South Korea to train medical students to combat future epidemics

File image of medical workers in protective gear walking into a hospital to treat coronavirus patients amid a surge in confirmed COVID-19 cases in Daegu, South Korea. March 8, 2020. REUTERS / Kim Kyung-Hoon / Archive

SEOUL, Jul 24 (Reuters) – South Korea will add 4,000 medical students over the next 10 years to strengthen the ranks of its health personnel and improve its response to other health emergencies in the future, government officials and party officials said. in the power.

The authorities warned of the need to train more doctors for possible outbreaks of infectious diseases even more serious than COVID-19, caused by the coronavirus, pointing to the risk of more frequent epidemics at a time when there is a limited number of beds to care for the sick.

To fill that gap, officials said they plan to increase the number of admissions to medical schools using a combination of new fees and incentives for students in less profitable specialties and for those who complete a decade working in public health in a rural area.

“We will increase the quota for medical students to strengthen health teams in specialized fields,” said Kim Tae-nyeon, a lawmaker with the ruling Democratic Party of Korea.

The plan is to raise student admissions to medical schools by about 400 a year over the next decade, before returning to the 3,058 quota, which has been flat since 2006.

The government said it will provide tuition subsidies and full scholarships to around 300 students in areas such as epidemiology, gynecology or surgery, considered unpopular specializations in contrast to plastic surgery or dermatology.

Officials have said that South Korea’s 2018 ratio of 2.4 doctors per 1,000 people was well below the average of 3.5 for Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) nations.

Report from Sangmi Cha. Edited in Spanish by Marion Giraldo


The United Nations warns of a global mental health crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic

LONDON (Reuters) – A mental health crisis looms on the horizon as millions and millions of people around the world are trapped in death and disease, leaving them isolated, impoverished and worried by the Covid-19 pandemic, UN health experts said on Thursday.

Two health workers cry during the memorial of a colleague who died of an infection with the Corona virus in Spain on April 13, 2020. Photo: Susanna Pera – Reuters.

“Isolation, fear, confusion, and economic instability all cause or may be the cause of a psychological crisis,” said Devora Kestel, director of the World Health Organization’s mental health department.

During the presentation of a report and the presentation of a United Nations guideline on Covid-19 and mental health, Kestel suggested increasing the number and severity of mental illnesses and called on governments to place this matter “at the center and center” of their pandemic control plans.

“The mental health and well-being of entire societies are severely affected by this crisis, which is a priority that needs to be addressed urgently,” she told reporters.

The report highlights several groups and sectors of society that are at risk of psychological problems, and include children and youth separated from their friends and schools, as well as health-care workers who are witnessing the infection and death of thousands of coronaviruses.

Already emerging studies and statistics show the influence of Covid-19 on mental and mental health globally. Psychologists say children suffer from anxiety, and depression and stress have increased in several countries.

Domestic violence is increasing, and health workers are talking about the increasing need for psychological support.

Reuters last week reported what was reported in interviews with doctors and nurses in the United States who said they or their colleagues had a combination of panic, anxiety, depression, numbness, irritability, restlessness and nightmares.

Outside the health sector, the WHO report says many are concerned about the immediate health consequences and consequences of isolation, while others fear infection, death and the loss of family members.

Millions face economic instability, they lost or face the risk of losing income and livelihoods, the report added. Some also feel anxious and frustrated about the future, as there is a lot of misinformation and rumors about the pandemic and severe foggy about its duration.

The report listed action points that decision-makers can use to “reduce the extreme suffering of hundreds of millions and reduce the long-term social and economic consequences for society”.

These points include addressing the problem of the lack of chronic investments in psychological services and the provision of an “emergency mental health service” via remote healers such as providing telephone consultations to frontline workers to confront the pandemic in the health sector and working proactively with those who suffer from depression and anxiety and those facing the risk of domestic violence and poverty Severe.

