COVID-19 Strategies

first_imgA literature review by University of Georgia researchers has helped identify the most effective antimicrobial agents for preventing the spread of COVID-19 within the food supply chain.As COVID-19 began to spread throughout the U.S. earlier this year, Govind Kumar, an assistant professor in the Department of Food Science and Technology and a faculty member in the UGA Center for Food Safety, Laurel Dunn and Abhinav Mishra, assistant professors in the Department of Food Science and Technology, and Center for Food Safety Director Francisco Diez collaborated to determine ways they could contribute to the knowledge base for members of the food industry regarding the novel coronavirus.“Meat manufacturing plants began to shut down because so many people in these industries were getting sick. We are not virologists, but this is a medical problem that definitely affected the food chain,” Kumar said.With information and scientific studies about the virus being released at a rapid rate, the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences researchers decided to examine relevant studies to identify and share practicable information for use in the food industry. The research team looked at studies on a range of biocides effective in eliminating or reducing the presence of coronaviruses from surfaces that are likely to carry infection, such as clothes, utensils and furniture, as well as skin, mucous membranes, air and food contact materials.After reviewing and synthesizing the information from more than 100 sources, the online journal Frontiers in Microbiology published the researchers’ findings in “Biocides and Novel Antimicrobial Agents for the Mitigation of Coronaviruses” in late June.“We wanted to go through the whole food supply chain — from processing to packaging to retail — to look at interventions to limit the spread of coronaviruses. This is not limited to handwashing, but looks at everything — how you can remove it from the air, from food contact surfaces. We asked a lot of tough questions and we feel we have answered those in this paper,” Kumar said.Since it was published, the paper has received interest from all over the world. According to the journal, the article has more views than 67% of all Frontiers articles on the website at frontiersin.org.“One of the main research areas we work on is the development of novel sanitizers and I do a lot of outreach on their proper use,” said Dunn. “For me, it has been industry — mostly in Georgia, but others from around the world — who stumbled on this and had questions.”The research team specifically focused on the effects of alcohols, povidone iodine, quaternary ammonium compounds, hydrogen peroxide, sodium hypochlorite (NaOCl), peroxyacetic acid (PAA), chlorine dioxide, ozone, ultraviolet light, metals and plant-based antimicrobials. The review highlights the differences in the resistance or susceptibility of different strains of coronaviruses, or similar viruses, to these antimicrobial agents. The team also worked with microbiologists Charles Gerba and Kelly Bright from the University of Arizona who are currently performing research on detecting the presence of SARS-CoV-2 in wastewater.While the review reinforced the effectiveness of certain antimicrobials — such as bleach and alcohol — on surfaces, it also addressed studies on agents that can be used to protect workers themselves.“A lot of what I’ve gotten have been questions about what can be used on the skin. We got crazy questions like, ‘Can we spray our workers with chemicals?’  A lot of questions have been about what steps they can take in certain types of facilities. It is not necessarily about sanitizer selection, but what to do in general,” said Dunn, who does outreach and extension work in on-farm and packinghouse microbial safety.While handwashing and the use of sanitizers are commonly implemented practices in food production plants, to address the spread of COVID-19 from asymptomatic workers, who often work in crowded conditions, the team focused on a number of studies of two substances — povidone iodine and iota carrageenan — that were of particular interest in preventing person-to-person transmission of coronaviruses.“Povidone iodine is very effective against coronaviruses and, in Europe and Asia, people use povidone iodine for oral rinses and nasal sprays. Because this is an airborne virus, the first place it goes is into the nose and it attaches to the cell receptors in the nose,” Kumar said.A seaweed-based antimicrobial polymer, iota carrageenan is commonly used as a food thickener and, in a 2018 study, demonstrated the ability to inhibit coronaviruses and other respiratory viruses.“When sprayed in the nose in nasal spray form, iota carrageenan can form a protective film over the nasal membranes and keep the virus from attaching,” Kumar said.While not performing any direct research, Kumar and Dunn said the synthesis of information from a variety of studies — some from this year and others done over the past 20 years — can serve as a sort of “CliffsNotes” for industry members seeking the most relevant and useful information on preventing transmission of COVID-19.“We were very excited about that and we want to get that information out for industry to investigate further or do more research,” Kumar said.The group shared their findings with Atlanta-area anesthesiologist Constantine Kokenes, with whom they connected when donating personal protective equipment from their labs to local frontline healthcare workers, an effort spearheaded by Dunn.Through conversations with Kumar, Kokenes obtained and studied papers about the potential benefits of povidone iodine rinses and iota carrageenan nasal spray. Using specific formulations, he purchased the materials and mixed his own preparations to use when treating and intubating COVID-19 patients in the intensive care unit at Emory Decatur Hospital.“Before elective surgeries were cancelled — from early March through mid-April — I did this for six weeks,” said Kokenes, who also followed recommendations to protect himself, including using masks and face shields and shaving his beard of 30 years to ensure a proper seal on his face mask.“I did this for my own good. It is only logical and rational to explore all options and protect yourself,” he said. “There is a lot of groundwork that has been done since the early to mid-2000s after the first SARS and MERS virus outbreaks. Dr. Kumar and his team have been on top of that.”The team’s full paper is available at www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fmicb.2020.01351/full#F2. More information on the Center for Food Safety is available at cfs.caes.uga.edu.last_img read more

