WHO says SARS outbreak is contained, but cause still unclear

first_img The agency commended Chinese authorities “for taking swift action to contain the latest outbreak once it was recognized and reported, by way of extensive contact tracing and the quarantine and medical observation of such individuals. Once again, it has been demonstrated that SARS is a containable disease.” Because more than 3 weeks have passed since the last patient was isolated, the chain of transmission apparently has been broken, the WHO said in a statement today. But WHO and Chinese experts investigating a Beijing virology laboratory where two SARS patients worked have been unable to pinpoint how the outbreak started, the agency said. Hundreds of people were quarantined during the outbreak. A Reuters report today said 28 staff members from the virology institute were still in quarantine. The nine cases in the outbreak included one death, that of Song’s mother. Except for the 31-year-old man who also worked in the lab, all the cases were traced directly or indirectly to Song. A 20-year-old nurse surnamed Li caught the virus from Song, and it subsequently spread from Li to several members of her family and other contacts. All but two surviving patients in the outbreak had been released from hospitals by May 12. However, the agency said investigators “have serious concerns about biosafety procedures at the Institute—including how and where procedures using SARS coronavirus were carried out, and how and where SARS coronavirus samples were stored.” “Preliminary findings in the investigation have yet to identify a single infectious source or single procedural error at the Institute—and it is conceivable that an exact answer may never be determined,” the WHO said today. See also:center_img Apr 25 WHO guidelines for safe handling of SARS specimenshttp://www.who.int/csr/sars/biosafety2003_04_25/en/ May 18, 2004 (CIDRAP News) – The World Health Organization says China’s latest SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) outbreak appears to be contained after nine cases, but its precise origin is still a mystery. May 18 WHO statementhttp://www.who.int/csr/don/2004_05_18a/en/ A 26-year-old woman surnamed Song became ill in late March after working in a lab at the National Institute of Virology for 2 weeks, and a 31-year-old man who worked in the lab fell ill in mid-April. Research on the SARS virus was done in the lab, but the two patients never worked with live virus, the WHO has said. The WHO urged all member countries to review the biosafety practices of labs that work with the SARS virus. The agency said many specimens were collected during and after the 2003 SARS outbreaks, and some are stored in labs with “inappropriate” containment measures. The WHO recommends biosafety level 3 as the minimum rating for labs handling the virus.last_img read more

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Taiwan to ease virus border controls to let in some business people

first_img“We will simplify quarantine measures, starting from low risks areas.”International flights have continued to operate to and from Taiwan throughout the border restrictions, though on a much reduced scale. Previously the only foreigners allowed in where those with residence permits, diplomats and a few other exceptions.Taiwan has reported 445 cases, the majority of which were in people who get infected overseas, and just seven deaths. It has only four active cases remaining. Taiwan will from the start of next week ease border controls put in place to prevent the spread of the coronavirus and will allow in business travellers from some lower-risk countries, though they will have to be tested and quarantined.Taiwan has never gone into total lockdown and life has continued largely as normal due to its early and effective prevention work and a first-rate public health system.While it has largely lifted domestic restrictions, Taiwan has been more cautious about opening up its borders, which have been shut to most foreign visitors since mid-March. Topics :center_img Taiwan’s Central Epidemic Command Centre said starting from Monday it would allow in business people coming from lower-risk areas including New Zealand, Australia, Vietnam and Thailand, plus those from South Korea, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, Hong Kong and Macau, which it judged medium to low risk.Travellers will have to provide details of where they are going in Taiwan, be able to provide proof of testing negative for the virus three days before flying, and prove they have been invited by a company, the center said on Wednesday.They will still be subject to 14 days of quarantine, as are all those coming into Taiwan, but will be able to shorten that if they pay for a coronavirus test and test negative.”To foster the opening of foreign business activities in a timely manner, we are announcing the relaxation of some border control measures,” Health Minister Chen Shih-chung told reporters.last_img read more