Marwa Salam Prepared for the Arab Bulletin – Edit Abu Amal Al Saud


Data, Maps, Infographics: The Coronavirus Crisis in the United States

Walls and border closures cannot stop pathogens like Sars-CoV-2: inside the United States, health officials face multiple regional outbreaks. The number of Covid 19 patients is increasing. An overview.

The global spread of the corona virus does not stop at the US’s external borders. In the United States, the number of coronavirus cases is increasing with the increased output of the long-awaited virus tests. In the 24 hours to Monday morning (German time), the total number of coronavirus cases recorded in the United States rose from 2443 to 3602. Since comparatively few suspected cases have been tested so far, experts assume that the number of unreported cases is significantly higher.

The virus has already been detected from Alaska to Florida and from Hawaii to Maine in all parts of the USA: There are identified cases of infection with Sars-CoV-2, the pathogen that can trigger the sometimes life-threatening lung disease Covid-19 49 of the 50 states, in the capital district of Washington, DC as well as in three US suburbs, including Puerto Rico.

The authorities are experiencing major regional outbreaks in several states: Washington State in the northwest, California, Colorado, Florida, Texas, Georgia and New York State, where New York City is the most populous US city, are hardest hit.

A familiar pattern is also repeated in the states, which was already clearly recognizable in Germany: Coronavirus cases initially occur particularly in economically strong and populous regions. By far most of the case numbers currently come from New York. There are currently 732 people already infected.

In order to curb the wave of contagion, the two US cities New York City and Los Angeles are restricting public life to a considerable extent. All bars, cafes and restaurants have to largely cease to operate, as New York Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Sunday. All nightclubs and cinemas as well as small theaters and concert halls in New York must also close.

Accordingly, catering establishments may only offer takeaway food. Delivery services are also excluded from the order. New York had previously banned gatherings of more than 500 people due to the Corona crisis and canceled all performances at Broadway theaters.

The west coast metropolis of Los Angeles also imposed drastic protective measures. Bars, restaurants and night clubs will have to close for at least two weeks from Monday, Mayor Eric Garcetti said.

The states of Massachusetts and Washington adopted similar measures. Numerous casinos and hotels were closed in Las Vegas. Schools, museums, sports arenas, and other venues had closed in several states due to the spread of the novel corona virus. California’s governor Gavin Newsom called on everyone over the age of 65 to isolate themselves at home.

In addition to New York State and California, the state of Washington in the extreme northwest of the United States is particularly hard hit. In this region on the Pacific coast, which is in close contact with Asia, the coronavirus was detected in a total of 676 people. This results in considerable burdens for the US economy: in the Seattle metropolitan area, in addition to the defense and aviation group Boeing, there are also world-famous heavyweights such as Microsoft, Starbucks and Amazon with their corporate headquarters.

In the area of ​​this globally networked region, the virus reached US soil for the first time in mid-January. The first confirmed coronavirus finding was on January 20 by a Washington resident who had returned to Seattle five days earlier from Wuhan. US President Donald Trump has repeatedly pointed out that the US is “very, very well prepared”.

At the end of January – around a month after the coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan – the US government actually imposed strict requirements for all travelers from the central Chinese province of Hubei. As part of the so-called “Travel Ban”, the US authorities denied entry to anyone who was until recently in the regions affected by the virus outbreak. However, all US citizens, their families and immigrants with US residence status were exempt.

At first that seemed to work. The US case numbers rose slowly. According to critics, only a relatively small number of suspected cases were tested in the USA. The reason? At first, there were apparently far too few corona virus test kits available, and laboratory capacities were not expanded in time. The number of confirmed infections remained largely stable for weeks. By February 23, just over 1000 people across the country had been tested for coronavirus infection.

At the end of February, however, coronavirus cases appeared in which the path of infection could no longer be traced. US researchers took this and other indications as evidence that the virus has apparently been circulating within the United States for weeks and that previously unknown infections have occurred on site.

Shortly afterwards, the CDC US disease control center called on regional authorities, businesses and heads of public agencies to update their epidemic plans and prepare for further spread of the virus. Prices began to drop on Wall Street at the end of February in view of the feared economic downturn.

