Cancer takes heavy toll on women’s work, finances, study shows

Young women with cancer are at a high risk for employment and financial consequences, a new study finds.

“Our study addresses the burden of employment disruption and financial hardship among young women with cancer — a group who may be at particular risk for poor financial outcomes after cancer given their age and gender,” said researcher Clare Meernik, a fellow at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center.

She and her colleagues surveyed more than 1,300 women in North Carolina and California a median of seven years after diagnosis. Their cancer was diagnosed when they were 15 to 39 years of age and working.

Following their diagnosis, 32% of the women had to stop working or cut back on their hours. Twenty-seven percent said they had to borrow money, go into debt or file for bankruptcy because of cancer treatment.

Women with disrupted employment were more likely — by 17 percentage points — to have these problems than women who were able to keep working.

Half of the women said they were stressed about their big medical bills, and women with disrupted employment were more likely to suffer psychological distress by 8 percentage points than women who were able to keep working.

The findings were published online Oct. 12 in the journal Cancer.

“Our findings highlight the need for effective interventions to promote job maintenance and transition back to the workforce after cancer treatment, as well as increased workplace accommodations and benefits, to improve cancer outcomes for young women,” Meernik said in a journal news release.

More information

To learn more about work and financial effects of cancer, visit the American Cancer Society.

Copyright 2020 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Source Article

The pandemic’s true toll: Deaths are up by 27%, study finds | Coronavirus

The coronavirus pandemic in Louisiana has marked some of the deadliest months on record for the state. From March 1 to August 1, about 24,000 people died, a 27% increase compared to the same five-month span in at least the last six years, according to a new study analyzing deaths during the pandemic.

Those cases are what scientists call excess deaths — the gap between reported deaths and expected deaths. The loss of life reflects the true toll of the virus, which impacts far greater numbers than those who die after a COVID-19 infection. 

In the past seven months, Louisiana hospitals have had to meet countless challenges as the coronavirus strained their staff and hospital capacity.

Louisiana’s increase is higher than the U.S. average, which was 20%, according to the analysis, published in the peer-reviewed Journal of the American Medical Association. Of all states, Louisiana ranked fourth for its per capita rate of excess deaths, behind only New York, New Jersey and Massachusetts.

According to the study, three-fourths of Louisiana’s excess deaths are attributed to coronavirus. But about 25%, or 1,232 people, are unaccounted for by COVID-19 infection.

“For every three people known to have died of COVID-19 in Louisiana, another person died due to some aspect of the pandemic,” said Dr. Stephen Woolf, study author and epidemiologist at Virginia Commonwealth University.

Within that 25% there are two groups of people. Some of those people were infected, but their death certificate didn’t mention it — possibly because they died at home or it wasn’t confirmed in a laboratory before or after death.

The second group is made up of people who were not infected but died because of the disruption to health care the pandemic caused.

“There are people dying of heart disease, strokes, diabetes and so forth because of interruptions in their care,” said Woolf.

In Louisiana, deaths from Alzheimer’s disease and dementia doubled. There were 64 such deaths in the first week of 2020, but 127 in the week ending April 11 during the peak of the virus. Diabetes deaths also increased significantly, Woolf said.

Those interruptions are driven both by fear of seeking care during the pandemic and a strapped medical system, he said.

On her last day of consciousness, Misty Luminais Babin held onto hope. “I choose life,” the 38-year-old told her sister, husband and doctor fr…

“My sense is that these deaths that are caused by disruptions are occurring more during surges when the system is being overwhelmed,” said Woolf. “In calmer times, people come out for appointments and the health system has the capacity to deal with them. When hospitals are getting overrun and emergency room patients are in hallways because there’s no room for them, that’s an environment where we worry about these kinds of deaths occurring more often.”

The findings of the report match up with what the state has reported and what doctors are seeing in hospitals, said Dr. Rebekah Gee, CEO of LSU Healthcare Services Division and former Secretary of

The Latest: Brazil’s Virus Death Toll Surpasses 150,000 | World News

RIO DE JANEIRO — Brazil’s count of COVID-19 deaths surpassed 150,000 on Saturday night, despite signs the pandemic is slowly retreating in Latin America’s largest nation.

The Brazilian Health Ministry reported that the death toll now stands at 150,198. The figure is the world’s second highest behind the United States, according to the tally maintained by Johns Hopkins University.

