News for Providers
Top stories summarized by our editors
4/1/2020

Elizabeth Davis, a retired social worker, wanted to uplift her neighbors, so she went door to door playing an English hymn on her violin. Davis says she was inspired by musicians performing online and that the experience gave her a mental break from her worries.

4/1/2020

The Trump administration will not create a special enrollment period for Affordable Care Act coverage due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, but officials are "exploring other options," according to a White House official. Some states that operate their own exchanges have opened enrollment in response to the pandemic.

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Politico
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Trump, White House
4/1/2020

A study in the Journal of the Endocrine Society found that a machine learning artificial intelligence model was able to predict the future incidence of type 2 diabetes by analyzing 509,000 annual health checkup records of more than 139,000 people in Japan with an overall accuracy of 94.9%. Lead researcher Akihiro Nomura wrote that machine learning could someday be used to identify high-risk groups of future diabetes patients better than existing risk scores.

4/1/2020

A new drone technology outlined in a study in the Journal of the Endocrine Society was able to successfully deliver insulin from Galway, Ireland, to the Aran Islands and returned with a blood sample from the patient for monitoring blood glucose control, leading the researchers to believe that the device may one day be used to make urgent deliveries of diabetes medications to remote locations. According to Spyridoula Maraka, an endocrinologist who was part of the test, the delivered insulin was secured in an insulated parcel with temperature monitoring en route, with a security lock on the parcel in case the device did not arrive at the right place.

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HealthDay News
4/1/2020

President Donald Trump told Americans to prepare for a difficult few weeks as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to worsen, with confirmed cases reaching close to 190,000 and deaths climbing to more than 4,000. With hospitals being pushed to capacity by the pandemic, the US Army Corps of Engineers is seeking large open spaces to build hundreds of makeshift hospitals after turning the Jacob Javits Convention Center in New York into a 1,000-bed hospital.

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Reuters, Fox News
4/1/2020

A Vizient report showed 13 drugs in three classes that are crucial to the use of ventilators are running low, based on findings of surging demand and reduced fill rates. Drugs facing possible shortages include sedatives and anesthetics such as lorazepam, ketamine and etomidate; analgesics such fentanyl, morphine and hydromorphone; and neuromuscular blockers such as rocuronium, cisatricurium and succinylcholine chloride vecuronium.

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FierceHealthcare
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vecuronium, rocuronium
4/1/2020

A study published in the Journal of the Endocrine Society and presented at group's virtual annual meeting found adults with overweight or obesity who had very poor fitness at baseline lost half the weight of those with poor or better fitness during an 18-month behavioral weight-loss program. Researcher Adnin Zaman said people with lower cardiorespiratory fitness will not burn as many calories as those with higher fitness levels when doing exercise of similar intensity, and that could affect weight loss or weight-loss maintenance.

4/1/2020

The coronavirus pandemic should prompt nuclear medicine providers to delay imaging for people with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 or place those patients in an "isolated room equipped with a high-efficiency particulate air filter" if needed; mandate that all patients and their companions wear masks during imaging exams; conduct shorter exams; and restrict patient activity, according to an article written by nuclear medicine specialists in Wuhan, China, in the European Journal of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging. Researchers also stressed that personal protective equipment be worn by technologists administering radiotracers to suspected and confirmed COVID-19 patients, and that scanners, instruments and other equipment be properly disinfected.

4/1/2020

Researchers who used a new 25-point CT scoring criteria, with a higher score indicating greater COVID-19-related pneumonia changes and lung lobe involvement, found that symptomatic individuals with COVID-19 who were diagnosed in three days or sooner had lower peak CT scores and faster recovery times, compared with those who received a later COVID-19 diagnosis. The updated system, described in the American Journal of Roentgenology, may enable earlier diagnosis and improved outcomes among patients with COVID-19.

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Health Imaging online
4/1/2020

Lung ultrasounds can be used to determine pregnant women in the early stages of COVID-19 and those with false-negative polymerase chain reaction test results, with scans proceeding from the basal to the upper thorax zones, according to a report in Ultrasound in Obstetrics & Gynecology. OB-GYNs can use any ultrasound machine, but handheld scanners are best to avoid disease transmission, researchers wrote, while ultrasound focus settings should be adjusted to ensure an adequate pleural line view, and the gain should be reduced to emphasize A- and B-lines, as well as other hyperechoic indications.