US President Donald Trump said on March 6, “Keep calm. It (the virus) will go away.” The broad US public, on the other hand, has long been confronted with a massive crisis in the public health system: For many Americans without health insurance, healthcare expenditure has a direct impact on their own finances. Visits to the doctor are expensive, and regulations such as continued sick pay are largely unknown.

Many US workers are also deeply in debt and simply cannot afford to fail for several days or even weeks or to stay at home voluntarily with mild symptoms. And: Without sufficient insurance coverage, inpatient treatment that may be required is tantamount to financial disaster for many Americans.

As a result, the health risks are increasingly gaining domestic political weight: Trump’s most important challenger in the upcoming presidential election campaign is Joe Biden, who, as Vice President under Barack Obama, also campaigned for fundamental reforms in the US healthcare system.

President Trump is therefore working hard to find ways to present himself as an energetic leader in the emerging coronavirus crisis. Most recently, he imposed a 30-day entry ban for Europeans. The borders for people from the Schengen area should be closed from Friday at midnight (local time), as Trump announced in a television speech.

However, according to critics, this measure also comes late, misses the target, also appears half-hearted and also has large gaps. Britain is explicitly excluded from Trump’s latest measure. The US President was initially unable or unwilling to explain why this is so. The corona virus is currently spreading even further on the British island. There are more than 450 confirmed infections.

In his television speech, Trump accused the EU states of not responding quickly enough to the spread of the novel pathogen. After the outbreak of the virus in China, the European borders were not closed to travelers from the People’s Republic, as his country had done.

CDC chief Robert Redfield even described Europe as the “real threat” to the United States in the coronavirus crisis. The measures are needed to protect “health and well-being” of US citizens, Trump said. Just a day later, on the evening of March 13, 2020, the US president finally declared the national emergency.


Pandemic 1918: Masks were used to fight

I.In September 1918, the situation in San Francisco was serious. Everyone could see that a plague was raging in the country – so most of the city’s residents kept wearing face masks. It paid off two months later: fewer people had contracted the infection and health officials advised cautiously to ease the quarantine that had also been imposed on the city. Hungry, the citizens of San Francisco flocked to public events – in restaurants, bowling alleys, clubs; the mayor of San Francisco had to pay a fine because the chief of police found him in the theater without a mask.

In December, a second wave of contagion rolled through the city. The head of the health department, a William C. Hassler, summoned the citizens of San Francisco to wear masks, please, please.


Corona virus live ticker: +++ 06:18 Bundeswehr postpones basic training +++

Because of the corona pandemic, the Bundeswehr is postponing basic training for new soldiers. “It would now be too dangerous to summarize the recruits at our locations in a small space,” said the inspector of the medical service, Ulrich Baumgärtner. “The recruits hired in writing on April 1st will remain at home subject to certain conditions and will start their basic training on June 1st at the earliest,” said the Chief of Staff. “However, we are already using e-learning to try to teach them basics such as the law on soldiers and military law.” Basic training will initially be shortened from three months to six weeks. Sometimes the weekends can also be used. This is followed by additional training. “We want the recruits who would be drafted on July 1st to start on August 1st. The normal three-month basic training would start again on October 1st,” said Baumgartner.

+++ 05:49 Almost 1000 Germans are still waiting for return +++
After the worldwide return campaign for 240,000 Germans stranded in the corona crisis, the Federal Foreign Office is still trying to get around 1,000 German citizens to be flown out. “A few hundred to a thousand stranded people were still waiting for an opportunity to return,” said Federal Foreign Minister Heiko Maas of the “Bild am Sonntag”. After getting back from popular tourist destinations, the most important thing now is to solve individual cases that are more difficult: “It is about people in the Colombian jungle, on remote South Sea islands and also in countries where the airspace is currently completely closed. We cannot help everyone immediately , but nobody will forget, “said the SPD minister.