Courts brace for funding shift

first_imgCourts brace for funding shift Courts brace for funding shift Amy K. Brown Assistant Editor July 1, 2004, may seem like a long way off, but for Florida State Courts Administrator Rob Lubitz, the day is rapidly approaching.Lubitz told members of the Bar’s Family Law Section Executive Council in September that everyone involved in the courts should be aware that this day — the official date the state will assume the lion’s share of funding for Florida’s state court system — is looming on the horizon.“Chief Justice [Harry Lee] Anstead has called this ‘the major challenge to the courts of our time,’ and I don’t think that’s an understatement,” Lubitz said. “This move to state assumption of funding of the court system really has the potential to change how we do business in the courts and really put in jeopardy many of the innovative, progressive things this state has done.”Currently, more than half of the funding for the court system comes from the counties, Lubitz said, but it varies from circuit to circuit.In larger areas like Dade County, it’s a much higher percentage, while in smaller counties, the state already picks up the majority of the tab, he said. However, the courts currently operate on less than 1 percent of the state budget — 0.58 percent, to be exact.“Most of the new programs, most of the innovative programs are funded by the counties,” he said.And those programs face the greatest risk of getting short-changed in the funding process, he said.In 1998, a constitutional amendment known as “Revision 7” was passed that said the state will assume responsibility for the essential elements of the court system. Follow-up legislation was passed in 2000 that defined from a legislative perspective what constituted an essential element — judges and essential staff, juror compensation, reasonable court reporting, services for the disabled, construction of facilities for the Supreme Court and appellate courts, and foreign language interpreters.“If you look at that as the essential elements of the court system, that’s a pretty bare bones court system,” Lubitz said. “If that’s all we get, the court system will look very different July 1, 2004, when this is implemented.”In response, the Supreme Court formed the Trial Court Budget Committee and tasked the 21 members, including representatives from each of the circuits, with formulating a plan to deal with Revision 7. Their first move was to take inventory of all the functions of the courts that were funded by the counties, which they separated into four categories.“The Trial Court Budget Committee feels that we have a great court system, and pretty much everything we have now needs to be funded in some way or another,” Lubitz said. “Everything’s important. . . and ultimately, we want to fund everything. The reality is that might not be the case. You have to set some priorities.“The first priority in the system in the constitution was to determine what the central element in the court system ought to be — what legally and constitutionally we absolutely have to have in order to run a court system. Without funding in these areas, our court system would ostensibly have to shut down. This is the minimum.”The TCBC set out 10 things they felt were absolutely essential: judges and judicial assistants, court administration, case management, court reporting, court interpreting, mediation and alternative dispute resolution, legal aid and legal services to the court, psychological evaluations and expert witnesses ordered by the court, masters/hearing officers, and auxiliary aids and services.“Those are the core things we call essential,” he said. “I think you’ll recognize that a lot of those are specifically related to the work in family court. They have to continue to be in the state court budget and. . . that’s really where we would make our first stand to the legislature that these things have to be done.”The second category the TCBC addressed was “due process elements” — areas not defined as constitutional elements, but areas that are necessary. These include conflict counsel and psychological evaluations ordered by state attorneys and public defenders.