Innovation, Contagion, Prevention: The Week in HealthBy Miriam Bello | Thu, 01/13/2022 - 12:10
Amid the growing number of COVID-19 cases in Mexico, several states are deploying new precautions to stop the spread. Internationally, innovations in organ transplants and insomnia treatment are in the spotlight.
Here is the week in health!
Mexico President’s Contracts COVID-19 a Second Time
President Andrés Manuel López Obrador tested positive to COVID-19 after attending a morning press conference showing clear symptoms. During the event, he said he “woke up hoarse but I think it is the flu." López Obrador will remain isolated util next Monday, said Minister of Health Jorge Alcocer. In the meantime, the president said he will only do office work and communicate virtually.
COVID-19 Quickly Spreads
As the highly contagious Omicron variant rapidly spreads throughout Mexico, the country broke its record of COVID-19 infections registered in a single day three times in a single week, reporting 44,187 new cases on Wednesday, said the Ministry of Health.
Flurona Identified in Mexico
Amid Mexico’s fourth wave of COVID-19, the first cases of flurona have been detected in the country, leading health experts to call for extreme caution. Flurona is the simultaneous infection of SARS-CoV-2 and the influenza virus.
Traveling Measures Relax
Despite rising COVID-19 cases, Mexico has discarded a health screening form previously given to tourists coming into the country, which was its only sanitary screening requirement. With this move, the country returns to its pre-pandemic travel procedures despite the mass spread of COVID-19 variants.
Jalisco Strengthens Sanitary Measures
As of Jan. 14, those living in Jalisco will have to present a COVID-19 vaccination certificate or a negative PCR test to enter cultural centers, casinos, clubs, stadiums, concerts and all kinds of mass events, reported the state’s government. These measures will only apply to people over 18 years old.
COFEPRIS Goes Digital
Mexican regulatory agency COFEPRIS introduced the Procedure Digitalization Platform (DIGIPRiS) to help users submit procedures related to personal consumption. The digital platform has been a long-time wish of the health industry.
A Light of Hope for Organ Transplant
For the first time in history, a pig heart was successfully transplanted into a human. David Bennett, a 57-year-old man with fatal heart disease, received a heart transplant from a genetically modified pig, reported surgeons at the University of Maryland Medical Center.
Novel Treatment for Insomnia
One of the most common sleeping disorders, insomnia, has a novel therapy on its way. This week, Swiss drugmaker Idorsia received FDA’s approval for its treatment for insomnia in adult patients.
Cannabis Against COVID-19
Some acids present in cannabis could help prevent COVID-19 infections, according to a study by Oregon State University. Researchers found that cannabinoids adhere to the spike protein of the virus, thereby inhibiting its ability to penetrate human cells.