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EU scrambles to buy intensive care drugs to tackle COVID shortages

first_imgThe Commission was not immediately available for comment.There are shortages of analgesics, antibiotics, muscle relaxers, anesthetics and resuscitation drugs, among others, the source said, without identifying the names of the medicines being sought in the tender, because the procedure is not yet concluded.An internal EU document seen by Reuters shows that in April about 100 medications for COVID-19 patients were in short supply in EU countries.Among those not available or at risk of shortages in a large number of EU states were analgesic paracetamol; anesthetics Fentanyl, Midazolam and Propofol; resuscitation drugs Dobutamine and Noradrenaline; muscle relaxers Cisatracurium and Rocuronium; and antibiotics Piperacillin, Azithromycin and Amoxicillin. The European Union is seeking firms to supply 24 intensive care drugs, an EU official told Reuters, as it strives to tackle shortages of medicines for COVID-19 patients amid fears of a second wave of infections and strong global demand.The tender, which will seek drugs for ten European Union member states, asks drugmakers to submit offers by Thursday.It is the latest move by the executive Commission to coordinate purchases of critical treatments, vaccines and equipment for EU members amid the COVID-19 pandemic. These drugs are mostly used in critically ill COVID-19 patients who need to be sedated for intubation.Steroid Dexamethasone was also seen in April at risk of shortages in Ireland, Cyprus and Luxembourg. The drug, which is made by several generic drugmakers, reduces death rates in hospitalized COVID-19 patients, according to British research.After the bids, the Commission could strike deals with companies that agree to supply the bloc with their drugs. EU states would then be able to place their orders with the manufacturers.Joint tenders are meant to avoid competition among EU states for drugs and critical equipment.Some EU governments have complained EU procedures are too complex, EU officials said. A tender to buy face masks initially received no offers in March. Supplies began flowing later after a second tender.Most of the 27 EU countries reached a peak in COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths a few weeks ago, but many have recently seen a resurgence of cases and large localized outbreaks, the bloc’s public health body, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), said last week.Topics :last_img read more

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Charlie Nicholas names three Arsenal players set to leave and makes Manchester City prediction

first_imgMikel Arteta faces his former club when Arsenal travel to Man City on Wednesday (Picture: Getty)Charlie Nicholas has named three players set to leave Arsenal and revealed his prediction for the club’s Premier League clash against Manchester City.The 2019-20 Premier League campaign will resume on Wednesday evening with Arsenal facing defending champions City and Aston Villa taking on Sheffield United.Nicholas says it is virtually impossible to be ‘enthusiastic’ about Arsenal’s prospects going into the match and reckons Mikel Arteta will suffer defeat on his first return to the Etihad since leaving his job as Pep Guardiola’s assistant.‘City will have a lot of the ball – I think Arsenal will sit and play one up front,’ Nicholas told Sky Sports. ‘As much as Arteta loves playing a 4-3-3, he will have to protect the weakness at the back.AdvertisementAdvertisementADVERTISEMENT‘The areas where Pep’s side will be overpowering will be in midfield and the wide areas. Whether Leroy Sane stays next year or not we do not know, but he will busting to get a start and get back playing.‘You then have the likes of Bernardo Silva, Riyad Mahrez, Raheem Sterling, Sergio Aguero and Gabriel Jesus – the choices are remarkable.‘If Arsenal were to go with an attacking line-up, if it was a front three, it would become an isolated Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang or Eddie Nketiah. They will not get the service or chances. Arteta spent a number of years as Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City assistant (Picture: Getty)‘Sterling went through a poor spell before the break and drifted off, so he will be keen to get back into it. The standards he set meant he was not as good as what he has been.‘There is too much pace, movement, control in City’s play, and in reality, Pep will have them fresh again. One thing we can expect is Kevin De Bruyne to be his same old brilliant self.‘Man City have won one trophy, they have FA Cup to go for and the potential of the Champions League, so they have to be ready for that. City will get back in the groove, keep the ball and carve teams open.More: FootballRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starChelsea defender Fikayo Tomori reveals why he made U-turn over transfer deadline day moveMikel Arteta rates Thomas Partey’s chances of making his Arsenal debut vs Man City‘I think Arsenal will have a half-decent run-in but this will be too much for them. City will take care of business. Man City 3-1 Arsenal.’Nicholas also revealed he believes at least three Arsenal players are on their way out of the club.Arteta is sweating over the future of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Bukayo Saka but Nicholas believes three other players are set to leave. Former Arsenal striker Charlie Nicholas (Picture: Getty)‘The break probably came at a decent time for Arsenal. They were improving under Mikel Arteta,’ Nicholas added.‘Has he brought himself time like people have been saying? I don’t think so. All he has done has worked on a strategy a bit more.‘The reality stares you straight in the face – Arsenal are ninth with 40 points. I look at the table and Arsenal have 13 draws in 28 games, yet they have only lost six all season.More: FootballBruno Fernandes responds to Man Utd bust-up rumours with Ole Gunnar SolskjaerNew Manchester United signing Facundo Pellistri responds to Edinson Cavani praiseArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira moves‘I would like to be more enthusiastic, but I can’t.‘You can work with Sokratis Papastathopoulos, David Luiz, and Shkodran Mustafi and get them to improve, but they will not improve by much.AdvertisementAdvertisement‘Luiz will move on next season and Arteta will know that Sokratis and Mustafi are all seemingly pitching to be sold.’Follow Metro Sport across our social channels, on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.For more stories like this, check our sport page.MORE: Chris Sutton hits out at Arsenal over Aubameyang’s contract situationMORE: Why Mikel Arteta was unhappy after Arsenal’s friendly defeat to Brentford Comment Advertisementcenter_img Charlie Nicholas names three Arsenal players set to leave and makes Manchester City prediction Advertisement Metro Sport ReporterWednesday 17 Jun 2020 9:26 amShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link126Shareslast_img read more