+++ 05:41 Left calls state aid for artists +++
In the face of the Corona crisis, left-wing leader Katja Kipping has called for a protective shield for the free cultural scene. The cancellation of all major summer events threatens “a cultural extinction of unprecedented proportions,” she said. “Freelance artists who often barely made ends meet before the Corona crisis, venues and festival organizers who don’t have large corporations behind them (…) are at risk of falling into bankruptcy,” warned Kipping. The left demands that failures due to canceled events be taken over by the state in line with the regulations for short-time work benefits. That would mean that artists and organizers receive 60 percent – and in households with children 67 percent – of the lost money from the federal government. In an open letter, German artists had previously called for state aid for freelancers in the cultural sector. “Is it inconceivable for the German state to offer tailored help to freelance cultural workers just as quickly as Adidas (…) or the dentists, who initially receive 90 percent of the previous year’s income?” Reports the “Welt am Sonntag” under Citing a letter to Minister of Culture Monika Grütters. According to the information, the signatories include the violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter and the conductors Thomas Hengelbrock and Christian Thielemann.

+++ 05:18 Greece resettles vulnerable refugees from islands to mainland +++
To protect against the corona virus, hundreds of older and sick refugees are to be brought to the mainland in Greece from Monday from the completely overcrowded camps in the Aegean islands. According to the Ministry of Migration, around 2380 “vulnerable people” are involved. These are to be brought from the camps on the islands to apartments, hotels or other camps on the mainland within two weeks. The situation in the refugee camps on the Greek islands is considered catastrophic: more than 36,000 people live there in camps that are actually only designed for a little more than 6,000 people. To date, no corona infections have been reported in the camps, but the fear of the new virus spreading is growing. The people who are now being brought from the camps to the mainland are 200 refugees over the age of 60 and 1,730 people with previous illnesses and their relatives.

+++ 04:51 South Korea reports only eight new infections +++
South Korea reports a single-digit increase in new infections for the first time in two months. The Korean Center for Disease Control reports that there are eight new cases. In total there are 10,661 infections and 234 deaths in South Korea.

+++ 04:25 Maduro is considering postponing the election in Venezuela +++
The general election in Venezuela could be postponed due to the widening corona pandemic. “I don’t know if there will be elections this year because we have other priorities,” President Nicolás Maduro said in a radio interview on Saturday regarding efforts to curb the novel corona virus. “It would be irresponsible to say that we are holding elections, whatever the cost.” At the same time, Maduro emphasized that, according to the constitution, the parliamentary election had to take place in December so that the new national assembly could be constituted at the beginning of January next year.

+++ 03:58 economic institute expects falling rental prices +++
The Cologne Institute for Economic Research expects rental prices in Germany to fall due to the Corona crisis. The reason is that households have less income overall due to possible bankruptcies and rising unemployment, according to a study from which “Welt am Sonntag” quotes. Michael Voigtländer, IW real estate expert, emphasized that the crisis would not be equally noticeable in all areas of the market: “There are individual market segments that are more likely to be affected by a short-term decline in demand – for example, micro-apartments, where the mobile specialists are no longer tenants, or about apartments in the luxury segment, “said the economist of the newspaper. In expensive regions, the likelihood of falling rental prices is higher. “In southern Germany, for example, a drop in prices could be more pronounced because rents in relation to wages were already relatively high before the crisis,” said Voigtländer. At some locations, there is also the structural change in the automotive industry, so that rent increases and thus prices could decline more sharply.

+++ 03:16 Scholz wants to help hoteliers and restaurateurs +++
SPD Federal Minister of Finance Olaf Scholz holds out the prospect of financial support for hoteliers and restaurant operators who are particularly affected by the ongoing closure. “Of course, we look closely to see whether and where we need additional help. We have a particular focus on those sectors for which things are not getting off to a quick start. The hotel and restaurant industry is certainly one of them,” said Scholz of “Welt am Sonntag “. According to Scholz, a later stimulus package should include tax incentives for companies to invest so that “anyone who is still hesitant can quickly take the money in hand”. In addition, there could be steps to “stimulate the citizens’ enthusiasm for consumption,” said the Vice Chancellor.

