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Binghamton University, State University of New York

Changing the value of life for COVID-19 victims is harmful to society

The coronavirus has killed hundreds of thousands of people worldwide, but placing special emphasis on these victims compared to people who have died from other causes can get in the way of making the right decisions, according to Subimal Chatterjee, SUNY distinguished teaching professor at Binghamton University’s School of Management.

“One of the most fascinating things that I have seen is how people are able to quickly differentiate one life from another. So for example, if somebody dies on a ventilator while struck with the virus, we somehow think that this life lost is more tragic compared to say, a person who died at home from a heart attack because the ambulance could not come in time. We always shy away from valuing a life, and yet we now seem very comfortable putting a label on it.  Sweden, for example, took a conscious decision to keep the country open knowing that there would be lives lost, but they reasoned that the lives lost would be predominantly among their elderly population. They too are putting labels on life, it would seem," Chatterjee says.

"What makes one life more special than another? There is a literature on the ‘identifiable victim effect’ which suggests that once the victim has a name that life is more precious. The coronavirus seems to be giving an identity to strangers. Is this a good thing? Certainly, if it makes us more caring as a society. Certainly not, if it makes us less caring towards others. That is something policy makers would need to think about as they make the very painful tradeoffs in the days ahead.”

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14-Jul-2020 8:55 AM EDT
Rapid genome sequencing and screening help hospital manage COVID-19 outbreaks
University of Cambridge

Cambridge researchers have shown how rapid genome sequencing of virus samples and enhanced testing of hospital staff can help to identify clusters of healthcare-associated COVID-19 infections.

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Released: 14-Jul-2020 3:05 PM EDT
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Research published today has found that Australians strongly believe paramedics deserve a work environment free from the threat of physical harm, but when it comes to the risk of infectious disease, it's complicated.

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Released: 14-Jul-2020 12:40 PM EDT
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Sharon Tapp, who worked as a nurse case manager at Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Washington, D.C., started experiencing sudden body weakness, chest pain, a high temperature and headache on March 18. Concerned, she went to her local urgent care center to find out what was wrong. They told her that these symptoms were flu-like, tested her for the coronavirus and told her to quarantine for 14 days. After five days and no difference in the presentation of her symptoms, the urgent care team contacted Sharon, letting her know that she tested positive for coronavirus and recommending that she go to the emergency department. Sharon’s family took her to Johns Hopkins Medicine’s Suburban Hospital. Because her condition worsened while at Suburban, she was transferred to The Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore within 10 days of being admitted to Suburban Hospital.

Released: 14-Jul-2020 12:05 PM EDT
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Newswise: Palliative Nursing’s Role During COVID-19 and Beyond
Released: 14-Jul-2020 11:35 AM EDT
Palliative Nursing’s Role During COVID-19 and Beyond
University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing

As a rapid influx of patients overwhelmed health systems during the coronavirus pandemic, palliative nurses played dual roles supporting patients, patient families, and colleagues. Two researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing (Penn Nursing) are among those detailing the important role palliative care has in responding during the COVID-19 pandemic and in future public health crises.

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Released: 14-Jul-2020 11:20 AM EDT
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Newswise: Hackensack Meridian CDI has Struck a COVID-19 Research Collaboration with Merck
Released: 14-Jul-2020 10:00 AM EDT
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Released: 14-Jul-2020 9:00 AM EDT
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Binghamton University, State University of New York

Educators could use the COVID-19 outbreak to help middle-schoolers better understand the world, according to new research from faculty at Binghamton University, State University of New York.


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