Coronavirus Morning News Brief – Sept. 29: New Guidance for Treating Long Covid, Al Roker Tests Positive

FIFA Announces Covid Protocols for World Cup 2022 in Doha

By Jonathan Spira on 29 September 2022
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Camels resting at the Al-Shahaniya camel racing track in Doha

Good morning. This is Jonathan Spira reporting. Here now the news of the pandemic from across the globe on the 903rd day of the pandemic.

The American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation announced new guidance concerning the diagnosis and treatment of Long Covid.

“When we recognized that Long Covid, this new problem was developing due to the pandemic, we really felt an obligation to come forth and try to address it as best as we could,” said Dr. Steven Flanagan, the group’s president-elect, at a media briefing Tuesday, ahead of the guidance release. “We recognized two years ago, this is a problem.”

The new guidance emphasizes that physicians “recognize, assess, and treat” the condition’s various symptoms across a wide range of medical disciplines, including cardiovascular and pulmonary to neurologic, cognitive, and gastrointestinal care.

Individual rehabilitation protocols will need to be tailored to each patient’s condition and unique needs as there is no one-size-fits-all treatment for Long Covid.

Long Covid symptoms include organ damage, severe chronic fatigue, brain fog, an inability to concentrate, and skeletal-muscular issues.

In news we cover today, FIFA outlined Covid-related protocols for the World Cup 2022 matches and meteorologist Al Roker has Covid, as does Spanish Prime Minister  Pedro Sánchez.

Here’s a look at what has taken place over the past 24 hours.

UNITED STATES

The Supreme Court, which will soon begin a new term, announced new policies that will allow the public to attend oral arguments in person.  Donning a face mask will be optional.

GLOBAL

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez continues to test positive for the coronavirus, causing a delay in a planned meeting of the nine leaders of Europe’s Mediterranean countries.

Taiwan will end its mandatory Covid-19 quarantine for arrivals starting on October13, a move intended to allow the island nation to welcome tourists back, the government said on Thursday.

SPORTS AND ENTERTAINMENT

Meteorologist Al Roker, who is the current weather presenter on the NBC “Today” show, tested positive for Covid, the network said.  He is experiencing “mild symptoms” a spokesman later reported.

The Fédération Internationale de Football Association, widely known as FIFA, said that visitors to Qatar for the World Cup 2022, which starts in November, will be required to show a negative PCR or antigen test to enter the country and show a tracking app at matches.  Rapid antigen tests taken in the previous 24 hours before landing in Qatar will only be accepted if they are from official medical centers and not self-administered, organizers said.   Masks are required on all public transit, which includes the city’s metro system fans will use to get to the World Cup’s eight stadiums in Doha.

TODAY’S STATISTICS

Now here are the daily statistics for Thursday, September 29.

As of Thursday morning, the world has recorded 622 million Covid-19 cases, an increase of 0.4 million cases, and over 6.5 million deaths, according to Worldometer, a service that tracks such information. In addition, 601.9 million people worldwide have recovered from the virus, an increase of 0.3 million.

Worldwide, the number of active coronavirus cases as of Thursday is 13,510,348, an increase of 254,000. Out of that figure, 99.7%, or 13,470,632, are considered mild, and 0.3%, or 39,716, are listed as critical.  The percentage of cases considered critical has not changed over the past 24 hours.

The United States reported 100,524 new coronavirus infections on Thursday for the previous day, compared to 41,906 on Wednesday, 58,520 on Tuesday, 5,275 on Monday, according to data from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.  The 7-day incidence rate is now 50,505.  Figures for the weekend (reported the following day) are typically 30% to 60% of those posted on weekdays due to a lower number of tests being conducted.

The average daily number of new coronavirus cases in the United States over the past 14 days is 48,806, a 22% decrease, based on data from the Department of Health and Human Services, among other sources.  The average daily death toll over the same period is 404, a decrease of 12% over the same period, while the average number of hospitalizations for the period was 28,765, a 12% decrease.

In addition, since the start of the pandemic the United States has, as of Thursday, recorded 98.1 million cases, a higher figure than any other country, and a death toll of 1.08 million. India has the world’s second highest number of officially recorded cases, 44.6 million, and a reported death toll of 528,611.

The newest data from Russia’s Rosstat state statistics service showed that, at the end of July, the number of Covid or Covid-related deaths since the start of the pandemic there in April 2020 is now 823,623, giving the country the world’s second highest pandemic-related death toll, behind the United States.  Rosstat reported that 3,284 people died from the coronavirus or related causes in July, down from 5,023 in June, 7,008 in May and 11,583 in April.

Meanwhile, France is the country with the third highest number of cases, with 35.3 million, although Brazil has recorded the third highest number of deaths as a result of the virus, 685,976, and has recorded 34.7 million cases, placing it in the number four slot.

Germany is in the number five slot with 33.2 million cases.

The other five countries with total case figures over the 20 million mark are South Korea, with over 24.7 million cases, the United Kingdom, with 23.6 million cases, placing it in the number seven slot, and Italy, with 22.4 million, as number eight, as well as Japan, with 21.2 million, and Russia, with just under 21 million.

VACCINATION SPOTLIGHT

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that, as of the past Thursday, over 263.8 million people in the United States – or 79.5% – have received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine. Of that population, 67.8%, or 224.9 million people, have received two doses of vaccine, and the total number of doses that have been dispensed in the United States is now 616.2 million. Breaking this down further, 90.4% of the population over the age of 18 – or 233.4 million people – has received at least a first inoculation and 77.5% of the same group – or 200.1 million people – is fully vaccinated.  In addition, 51.8% of that population, or 103.7 million people, has already received a first booster dose of vaccine.

Starting on June 13, 2022, the CDC began to update vaccine data on a weekly basis and publish the updated information on Thursdays by 8 p.m. EDT, a statement on the agency’s website said.

Some 68% of the world population has received at least one dose of coronavirus vaccine by Thursday, according to Our World in Data, an online scientific publication that tracks such information.  So far, 12.73 billion doses of the vaccine have been administered on a global basis and 3.06 million doses are now administered each day.

Meanwhile, only 22.6% of people in low-income countries have received one dose, while in countries such as Canada, China, Denmark, France, Italy, the United Kingdom, and the United States, at least 75% of the population has received at least one dose of vaccine.

Only a handful of the world’s poorest countries – Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia and Nepal – have reached the 70% mark in vaccinations. Many countries, however, are under 20% and, in countries such as Haiti, Senegal, and Tanzania, for example, vaccination rates remain in the single digits, if not lower.

In addition, with the start of vaccinations in North Korea, Eritrea remains the only country in the world that has not administered vaccines.

Anna Breuer contributed reporting to this story.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

Accura News

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