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Video: Wärtsilä Tests Remote Control Ship Operating

first_imgFinnish technology group Wärtsilä has taken a step towards developing its Smart Marine capabilities as it tested the remote control of ship operations.The testing, which involved driving the vessel through a sequence of manoeuvres using a combination of Dynamic Positioning (DP) and manual joystick control, was carried out on August 21 off the North Sea coast of Scotland in collaboration with US-based operator Gulfmark Offshore.Although the test vessel was in the North Sea, the remote control navigating was carried out from the Wärtsilä office located in San Diego, California, 8000 km away.Wärtsilä’s Dynamic Positioning unit developed remote control capabilities in the early part of 2016, but this was the first test carried out on the offshore vessel Highland Chieftain. The ship is an 80 metre platform supply vessel already fitted with a Wärtsilä Nacos Platinum package for Navigation, Automation and Dynamic Positioning systems, as well as a Wärtsilä drives package.For the test, additional software was temporarily added to the DP system in order to route data over the vessel’s satellite link to the onshore work station in California.The testing was carried out using standard bandwidth onboard satellite communication. No land-based technology was used for the communications between the vessel and the remote operator work station.The successful test was conducted over an almost 4 hour period during which time the vessel was driven through a series of manoeuvres at both high and low speeds. All the test procedures carried out went as planned.last_img read more

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Hong Kong political rivals woo voters with free face masks

first_imgHONG KONG’S rival political camps haveembraced a new tactic to woo potential voters as the city hunkers down duringthe coronavirus pandemic: free face masks. Local councillor Eason Chan said he believed the swift response from the pro-democracy camp to the virus pushed their opponents to up their game. AFP Politicians from both the resurgentpro-democracy camp and their embattled pro-Beijing rivals have seized on theshortage, beginning a charm offensive with voters even before officialcampaigning kicks off for the city’s legislature elections in September. (AFP)center_img Masks have been in desperately shortsupply in Hong Kong since the start of the year when the epidemic reached thefinancial hub.last_img

