Officials at the Misericordia Community Hospital in Edmonton confirmed two new cases of COVID-19 in its hospital Saturday, as outbreaks continue to plague two units.
As of Saturday, the hospital has 10 patients who have tested positive for the virus, an increase of one cases since Friday. There are also eight staff members who have tested positive, an increase of one since Friday.
One patient at the hospital has also died as a result of the virus.
The new cases were reported on the same day Alberta recorded the biggest increase in COVID-19 cases since May.
Hospital officials said outbreak protocols have been implemented, and only urgent emergent and oncology surgeries are being performed.
But some say officials aren’t doing enough to make people aware of the outbreak.
“They should make a better effort to let people know. Even signs out before you enter the area allowing people to know, at least you have the option of turning around and leaving,” said Michael Dumes.
Dumes was dropping his sister-in-law off at the hospital on Saturday to feed her newborn baby, who is still in the hospital.
“It’d be nice to know before you go in because she was here this morning and she never said anything about it so maybe they’re not telling people coming in and out.”
“I had no idea,” said Damien Cournoyer, who is a patient at the hospital.
Cournoyer said he’s washing his hands, wearing a mask and taking precautions, but news of the outbreak concerns him.
“It’s not great especially coming from a small town you always think you go back there and you never know what you’re bringing into a small community.”
All patients on the affected units are being tested, as well as staff members who have worked on been present on the units, even if they are not showing symptoms.
Visitors to the affected units are being restricted.
Canadian company to collaborate on potential coronavirus vaccine with GSK – Global News
The world’s largest vaccine-maker GSK has put its vaccine booster technology to work in a potential new COVID-19 shot, to be developed with a Canadian biopharmaceutical company backed by tobacco company Philip Morris.
Rather than developing its own vaccine in the global race to combat the pandemic, GSK has instead focused on contributing its adjuvant technology to at least seven other global companies, including Sanofi and China’s Clover.
The latest deal, with Canadian firm Medicago, uses plant-based technology that differs from GSK’s other coronavirus-partnerships and boosts the London-listed company’s chances of finding a successful candidate and scaling production relatively quickly.
There are no approved vaccines for the respiratory illness caused by the new coronavirus, but 19 vaccines are being trialed in humans globally and some treatments, such as Gilead’s remdesivir, have been approved in certain regions.
When will a COVID-19 vaccine be ready?
Medicago’s approach, already used in a flu vaccine awaiting Canadian approval, takes the leaves of a plant as bioreactors to produce one of the three spike proteins of the novel coronavirus, the S-spike, which can be then used in the vaccine with GSK’s adjuvant.
GSK said on Tuesday the companies aimed to make their vaccine available in the first half of next year and produce about 100 million doses by the end of 2021. An early-stage human trial of three different dosage levels is expected to begin in mid-July.
Adjuvants, or efficacy boosters, are added to some vaccines to increase the immune response with the aim of achieving more lasting immunity against an infection.
Medicago, headquartered in Quebec City, Canada, is privately owned. PMI has a 33% stake, and Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma holds the remainder.
PMI has said it is evaluating options for its stake in Medicago. It was not immediately available for further comment.
© 2020 Reuters
EIA Raises Brent Crude Oil Price Outlook – OilPrice.com
The Energy Information Administration raised its price outlook for Brent crude to $41 per barrel for the second half of 2020—this is $4 per barrel higher than the EIA’s forecast last month.
In its Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEs expectation that global oil inventories will continue to decline in the second half of the year and throughout next year.
“EIA expects high inventory levels and surplus crude oil production capacity will limit upward price pressures in the coming months, but as inventories decline into 2021, those upward price pressures will increase,” the EIA said in a summary of its monthly report.
Specifically, the EIA is forecasting that global liquid fuel inventories will rise at a rate of 6.7 million bpd in H1 2020, and then decline at a rate of 3.3 million bpd in H2 2020. Finally, in 2021, the EIA expects that inventories will decline further by 1.1 million bpd.
The EIA expects U.S. oil production to fall this year and next, with WTI prices sitting below $50 per barrel through next year. The EIA’s expectation is that oil production in the United States will average 11.6 million barrels per day this year, and 11.0 million bpd next year. This is off from an average of 12.2 million bpd last year. The EIA expects U.S. liquid fuels consumption to fall this year by an average of 2.1 million bpd from 2019, to 18.3 million bpd.
The EIA cautions, however, that this month’s projections for U.S. oil production were made prior to the court-ordered closure of the Dakota Access Pipeline. Energy Transfer Partners plans to file a motion to stay that decision.
By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com
More Top Reads From Oilprice.com:
Julianne Geiger is a veteran editor, writer and researcher for Oilprice.com, and a member of the Creative Professionals Networking Group.
Stock futures flat following sell-off on Wall Street – CNBC
U.S. stock futures were flat in overnight trading, following weakness in equities in the previous session.
Dow futures rose 40 points, indicating a gain of 0.16%. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq-100 also were set to open higher, with gains of 0.08% and 0.12%, respectively.
On Tuesday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 397 points, or 1.5%, breaking a two-day winning streak. The Dow was brought down by a 4.8% drop in Boeing. The S&P 500 also registered a loss, slipping 1.1%, to break a five day win streak.
The Nasdaq Composite lost 0.86%, after notching its 27th intra-day all-time high of the year earlier in the session on Tuesday. The technology-heavy index was positive for most of the day thanks to strength in Apple, Microsoft, Facebook and Netflix, which all hit record highs.
“While significant gains in technology stocks kept the market afloat yesterday, even these market darlings capitulated during the afternoon hours today,” Jim Paulsen, chief investment strategist at the Leuthold Group, told CNBC.
Stocks that hinge on the reopening of the economy dragged down the broader market as investors digested a resurgence in coronavirus cases in the U.S. More than 2.93 million coronavirus cases have been confirmed in the U.S. along with at least 130,306 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University.
“Concerns about rising U.S. Covid case counts continued to shake confidence in reopening efforts about the country,” Paulsen added.
Sentiment was boosted when the U.S. government awarded drugmaker Novavax a $1.6 billion contract to develop a coronavirus vaccine, the biggest amount yet granted under the White House’s “Operation Warp Speed.”
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