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August 28 coronavirus news
By Adam Renton, Steve George, Tara John and Ed Upright, CNN
Move over, slowpoke coronavirus tests that take a week or more to return a result -- there's a new generation of rapid tests coming to town and they're poised to transform the landscape.
They are the antigen tests. But are they really all they're cracked up to be?
The US Food and Drug Administration granted emergency use authorization to another antigen test this week, bringing the total to four.
Compared to the most commonly used type of coronavirus test in the country -- molecular diagnostic tests, also called PCR tests -- antigen tests don't need complicated chemicals, viral transport media or RNA extraction kits. They don't necessarily require appointments at specialized labs, highly trained technicians, or certain machines.
And they can provide an answer in minutes, rather than hours or days.
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Editor's note: The opinions expressed in this commentary are the authors'. View more opinion on CNN.
The US Food and Drug Administration's shocking decision this week to allow the use of Covid-19 convalescent plasma to treat sick patients was by all appearances motivated by a desire to appease President Donald Trump rather than on any serious consideration of the science.
FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn left the medical community aghast when he said, at a news conference on Sunday, that 35 of 100 people sick with Covid-19 "would have been saved because of the administration of plasma."
Researchers and doctors were confused by Hahn's comments. We were, even after combing through the preliminary manuscripts from the Mayo Clinic on the efficacy of using plasma from Covid-19 patients, from which this claim was reportedly drawn.
The manuscripts, by the way, have not been peer-reviewed and do not describe a randomized clinical trial that proves Covid-19 convalescent plasma, or CCP, is effective. One of them presents pooled data drawn from CCP studies in multiple countries including China, Iran, Iraq and Mexico. In short, we need much more information than we now have.
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As coronavirus cases in France continue to climb, President Emmanuel Macron said authorities are doing everything "to prevent, obviously, a national reconfinement."
On Friday, French health authorities said the coronavirus epidemic is "growing exponentially." They reported 7,379 new daily cases -- the biggest increase since late March.
There has only been one day with more cases recorded in 24 hours, on March 31st, which was during the height of the epidemic in France.
The daily increase in cases has tripled in less than a week, according to French health authorities.
Macron said he had learned enough about coronavirus over the past eight months to not "totally exclude” reconfinement.
"Nothing can be theoretically excluded, but we are put ourselves in a situation where we can do everything we can to prevent it," he said.
On Thursday, France declared 19 more areas around the country as coronavirus “red zones”, bringing its total to 21.
A 25-year-old Nevada man appears to be the first documented case of Covid-19 reinfection in the United States.
Genetic tests indicate the patient was infected with two different varieties of the virus, a team at the University of Nevada Reno School of Medicine and the Nevada State Public Health Laboratory reported.
The patient was first diagnosed with coronavirus in April after he had a sore throat, cough, headache, nausea and diarrhea, the researchers wrote in a pre-print study posted Thursday. He got better around April 27, and he tested negative for the virus twice afterwards.
He continued to feel well for about a month. Then, on May 31, he sought care for fever, headache, dizziness, cough, nausea and diarrhea. Five days later, he was hospitalized and required ongoing oxygen support. He was tested again for Covid-19 and the results were positive.
The Nevada researchers examined genetic material from both coronavirus specimens collected from the man. Their analysis suggests he had two distinct viral infections.
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There were 5,824 new cases of the novel coronavirus in Mexico on Friday, the health ministry said, bringing the total number of confirmed infections in the country to 585,738.
Mexico reported another 552 coronavirus-related deaths on Friday, according to the government. The country's death toll now stands at 63,146.
Mexico has the third-highest number of coronavirus deaths in the world -- behind only the US and Brazil -- according to Johns Hopkins University, and is ranked third in Latin America for total number of confirmed cases. Only Brazil and Peru have more infections in the region.
There are at least 5,912,016 cases of coronavirus in the US and at least 181,704 people have died from the virus, according to Johns Hopkins University's tally of cases.
So far on Friday, Johns Hopkins has recorded 44,231 new cases and 880 reported deaths.
The totals include cases from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and other US territories, as well as repatriated cases.
Brazil's health ministry on Friday reported 43,412 new coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours. That brings the total number of cases in the country to 3,804,803.
The ministry recorded 855 deaths in the last 24 hours, bringing Brazil’s total number of deaths from Covid-19 to 119,504.
Brazil continues to be second only to the United States in the highest total number of coronavirus cases and deaths globally.
The Colorado Supreme Court has declined to hear a case challenging Gov. Jared Polis' statewide mask order.
In a tweet sent Friday, Colorado Supreme court Public Information Officer Rob McCallum said that the court declined to hear the Neville vs. Polis case.
"Mask wearing is a proven way to slow the spread of this deadly virus, will help keep businesses open, save lives, and keep our economy growing. I'm glad the Supreme Court stands with the people of Colorado in our fight against the deadly virus, in which mask-wearing is one of our most effective weapons," the governor said in a statement.