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Weekly Roundups

Early Studies on Long-Term COVID-19 Effects Come To Light

By Miriam Bello | Thu, 07/23/2020 - 13:12

Although it is hard to tell what long-term effects the SARS-CoV-2 virus will have on people’ health, assumptions and early data show COVID-19 could have long-lasting impacts.

Here is the Week in Health!

NATIONAL

-Yesterday, during a special videoconference between Foreign Ministers of China and Latin America and the Caribbean, Minister of Foreign Affairs Marcelo Ebrard announced China will grant a US$1 billion loan to Latin America to ease access to the COVID-19 vaccine.

-Grupo Neolpharma opened a new distribution center in Mexico City, which will also serve as a plastic ampoules manufacturing facility. The project represents a MX$700 million (US$31.2 million) investment into the country and will generate 100 direct and indirect jobs. The Mexican group highlighted that with this plant, it seeks to substitute raw material imports. The company already manufactures vitamins, generics and innovative medicines and this action hopes to contribute to the economic reactivation of the city.

-Facebook, alongside the Ministry of Health, announced an initiative to encourage and facilitate blood donation, which has dropped 70 percent in the country due to COVID-19 safety measures.

INTERNATIONAL

-A recent post by The Vaccine Alliance (GAVI) explains the COVID-19 virus can have long-term effects on the body. While it is still too early to determine the exact long-term consequences of COVID-19, GAVI draws parallels to the SARS and MERS-CoV viruses. Long lasting effects of SARS include poor exercise capacities and deteriorated overall health status, as well as chronic fatigue symptoms. Regarding COVID-19, data indicates that symptoms can last up to 10 weeks or that they can fade way and return with more severity. Moreover, some doctors already use the term “post-COVID lung disease” to refer to the affectation that organs will eventually present.

-A study made by NEJM revealed that people are presenting a rapid decay of antibodies following a COVID-19 infection with mild symptoms. These findings suggest that immunity to the virus was not developed by all people that were infected with SARS-CoV-2.

-Pfizer and BioNTech’s vaccine will be US$20 per dose. According to their statement, the vaccine will require a two-dose take and according to Sally Beaty, Pfizer’s Spokeswoman, “this is almost 30 percent less that what others charge for a seasonal flu vaccine.” Prior to the statement, the US government had said that they were giving US$2 billion to the coalition to secure 100 million doses of the vaccine. According to Pfizer, after this price announcement, this figure can secure up to 600 million doses for the US.

-The Oxford University and AstraZeneca coalition showed significant advances on their COVID-19 vaccine. According to The Lancet, vaccine results can determine “safety and immunogenicity against SARS-CoV-2.” Other vaccines and treatments have also reported positive results. Here is a briefing.

-A new blood test called PanSeer has detected cancer cells quicker than any other test before. According to test results, it detected cancer on asymptomatic patients, meaning that its early detection is a watershed in the field of diagnosis. The study on PanSeer began in China back in 2007 and the results have finally been posted.

Miriam Bello Miriam Bello Journalist and Industry Analyst