COVID-19

Tom Sweitzer knows firsthand how social isolation and loneliness are real side effects of living through a pandemic — just as mental health professionals have warned.

High school senior Audrianna Hill has been playing basketball since she was five years old. But this winter, with Covid-19 cases rising, there was a chance she might not get to play. Her Detroit school has been virtual since the pandemic began, and the basketball season has been pushed back multiple times since September. Basketball is a big part of who she is, and she's been banking on her last year of playing to help get her recruited. The suspensions haven't helped.

Stuck on a stalled motorized inflatable raft in the open sea, 15-year-old Tsedal began to panic.

She and the other passengers, more than 60 migrants from the African countries of Eritrea and Sudan, had set off from neighboring Libya, where their lives had become unbearable. They were trying to cross more than 100 miles of the Mediterranean Sea to reach Europe.

Repeated distress calls brought no help. The passengers were suffering from dehydration and sunstroke. Two babies on board cried with such anguish that Tsedal could feel their wails deep in her chest.

Elected officials in Florida are reacting strongly against media reports that the White House is considering imposing domestic travel restrictions to control the spread of COVID-19.

"It would be unconstitutional. It would be unwise and it would be unjust," Gov. Ron DeSantis said Thursday at a vaccination site in Port Charlotte, on Florida's Gulf Coast.

Japan may have several million fewer coronavirus vaccine doses than originally planned because the country does not have the appropriate syringes. It's another setback to one of the slower vaccination rollouts among developed economies.

The Pfizer vaccine normally contains five doses per vial. But a special syringe known as a low dead space syringe, which expels more medicine from the space between a syringe's needle and plunger, can eke out six doses per vial.

When Black business owner Jennifer Kelly applied for an emergency loan for small businesses through a major bank last spring, she found herself shut out.

Kelly, who runs a clinical psychology practice outside Atlanta, was not the only one. Businesses owned by Blacks and Latinos were often at the back of the line last year as the government rushed out hundreds of billions of dollars in Paycheck Protection Program loans. The money was intended to help small businesses keep their workers on the payroll during the pandemic.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel defended her government's decision to extend a COVID-19 lockdown into March, as she issued a stark warning that new strains of the coronavirus "may destroy any success" already achieved in keeping the pandemic in check.

Abbygail Broughton

The Madison County health department in Kentucky has kept its harm reduction program open throughout the COVID-19 pandemic to continue its work against the other epidemic afflicting the region: the addiction crisis. Through the program, people can exchange needles, receive referrals for addiction treatment services, and get training to use the overdose-reversal drug Narcan. 

 

Screenshot / Facebook

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear went live on Facebook early this afternoon to address the current weather system reportedly carrying the potential to be the worst ice storm in the past two to three years. He reports state agencies are activating measures to respond. 

Addiction In The Pandemic: Staying In Treatment

Feb 8, 2021
Corinne Boyer / Ohio Valley Resource

Since 2012, the 2nd Chance Center for Addiction Treatment has served people in Lexington, Kentucky. The office sits on a busy street on the city’s north side. Similar to the heavy traffic that passes by, clients seeking treatment for substance and opioid use disorders steadily stream in and out of the building.

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