Brazil’s far-right President Jair Bolsonaro has played down the severity of the virus while deaths mounted rapidly in Brazil. The 65-year-old president flouted social distancing at lively demonstrations and encouraged crowds during outings from the presidential residence. He has rejected governors’ and mayors’ lockdowns and other tough measures to contain the virus’ spread, even after he contracted it himself in July.

But there have been recent signs of relief in Brazil. Over the last month and a half, the viral curve has dropped. The average number of deaths sat at 598 over the last 7 days, the lowest level since the beginning of May.

HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE VIRUS OUTBREAK:

— President Trump makes speech from White House balcony, 1st appearance in 5 days since return to residence

— Religious gathering limit upheld as New York hospitalizations rise

— Dr. Fauci cautions against large gatherings without masks, social distancing

— House Speaker Nancy Pelosi dismisses the latest White House offer in COVID-19 aid talks but remains hopeful progress can be made toward a deal.

— Queen Elizabeth II honored the work of doctors and nurses, delivery drivers, fundraisers and volunteers during the coronavirus pandemic.

— The NFL’s Tennessee Titans and the New England Patriots had no positive coronavirus tests Saturday and both teams will be allowed to go back to their facilities.

— Follow AP’s pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Anchorage public health officials say they are investigating a coronavirus outbreak from a youth hockey tournament that drew teams from around Alaska. Officials say more than 300 players, coaches and fans were in attendance at the Termination Dust Invitational over a three-day period last weekend. Teams came from nine cities across the state. Local health officials did not provide specific numbers as to how many people tested positive as a result of the event. But, tournament organizers say they first learned of a positive case in one of the teams on Monday. They also say they knew of two teams with a positive case each.

ST. LOUIS — Missouri reported more than 5,000 new COVID-19 cases on Saturday, more than doubling its previous daily record.

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services said there have been a total of 144,230 confirmed cases since the outbreak started, up 5,066 cases from Friday. The state also reported 27 more deaths to bring the total to 2,422.

The new number more than doubles the previous single-day high of 2,084 new cases, which occurred on July 30. Health department spokeswoman Lisa Cox didn’t immediately respond to an email from The Associated

CDC ensemble forecast forsees death toll from Covid-19 climbing to 233,000 by end of month

A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention forecast that combines the data from dozens of independent models predicts US deaths from Covid-19 could reach 233,000 by the end of the month.



a man in a police car parked in a parking lot: People line up in their vehicles to undergo the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) tests, distributed by the Wisconsin National Guard at the United Migrant Opportunity Services center, as cases spread in the Midwest, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, U.S., October 2, 2020. REUTERS/Alex Wroblewski


© Alex Wroblewski/Reuters
People line up in their vehicles to undergo the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) tests, distributed by the Wisconsin National Guard at the United Migrant Opportunity Services center, as cases spread in the Midwest, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, U.S., October 2, 2020. REUTERS/Alex Wroblewski

“This week’s national ensemble forecast indicates an uncertain trend in new COVID-19 deaths reported over the next four weeks and predicts that 2,800 to 6,800 new deaths will likely be reported during the week ending October 31,” the CDC says on its website.

A prior ensemble forecast said there would be a total of 207,000 to 218,000 coronavirus deaths by the end of this week.

More than 212,000 Americans have already lost their lives to the virus, according to Johns Hopkins University.

But deaths in the US have been declining recently. A total of 4,869 people in the US died from Covid-19 during in the first week of October, down 13% when compared to the first week of September (5,611 reported deaths).

Miami-Dade schools see first case

Workers in Florida’s Miami-Dade County spent overnight hours sanitizing an elementary school after a student tested positive for the virus.

It is the first positive test result since the school district, one of the nation’s largest, reopened Monday. But officials said the student didn’t contract the virus at the school.

“It was almost inevitable that as we reopen schools, some of these cases would happen,” Superintendent Alberto M. Carvalho said.

Contact tracers notified Wednesday night people who had close contact with the student. They were asked to be tested and quarantine for at least 14 days before being cleared to return to schools, according to Carvalho.

The student will remain at home until cleared by health officials to return, officials said.

Parents and employees at William Lehman Elementary were notified early Thursday morning.

The school remains open.

“It is something I think we all expect is going to happen,” parent Jessica Blais, who was outside the school Thursday, told CNN affiliate WSVN. “This virus is not going anywhere. I think the school is doing everything they can to assure that our kids are going to be safe.”

Vivian Perez told WSVN that she was reinforcing safety measures with her son.

“I just make sure he’s OK, that he keeps his social distancing, that he washes his hands, (wears a) face mask,” she said.

The district educates 437,000 students in 435 schools across the county.

