NEWS STORIES IN THIS ISSUE:
- How Can Scientists Predict a COVID-19 Outbreak? There's an App for that
- Johns Hopkins Medicine Collaborates with the City and Faith Organizations to Offer Guidance on Safely Reopening Houses of Worship
- Johns Hopkins Hospital Patient ‘Grateful to Still Be Alive’ After Two-Month Hospitalization with COVID-19
- “12 Things You Need To Know” Infographic
- Johns Hopkins Medicine Continues Grassroots Vaccination Efforts for Underserved Communities In Baltimore
HOW CAN SCIENTISTS PREDICT A COVID-19 OUTBREAK? THERE'S AN APP FOR THAT.
Media Contact: Rachel Butch; [email protected]
“COVID Control” using self-reported virus symptom information could predict next outbreak.
A mobile app that uses crowd-sourced data on COVID-19 symptoms can accurately identify where local coronavirus outbreaks will appear, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine scientists who developed the app.
The Johns Hopkins team launched the “COVID Control” app in May 2020 and have been studying how user-reported COVID-19 symptoms can predict potential outbreaks of the virus, enabling public health leaders to enact measures to contain the virus’ spread. Results of the researchers’ findings were published February 25, in Nature Scientific Reports.
“It’s a really promising example of how we can use public participation and the ubiquity of technology like cell phones to track disease,” says Robert Stevens, M.D., director of anesthesiology and critical care precision medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “It’s not limited to infectious diseases. This could be used to track the epidemiology of a number of prevalent health conditions, such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes.”
Available via Google Play and Apple's App Store, COVID Control enables users to anonymously report symptoms associated with COVID-19, such as fever, loss of taste/smell, nausea and other symptoms to create a publicly viewable map showing clusters of people experiencing those symptoms. Since its launch, more than 19,000 users in 1,019 counties in every state across the U.S. have logged more than 174,000 data entries.
The study focused on Baltimore City and Baltimore County and showed that nine clusters of symptoms logged by COVID Control users correlated with locations of increased coronavirus prevalence reported by the Baltimore City Department of Health. New loss of taste or smell showed the strongest correlation between symptom reporting and confirmed COVID-19 cases, predicting the spike in cases an average of five days before the city’s Department of Health confirmed a coronavirus outbreak.
The COVID Control research group comprises engineers, epidemiologists and physicians from Johns Hopkins' Whiting School of Engineering, Bloomberg School of Public Health and the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.
Stevens is available for interviews.
JOHNS HOPKINS MEDICINE COLLABORATES WITH THE CITY AND FAITH ORGANIZATIONS TO OFFER GUIDANCE ON SAFELY REOPENING HOUSES OF WORSHIP
Media contact: Marin Hedin, [email protected]
Johns Hopkins Medicine is collaborating with Mayor Brandon M. Scott and the Baltimore City Health Department to advise houses of worship on how to reopen safely during the COVID-19 pandemic. The program will include opportunities for faith institutions to pair with health professionals to receive individualized guidance on how to create health and safety protocols to protect congregants and staff.
The partnership, announced on April 26, will involve two components: a virtual educational session and one-on-one guidance to help Baltimore faith institutions comply with the City’s public health mandates, learn about best practices and receive resources.
“Johns Hopkins Medicine and University are proud to collaborate with The Mayor’s Office of Neighborhoods and the Baltimore City Health Department on this vital COVID-19 education initiative,” said Sherita Golden, M.D., M.H.S., vice president and chief diversity officer at Johns Hopkins Medicine and professor of medicine at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “This initiative is a part of a broader scope of work we have been leading, aimed at partnering with Baltimore City, faith leaders and our community to bring relief to residents facing economic hardships due to the pandemic and to provide information about COVID-19, vaccines and testing.”
Golden and Panagis Galiatsatos, M.D., M.H.S., assistant professor of medicine and director of Medicine for the Greater Good at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, are available for interviews.
JOHNS HOPKINS HOSPITAL PATIENT ‘GRATEFUL TO STILL BE ALIVE’ AFTER TWO-MONTH HOSPITALIZATION WITH COVID-19
Media Contact: Kim Polyniak, [email protected]
Driving a car, walking or even putting on clothes were always second nature for 49-year-old Latrice Daniels. But after she developed COVID-19 and spent two months in the hospital, she no longer takes those everyday activities for granted.