+++ 02:35 Müller calls for aid program for developing countries +++
Development Minister Gerd Müller has called on the European Union to support countries in Africa and the Middle East with an aid program of 50 billion euros in the corona crisis. “Germany and Europe must also make a decisive contribution internationally to get the pandemic under control,” Müller told the newspapers of the Funke media group. The EU’s own aid package comprises 500 billion euros, but is only directed inwards, said the CSU politician. “We must also extend the protective shield to our neighboring regions in Africa and in the crisis arena around Syria.” In the immediate program, the European Investment Bank should on the one hand issue commercial loans to stabilize the neighboring European countries, and on the other hand the EU budget should be restructured to deal with the crisis.

+++ 01:48 Altmaier: need twelve billion respirators +++
The German government expects the corona crisis to require up to twelve billion respirators a year. “If we want to enable everyone in Germany to work, shop and drive a bus with a face mask, we need between eight and twelve billion masks a year,” said CDU Federal Minister of Economics Peter Altmaier of the “Bild am Sonntag”. The aim is to be able to produce millions of surgical masks and mouthguards in Germany in the second half of summer. He promised investment grants and purchase guarantees.

+++ 01:12 Austria plans vacation tourism in summer +++
In the Corona crisis, Austria’s Minister of Tourism Elisabeth Köstinger indicated that she would be willing to talk to Germany when it came to travel options in the summer. “The restriction of freedom of travel will remain in the next few months,” said the ÖVP politician to the newspaper “Die Presse”. “But if countries are also on a very good and positive path, such as Germany, there is certainly the possibility that bilateral agreements can be reached.” In doing so, she replied to the question of whether tourists come to Austria in summer and, conversely, Austrians can travel abroad. Köstinger also warned that it is difficult to estimate how the next few months will develop. “There is no deadline, there could be further waves of infection.” And then it cannot be ruled out that “far-reaching measures will have to be taken again”.

+++ 00:51 Altmaier: “Don’t run around like a pile of chickens” +++
Federal Minister of Economics Peter Altmaier called on the federal and state governments to be more united in the corona crisis. “We must not run around like a heap of chickens and alternately outperform and tighten each other,” warned the CDU politician in the “Bild am Sonntag”. “If we keep our nerve now, we can avoid a second lockdown. That is why joint action by the federal and state governments is so important.” At the same time, Altmaier clearly rejected demands for tax increases, such as those raised by the SPD. “Occasional discussions about tax increases for certain people, groups or industries are wrong and harmful,” he said. “We also have to be economical, but nobody should have to pay higher taxes.” Higher tax revenues can be achieved primarily through stronger growth and investments. The Minister of Economic Affairs was generally optimistic that the German economy could emerge stronger from the Corona crisis. “Germany can and should be stronger and better in three years at the latest than before the crisis,” he said.

+++ 00:13 Scholz thinks the all-clear is premature +++
Has Germany already got the worst of the Corona crisis? According to Federal Finance Minister Olaf Scholz, it is “far too early to give the all-clear”. The infection process has now “slowed so far that we can gradually venture openings. But that has to be done with a sense of proportion.” You have to look closely at how this affects the infected numbers. “As long as we have no vaccine against the virus and no therapeutic drugs, we will have to change our social and economic life.” A vaccine may not be available until 2021. Until then, there would be some easing and there would be a transition to a new normal. However, this will differ from the familiar everyday life before the pandemic.

Note: You can read the most important developments from the previous day on the current situation relating to the global coronavirus pandemic read here.


They force medical students in Holguín to attend investigations

The University of Medical Sciences of Holguín made known to its students the retaliation that could be applied to them if they refused to carry out the health investigations that allegedly support the diagnosis of the coronavirus in the territory.

A source, on condition of anonymity, commented to Cyber ​​Cuba that the center’s management had issued an official statement stressing that those who did not participate in such inquiries ran the risk of disapproving and losing the right to pass the academic year.

