The epidemic has now claimed more than 1 million lives worldwide in a span of less than a year. The US remains the world’s center of coronovirus casualties, with more than 7 million confirmed cases and 200,000 deaths.
To help schools reopen safely, the federal government has purchased Abbott’s (ABT) rapid tests, which provide results in 15 minutes and were recently approved by the US Food and Drug Administration . The antigen tests imposed by Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar as the linchpin of President Donald Trump’s testing strategy provide the ability to identify possible active infections.
The administration’s move was sparked by developments in New York City – a former global coronavirus subcenter – that began in one-man elementary school classrooms on Tuesday, with more than 1 million students in the city still learning remotely.
The hybrid model of the Big Apple has marked a milestone in a city where mass restrictions of public life still persist. Yet the reopening of the school was a tough battle between teachers, principals and city officials – and transitions have begun to increase in areas of NYC recently after months of stability. On Tuesday, Mayor Bill de Blasio said that for the first time in months, the city’s daily positive tests rate exceeded 3%.
All of which sparked a heated debate over the administration’s antibody strategy, with health experts warning that the toolbox has only one tool to help track the test outbreak.
The administration’s focus on time and education coincides with growing opposition from teachers in various states, who are struggling with the mandate of the individual-class – and some unions have organized strikes or threatened. Amid those concerns, more than 100 teachers did not show up for classes in Arkansas on Monday.
Social deviations are important to prevent COVID-19 from spreading, proper ventilation, wearing masks in crowded places – such as school- and frequent hand washing. Public health officials have also warned against staying in indoor locations for extended periods of time, even if there were concerns over the reopening of bars and restaurants.
While children are less likely to show signs of the virus, health experts worry about the ability of asymptomatic spread from school going children to adults. The US Center for Disease Control (CDC) released a new study of symptoms in young children on Monday, stating that minorities are the same as adults — disaffected, and more likely to end up in intensive care units in hospitals There is a possibility.
As a result, the CDC asked schools to “implement several concurrent preventive strategies based on local levels of transmission and adjust mitigation to reduce COVID-19 disease risk for students, teachers, school staff members, families, and the community.” Urged. ”
However, the agency’s guidance has come under fire in the wake of a New York Times report that suggested the White House was politicizing CDC policy. Teachers and adults in schools are more likely to be at risk, as children are more likely to be asymptomatic and less likely to be. And in some cases, parents have intentionally sent the infected children to school.
What are the experts saying
Scott Atlas, a Stanford University fellow and one of Trump’s leading coronavirus advisers, has been adamant that schools should reopen. At a recent press conference in Florida, Atlas stated that the US is “the only country of our peer countries in Western countries so hysterical about reopening schools.”
His comment underscores the sentiments expressed by other experts, who argue in favor of person-to-person learning based on mental health and educational equity. Since the lockdown began in March, scores of parents at all income levels have also struggled to balance learning at home with work responsibilities.
An August article in the Journal of the American Medical Association stated that school closures increased the risk that “children have poor mental health as well as reduced access to nutritious foods and health services, lower educational benefits and protective Services may be given less attention. ”
Those problems are worse in low-income communities, the authors wrote, which also raised the question of whether children can spread COVID-19 and how.
The American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association noted that children represent 9% of all COVID-19 cases in the country, and the rate of hospitalization among children is low. And just like adults, a disproportionate number of minorities are affected by the virus.
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