In December, Latrice, who lives in Baltimore, began feeling tired and achy. She also had chills and shortness of breath. A test for COVID-19 came back positive. As time went on, she became progressively worse, developing high fever, and felt even more difficulty breathing. She was admitted to a local hospital on Dec. 24, where she was diagnosed with pneumonia in both of her lungs. After a few days, her condition wasn’t getting better, and she was placed on a ventilator. “I called my daughter,” Latrice recalls. “That’s the last thing I remember from that point.” Because of her continuing declining condition, Latrice was transferred to The Johns Hopkins Hospital from another local hospital on Jan. 7. “In the middle of the night, I got a call from [Johns] Hopkins. It gave me relief,” says Dionne Daniels, Latrice’s daughter. “To know there is some hope, and things can turn around — that was another sense of relief.” Dionne describes the subsequent days as a “roller coaster,” as her mom’s condition would improve and worsen with every passing day. Then, on Jan. 17, she received a call from her mom’s doctor requesting that she come to the hospital because her mother was in grave condition. “I felt in my heart that wasn’t the end for my mother,” Dionne says.
Latrice’s condition soon began to progress in the right direction. Her medical team gradually reduced her sedation, and, on Feb. 7, Latrice woke up after three weeks in a medically induced coma. “The nurse said, ‘Well, hello, sleeping beauty. I finally get to meet you,” Latrice remembers as she awoke. She was removed from the ventilator, but was still receiving additional oxygen, from which she was eventually weaned.
“Ms. Daniels was on a ventilator for almost a month” says Brian Garibaldi, M.D., associate professor of medicine and one of Latrice’s physicians during her ICU stay. “We thought she was going to need to spend a much longer time on the ventilator and had scheduled a tracheostomy, a common procedure to assist patients breathing when they are on ventilators for extended periods of time. However, she turned the corner and made a wonderful recovery without requiring the trach.”
Latrice moved to the acute inpatient rehabilitation unit, where she worked three hours a day doing physical, occupational and speech therapy to relearn how to swallow food, walk, dress and care for herself again. After two months in two hospitals, Latrice was discharged on Feb. 26.
Today, Latrice says she is doing much better but is still working to regain strength more than two months after her discharge. She continues her rehabilitation through home physical and occupational therapy. She is not driving or going to stores. Besides the occasional doctor’s appointment, including appointments with the Post-Acute COVID-19 Team clinic at Johns Hopkins, she stays at home. As the pandemic continues, Latrice, a self-proclaimed “hugger,” misses embracing family and friends. “Being in the pandemic, I know that is the one thing we shouldn’t do, but that’s the one thing that I want to do,” she says.
Latrice says she never thought she would get COVID-19, especially since she was following recommended safety guidelines. “It truly made me a believer experiencing what I’ve experienced,” she says. COVID-19 is “really real. At this time, I’m grateful to still be alive.”
Latrice and her daughter, Dionne, as well as Latrice’s doctors, Garibaldi, Alba Azola, M.D., assistant professor of physical medicine and rehabilitation, John Woller, M.D., III, assistant professor of Medicine, all with the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, are available for media interviews.
“12 THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW” INFOGRAPHIC
Media Contact: Michel Morris, [email protected]
As the coronavirus continues to spread, and half the country’s population receives the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, Johns Hopkins Medicine has released an infographic that outlines “12 Things You Need to Know” about getting vaccinated.
Each fact, accompanied by a cartoon and short blurb with additional details, plainly states helpful information about vaccines and their importance.
Panagis Galiatsatos, M.D., M.H.S., co-chair of Johns Hopkins Health System’s Health Equity committee in the Office of Diversity, Inclusion, & Health Equity at Johns Hopkins Medicine, is available for interviews to talk about the infographic.
"This infographic helps simplify how to continue being mindful of COVID-19 as the pandemic continues, even if we are faced with fatigue. We may be tired, but Mother Nature is not; therefore, these tips help simplify action to prevent COVID-19," Galiatsatos says.
JOHNS HOPKINS MEDICINE CONTINUES GRASSROOTS VACCINATION EFFORTS FOR UNDERSERVED COMMUNITIES IN BALTIMORE
Media contact: Vanessa Wasta, [email protected]
Johns Hopkins Medicine clinicians are taking a very focused approach to serving people of color and other marginalized communities in Baltimore by partnering with local health departments, faith-based organizations and going door-to-door to offer COVID-19 vaccinations.
To date, the clinicians have vaccinated more than 3,000 people in Baltimore’s Black, Hispanic and other communities. One city resident remarked, “Thank you for coming. We thought we had been forgotten.”
A photo essay at one such clinic marks how clinic organizers bring vaccines to the community and the residents who receive them.
Johns Hopkins Medicine’s vaccination clinic directors are available for interviews on how medical institutions partner with communities to improve access to care.
For information from Johns Hopkins Medicine about the coronavirus pandemic, visit hopkinsmedicine.org/coronavirus. For information on the coronavirus from throughout the Johns Hopkins enterprise, including the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and The Johns Hopkins University, visit coronavirus.jhu.edu.