Author: Frank Domino, MD in collaboration with Aylin Madore, MD

I stay up-to-date on the latest COVID-19 news and am regularly compiling a list of articles published that are relevant to your primary care practice. Read the insights below from recently published articles in less than two minutes.

Interim: Implications of the Emerging SARS-CoV-2 Variant VOC 202012/01

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The United Kingdom has reported the presence of a more virulent strain of the virus, called N501Y; the WHO has said the variant has been found in Australia, Denmark, Iceland, Italy, and the Netherlands and it is assumed to be in the U.S. While more virulent, it has not yet been found to cause more severe disease than other variants. Notably, the UK does more viral surveillance than other countries.

FDA Takes Additional Action in Fight Against COVID-19 By Issuing Emergency Use Authorization for Second COVID-19 Vaccine

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To date, the Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna vaccines have been given Emergency Authorization Use by the U.S. FDA.

Final ACTT-1: Remdesivir Results

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Another randomized controlled trial (RCT) of remdesivir found that it shortened time to clinical recovery for hospitalized patients with lower respiratory tract disease (10 days vs. 15 days) but did not provide mortality benefit except in those who required supplemental oxygen without need for high-flow oxygen or mechanical ventilation.

Comparison of the Characteristics, Morbidity, and Mortality of COVID-19 and Seasonal Influenza: A Nationwide, Population-Based Retrospective Cohort Study

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A study compared ~46,000 patients hospitalized with influenza during the 2018–2019 flu season and 90,000 hospitalized with COVID-19 from March through April. The in-hospital mortality rate for COVID-19 was 3 times higher than influenza (17% vs. 6%). For adolescents, in-hospital mortality was 10 times higher with COVID-19 (1.1% vs. 0.1%). Patients with COVID-19 were more likely than patients with flu to develop acute respiratory failure, pulmonary embolism, septic shock, or hemorrhagic stroke but were less likely to experience myocardial infarction or atrial fibrillation.

For more insights, view our collection of COVID-19 resources and CME courses. We recognize it is critical that you have access to timely, reliable information, so we are working hard to release new content in collaboration with our team of infectious disease experts, medical specialists, and primary care clinicians like Dr. Frank Domino.