New cases on the increase across country

Covid-19 cases are trending upward across the US, with only two states reporting a decline of cases compared to last week. And hospitalizations across the country have also begun to rise, according to data from the COVID Tracking Project.

Wisconsin health officials reported a record-high number of 141 new patients Wednesday, days after the state saw

Coronavirus taking toll on small fitness centers | Business

NEW YORK – There’s little evidence of Americans’ passion for fitness at the tens of thousands of small and independent gyms around the country.

Gyms, health clubs and workout studios began reopening in late spring following government-ordered shutdowns aimed at halting the coronavirus spread. But most are only allowed to have a fraction of their regular clientele onsite at one time. And some clients are staying away for fear of catching the virus.

The International Health Racquet & Sportsclub Association, an industry group, estimates that gyms, health and fitness clubs lost an aggregate $13.9 billion during shutdowns as of Aug. 31. The group warns that without government help, at least a quarter could close by Dec. 31 as limits on indoor workouts continue.

Michael Hanover is lucky if he gets 45 client hours a week in his Northbrook, Illinois gym, Fitness Hero Wellness Center, down from his usual 60. He sometimes opens at 5 a.m. or stays late at night to get those hours; many clients are too uneasy to come in when other people are there.

“We don’t have people pounding on the door trying to get in,” Hanover says.

In Illinois, gyms can operate at 50% of capacity, leaving Hanover with no more than 10 people onsite at any time. He feels small gyms have been lumped in unfairly with big fitness chains where there might be hundreds of people exercising at once and coming into contact with one another. He’d like to be able to bring in more clients.

Hanover’s big worry: A surge in cases that might prompt officials to force gyms to go back to holding only outdoor classes and one-on-one training sessions indoors.

“It will be devastating and most likely, the end of Fitness Hero Wellness Center,” Hanover says.

Over 80% of the 40,000 to 50,000 health and fitness clubs in the U.S. are small businesses, according to the Health Racquet & Sportsclub Association. Whether yoga studios or fully equipped gyms, these businesses provide a livelihood to their owners. Last year, the overall industry employed 3 million trainers, instructors and other workers.

In a thriving fitness center or small gym, people run on treadmills or pedal stationary bikes nearly side by side, exercise classes are crowded and trainers work with clients just inches or a few feet apart. Following a good exercise, people tend to breathe more frequently and harder.

When it comes to the coronavirus, all those scenarios concern health officials because they can increase the spread of the respiratory droplets that carry the virus.

To allay those fears, owners follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines calling for bikes and treadmills to be spaced farther apart or unplugged so some can’t be used. Equipment is disinfected after each use. Masks are required.

Owners are also installing ventilation equipment to lessen the chances of breathing in concentrated amounts of coronavirus germs. But these procedures don’t reassure many people who used to work out several times a week.

Vincent Miceli, owner of Body

India’s coronavirus death toll passes 100,000 with no sign of an end

By Anuron Kumar Mitra and Devjyot Ghoshal

BENGALURU/NEW DELHI (Reuters) – India’s death toll from the novel coronavirus rose past 100,000 on Saturday, only the third country in the world to reach that bleak milestone, after the United States and Brazil, and its epidemic shows no sign of abating.

Total deaths rose to 100,842, the health ministry said, while the tally of infections climbed to 6.47 million after a daily increase in cases of 79,476. India now has the highest rate of daily increase in infections in the world.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government, faced with a collapsing economy after imposing a tough lockdown to try to stem the spread of the virus in late March, is pushing ahead with a full opening of the country.

Cinemas were allowed to re-open at half capacity this week and authorities can decide to re-open schools from the middle of this month.

Heading into winter and the holiday season, including the Hindu festival of Diwali next month, the world’s second most populous country could see a jump in cases, health experts said.

“We have seen some recent slowdown of the virus curve but this may be a local peak, there may be another coming,” said Bhramar Mukherjee, a professor of biostatistics and epidemiology at the University of Michigan.

She said data showed a little over 7% of the population of 1.3 billion had been exposed to the virus, meaning India was still far from any sort of herd immunity.

The number of cases could rise to 12.2 million by the end of the year but the rate of spread would depend on how effective measures such as social distancing were, she said.

“So it will continue like a slow burning coil, that is my hope, and we have to play the long game to stop it from being a wildfire.”

GRAPHIC: Covid-19 cases vs recoveries: India, Brazil and U.S. – https://fingfx.thomsonreuters.com/gfx/buzz/nmopawomnpa/GRFX%201.png

DATA QUESTIONED

The United States, Brazil and India together account for nearly 45% of all COVID-19 deaths globally.