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Travelers to Kentucky, Michigan warned about hepatitis A outbreak

first_imgIndianapolis, in. — Kentucky and Michigan have reported significant outbreaks of hepatitis A, a highly contagious viral infection of the liver. Kentucky has more than 300 cases, the majority of which have occurred in the Louisville area, and Michigan has more than 800 cases, including 25 deaths. Indiana, which typically sees fewer than 20 cases of hepatitis statewide each year, has confirmed 77 cases since January, many of which are related to an outbreak in southern Indiana.“With popular tourist events coming up in other states, we know many Hoosiers will be traveling to areas impacted by hepatitis A, and we want them to be safe,” said Deputy State Health Commissioner and State Epidemiologist Pam Pontones. “Getting vaccinated and thoroughly washing your hands before and after preparing food and eating and after using the restroom are simple, safe and effective ways to prevent the spread of hepatitis A.”Symptoms of hepatitis A vary and may include loss of appetite, nausea, fatigue, fever, stomachache, dark (cola) colored urine and light colored stools. Jaundice (yellowing of the eyes or skin) may appear a few days after the onset of these symptoms. Individuals can become ill 15 to 50 days after being exposed to the virus. Most people who get hepatitis A feel sick for several weeks, but they usually recover completely and do not have lasting liver damage. However, hospitalization and, in rare cases, death can occur. Anyone who is exhibiting symptoms of hepatitis A should contact a healthcare provider immediately and refrain from preparing food for others. Hepatitis A virus is usually spread through feces (stool) of infected people but may also be spread through injection drug use.Since 2014, Indiana has required children to be immunized against hepatitis A prior to entering school. However, anyone who may be at risk, especially food handlers in schools, hospitals, restaurants, correctional institutions and other facilities that serve large numbers of people, is urged to get vaccinated. Hepatitis A vaccine is readily available from health care providers and pharmacies as routine preventive care.Healthcare providers are encouraged to ask patients about risk factors for hepatitis A, including:Travel to locations with high rates of hepatitis AMen who have sex with menInjection drug useA diagnosis of chronic liver diseaseDirect contact with individuals who have hepatitis AFor more information on hepatitis A, visit the ISDH website.last_img read more

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Magath sticks to his guns

first_img The 60-year-old replaced Dutch coach Rene Meulensteen last week and the west London club’s third manager of a rollercoaster season has been charged with lifting Fulham out of the relegation zone with only 12 league games remaining. Magath won the 1983 European Cup as a player with Hamburg and appeared in two World Cup finals before moving into the dugout where he earned a reputation as “the fireman”, taking over in difficult circumstances to great success at Nurnberg, Werder Bremen and Eintracht Frankfurt before joining Stuttgart, whom he guided to Intertoto Cup success at 2002, which brought him to the attention of Bayern Munich. New Fulham manager Felix Magath sees no reason to change the strict training regimes which have helped turn his German teams into winners – declaring “no-one has died”. The German, though, expressed limited sympathy for Meulensteen, his assistant manager Ray Wilkins and first-team technical director Alan Curbishley, who have all left Craven Cottage under a clean break after results were not turned around despite plenty of support from owner Shahid Khan in the January transfer window. “I had to talk with him (Curbishley) about football and he gave me information about West Brom (away on Saturday), was very good, very nice, but I decided to make a real cut,” Magath said. “If you make one here, one there, it is not the same. “We have good relations and I know he is a very good manager who knows the English league well. “So I am sorry for that, but I think it is the best for Fulham.” Magath is set to leave his squad in no uncertain terms of what is expected as they aim to haul themselves off the bottom and make up what is currently a four-point deficit ahead of Saturday’s trip to the Hawthorns, which is followed by the visit of west London neighbours Chelsea on March 1. “We have to do what we can at the moment and play to win, not to impress our fans. Sorry for that, but they have to be patient for a few months,” he said. “I am sure the players want to stay in the league, so I think they are happy that they had a change. “I think they are trusting me that we stay in the league.” Magath added: “The most important thing for me is to get the players together and to work as fast as we can, that is why I called them to come on Sunday because we have no time to get to know each other. “The players have to know me and they have to try to understand what I want, I have to understand the players and I have to think about what I can ask for. “For me it is not the most important thing to know what they did four weeks ago, because that is the past. “It is important what they do now and what I can ask for.” Successive Bundesliga titles followed, and Magath would go on to also guide Wolfsburg to the domestic championship in 2008-09. Magath’s reputation was built on tough discipline – with one former player Eintracht Frankfurt player Bachirou Salou labelling him as the “last dictator in Europe”. The new Fulham manager, however, will not be about to alter his methods for what is unknown territory in the English game, having already called the Fulham squad in for extra sessions since his arrival. “Why should I change my training? At the moment I am the most successful (club) coach of Germany. Why should I change?” he said. “I don’t know. Can you explain? Until now everybody has loved my training. No-one died.” Magath added: “I am a nice guy, very nice (not a tough guy),” he said. “Ask Raul about my work, don’t ask a player who did not know here in England. Ask the good players and you will get the right answers.” Magath had been out of work since leaving Wolfsburg for the second time in October 2012. Press Associationlast_img read more

