Inside a COVID-19 hospital in India, doctors see no end in sight


first_imgIt was barely noon on Thursday when the metal doors of the mortuary at a hospital in south New Delhi swung open and staff in white coveralls rolled out a stretcher. Mourning relatives looked on, as a body bag was loaded into an ambulance and taken away to a cemetery.It was yet another casualty from the coronavirus pandemic that has killed over 4,500 people and infected more than 150,000 across India. While infection rates from the virus have begun to fall in many countries, in India they are still rising sharply, and epidemiologists warn peak is yet to come.Concerns are rising about how the country of 1.3 billion, with one of the world’s most overburdened healthcare systems, will handle the surge with roughly 6,000 new infections being detected daily this week. On Thursday, Reuters was given exclusive access inside Max Super Speciality Hospital – currently the largest such private COVID-19 treatment site in New Delhi – where some 200 patients are being treated for the disease caused by the new coronavirus.While India is easing a more than two-month long nationwide lockdown that was aimed at reining in the spread of the disease, the battle against the virus rages within its strained hospital system.”We are getting more and more people daily both in numbers and in the severity of disease,” said Arun Dewan, the director of the hospital’s critical care section. “We’re not seeing any end.”Around him, the eerie calm within the hospital was broken only by the sound of machines beeping and patients coughing – most of whom were separated only by white curtains. Staff in heavy protective gear move around softly, speaking in murmurs. Until a few months ago the cries of babies would often fill this section of the hospital, which was meant for neonatal care. But with the number of cases surging, Max designated the entire building for COVID-19 patients.Now, posters of Winnie the Pooh and other cartoon characters meant to soothe children, beam down upon patients struggling to beat a deadly virus.It is the first time in his 35-year-career that Dewan is battling a pandemic of this scale, he said, and while each day has been as struggle, he fears the worst is yet to come.”Manpower will be the biggest challenge. We have reached the limit,” he said, adding even as the toll rises, the wait list of patients is growing fast.But there are small victories that keep the staff going. For Steena, a doctor working in the ICU who only gave her first name, one such moment was when a 70-year-old woman brought in dire condition recovered in recent weeks.”After seven or eight days, she was taken off a ventilator, and tested negative,” she said, sounding hopeful, before quickly turning to attend to yet another patient.center_img Topics :last_img read more

Australia’s Queensland shuts state border to stem COVID-19 second wave


first_imgAustralia’s Queensland state on Wednesday said it would close its border with New South Wales state to hold back a second wave of COVID-19, while the country’s second-largest city Melbourne was set to shut most businesses from midnight.A surge in coronavirus cases in Melbourne has forced the state of Victoria to impose a night curfew, tighten restrictions on people’s movements and order most businesses to stop trading from Wednesday night.Other states are imposing new restrictions of their own to prevent any spillover form Victoria and an even bigger hit to the national economy, which has plunged into its first recession in nearly three decades. Australia has withstood the pandemic much better than most other countries, with 18,729 cases and 232 deaths in a population of 25 million.But Victoria, which accounts for about a quarter of the nation’s economy, has nearly two-thirds of Australia’s coronavirus cases and is expected to report more than 700 new infections on Wednesday, according to media reports.Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, who has already shut her northeastern state’s border to Victorians, said travelers from New South Wales and the capital Canberra also would be barred from Saturday.”We have seen that Victoria is not getting better, and we’re not going to wait for New South Wales to get worse. We need to act,” Palaszczuk said at a media conference in Brisbane. After two months of no community transmission in the state, two travelers who returned to Queensland from Melbourne last month tested positive to the virus and there have been at least three cases of local transmission, the state’s deputy premier said.”It is clear now that Australia is experiencing a second wave of COVID-19 and we cannot afford to have that second wave here in Queensland,” Deputy Premier Steven Miles said.Queensland, a popular holiday destination for people from the colder southern states, reported one new and 11 active cases on Wednesday.Victorians are bracing for the shutdown of a range of businesses from hair salons to furniture stores, and curbs on construction activity, meatworks and warehouses, hitting 250,000 jobs.In another blow to the economy, Australia’s number two airline, Virgin Australia Holdings, said on Wednesday it would axe 3,000 jobs under its prospective new owner Bain Capital.Topics :last_img read more

Alecta considers push for board overhaul at Swedbank


first_imgAlecta CEO Magnus BillingMichael Kjeller, head of asset management and sustainability at Folksam said: “Even in an extreme scenario where the share price fell to zero, we can observe that Folksam Life and Folksam Sak would remain financially stable and not have any need to change their investment policies.”Swedbank shares are currently trading at around SEK130, having fallen some 26% from around SEK175 at the beginning of this week.Kjeller added that Folksam – the second-largest shareholder in the bank with a 7% stake – had secured a total return of almost SEK18bn from its investment in Swedbank since it became a major shareholder in 2008. Of this, about SEK7bn was realised profits passed on to its customers.At the AGM, the bank elected Kerstin Hermansson as a new supervisory board member. Hermansson has previously worked as managing director at the Swedish Securities Dealers’ Association, a trade body.Alecta’s Billing said: “It is good that the nomination committee continues to work on strengthening the board. The election of Kerstin Hermansson today was a first step.” Meanwhile, fellow pension provider Folksam attempted to reassure its customers that the rapid fall in the bank’s share price would not affect the fund’s stability. Sweden’s biggest pension fund could call for a completely new supervisory board to be appointed for troubled financial services group Swedbank to help deal with recent money-laundering allegations.The SEK878bn (€84.4bn) Alecta which holds around 5% of Swedbank’s shares, said it was dissatisfied with the action taken by the bank’s existing supervisory board in response to reports that billions of krona were laundered through branches of Swedbank and Danske Bank.Commenting after Swedbank’s annual general meeting (AGM) yesterday, in which shareholders discussed the bank’s handling of the money-laundering scandal, Alecta’s chief executive Magnus Billing said: “I do not rule out calling an extraordinary meeting in the near future to get a new board in place.”Just hours before yesterday’s AGM, the Swedbank supervisory board sacked chief executive Birgitte Bonnesen and appointed current chief financial officer Anders Karlsson as acting president and chief executive until a permanent replacement was found.last_img read more

