey. Results from the second survey also showed urban slum and non-slum areas had a higher infection prevalence than rural areas.

“The new (survey) shows lockdown and containment measures as well as behaviour change at population level checked spread of SARS-CoV-2,” Bhargava said.

India on Tuesday reported 70,589 new infections in the last 24 hours, taking its total to 6.15 million cases. The country leads the world in the daily average number of new infections reported.

(Reporting by Anuron Kumar Mitra in Bengaluru; editing by Barbara Lewis and Giles Elgood)

Copyright 2020 Thomson Reuters.

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Itchy scalp: Causes, symptoms, and treatment

An itchy scalp can be irritating and even painful, depending on the cause. There can be several triggers, such as various forms of dermatitis or reactions to certain hair products.

Experts consider it a common condition — one study found 25% of participants reported an itchy scalp.

It can be difficult to diagnose what causes an itchy scalp. Understanding the symptoms and treatments associated with the possible causes can help people better understand and address their symptoms.

Keep reading to learn more about the various triggers of an itchy scalp and how to treat them.

The following are some of the most common factors that can lead to an itchy scalp:

Seborrheic dermatitis

The most common cause for an itchy scalp, seborrheic dermatitis (SD) is a condition that affects the parts of the body that are rich in oil-producing glands, such as the scalp, face, and back.

Dandruff

Researchers consider dandruff — when the scalp becomes so dry, it starts to itch and flake off — to be a mild form of SD.

Haircare practices

When people do not rinse out the shampoo when washing their hair, it can collect on the scalp and cause itching and flaking.

Head lice

Common among young children and their families, these parasitic insects live on human blood and are mainly spread through close personal contact.

Contact dermatitis

Some people have allergic reactions to hair products, such as black hair dye, causing itching and rashes on the skin.

Scabies

When human itch mites dig into the scalp, they can cause itching so severe it can stop a person from sleeping.

Hives

Outbreaks of itchy, often red and raised, bumps can develop anywhere on the body, including the scalp.

Ringworm

Despite the name, a fungus triggers this condition, which is also known as tinea capitis.

Scalp psoriasis

About 50% of people who have plaque psoriasis on their bodies also develop symptoms on their scalp.

Atopic dermatitis

This form of eczema affects the scalp, causing intense itching that can lead to infection.

The symptoms that accompany an itchy scalp can help individuals and healthcare providers determine the trigger. In turn, this can point the way towards likely treatment options.

Other symptoms that may come with an itchy scalp include:

  • Patches of thick, greasy scales on the scalp: These are frequently a sign of seborrheic dermatitis.
  • Flakes: When they appear in the hair or on clothing, these are signs of dandruff.
  • Small white nubs on the hair: These could be nits or the eggs of head lice. A medical professional will need to perform a visual examination to identify signs of lice.
  • Small raised bumps: These are often symptoms of scabies.
  • Hives: People with hives on their scalp often have them elsewhere on their bodies.
  • Red rash, pus-filled bumps, and hair loss: These can be signs of ringworm, especially if they all occur at the same time.
  • Silvery-white scales on a dry scalp with red patches: These symptoms suggest scalp psoriasis.
  • Difficulty

How can I volunteer for a COVID-19 vaccine study?

People interested in volunteering for COVID-19 vaccine studies can sign up on websites set up by governments and companies

How can I volunteer for a COVID-19 vaccine study?

Governments and companies are setting up websites where people can sign up.

Enthusiasm is high: More than 400,000 people have signed a registry of possible volunteers that’s part of a vaccine network set up by the U.S. National Institutes of Health.

But before raising your hand, it’s important to understand how the research works.

Volunteers won’t know if they’re getting the vaccine or a dummy shot.

— The website clinicaltrials.gov lets people search for COVID-19 vaccine studies by country.

— Many regions, such as the European Union, also have their own research registries.

— And if local hospitals, clinics or testing labs in your area are looking for volunteers, you’ll likely see advertisements or flyers with a number to call for information.

———

The AP is answering your questions about the coronavirus in this series. Submit them at: [email protected] Read more here:

Does a face mask protect me, or just the people around me?

Does the coronavirus spread easily among children?

Can I get the coronavirus twice?

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Cyberattack hobbles hospital chain Universal Health Services

A computer outage at a major hospital chain thrust health care facilities across the U.S. into chaos Monday, with treatment impeded as doctors and nurses already burdened by the coronavirus pandemic were forced to rely on paper backup systems.

