In-home testing kits for COVID-19
In this article, the authors discuss testing kits that have been FDA approved for diagnosing COVID-19 in the home. In April 2020, LabCorp developed the first FDA-approved, in-home collection kit, followed Everlywell who developed a kit in May 2020. The authors state that these kits provide a superior option for screening when a person experiences mild symptoms or is asymptomatic, or when they are under self-quarantine. Pros include conservation of PPE, reduced usage of healthcare workers, and affordability. The cons to using in-home collection kits are related to inappropriate sampling and insufficient clinical examination. The authors continue to discuss how in-home test kits may create a huge benefit to society during the pandemic.
Clinical screening for COVID-19 in asymptomatic oncology patients
In this quality improvement study, authors discuss a triaging process that was implemented at the Weill Cornell Medicine Division of Hematology and Medical Oncology during the COVID-19 pandemic. This study follows the Standards for Quality Improvement Reporting Excellence (SQUIRE) guidelines. The authors report that patients were considered asymptomatic if they had no recent fever, (≥100.5 °F for 5 days), report no cough, headache, loss of taste, shortness of breath, or high risk exposure within 14 days prior to arrival. Participants were tested using SARS-COV-2 nasal swab PCR testing, IgM and IgG serology, and were retested every 1-2 weeks. Rates of positive cases are discussed among those who are asymptomatic and have dual cancer diagnosis.
Cases of Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Adults
As we know, children have predominately had a lower incidence of SARS-COV-2 infection, however, have had more cases of MIS-C. Clinical features include shock, cardiac dysfunction, abdominal pain, and elevated inflammatory markers, etc. In this CDC article, authors discuss incidences of this condition in adults that have been discussed in published case reports and peer-reviewed journals. The authors urge clinicians to consider MIS-A in adults with compatible signs and symptoms.
Impact of COVID-19 on immunizations against vaccine preventable disease
In this commentary, the author discusses the possible positive and negative effects that COVID-19 may have on vaccination rates this year. It has been well documented that vaccination rates were down from this time last year, however, there are also positive effects related to the pandemic and immunizations. For example, the author notes a strong possibility that there will be a universally recognized need for a coronavirus vaccine and that alone will increase people’s appreciation for vaccines in general. The downside, of course, is that there have been halts in vaccination programs due to the pandemic and this increases the risk that vaccine preventable diseases could make a comeback, particularly in low-resource countries. With a COVID-19 vaccine in the works, time will tell the effects on vaccine preventable disease.
Multiple clusters of COVID-19 on college campus
Before August 2020, there were minimal studies on outbreaks and disease transmission among college campuses leading many higher learning institutes to question mitigation and safety strategies for the fall semester. In this article, authors discuss a North Carolina university which experienced a rapid increase in COVID-19 cases and clusters within weeks of reopening the campus. This rise in cases was attributed to congregate living and student gatherings. The article goes on to discuss implications to reduce transmission among college campuses and what was learned during this college outbreak. Suggestions include reduced housing density, adherence to non-pharmacologic prevention (masks and physical distancing), increased testing, and prohibiting student gatherings.