In this way, the obligatory nature of the so-called investigations was established, an activity whose usefulness was questioned by some students, who have also pointed out the danger of contagion to which they are exposed during house-to-house investigations.

The statement states that the research is “a fundamental part of a future evaluation of subjects” and that “each student must carry a notebook or similar where daily the teacher responsible for each area signs and evaluates their attendance and performance (…)”.

“Each teacher must issue an evaluation on the first sheet of the notebook where the behavior of each one of us is recorded since we started with the research so far, emphasizing our attendance.”

At the end of March, medical students collected signatures as an act of petition. so that the investigations were suspended as long as they were not guaranteed “adequate hygienic-sanitary conditions”.

“We students of medicine and stomatology, who must go house to house in search of possible patients (of coronavirus) without adequate protection, have a very high probability of being infected, in addition to the fact that we will become direct transmitters of the virus,” they warned.

In total, they requested three measures to participate in epidemiological control efforts, demanding that the Cuban Government “at least two nasobucos per student”, “solutions for asepsis and antisepsis” and “a place with conditions for sterilization of clothing and skin “

A medical student and LGBTI + rights activist He also drew attention on social networks when expressing his concern about the risk of infection. during that preventive activity.

“I think we are not fulfilling a role, people hide symptoms from you, there are no good action protocols since you report patients with respiratory symptoms, the elderly who live alone, etc., until something is done,” he said.

“These are times when it is better to be at home (as the rest of the population is sent) because we are large groups of students on the streets, gathered in places where there are already positive cases and at the end of the day we return to our homes where we also have family , the elderly, people included in the risk groups ”, he added.

“I want to see all my classmates when we can go back to school, I do not want a martyr, nor empty tributes. I ask, if you who read me have any symptoms, could you not go to the hospital or health area alone? “

The Cuban government announced the launch of an app to collect information on the health status of the population around the coronavirus pandemic, baptized as “Virtual Investigator”.

The Cuban authorities have officially recognized 923 confirmed cases of coronavirus and a total of 31 people who have lost their lives in the archipelago because of the outbreak in the Chinese city of Wuhan.

A total of 2,734 admitted and 192 patients who have been cured since the onset of the health crisis are also listed. Another 7,373 people are monitored in their homes from Primary Health Care.

Of the 923 patients diagnosed with the disease, 681 present stable clinical evolution. 10 critically ill patients and seven critically ill patients are reported.

According to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University, 2,310,572 positive cases of coronavirus and 158,422 deaths from the outbreak have been recorded worldwide.


Immunity Questions Open: Can People Get Covid-19 Twice?

Anyone who has survived Covid-19 is initially immune – at least that’s what epidemiologists have assumed so far. But reports of patients who got the disease again cause uncertainty. What is the current state of research?

Reports from Asia have caused a stir in the past few days, according to which patients who have already been cured have again been tested positive for the coronavirus. Is it possible that they weren’t immune after all? Can you catch the virus twice? So far there is no clear answer.

However, epidemiologists hope that an infected patient will be immune for at least a few months after recovery. “Being immune means that the body has developed a defense reaction against a virus. And because this immune reaction has a ‘memory’, it means that it later prevents infection with the same virus,” explains immunologist Eric Vivier from the university hospital in Marseille.

In general, it takes around three weeks for RNA viruses, which include Sars-CoV-2 in addition to the newer influenza pathogens, to produce enough protective antibodies, says Vivier. Experience has shown that this protection lasts for several months.

Rhesus monkeys develop resistance

So far the theory is – but the new Sars-CoV-2 is still too little researched to be sure. “We don’t know,” said WHO emergency director Mike Ryan, who directs the global fight against the virus. “We can only draw conclusions from our knowledge of other corona viruses, and even with them, our data are limited.”

When almost 800 people died worldwide during the Sars epidemic from November 2003 to summer 2003, the patients were “protected for an average of two to three years after their recovery,” explains François Balloux, an expert from University College London. “So you can get infected again, but the question is: after what time?” He adds: “We will only know that afterwards.”

