PUT-IN-BAY, Ohio (WJW)– The mayor of Put-in-Bay is asking visitors to do their part to prevent the spread of coronavirus after at least seven cases were tied to restaurants and bars on the island.
Squirrel tests positive for the bubonic plague in Colorado – ABC News
Public health officials have announced that a squirrel in Colorado has tested positive for the bubonic plague.
The town of Morrison, Colorado, in Jefferson County, which is just west of Denver, made the startling announcement saying that the squirrel is the first case of plague in the county.
Plague is an infectious disease caused by the bacteria Yersinia pestis, and can be contracted by humans and household animals if proper precautions are not taken, officials from Jefferson County Public Health (JCPH) said in a statement released to the public.
It is possible for humans to be infected with the bubonic plague through bites from infected fleas and by direct contact with blood or tissues of infected animals such as a cough or a bite.
Jefferson County Public Health said that cats are highly susceptible to the plague from things like flea bites, a rodent scratch or bite, and ingesting an infected rodent. Cats can die if not treated quickly with antibiotics after contact with the plague.
Officials also said that dogs are not as susceptible to the plague as cats are but still may pick up and carry plague-infected rodent fleas. Any pet owner who suspects that their pet is ill should contact a veterinarian immediately.
Symptoms of plague may include sudden onset of high fever, chills, headache, nausea and extreme pain and swelling of lymph nodes, occurring within two to seven days after exposure. Plague can be effectively treated with antibiotics when diagnosed early. Anyone experiencing these symptoms should consult a physician, said JCPH.
Risk for contracting the bubonic plague is extremely low as long as the proper precautions are taken and JCPH published a list of them including eliminating all sources of food, shelter and access for wild animals around the home, not feeding wild animals, maintaining a litter and trash-free yard to reduce wild animal habitats, having people and pets should avoid all contact with sick or dead wild animals and rodents, using precaution when handling sick pets and having them examined by a veterinarian, consulting with a veterinarian about flea and tick control for pets and keeping pets from roaming freely outside the home where they may prey on wild animals and bring the disease home with them.
All pet owners who live close to wild animal populations, such as prairie dog colonies or other known wildlife habitats, should consult their veterinarian about flea control for their pets to help prevent the transfer of fleas to humans, JCPH said.
According to the CDC, even though there is no vaccine for the plague, it can be treated successfully with antibiotics if caught within 24 hours of exhibiting symptoms.
Arguably the most infamous plague outbreak was the so-called Black Death, a multi-century pandemic that swept through Asia and Europe, according to National Geographic. It was believed to start in China in 1334, spreading along trade routes and reaching Europe via Sicilian ports in the late 1340s. The plague killed an estimated 25 million people, almost a third of the continents population. The Black Death lingered on for centuries, particularly in cities. Outbreaks included the Great Plague of London (1665-66), in which 70,000 residents died.
However, the CDC says that there is now only an average of seven human plague cases per year and the WHO says the mortality rate is estimated to be between 8-10%.
National Geographic is owned by Walt Disney, the parent company of ABC News.
UK could see up to 120,000 additional coronavirus deaths this winter, scientists warn – CNBC
In a worst-case scenario, the experts said there could be 119,900 additional hospital deaths in the U.K. this winter.
The U.K. government must prepare for a potential new wave of Covid-19 infections that may be more serious than the first, a group of scientists has said, warning that the country could see nearly 120,000 further coronavirus deaths this winter.
In a report published Tuesday, an advisory group of 37 experts from the Academy of Medical Sciences stressed that “intense preparation” was urgently needed throughout the rest of July and August to reduce the risk of the National Health Service being overwhelmed this winter.
Their modeling suggests Covid-19 infections in the U.K. will rise again in the fall and peak in January and February, the busiest time of year for the NHS.
In a worst-case scenario, the experts said there could be 119,900 additional hospital deaths this winter at least double the number from the first wave.
The models do not consider the use of drugs, treatments or potential vaccines. It also excludes deaths in care homes and the community.
To date, the U.K. has recorded more than 291,000 cases of the coronavirus, with 44,915 related deaths, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
The “Preparing for a challenging winter 2020/2021” report was requested by Patrick Vallance, the British government’s chief scientific adviser, to model a “reasonable” worst-case scenario.
“The modelling suggests that deaths could be higher with a new wave of Covid-19 this winter, but the risk of this happening could be reduced if we take action immediately,” Stephen Holgate, a respiratory scientist from University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust, said in the report.
“With relatively low numbers of Covid-19 cases at the moment, this is a critical window of opportunity to help us prepare for the worst that winter can throw at us,” he added.
