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What We’re Reading About COVID-19 – April 3, 2020

General News 

The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases has now pushed past 1 million globally. The BBC says the White House is soon expected to advise Americans living in coronavirus hotspots to wear masks or scarves in public to help stop disease spread. And as New York remains the U.S. city most impacted by the outbreak, there are worries Washington D.C. will be the next hot spot.

An analysis of smartphone location data by the New York Times shows many lower-income workers continue to move around the country, while those who make more money are staying home and limiting their exposure to the coronavirus. Meanwhile, released a series of polls showing Americans’ shifting concerns about the coronavirus over the past few weeks. 

Outside of the U.S., Germany has so far been able to maintain a relatively low coronavirus mortality rate. CNBC looked into why this is the case. 

Science News 

For those interested in increasing your understanding of SARS-CoV-2 at the genomic level, the New York Times has published a fascinating article titled: Bad News Wrapped in Protein: Inside the Coronavirus Genome. The New England Journal of Medicine has posted an audio interview on the lessons learned from COVID-19 hotspots. An article in the World Economic Forum explains why a coronavirus vaccine will take over a year to produce and why that is incredibly fast. 

We’ve already shared several articles about COVID-19 impacts on biomedical research. The Guardian says it will likely have a similar effect on climate monitoring and research. And in other global science news, researchers say the coronavirus pandemic is making the planet shake less.

Health News 

Unsurprisingly, the coronavirus outbreak has impacted blood donations. Yesterday, the FDA offered guidance to address the continuing urgent need for blood. And an article on explains how the decision to quit smoking – even now – could increase a person’s odds.  

Worth Reading 

Finally, we wanted to share a few articles that we think are worth spending some time on. The author of a story in STAT News, who herself battled infection, shares how the emotional impacts hurt more than the physical ones. Empty grocery store shelves are a common sight around the globe. But the decision to stock up is not always a rational one. The Guardian wrote about what stockpiling in the coronavirus crisis reveals about us. 

Finally, whether it’s the toilet paper shortage or other unusual aspects of the COVID-19 crisis, we’ve all heard or made jokes. This article in The Atlantic encourages occasional humor because it helps us take back control and connect. 

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