COVID-19 Report

To Listen

We have compiled a playlist from all our shows and podcasts on our network that discuss the current COVID-19 pandemic.

Products and Technology

HNL Lab Medicine Achieves Nearly 100 Percent Accurate Patient Records using 4medica’s Big Data MPI
An identity matching data assessment’s discovery catapulted Health Network Laboratories (HNL Lab Medicine) into making a profound business change to safeguard its patients’ health and well-being. Earlier this spring as states began issuing state-at-home orders to curtail the COVID-19 outbreak, the multiregional, full-service laboratory across central and eastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey took decisive action employing 4medica Big Data MPI™ and proprietary master data management services. The result: A dramatic reduction of a detected 30 percent duplicate IDs captured in patient records to half a percent.

GIOSTAR Reports on a Positive Outcome of a COVID-19 Patient After Stem Cell Treatment
Global Institute of Stem Cell Therapy and Research (@giostarstemcell), a stem cell research company, is pleased to announce the outcome of a COVID-19 patient treated using stem cells. Led by Chairman and Co-Founder Dr. Anand Srivastava, GIOSTAR received approval for the treatment under the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) “expanded access for compassionate use” program.

One Stop Testing Shop: ATC Healthcare Services and Rymedi Offer Nation’s First Integrated COVID-19 Testing Solution
On July 28, 2020, ATC Healthcare Services, LLC (@atchealthcare), a national medical staffing firm, and Rymedi, Inc., a company offering digitally connected testing and tracking, entered into a partnership to provide a turnkey COVID-19 testing solution. The offering combines ATC’s wide-reaching medical personnel resources with Rymedi’s integrated diagnostic platform for COVID testing, tracking, and analytics to create a crucial solution to suppressing the COVID virus and safely reopening the nation’s economy.

Racial Disparities:

Health Equity Considerations and Racial and Ethnic Minority Groups
According to the CDC, long-standing systemic health and social inequities have put many people from racial and ethnic minority groups at increased risk of getting sick and dying from COVID-19. The term “racial and ethnic minority groups” includes people of color with a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences. But some experiences are common to many people within these groups, and social determinants of health have historically prevented them from having fair opportunities for economic, physical, and emotional health.

Racial Health Disparities and Covid-19 — Caution and Context
According to The New England Journal of Medicine, in documenting Covid-19 racial disparities, we must contextualize data with adequate analysis. Disparity figures without explanatory context can perpetuate harmful myths and misunderstandings that actually undermine the goal of eliminating health inequities. Such clarifying perspective is required not just for Covid-19 but also for future epidemics. There are several key dangers of insufficient contextualization, but researchers, journalists, public health officials, and policymakers can take a few important steps to address them when discussing racial disparities, especially in the public sphere.

COVID-19 and Health Disparities in the United States
The Infectious Diseases Society of America and its HIV Medicine Association represent more than 12,000 infectious diseases and HIV physicians and other health care providers, public health practitioners and scientists committed to ending the health disparities that have historically impacted the lives of black and brown and other underserved Americans and that have been exacerbated by COVID-19. Uniform racial and ethnic data for COVID-19 cases and outcomes continue to be limited but IDSA and HIVMA offer some of the available statistics.

News and Noted

Announcements from HHS

DOE, HHS, VA Announce COVID-19 Insights Partnership
U.S. Government Engages Pfizer to Produce Millions of Doses of COVID-19 Vaccine
HHS Announces National COVID-19 Testing Implementation Forum
HHS and DOD Invest $7.6M in Hologic to Expand Production of Custom Sample Collection and Processing Consumables for COVID-19 Tests
HHS Reserves and Rapidly Expands Manufacturing Capacity for COVID-19 Vaccines at Texas Center for Innovation in Advanced Development and Manufacturing

Researchers’ predictive algorithm to forecast coronavirus outbreaks taps clinicians’ searches in UpToDate from Wolters Kluwer
Wolters Kluwer (@Wolters_Kluwer), Health announced that a new predictive algorithm is using UpToDate® search activity from clinicians at the point of care—together with data streams from social media, internet search trends and mobility data from smartphones—to serve as a coronavirus early-warning system that could forecast an outbreak two to three weeks in advance.

Respiratory health AI trailblazer VIDA poised for increased scale with newest appointment to leadership team
VIDA Diagnostics, Inc. (@vidalung), an AI-powered lung imaging analysis company, announced that Todd Johnson has joined the company as chief technology officer. Johnson, a leader in enterprise imaging and advanced clinical applications, will apply his expertise to extend the breadth and depth of VIDA’s LungPrint® solutions, ensuring the company’s AI (artificial intelligence) insights are accessible to a broader base of clinicians to improve the diagnosis and treatment of lung disease.