Holgate, who chaired the report, said the findings were not a prediction of what is likely to happen, but a scenario of what may happen if the virus is allowed to surge and little is done to protect the NHS and social care services.
The report calls for a public information campaign, a reorganization of health and social care staff facilities to ensure Covid-19-free zones, and increased capacity of the country’s “test, trace and isolate” program.
It also says the U.K. government should consider a “comprehensive, near-real-time, population-wide surveillance system to monitor and manage a winter wave.”
Health experts have said previously that they expect cooler weather conditions in winter to trigger a more intense transmission of the Covid-19 infection, saying the disease was “very likely” to show a similar seasonal pattern to other coronaviruses.
In winter, people tend to spend more time indoors clustered together, with less ventilation and less personal space than in summer.
Respiratory infections, such as coronaviruses, are spread by droplets that are released when a person coughs or sneezes. And, health experts say colder and drier conditions in winter strongly affects the transmission of flu-like illnesses.
The World Health Organization said last week it was also reviewing new evidence on whether the coronavirus can spread through particles in the air.
“Every winter we see an increase in the number of people admitted to hospital and in the number of people dying in the U.K.,” Anne Johnson, professor of infectious disease epidemiology at University College London and vice president of the Academy of Medical Sciences, said in the report.
“This is due to a combination of seasonal infections such as flu, and the effects of colder weather, for example, on heart and lung conditions,” Johnson continued. “This winter we have to factor in the likelihood of another wave of coronavirus infections and the ongoing impacts of the first wave. We have to be prepared that we might also experience a flu epidemic this year.”
The WHO has previously warned world leaders that the pandemic is still not under control and is getting worse.
Speaking at a news conference from the health agency’s Geneva headquarters on Monday, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said: “Let me be blunt, too many countries are headed in the wrong direction.”
He said it appeared many countries were “losing gains” because proven measures to reduce the risk were either not implemented or followed.
More than 13.1 million people had contracted the coronavirus as of Tuesday, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University, with 573,042 deaths due to the virus worldwide.
State leaders address recent spike in COVID-19 cases – KTVA
Gov. Mike Dunleavy and Chief Medical Office Dr. Anne Zink, well-known figures in the state’s ongoing efforts to battle the pandemic, spoke to Alaskans Monday evening in another livestreamed address.
Gov. Mike Dunleavy and Chief Medical Officer Dr. Anne Zink, well-known figures in the state’s ongoing efforts to battle the pandemic, spoke to Alaskans Monday evening in another livestreamed address.
The duo was joined by public health director Heidi Hedberg and Dr. Joe McLaughlin, the state’s chief of epidemiology.
Dunleavy touted the state’s more positive data: Alaska is fifth in the country when it comes to testing per capita and is the state with the lowest COVID-19 death count.
He noted governors in other states where cases are on the rise are implementing restrictions and statewide mask mandates but did not indicate he would be following suit.
“We don’t need to take draconian actions here in Alaska,” he said.
Dunleavy urged Alaskans to take small steps to reduce the spread, including practicing social distancing and wearing a mask.
“If we all just make a couple small adjustments, we can keep our numbers within a range that will keep our hospitalization and our death rates down,” he said.
McLaughlin said people in their 20s consistently have more cases than any other age group, followed by people in their 30s. He said there is not a clear reason why young adults are driving cases in Alaska, but they might be more likely to congregate in risky social settings.
“We really want to make sure that we’re messaging to these younger adult groups in a way that they really get and really understand and really compel them to do their part, because that’s what we’re asking is that all people just do their part,” he said.
As of Monday, people in their 20s and 30s remain the highest age groups testing positive for the disease, with 23% and just over 19% of the total cases, respectively.
In Anchorage, 28 more people were reportedly diagnosed with COVID-19 on Monday, bringing the city’s total to 444 active cases.
Mayor Ethan Berkowitz the same day issued a statement, pleading with Alaskans to adhere to renewed public health advisories:
“We are in the middle of a significant COVID-19 case spike. Our contact tracing capacity has been overwhelmed, and we must defend our hospital capacity. Contact tracing is critical because it allows us to know where the virus is and who has it so we can better contain it. Hospital capacity allows us to safely treat those who have become infected.
We know that this public health crisis poses a threat to our jobs and businesses, and we know what works to keep us safe. Mask up. Stay six feet apart. Wash hands. Keep our social bubbles small. Flattening the curve is how we stop the increase in cases. And, as we have seen in so many other states, it’s what we need to do so we won’t have to start shutting things down.”
This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.
Copyright 2020 KTVA. All rights reserved.
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