Syracuse to adjust tackling techniques under new targeting rule


first_img Published on August 4, 2013 at 5:41 pm Contact Trevor: [email protected] | @TrevorHass Syracuse head coach Scott Shafer discussed the new NCAA targeting rule at a press conference at Manley Field House Sunday afternoon. The rule, which states that officials can eject players who target and contact defenseless players above the shoulders, is effective starting this season.Shafer said he plans on teaching his team new tackling techniques in a meeting on Monday. One key point, guided especially toward new players, will be keeping their “eyes to the sky” while making contact.He supports the rule and added that the purpose behind it is to “protect the kids,” which is his primary objective.“It’s going to be inevitable that there’ll be some helmet-to-helmet contact,” Shafer said, “but the biggest thing is just teaching the kids what targeting is and making sure they understand the parameters and such.”However, one of his main points of emphasis was to avoid being overly cautious. He thinks players get hurt more when they back off and play with hesitation than they do when going at full throttle.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“There’s that fine line that all of us coaches around the country will be dealing with this targeting rule,” Shafer said, “but at the end of the day I think it will sort itself out to be just fine.”Shafer to implement split-field repsShafer said he plans to use split-field reps as a way to get his players more time on the field.By dividing the field in half, it gives players twice the reps and twice the time to look at tape between practices.“The tough thing about that is they’re going to wear down when they’re getting five, six, seven, eight reps in a row,” Shafer said, “which is a good thing, but you’ve got to be smart.”He said he’ll closely monitor the number of reps each player gets and splitting the field will ensure that the coaching staff gets a sufficient look at each player.“Reps are an interesting thing,” Shafer said. “For us we just have to be diligent. Some of the guys have been in the program for a few years so we have a good feel of what their strengths are.”Howard academically ineligibleOutside linebacker Malcolm Howard is academically ineligible this season, Shafer said at the team’s annual media day Sunday.“He came up short academically, so unfortunately for him he won’t be part of the program,” Shafer said.Howard, a 6-foot-3, 210-pound linebacker, transferred to Syracuse from Navarro Community College in late March and would have had two years of eligibility and the option to use a redshirt year. He was slotted behind junior Cameron Lynch and senior Lewellyn Coker at outside linebacker on the Orange’s preseason depth chart.Other than that, Shafer said everyone is healthy and cleared academically heading into training camp. He said the last injury and medical checkups were going on “as we speak,” around 1:17 p.m. Comments Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

MLB trade rumors: Cardinals have done ‘due diligence’ on Giants’ Tony Watson


first_imgSt. Louis was dealt a blow earlier in the year when closer Jordan Hicks learned he had a UCL injury and would have to undergo Tommy John surgery.The Cardinals made the most of the situation by moving oft-injured starter Carlos Martinez into the closer role and the team has kept winning despite losing a key arm to the back of their pen.But teams can never have enough relievers and with a veteran in the rotation like Adam Wainwright, a young gun like Jack Flaherty and two more inexperienced pitchers in Daniel Ponce de Leon and Dakota Hudson, odds are the Cardinals will need all the help they can get.Watson would not only give them that, but he could also provide a backup plan at closer if Martinez doesn’t work out in the long run. The Giants are reportedly no longer sellers in the market and are exploring deals for other players such as Blue Jays utilityman Eric Sogard.However, this doesn’t mean the team won’t trade a reliever or two if the return is right. San Francisco has a lot of good relievers in its pen and could trade Watson without hurting the team too much. It is unclear if this means the team is heavily pursuing him, but it likely means the Cardinals have scouted a few of his outings and have made a decision as to whether or not he would fit in with the pitching staff.I’m told the #STLCards have done due diligence on #SFGiants lefty Tony Watson, probably signaling some interest. Of concern are escalator clauses of $500k each for 25th, 30th, 35th, 40th (which he already has reached), 45th, and 50th appearances. Could make as much as $10.5m.— Mark Saxon (@markasaxon) July 26, 2019Watson is 2-0 with a 2.85 ERA in 44 games this season. Related News MLB trade rumors: Giants have interest in Blue Jays’ Eric Sogard MLB trade rumors: What are the second moves Cubs, Red Sox, Yankees could make before deadline? The Cardinals apparently want to add to their bullpen.St. Louis has done its “due diligence” on Giants lefty Tony Watson, according to The Athletic. MLB trade rumors: Angels checking on Noah Syndergaard, Trevor Bauerlast_img read more