“That leaves pretty much everything else,” Lubitz said. “Everything else, the TCBC defined as integrated functions. These are functions that we believe are necessary for providing a modern, responsive, efficient court system, but they don’t rise to the level of essential.”Lubitz said there are four options for dealing with the integrated functions: advocate for them to continue in the court budget; try to move them to another area of the state budget; make them local requirements; or make them local options.The third option — local requirements — is what Lubitz called “the crux of the matter.” Some have argued that everything nonessential can be a requirement, but, constitutionally, local requirements are those functions unique to a particular circuit or locality that meet local demands.The last category of court functions, local obligations, encompasses those few functions counties will be required to maintain funding for — local facilities, technology, and information systems. Uphill Battle At a recent meeting of district court judges, Senate President-designate Jim King, R-Jacksonville, and Rep. Dudley Goodlette, R-Naples, on behalf of House Speaker-elect Johnnie Byrd, R-Plant City, gave their perspectives on how the legislature plans to face Revision 7.Sen. King “gave a little bit of a bleak message,” Lubitz said. “Sen. King said that he felt he was facing, in his terms, approximately a $4 billion budget deficit. He indicated that, although he would like to be able to give the courts everything that they want, likely, they’d only be able to fund the essential elements from a state perspective, and that would be a very literal definition of what are essential elements.“He indicated there would probably be lost positions and the hope was that the courts wouldn’t be seriously short-sheeted.”But, Lubitz added, some better news came from Rep. Goodlette.“He basically said we have a great court system, and we don’t want to do anything that harms the court system. We want to continue it,” Lubitz said. “He implied that they were really going to lean on the counties to continue funding, or take funds from the counties to continue funding, the court system.” Getting the Message Out One of the most important duties of the courts this year and next is to formulate and implement a communications and education plan to educate legislators about the implications of Revision 7, Lubitz said. Earlier this year, Chief Justice Anstead formed a communications advisory group made up of court and Bar leaders, including Bar President Tod Aronovitz, former President Terry Russell, and President-elect Miles McGrane, and led by Ninth Circuit Chief Judge Belvin Perry, to formulate just such a plan.On September 22 (after this News went to press), in conjunction with a business meeting of the state’s chief judges at the College of Advanced Judicial Studies in St. Petersburg Beach, Perry and Chief Justice Anstead were set to task the chief judges to form Revision 7 communications committees in their home circuits.“The concept of these committees is to bring together key members of the Bar and the community, key business leaders, key criminal justice people, whoever they identify are the real decisionmakers, the movers and shakers in the community, to talk about the importance of the court system,” Lubitz said. “The idea is to energize these people to go out and talk to the legislators about what the courts do in the community.”Evan Marks, treasurer of the Family Law Section Executive Council, asked what the section could do to protect services specific to the family court system.“While I applaud the effort on a global scale to try to get funded, our section and the people we represent don’t want to lose their services,” he said. “I imagine there are similar people in the criminal section, in the probate section, in other sections, that are saying, ‘How do we hold on to our services?’”Lubitz answered that individual advocacy for specific services with the legislature could be effective, but the entire system should be the priority.“I think that if each of the various groups fights for just their piece, then I think we’re in trouble,” he added. “If we get case management in the family area, but we don’t have court administration. . . then the system won’t work. I think if we break into various groups, each clawing for their own piece of it, that could unravel the system.”Bar President Aronovitz, who attended the executive council meeting to make a Dignity in Law presentation, added, “This is such a critically important issue.. . . We need to get excited about this.. . . “We need to get the message out to the legislature that banks aren’t going to be able to go to court to prosecute foreclosures. Landlord/tenant evictions aren’t going to take place. The criminal court justice system is going to really be hindered in its ability to prosecute cases. It’s a very, very frustrating situation.“We all know in our communities members of the House and Senate. It’s really important now, more than ever, that you pick up the phone and call somebody you know. Go have a cup of coffee with them. Explain to them your practice and how you practice law, how you move your cases through the family courts and how our judicial system works, and how vitally important what Rob is talking about is.“If we don’t do it, nobody’s going to do it.” October 1, 2002 Assistant Editor Regular Newslast_img read more