Universal Health Services, which operates more than 250 hospitals and other clinical facilities in the U.S., blamed the outage on an unspecified IT “security issue” in a statement posted to its website Monday but provided no details about the incident, such as how many facilities were affected and whether patients had to be diverted to other hospitals.

UHS workers reached by The Associated Press at company facilities in Texas and Washington, D.C. described mad scrambles after the outage began overnight on Sunday to render care, including longer emergency room waits and anxiety over determining which patients might be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19.

The Fortune 500 company, with 90,000 employees, said “patient care continues to be delivered safely and effectively” and no patient or employee data appeared to have been “accessed, copied or misused.” The King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, company also has hospitals in the United Kingdom, but its operations in that country were not affected, a spokeswoman said Monday night.

John Riggi, senior cybersecurity adviser to the American Hospital Association, called it a “suspected ransomware attack,” affirming reporting on the social media site Reddit by people identifying themselves as UHS employees. BleepingComputer, an online cybersecurity news site, spoke to UHS employees who described ransomware with the characteristics of Ryuk, which has been widely linked to Russian cybercriminals and used against large enterprises.


Videoconferencing under attack amid COVID-19 …

06:30

Targeting health care institutions

Criminals have been increasingly targeting health care institutions with ransomware during the pandemic, infecting networks with malicious code that scrambles data. To unlock it, they demand payment.

Increasingly, ransomware purveyors download data from networks before encrypting targeted servers, using it for extortion. Earlier this month, the first known fatality related to ransomware occurred in Duesseldorf, Germany, after an attack caused IT systems to fail and a critically ill patient needing urgent admission died after she had to be taken to another city for treatment.

UHS may not be a household name, but has U.S. hospitals from Washington, D.C., to Fremont, California, and Orlando, Florida, to Anchorage, Alaska. Some of its facilities provide care for people coping with psychiatric conditions and substance abuse problems.

A clinician involved in direct patient care at a Washington UHC facility described a high-anxiety scramble to handle the loss of computers and some phones. That meant medical staff could not easily see lab results, imaging scans, medication lists, and other critical pieces of information doctors rely on to make decisions. Phone problems complicated the situation, making it harder to communicate with nurses. Lab orders had to be hand-delivered.

“These things could be life or death,” said the clinician.

Chaotic scene

A different UHS health care worker, at an acute care facility in Texas, described an even more chaotic scene. Both the

Higher ‘Time in Range’ May Benefit Type 2 Diabetes Patients

Patients with type 2 or type 1 diabetes who stay in a blood glucose range of 70-180 mg/dL at least 70% of the time have the lowest rates of major adverse coronary events, severe hypoglycemic episodes, and microvascular events, according to a post hoc analysis of data collected from 5,774 patients with type 2 diabetes.

Data collected by the DEVOTE trial showed that every additional 10% of the time that a patient with type 2 diabetes (T2D) spent in their target range for blood glucose linked with a significant 6% reduced rate for developing a major adverse cardiovascular event (MACE), Richard M. Bergenstal, MD, said at the virtual annual meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes.

For every 10% increase in time in range (TIR), patients showed an average 10% drop in their incidence of severe hypoglycemic episodes.

Increasing Evidence From Post Hoc Analyses

These findings confirmed a prior post hoc analysis of data collected in the DCCT trial (NCT00360815), which were published in the New England Journal of Medicine, although those results showed significant relationships between increased TIR and decreased rates of retinopathy and microalbuminuria. For every 10% drop in TIR, retinopathy rose by 64% and microalbuminuria increased by 40%, according to a post hoc analysis of the DCCT data that Dr. Bergenstal helped run and was published in Diabetes Care.

“It’s becoming clear that time in range is an important metric for diabetes management, and our new findings and those previously reported with the DCCT data make it look like time in range is becoming a good marker for clinical outcomes as well,” said Dr. Bergenstal, an endocrinologist at the Park Nicollet Clinic in Minneapolis.

“It’s a new concept, getting time-in-range data,” said Dr. Bergenstal, who was a coauthor of recommendations from Diabetes Care that were made in 2019 by an expert panel organized by the Advanced Technologies & Treatments for Diabetes Congress. “We think this will be a good marker to keep glycemia in a safe range, and the results look positive.” Patients who stay in the blood glucose range of 70-180 mg/dL (3.9-10.0 mmol/L) at least 70% of the time generally have a hemoglobin A1c of about 7%, which is what makes it a good target for patients and clinicians to focus on. Patients with a 50% TIR rate generally have an HbA1c of about 8%.