Death rates in India, however, have been significantly lower than in those other two countries, raising questions about the accuracy of its data.

India has, on average, less than one death from the disease for every 10,000 people while the United States and Brazil have seen six deaths per 10,000.

U.S. President Donald Trump, defending his administration’s handling of the pandemic in this week’s presidential debate, said countries such as India were under-reporting deaths.

Shashank Tripathi, of the Centre for Infectious Disease Research at the Indian Institute of Science in Bengaluru, acknowledged there could be problems with the data though India’s young population might help explain the lower death rate.

“In India, even without a pandemic, all deaths are not properly registered,” Tripathi said.

“I’m not very confident that the mortality rates reflect the right numbers, though the younger demographic has given us some advantage.”

Representatives of the health ministry and the Indian Council of Medical Research did not immediately respond to

SD reaches record high coronavirus death toll

South Dakota recorded a record high COVID-19 death toll Thursday with 13 fatalities and 747 new positive virus cases.

According to state epidemiologist Josh Clayton, cities and rural zones are reporting significant clusters of the virus in recent days, the Associated Press reported.

He noted that 245 of the infections reported were backlogged from previous days after a reporting error.

ADVERTISEMENT

One large outbreak stemmed from a women’s prison in Pierre, with testing showing positive results for 29 women in one housing unit.

The prison recorded a total of 197 prisoners and staff have tested positive while 110 have recovered.

According to Johns Hopkins University, as of Tuesday, the state’s seven-day average testing positivity rate was 26 percent — the highest in the country.

The record numbers of new cases come as Gov. Kristi NoemKristi Lynn NoemSouth Dakota governor spars with PETA over viral ‘social distancing’ hunting video South Dakota AG issues statement on fatal crash, says ‘I discovered the body’ Authorities confirm South Dakota attorney general involved in fatal crash MORE (R) tweeted late last month, “South Dakota’s #COVID19 spread peaked the latest of just about any state.”

Other states in the Midwest are also reporting record COVID-19 numbers, including Minnesota, Wisconsin and Kansas.

Source Article

UN chief cites pandemic’s ‘unprecedent toll’

UNITED NATIONS — The United Nations chief says the COVID-19 pandemic has taken “an unprecedent toll” especially on the economies of many developing countries and the world has not responded with “the massive and urgent support those countries and communities need.”

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said that in the United States, Canada, Europe and most of the developed world, governments have adopted packages valued in double-digits of GDP to help tackle the coronavirus crisis and its impact.

“The problem is to mobilize the resources to allow the developing countries to be able to do the same,” he told a joint press conference Tuesday with Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who have been jointly spearheading high-level meetings to try to raise the resources.

Guterres urged the international community to increase resources to the International Monetary Fund, including through a new allocation of special drawing rights and a voluntary reallocation of existing special drawing rights. He said many countries urgently need debt relief and called for the current debt suspensions to be extended and expanded to all developing and middle-income countries that need help. The private sector, including credit-rating agencies, also “must be engaged in relief efforts,” he said.

The U.N. chief said he is encouraged to see over 40 world leaders and the heads of the IMF, World Bank, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and the African Union “coming together around these bold policies.”

He urged the international community to provide $35 billion — including $15 billion immediately — to fund “the ACT-Accelerator to ensure equitable access to diagnostics, treatments and vaccines” for all countries.

___

HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE VIRUS OUTBREAK

— New York City officials to start issuing fines to people who refuse to wear masks in areas with spikes in the novel coronavirus

— llinois Gov. Pritzker to quarantine 2 weeks after contact with staffer who tested positive

— India vice president tests positive for virus, isolating at home

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

— The coronavirus is infecting a rising number of American children and teens in a trend authorities say appears driven by school re-openings, resumption of sports and play dates.

— University of Notre Dame president Rev. John I. Jenkins apologized for not wearing a mask after pictures surfaced online of him shaking hands and sitting shoulder-to-shoulder with people at a recent Rose Garden ceremony.

— Tennessee Titans players, staff test positive for coronavirus; first outbreak in the NFL at Week 4.

___

Follow AP’s pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

___

HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:

RALEIGH, N.C. — The University of North Carolina system reported its first coronavirus-related student death on Tuesday since several campuses reopened with at least partial in-person learning last month.

Chad Dorrill, a 19-year student at Appalachian State University who lived off campus in Boone and took all of his classes online, died on Monday due to coronavirus complications, officials said.

“Any

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