COVID Test Shipments Top One Million Per Day
The Advanced Medical Technology Association (@advamedupdate) announced that shipments of COVID-19 molecular diagnostic tests reached one million per day for the week ending July 24, based on the latest data from the association’s National Testing Registry.

Vaccine News:

U.S. sets global benchmark for COVID-19 vaccine price at around the cost of a flu shot
The U.S. government has set a benchmark for COVID-19 vaccine pricing in a $2 billion deal announced on Wednesday with Pfizer Inc and German biotech BioNTech SE that will likely pressure other manufacturers to set similar prices, industry analysts told Reuters.

FDA official casts doubt on ‘challenge trials’ for Covid-19 vaccine
Politico reports that a top FDA official overseeing vaccine approvals raised doubts Wednesday about the possibility of intentionally infecting people with the coronavirus to see whether vaccines work, saying that could represent “ethical heartburn” because there’s still no easy way to treat the potentially severe disease.

NIH launches clinical trials network to test COVID-19 vaccines and other prevention tools
The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health, has established a new clinical trials network that aims to enroll thousands of volunteers in large-scale clinical trials testing a variety of investigational vaccines and monoclonal antibodies intended to protect people from COVID-19.

FDA says a coronavirus vaccine would have to be at least 50% effective to be approved
A coronavirus vaccine would need to be at least 50% more effective than a placebo in preventing or at least decreasing the severity of COVID-19 in order for the Food and Drug Administration to approve it, the agency said.

To Read

COVID-19’s Disproportionate Impact on Minority Communities – from the AHIP Blog – According to the CDC, initial analysis of data out of New York shows that despite only making up 18% of the community, Black patients represented 33% of hospitalized COVID-19 patients. Nationally, the COVID Racial Tracker found that Black patients die of COVID-19 at rates far higher than their proportion of the population, NPR reported.

8 Return-to-Work Considerations for Employers Amid COVID-19 – from Avalere (@avalerehealth) – To develop a RTW strategy that is safe and effective and protects both workers and customers, employers must recognize the value in data-driven solutions during this unprecedented and rapidly changing time.  Avalere organizes 8 of the highest-level considerations.

HHS unveils new coronavirus hospitalization database, says it’s more complete than CDC’s – from CNBC – The Trump administration on Monday unveiled a new website of Covid-19 hospitalization data that officials said offers a more complete picture of the outbreak than the data previously compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

To Watch:

Bill Gates Makes the Rounds to Discuss the Latest Coronavirus Topics

Microsoft Corporation co-founder Bill Gates joins CNN’s Anderson Cooper and Dr. Sanjay Gupta to discuss coronavirus testing, infection rates in the US and what developing a safe and successful vaccine would look like. Part 1 is below and Part 2 is also available.

Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates tells CNBC’s Andrew Ross Sorkin that “titillating” misinformation has a tendency to spread faster than the truth on social media services. In another clip Gates discusses the coronavirus vaccine and treatment study results thus far and which efforts out there he thinks show the most promise.


Taskforce on Telehealth Public Policy
What: Telehealth Policy Public Comment Town Hall
When: August 4, 2020, 1:00-3:00 p.m. ET
Register to view or listen

Telehealth Policy Public Comment Town Hall – Through this virtual session, telehealth stakeholders can share their views on the challenges and opportunities that have emerged with the explosion of telehealth use during the COVID-19 pandemic and identify policies that will advance its safe and effective use. More than 300 stakeholders have already submitted written comments. The public comment site remains open for written submissions. All public input will be closely considered as the taskforce prepares recommendations to policymakers.

Physicians’ Reciprocal Insurers (PRI)
What: COVID-19 Physician Peer Support
When: Mondays 8:00 p ET; Tuesdays & Thursdays 5:30 – 6:30 pm ET
Register for Monday Groups
Register for Tuesday & Thursday Groups

COVID-19 Physician Peer Support – PRI has multiple weekly complimentary Virtual Support Groups on Coping with COVID-19 which your fellow physicians have been utilizing and finding great comfort and support from.

CDC is one of the major operating components of the Department of Health and Human Services. CDC works 24/7 to protect America from health, safety and security threats, both foreign and in the US. CDC increases the health security of our nation. As the nation’s health protection agency, CDC saves lives and protects people from health threats.

The CDC is the front line for our safety and information on the Coronavirus. Keep informed about COVID-19. Sign up to get emails or text alerts from the CDC.

COVID-19 Resources
HealthcareNOW Radio rounded up some health IT resources being offered by companies to help healthcare professionals, American citizens and all of those affected in the fight against the coronavirus.

Canceled/Rescheduled Due to Coronavirus

Patient Experience Symposium
What: Patient Experience Symposium 2020
When: September 30 – October 2, 2020