AP: As virus surges in some US states, emergency rooms swamped

AP: As virus surges in some US states, emergency rooms swamped. “A fast-rising tide of new coronavirus cases is flooding emergency rooms in parts of the United States, with some patients moved into hallways and nurses working extra shifts to keep up with the surge. Patients struggling to breathe are being placed on ventilators in emergency wards since intensive care units are full, officials say, and the near-constant care they require is overtaxing workers who also are treating more typical ER cases like chest pains, infections, and fractures.”

University of Kentucky: Don’t Let COVID-19 Fear Keep You From Seeking Medical Care

University of Kentucky: Don’t Let COVID-19 Fear Keep You From Seeking Medical Care. “The fear of contracting COVID-19 is keeping many people at home who should be coming to the Emergency Department for life-threatening conditions. Emergency departments, however, have been reorganized to isolate patients with suspected or known COVID-19 to protect those who are not infected. Yet, in the face of the pandemic, hospitalizations for stroke have decreased dramatically all over the world, including in Kentucky. Avoiding or delaying seeking emergent help can have drastic consequences because effective stroke treatments are available, but need to be started soon after the symptoms begin. It is important not to dismiss even transient symptoms because they are a warning that a major stroke may occur over the next hours or days.”

EXCLUSIVE: Patients with serious health problems avoiding ER over coronavirus concerns, Bay Area hospitals say [KGO]

KGO: EXCLUSIVE: Patients with serious health problems avoiding ER over coronavirus concerns, Bay Area hospitals say. “Emergency room doctors around the Bay Area are pleading with patients not to be afraid to seek medical care for a serious issue amid the coronavirus outbreak. ‘We’re not seeing patients coming in with strokes that have been delayed for several days, people sitting at home with appendicitis for five or six days,’ explained Dr. Russell Rodriguez M.D., the Director of Emergency Medicine for John Muir Health. [Note a caption with the article reads “We’re now seeing,” not “We’re not seeing”.] Rodriguez told ABC7 News his hospitals in Walnut Creek and Concord have seen an alarming drop in the number of patients coming in for serious non-COVID-19 related issues.”

CNBC: Your Google searches can be used to predict when you’re about to go to the emergency room, researchers find

CNBC: Your Google searches can be used to predict when you’re about to go to the emergency room, researchers find. “A new study from Penn Medicine, which involved analyzing both medical record data and Google search histories of more than 100 patients, found that searches related to health increases a lot in the week before a patient goes to the emergency room.”4

EurekAlert: Study examines suicides publicized on social media and teens’ ER visits

EurekAlert: Study examines suicides publicized on social media and teens’ ER visits. “Using 2002-2013 data from Canada’s National Ambulatory Care Reporting System, researchers used an interrupted time?series analysis to examine monthly rates of emergency department visits related to suicidal behavior such as intentional self-poisoning before and after [Amanda] Todd’s suicide. They found a no significant change in ER visits for suicidal behavior after her death. Importantly however, the authors found a significant increase in ER visits in teenagers for suicidal behavior that begin in June 2011. No such increase was found among the younger children studied.”

Hawaii Launches Text-to-911 Service

A little outside my remit but I think it’s important: Hawaii has launched a text-to-911 service. “Gov. David Ige announced today that Hawaiʻi has launched an enhanced 911 service allowing residents to report an emergency to 911 as a text message. Text-to-911 can support plain text Short Messaging Services (SMS) messages only and is limited to 160 characters per text. Pictures, videos and emojis currently cannot be processed. In addition, callers must have active wireless service including a text or data plan, and the device’s location service must be turned on. Text-to-911 may not be available if the wireless phone is roaming or outside of the provider’s coverage area.”

Popular Science: First Responders Give Google Glass a Second Life

Popular Science: First Responders Give Google Glass a Second Life. “This fall, UMMS will host an active-shooter drill and outfit dozens of first responders with Google Glass to see if it improves emergency assessment. For extra ground support, UMMS will also deploy a drone equipped with heat sensors to help find patients and determine which ones need the most urgent attention.”

Using Facebook to Determine the Timing of a Stroke

Interesting: a doctor was was able to use Facebook posts to determine the timing of a stroke. “In treatment of stroke care, timing is everything. One of the first things a doctor or EMT has to determine in the case of suspected stroke is when the last time the patient was healthy and coherent. For Marlene Grimes, 82, spending time on the computer one day in April 2016, playing card games and replying to Facebook posts, may have been what saved her life.”