But a TIR assessment can be more informative than HbA1c, said the 2019 recommendations document. It called TIR assessments “appropriate and useful as clinical targets and outcome measurements that complement A1c for a wide range of people with diabetes.”

Data Mining From DEVOTE

The analysis run by Dr. Bergenstal and his associates used data from 5,774 of the 7,637 patients enrolled in the DEVOTE trial, for whom adequate longitudinal blood glucose data were available to derive and track TIR. DEVOTE had the primary aim of comparing two different types of insulin in patients with T2D, according to its explanation in the New England

Why Trump Has No Real Health-Care Plan

While the House and Senate plans did include funds for states to create “high-risk pools,” which would subsidize coverage for those requiring more medical care, such pools have been tried in about 30 states and have uniformly failed. States found that they could not allocate anywhere near the amount of money necessary to make coverage affordable for patients with preexisting conditions, and experts say the plans’ funding was equally inadequate. “The cost would have to be tremendous, and that is precisely because of the skewed distribution of health-care spending,” Blumberg said. “In order to make that coverage affordable for the people who need it, you would have to throw huge amounts of money at those pools.”

More recently, many Senate Republicans have rallied behind 2019 legislation from Senator Thom Tillis, who is facing a tough reelection fight in North Carolina. His bill declares that insurers must continue selling coverage to patients with preexisting conditions at comparable prices to what they charge other consumers. But the bill contains huge loopholes that undermine that promise. It allows insurers to limit the benefits provided in such coverage, which could exclude the treatments a patient needs. It also doesn’t maintain the ACA’s limits on out-of-pocket costs, or its ban on annual and lifetime benefits caps, which means those with substantial health problems could easily generate bills that exceed their coverage. All of those provisions provide insurers “another way of excluding coverage of preexisting conditions,” Sarah Lueck, a senior policy analyst for health care at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, told me.

Meanwhile, with repeal of the ACA again wending its way through the courts, Trump has tried to advance the GOP goal of unraveling risk-sharing through regulatory action. His administration has authorized insurance companies to sell more short-term plans that are exempt from the ACA’s requirements to cover patients with preexisting conditions and offer comprehensive benefits. Those plans provide an escape route for healthier consumers to buy cheaper coverage, which could tilt the general individual market more toward the sick, raising their premiums.

The paradox in the contrasting GOP and Democratic approaches, as I’ve written, is that the Democratic plans ask more of the young—who mostly vote for Democrats—while the Republican plans impose greater costs on older Americans, most of whom are white and have leaned toward the GOP for the past few decades.

Biden’s proposals to significantly increase federal subsidies for consumers purchasing insurance in the ACA marketplaces represent a tacit admission that the law’s original design may have asked healthier consumers to shoulder too much of the cost of ensuring coverage for those who are older and sicker. Expanding subsidies could also entice more younger and healthier people into the insurance market, which would help restrain costs. By contrast, Trump and other Republicans are still resolutely denying the inescapable reality that their proposals will increase costs and reduce access for the sick, not as

City where boy, 6, died of brain-eating amoeba to purge water system for 60 days

A Houston-area city where a 6-year-old boy died of a brain-eating amoeba will purge its water system for 60 days to ensure it is safe for residents.

The death earlier this month of Josiah McIntyre of Lake Jackson, Texas, from the deadly microbe prompted an investigation that preliminarily identified the amoeba in three of 11 water samples taken in the city.

Now, the local water utility is trying to purge any “old water” so the system can be disinfected and replaced with fresh water.

“We’ll be doing that for a 60-day period,” said City Manager Modesto Mundo of the community of about 26,000 residents 55 miles south of Houston.

Lake Jackson residents were initially warned over the weekend not to use tap water for anything but flushing toilets, but are now being advised to boil tap water before using it for drinking or cooking and to avoid getting tap water up the nose.

Naegleria fowleri “usually infects people when contaminated water enters the body through the nose” and typically occurs when people go swimming in warm freshwater places, like lakes and rivers, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in guidance on its website. “Once the ameba enters the nose, it travels to the brain,” where it causes a condition that is usually fatal.

“You cannot get infected from swallowing water contaminated with Naegleria,” the CDC said.

Josiah’s mother, Maria Castillo, said her son, “a super-active 6-year-old who loved to be outside” and adored the Houston Astros, initially showed flu-like symptoms that quickly worsened to the point that he had trouble standing and communicating.

“We found out that it was, most likely, this amoeba that was causing all of these symptoms,” Castillo said.