A recent Chinese study with rhesus monkeys gives hope: the animals infected with the virus showed themselves to be resistant a few weeks after their recovery. According to Frédéric Tangyn from the Paris research center Institut Pasteur, the study says nothing about the period of immunity – because it only lasted one month.

However, many experts are skeptical about the reports from Asia that corona patients contracted a second infection. They think it is rather unlikely that it is actually a new infection.

Bad symptoms despite antibodies

According to Balloux, the virus could become chronic in some people, such as the herpes pathogen. Or the negative test results were flawed, and in reality the patients never got rid of the virus: “This would indicate that people remain contagious for a long time, several weeks,” he says. “That would not be ideal.”

A study published in early April with 175 healed patients from Shanghai shows that most of them had developed different concentrations of Covid-19 antibodies between ten and 15 days after the onset of the lung disease caused by the virus. But whether “the presence of antibodies can be equated with immunity alone is another question,” warns the US expert at the WHO, Maria Van Kerkhove.

“We wonder if someone who has had Covid-19 is really that much protected,” says virologist Jean-François Delfraissy, who advises the French government. Even worse: According to Pasteur researcher Tangy, the antibodies could even aggravate the disease. He points out that the worst symptoms of Covid 19 do not appear until a patient has already developed antibodies.

It is also unclear who develops more effective antibodies – the most or least affected patients, the older or the young? Given all of these uncertainties, some experts are also questioning the success of herd immunity. For Australian epidemiologist Archie Clements, only one thing is certain: “The only real solution is a vaccine.”


dm warns against homemade mouthguards – and has an urgent appeal

Corona virus

Why dm warns of corona masks made from vacuum cleaner bags

To protect themselves against corona viruses, many people make protective masks out of vacuum cleaner bags. But that carries great risks.

How to sew a face mask yourself

Because of the corona crisis, you can hardly buy face masks. But with this guide you can sew one yourself that you can use to protect your surroundings.

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  • Many Germans get a mouthguard against the corona virus, in Saxony a mouthguard obligation has already been enacted
  • For the homemade mouth-nose protection sometimes have to Vacuum cleaner bags serve
  • dm has warned its customers against making protective masks from vacuum cleaner bags
  • Because the bags could contain substances that can have a harmful effect on health

Necessity is the mother of invention. Because in the Coronavirus pandemic almost everywhere Protective masks out of print, many people in Germany make their own masks.

For the homemade mouth-nose protection sometimes have to Vacuum cleaner bags serve. But this kind of mask carries risks – and the drugstore chain dm now warns against using these bags for protective masks.

Corona protective masks made of vacuum cleaner bags: dm warns

dm has called on its customers not to follow the currently widespread tips from the Internet for making protective masks from vacuum cleaner bags. Because the bags could contain substances that can have a harmful effect if they get into the respiratory tract, the drugstore chain says.

For these reasons, vacuum cleaner bags are not a good idea:

  • For reasons of hygiene, many vacuum cleaner bags contain a fine antibacterial powder made of polymer, which can be released by cutting the bag open.
  • If this is then brought directly to the respiratory tract and inhaled, it is harmful to both the lungs and digestive organs.

Vacuum cleaner bags are no protection against Covid-19

Also, there would be no scientific evidence to suggest that this material can be used to make a particle-filtering mouth guard (MSN) that stops the Sars-CoV-2 virus, which can lead to Covid-19, such as one Respirator mask of the FFP category. This is how respiratory masks and mouthguards protect against the corona virus

“We understand the need and the desire of people to help themselves in this unsettling situation, in which protective masks are in short supply. At the same time, we also appeal to the population, precisely because of the seriousness of the situation, to only follow the tips on the official channels of the government to contain the corona virus and their scientific expertise, ”explained Petra Gruber, dm Managing Director Marketing and Purchasing

This is how respiratory masks and mouthguards protect against the corona virus

Poor fit increases risk of infection

The Melitta Group, manufacturer of vacuum cleaner bags of the Swirl brand, also strongly warns against using self-made protective masks made from vacuum cleaner bags. On the one hand, the corona viruses with a size of 120-160 nm (this corresponds to 0.12 – 0.16 µm) are smaller than the fine dust filter of the bags, which filters 99.9% of fine dust up to a fragmentation of up to 0.3 µm.