Chrishell Stause Responds to Gleb Savchenko, Elena Samodanova Split

first_img“I don’t hate you. I’m just disappointed you turned into everything you said you’d never be,” the quote read.Savchenko and Stause competed together during season 29 of Dancing With the Stars but were eliminated on the Monday, November 2, episode.Listen to Watch With Us to hear more about your favorite shows and for the latest TV news! The Selling Sunset star, whose public split from Justin Hartley was chronicled during season 3 of the Netflix reality show, continued by denying that she and the pro dancer were anything more than friends.CHRISHELL STAUSE GLEB SAVCHENKOChrishell Stause and Gleb Savchenko Eric McCandless/ABC“As you can imagine, the countless hours of training, and dance rehearsals has created a strong supportive friendship, but nothing more,” she added. “I wish nothing but the best for both Gleb and Elena during this unfortunate time.”Samodanova, 36, announced her split from Savchenko via Instagram on Thursday, sharing a statement via Instagram. He confirmed the news in a statement to Us Weekly.- Advertisement – – Advertisement – Speaking out. House after Dancing With the Stars pro Gleb Savchenko and his wife, Elena Samodanova, announced their split, Chrishell Stause took to her Instagram Story on Friday, November 6, to react to the news.“I am so saddened about the news of Gleb and Elena’s split,” the realtor, 39, who was partnered with Savchenko, 37, on season 29 of DWTS, wrote on Thursday night. “It is unfortunate that this has caused rumors to swirl about my personal life. Having gone through a public split myself, I would not wish this on anyone.”- Advertisement – “It is with a heavy heart that I tell you my wife and I are parting ways after 14 years of marriage,” the choreographer said in a statement. “We still intend to coparent our wonderful children together who we love so dearly, and we will strive to continue to be the best parents that we can to them. We ask that you respect our family’s need for privacy and healing during this time.”Gleb Savchenko and Elena SamodanovaShutterstockGleb Savchenko and Elena SamodanovaThe So You Think You Can Dance alum, who shares daughters, Olivia, 10, and Zlata, 3, with the reality star, later posted a cryptic quote via her Instagram, causing fans to speculate that their split was a messy one.- Advertisement –last_img read more

Strikers find scoring touch to delight of fantasy managers

first_img Björn Nilsson: How Triggy is delivering digestible data through pre-set triggers August 28, 2020 Share StumbleUpon Spotlight ups matchday commentary reach and capacity for new EPL Season  August 21, 2020 A plethora of points have been registered throughout SBC’s League of Legends this past weekend, with strikers hitting form at a number of clubs during gameweek six.Chelsea’s Alvaro Morata secured a maiden Premier League hat-trick, Tottenham hot shot Harry Kane and Arsenal new boy Alexandre Lacazette earned a brace each while Manchester rivals Romelu Lukaku of United and Sergio Aguero of City got one apiece ensuring points galore.Something Stephen Looker at Pinnacle Sports was the beneficiary of; top scoring with 89 points and surging up the table to eighth in the process.  Morata, who earned the highest round score with 17 points, captain Kane (13 points doubled to 26) and David Silva (11) doing most of the damage.At the summit, however, is still the familiar face of James Birch.  Aguero (captain), the game’s current MVP with 52 points, responsible for a third (22) of the 66 points his side managed in this game week, with a 31 point cushion to second now in place.Flying the flag for SBC is Charlie Cole, who built on last week’s impressive 85 points with 73 this time to lift ‘Missed The Deadline’ into the top three.  Manchester City duo Aguero (captain) and Raheem Sterling contributing almost half (35) of the overall total; a score that lifted Cole from seventh into third.All eyes will be on Old Trafford this weekend, with Jose Mouriho’s United side taking on Crystal Palace who have recorded six losses from six with zero goals scored.  Free scoring City face a tricky trip to Stamford Bridge, while Lacazette and Arsenal will be hoping to build on their impressive home form against Brighton and Hove Albion in Sunday’s early kick off. Premier League looks to broadcast every behind-closed-door fixture August 28, 2020 Submit Related Articles Sharelast_img read more