Social distancing and other related behaviors might continue for some time after the pandemic as they become habits, says social work professor Michael Sherr. "The consequences and the things that are going to happen around the world are going to be longer and longer standing than when we find a cure," says Sherr, who is researching how the coronavirus has affected interactions.
The number of data breaches involving protected health information was 10.4% lower in the first half of the year than in the last half of 2019, and the decline could be due to better cybersecurity in the health care sector, according to a report from CI Security. However, some health care organizations might be so focused on the coronavirus pandemic that they haven't noticed breaches, and the report predicts cyberattacks in the health sector are likely to surge.
The CMS says its new Community Health Access and Rural Transformation Model will facilitate high-quality health care in rural communities "through new seed funding and payment structures, operational and regulatory flexibilities and technical and learning support." The program's community and accountable care tracks continue expanded coverage of telehealth and encourages the use telehealth for home health care, remote patient monitoring and care at skilled nursing facilities.
Home improvement projects may be a source of stress for pets, and their favorite locations should be left undisturbed when possible, says veterinarian Dani McVety, discussing problems that commonly arise with more owners working from home. Dr. McVety and behaviorist Kait Hembree add that pets need predictable routines that include mental stimulation, exercise and some solitude so they don't get bored or overstimulated.
Opossums do carry babies in pouches, but they don't carry rabies, writes Traci Howerton, the volunteer coordinator at Animal Rescue New Orleans. She adds that the marsupials are highly adaptable; eat mice, garden pests, venomous snakes and trash; and "may actually be useful to have around."
Dogs do not appear to be highly susceptible to SARS-CoV-2, and they are very unlikely to be able to transmit it to people, but keeping them 6 feet away from other dogs is a good idea for the time being, say AVMA President Dr. Douglas Kratt and veterinarian J. Scott Weese, who researches infectious diseases. Knowledge about how the virus spreads is evolving, and caution is warranted until we know more, Dr. Kratt says.
The risk for below-knee amputation was not higher among patients with type 2 diabetes who used sodium glucose cotransporter 2 inhibitors, compared with those who used dipeptidyl peptidase 4 inhibitors, according to a study in Diabetes Care. The findings were based on data from 207,817 incident SGLT2 inhibitor users and 207,817 DPP-4 inhibitor users.
A study in JAMA Oncology found that the risk for pancreatic cancer was three times higher among patients with new-onset diabetes who had lost 1 to 8 pounds, and seven times higher among those who lost more than 8 pounds, compared with individuals with no diabetes or weight loss. The findings, based on data from 159,025 individuals followed for 30 years, also revealed that the association between pancreatic cancer and new-onset diabetes accompanied by weight loss was stronger among older individuals, those with healthy body weight, and those with no intentional weight loss.
A study in Pediatrics found that higher neonatal adiposity is significantly linked to higher overall body mass index and an increased likelihood of overweight or obesity at ages 2 to 6 years. The findings, based on data involving 979 youths, "suggest that neonatal adiposity may be a useful surrogate end point for prenatal trials designed to reduce future child overweight and obesity," the researchers wrote.
A survey of health care workers found that when it comes to securing personal protective equipment and staffing, larger and more financially affluent hospitals and practices are winning bidding wars with their smaller counterparts, including those in COVID-19 hot spots. GetUsPPE CEO Ali Raja says the group is getting requests for donations from visiting nurse associations and rehabilitation facilities that care for patients after they leave the hospital.
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