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University launches ‘We are considerate’ campaign

first_imgCLICK HERE for a podcast with USG President Monish Tyagi and Daily Trojan News Editor Rachel Bracker about the ‘We Are Considerate’ Campaign. USC will roll out a new campaign today in an effort to improve bike safety and encourage riders to develop more courteous bike behavior.The “We are Considerate, We are USC” initiative is an effort to use the strength of the Trojan Family to enact positive changes on campus.  The university plans to use the programs’ principles to address the problems related to bikes on campus.“It is not just about us enforcing a code of conduct, but looking out for one another, being safe on campus and not being distracted when we are on a bike, or even on foot,” said Thomas Studdert, the campaign’s project manager and director of Orientation Programs.The campaign will be announced in a letter to students, faculty and staff from Vice President for Student Affairs Michael L. Jackson, Vice President of Career and Protective Services Charles Lane, Undergraduate Student Government President Monish Tyagi and Graduate and Professional Student Senate President Ryan Estes. The letter attributes the increase in congestion from biking to USC becoming a more residential university.With the campaign, Studdert said he hopes to make “considerate” the sixth “Trait of a Trojan,” after faithful, scholarly, skillful, courageous and ambitious.“It’s going to be part of a larger campaign where people are more considerate on campus,” Tyagi said.The campaign includes an Operations committee, which comprises representatives from a diverse range of parties, including the Dept. of Public Safety, USG, GPSS, the athletics department, Career and Protective Services and departments in Student Affairs.“It’s out of hand for a university perspective as a whole,” Studdert said. “We are not just addressing bikes, we are addressing the culture of being considerate community members to one another. We are talking about a bigger picture. This is something that, as members of a Trojan Family, we need to do for one another.”The bike initiative encompasses five key points: “share the pathways and yield to pedestrians,” “walk your bikes,” “encourage safety,” “park it” and “watch the road.” Studdert said the goals will be publicized in the coming months and at a kickoff event Nov. 7.In addition to launching the campaign, the university has hired an external consulting firm, Kendall Planning and Design, to analyze the bike situation.Though the ultimate goal of the campaign is to reduce reliance on DPS to enforce bike policy, Studdert said the university will increase bike rule enforcement in the coming months.“We are going to have to move into a strict enforcement phase,” he said. “Over the course of the next couple of months, we are going to ratchet up the enforcement of existing bike policy or [policies] that might be suggested as part of the consulting process.”The consulting firm will gather information, including the number of bikes on campus at various times of the day and student opinion for about eight to 12 months, after which the firm will make suggestions about bike policy on campus, Studdert said.“They have done this at other campuses,” Studdert said. “They come in and look at the design and infrastructure of a campus.”The school is not ruling out any possible policy changes, including bike bans or bike parking on the campus perimeter, Studdert said at last week’s USG Senate meeting.“Everything and anything is on the table to have discussions throughout the process,” Studdert said.Tyagi said although students would be upset by a bike ban, they will be equally upset if bike traffic becomes so congested pedestrians cannot walk safely on campus.“Most students are on the same page and they are looking for some sort of compromise … where pedestrians and bikers can share the space safely and considerately,” Tyagi said.Studdert said that unlike past campaigns, this effort has the support of key university officials.“We have a president, provost and vice president for student affairs who are interested in addressing this problem,” he said.The one-hour kickoff event next Wednesday, Nov. 9 near Tommy Trojan will include remarks from Tyagi, a performance from Kenton Chen, who graduated in 2010 and is a member of the a capella group Backbeats, and other activities. DPS will also be available for students to register their bikes.Kendall Planning and Design will distribute surveys at the event.last_img read more

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