Doctors took measures to alleviate swelling in the child’s brain and tried to save him. But Josiah died on Sept. 8 at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston.

The family told city officials of two possible places where Josiah may have been exposed to the naegleria fowleri microbe, a city splash pad and the hose at the family’s home.

Mundo said testing of 11 samples of the city’s water found three with preliminary positive results for the microbe — in a storage tank for the splash pad, a dead-end fire hydrant downtown near the splash pad, and in the hose bib at Josiah’s home.

Gov. Greg Abbott issued a disaster declaration on Sunday for Brazoria County in response to the discovery of the deadly parasite.

“The state of Texas is taking swift action to respond to the situation and support the communities whose water systems have been impacted” by this amoeba, said a statement by the governor, who is scheduled to give an update on the matter Tuesday.

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A suicidal teen needed help. In Alabama, she found nothing but hurdles

On Sept. 24, 2019, Gina Moses received an unusual phone call from her teenage daughter. The girl was on vacation in Las Vegas and wanted her health insurance information.

When Moses asked why, everything tumbled out: The fight with her boyfriend, the suicide attempt and the trip to the emergency room. She called her mom from the hospital bed.

“She begged me to come get her,” Moses said. “She told me that she just wanted to come home.”

Moses lives in Albertville with her husband and two younger children. Within hours, she was on her way to Nevada.

“I stop and breathe and then pray for my daughter and for our family,” Moses wrote in a journal. “I pray for a safe trip to Vegas. I pray that I handle this in the right way to where it doesn’t affect the little ones.”

Moses and the teen spent the night in the same downtown Las Vegas hotel room where her daughter tried to take her life. When the boyfriend came back, the teen changed her mind about returning to Alabama.

“At that point, I realized just how delusional she was,” Moses said. “It was like she didn’t realize I had just flown all the way across the country to take her home.”

In Alabama, the daughter’s therapist said she would need residential treatment to learn how to subdue self-destructive thoughts. Under Moses’ insurance plan, the family’s out-of-pocket costs capped out at $875.

Then a problem emerged. Although the insurance plan covered residential mental health treatment, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alabama wouldn’t approve payment for the types of private programs the girl’s therapist recommended.

Her issues mirror those of other insurance customers nationwide who struggle to get access to mental health benefits, in spite of two federal laws passed to make it easier to get coverage. Such challenges have persisted despite rising rates of suicide across the nation and in Alabama.

In Alabama, suicide is the second leading cause of death for people in their teens and early twenties, according to the Alabama Department of Public Health.

Alabama also has the nation’s smallest mental health workforce per capita, according to the United Health Foundation, and the least competitive insurance market. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alabama covers nearly 3 million people, or 86 percent of the private insurance market in the state, according to the American Medical Association. That leaves Alabamians with few options for care and coverage of life-threatening mental illness.

“Do I think we would have had a second suicide attempt if we had been able to get residential treatment the first time around?” Moses asked. “No. She would have been there six months and she would have been over it.”

Guidelines and gatekeepers

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alabama uses Kansas-based New Directions Behavioral Health to manage its mental health network and benefits.

New Directions acts as the gatekeeper for several Blue Cross plans, said Meiram Bendat, a California attorney involved in a lawsuit against the company.

Global Bone Regeneration Materials Market to Surpass US$ 2877.0 Mn by 2027, Says Coherent Market Insights (CMI)

According to Coherent Market Insights, the global bone regeneration materials market is estimated to be valued at US$ 2292.1 Mn in 2020 and is expected to exhibit a CAGR of 3.3% during the forecast period (2020-2027).

Key Trends and Analysis of the Global Bone Regeneration Materials Market:

Increasing R&D and innovation in bone regeneration therapy is expected to drive growth of global bone regeneration materials market. For instance, in 2020, the Bone Biologics Corp. Company has bone biologic product named as NELL-1 in its pipeline. The company is developing this product for spinal fusion and also the company expect that this product is used in one regeneration and repair for clinical conditions such as osteoporosis and trauma applications.

Moreover, increasing focus on stem cell research and development is an important factor fueling growth of the global bone regeneration materials market. In the last few years, stem cells have been a used in regenerative medicine due to its capabilities such as self-renewal and differentiation capacity. Additionally, stem cells have properties of secreting bioactive molecules and regulating the behavior of other cells in different host tissues. Stem cells improve bone regeneration process effectively and rapidly. These stem cells are used with scaffolds and growth factors to accelerate bone healing at the site of fracture in a body. Also, stem cells mesenchymal stem cells are used in tissue engineering and have shown progress in different clinical applications as well.