On the other hand, the company points out that the fit could differ from self-made protective masks to purchased masks – and if the fit is poor, optimal protection of the mouth and nose may not be guaranteed. A badly fitting mask also increases the risk that you have to touch your face more often to straighten the mask – and become infected in this way.

What the Robert Koch Institute recommends

The Robert Koch Institute (RKI) recommends that the population wear an oral nose cover (textile barrier in the sense of an MNS) in certain situations in public space.

Wearing the mouth and nose cover can be an additional component to reduce the rate of spread of Covid-19 in the population – but only if there is still a distance (at least 1.5 meters) from other people, cough and sneeze rules and good hand hygiene is observed.

The RKI appeals that multi-layer medical (surgical) mouth and nose protection and medical respirators, e.g. FFP masks, medical and nursing staff must be reserved. The protection of specialist staff is of great interest to society as a whole.

More information about the coronavirus pandemic:



Starting Monday, mandatory mouthpiece at the ZMG

One of the measures being taken by the world’s governments to prevent the transmission of COVID-19, and in preparation for phase 3 of the pandemic, is the mandatory use of face masks. And Jalisco was not far behind.

The Council of Industrial Chambers of Jalisco (CCIJ) reported that the municipalities of the Guadalajara Metropolitan Area (ZMG) and the Government of Jalisco will monitor the mandatory use of mouth cover in customers to allow them to enter supermarkets, banks, pharmacies, convenience stores and essential establishments.

The measure will take effect on Monday, April 20 at the ZMG.

In addition, he explained that the municipal authorities will have the power to close those businesses in which people are allowed to enter without mouth cover.

The measure too It will apply to users of public transport, who, if not used, will prohibit access.

Other measures to take is zero tolerance for crowds in sports units, parks and any other public space.

He added that the self baths they joined the list of essential businesses in the State, as long as they only serve cargo transportation, otherwise it will be closed.

Tire and vitalizer factories were also added, while colony clubhouses will remain closed.

Rubén Masayi González Uyeda, coordinator of the CCIJ, confirmed to this media the measures, as a result of the inter-institutional roundtables to deal with the pandemic.

The next official measures of the Jalisco Plan COVID-19 will be made public by the Governor on Sunday April 19 around noon.

“These will be the product of the analysis that the Health Cabinet is carrying out in coordination with the municipal authorities. These measures will be defined in the course of tomorrow,” said the State Government.




They confirm that a medical intern in Puerto Vallarta tested positive for COVID-19

The Jalisco Ministry of Health (SSJ) confirmed that of the two suspected cases of COVID-19 identified in the Ixtapa II Health Center, located in the delegation of the same name in the municipality of Puerto Vallarta, one of them was positive, while the other was ruled out.

The case confirmed by the State Laboratory of Public Health, said the secretariat, corresponds to a young medical intern who works in said health unit. The second case that was negative, he said, was a patient who attended a consultation at this center in Puerto Vallarta.

Due to this situation, after identifying the suspected cases, the SSJ activated the security protocol to COVID-19, whereby health Center Ixtapa II was temporarily closed to carry out the sanitization of all its facilities. This Thursday, he pointed out, a module was installed on the outside of the property to inform the community that all care will be transferred to the Ixtapa I Health Center, in the same town.

He also referred that at the Health Center Ixtapa II a total of 26 workers work including doctors, dentists, psychologists, nurses, nursing interns, pharmacy assistants, and security personnel. “All are isolated and under observation in their respective homes, waiting for the laboratory results,” he said.

Lastly, the SSJ ensured that the Epidemiology Unit provides daily follow-up to contacts who, to this day, do not report symptoms of respiratory disease. The confirmed case is also kept in home isolation.