Furthermore, the increasing demand for bone regeneration across the world is expected to drive growth of this market. According to NCBI information, in 2018, the annual cost of treating bone defects was around US$5 billion in the U.S. This costs includes bone grafts for tumors, bone injuries, and other defective fracture healings.

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Key Market Takeaways:

The global bone regeneration materials market is expected to exhibit a CAGR of XX% during the forecast period (2020-2027), owing to increasing R&D and innovation in the global bone regeneration therapy market.

The growth of the North America global bone regeneration therapy market is attributed to increasing incidence of traumatic injuries in this region. According to the American Association for the Surgery of Trauma Information, in the U.S, around 3 million traumatic injuries accounts for non-fatal injuries and around 150,000 average deaths per year.

Competitive Landscape:

Key players operating in the global bone regeneration materials market are Sigma Graft, NovaBone, B&B Dental, Stryker Corporation, J Morita USA, Kerr Restoratives, Septodont, Citagenix and Ethoss Regeneration Ltd.

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Market Segmentation:

  • Global bone regeneration materials market, By Product Type:

  • Global bone regeneration materials market, By Application:

    • Orthopaedic Surgery

    • Bone Trauma

    • Dental Surgery

    • Others

  • Global bone regeneration materials market, By Region:

    • North America

    • Europe

      • U.K.

      • Germany

      • Italy

      • Spain

      • France

      • Russia

      • Rest of Europe

    • Asia Pacific

      • Australia

      • India

      • China

      • Japan

      • ASEAN

      • South Korea

      • Rest of Asia Pacific

    • Latin America

      • Brazil

      • Mexico

      • Argentina

      • Rest of Latin America

    • Middle East

      • GCC

      • Israel

      • Rest of Middle East

    • Africa

      • South Africa

      • Central Africa

America ranks at the top of the world’s 1 million death toll

More than 1 million people have died worldwide from Covid-19, and the United States accounts for more than 20% of the death toll.



a flag on top of a grass covered field: Activists from the COVID Memorial Project mark the deaths of 200,000 lives lost in the U.S. to COVID-19 after placing thousands of small American flags places on the grounds of the National Mall in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2020. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)


© J. Scott Applewhite/AP
Activists from the COVID Memorial Project mark the deaths of 200,000 lives lost in the U.S. to COVID-19 after placing thousands of small American flags places on the grounds of the National Mall in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2020. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

In less than nine months, the death toll jumped from one coronavirus-related death — in Wuhan, China, on January 9 — to 1,002,628 early Tuesday, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. The US has been hit hard by the virus, with almost 7.2 million reported infections and more than 205,000 deaths.

With recent spikes in US cases, health experts warn things could soon get worse.

Only 20 states are holding steady when it comes to the average of daily new cases compared to last week, while 23 are reporting increases: Alabama, Alaska, Colorado, Idaho, Indiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oregon, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

Seven states show downward trends: Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, Rhode Island, Texas and Virginia.

Track cases in your state

Fall and winter promise to drive more people indoors and bring about flu season, and experts say Americans need to be consistent in following guidelines. Mask wearing, social distancing and avoiding large crowds will be key, experts say, along with authorities increasing testing as infections surge again.

Worldwide, the US dubiously ranks No. 1 in the total number of reported deaths and fifth per 100,000 people.

Johns Hopkins’ tally shows the US, Brazil, India and Mexico account for more than 50% of coronavirus deaths.

Some states fight spikes while others ease restrictions

As trends vary across the US, some local leaders are stepping back toward normal while others are clamping down on efforts to combat the virus’ spread.

Chicago bars, restaurants, gyms and personal services will be allowed to expand service Thursday because of “sufficient progress in the fight against Covid-19,” Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot said Monday.

“Over the past six months, we have asked so much of our business community, but each time, our businesses have stepped up to the plate,” she said in a news release. “This next step in our reopening is good news for business owners as well as the communities they serve and the thousands of residents that work for them.”

Hard-hit California is seeing coronavirus positivity rate, hospitalizations and new cases trending downward, Gov. Gavin Newsom said Monday, but he cautioned the numbers could pick back up if residents don’t remain vigilant.

Meanwhile, New York will release guidance this week to reopen “Covid-safe” homeless shelters, noting a rise in cases among homeless encampments, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said. Cases are also rising at an “alarming” rate in parts of Brooklyn and Queens, the New York City Health Department said.

New Jersey is set to