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New Montreal clinic will be part of Quebec network studying long COVID, Lyme disease

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MONTREAL — A new clinic opened Monday in Montreal to treat patients and help researchers better understand two conditions with different origins but similar symptoms — long COVID and Lyme disease.

The centre at Montreal’s Jewish General Hospital is one 15 specialized facilities announced by the Quebec government in May to study the two infectious diseases.

Although most people recover from COVID-19 infections within two to four weeks, some patients even with mild cases of the disease end up with symptoms that last much longer.

“Actually it’s very diverse, but you have people that have difficulty breathing, cardiac problems, pain, fatigue,” said Lucie Tremblay, the associate CEO of the CIUSSS West-Central Montreal, a regional health board. “It really, really varies, which makes it even more difficult to intervene.”

Long COVID symptoms can make daily activities such as working or going to school difficult and vary in intensity from day to day.

“As you can imagine, research and knowledge about treating this illness — known as long COVID syndrome — is emerging and rapidly evolving,” Dr. Karl Weiss, head of infectious diseases at the Jewish General Hospital, said in a statement. “Our goal in establishing the referral centre is to provide patients with leading-edge care, while improving our understanding of the disease.”

Tremblay said the clinics will treat patients with a COVID diagnosis confirmed by a PCR test or a physician and with symptoms that persist after 12 weeks and that weren’t present before infection. About five to 10 per cent of COVID cases have such symptoms, Tremblay said, but not all will end up being seen at the clinic.

“To come to our clinic, you need to have a complex situation. What can be taken care of by your regular physician or nurse practitioner should be taken care in those offices,” Tremblay said. Those using the specialized clinics need the expertise of “several different professionals,” she said.

The clinic team includes specialists in internal medicine, pulmonology, cardiology and infectious diseases as well as nurses, social workers and physiotherapists to “help the person with the disease to find ways to ease the pain or ease the symptoms over time.” There will also be a research component to better understand the conditions.

The clinic will also treat people with Lyme disease who have symptoms that persist well beyond the regular treatment of the tick-borne disease. “These are both very complex diseases sometimes to take care of, and you need the expertise of an interdisciplinary team,” Tremblay said.

The Health Department says most of the 15 clinics will begin offering services this fall, with several already open across the province. The network is co-ordinated by the Centre hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal and consists of five referral centres and 10 satellite clinics in different parts of the province.

The Quebec government has set aside more than $20 million for the project, including $4 million this year to set up the centres.

In December 2021, before the fifth wave of COVID-19, officials estimated 23,000 people would require the services offered under the three-year clinic pilot project. Tremblay said Monday the clinic at the Montreal hospital expects to treat 1,000 patients from the city and surrounding area over the three years.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 31, 2022.

 

Sidhartha Banerjee, The Canadian Press

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Talkative Giants manager Bob Melvin ejected before first pitch at Colorado

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DENVER (AP) — San Francisco Giants manager Bob Melvin wasn’t around for the finish Sunday as his team defeated the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field.

He didn’t even make it to the start, for that matter.

In an unusual scene, Melvin was ejected before the first pitch after he and bench coach Ryan Christensen delivered the lineup card to home plate umpire Alex MacKay.

“I just talked too much,” Melvin said following the Giants’ 3-2 victory. “Umpiring’s a hard job, I’m aware of that, just probably said too much. I didn’t plan that, it wasn’t choreographed. I probably went too far.”

San Francisco was coming off a 4-3 loss to the Rockies on Saturday night and a 7-3 loss on Friday.

Moments after Melvin was tossed, Jorge Soler led off Sunday’s game for the Giants with a 478-foot homer to centre field, the longest in the majors this season.

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LSU cornerback Javien Toviano arrested on accusation of video voyeurism, authorities say

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BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — LSU sophomore cornerback Javien Toviano surrendered to authorities Sunday on charges of video voyeurism, the East Baton Rouge Parish sheriff’s office said.

Toviano, 19, of Arlington, Texas, is accused of recording himself having sex with a woman without her consent, according to an arrest warrant. The woman told detectives she found videos of the two on Toviano’s iPad that were recorded through a clock with a built-in camera placed near the bed, The Times-Picayune/The New Orleans Advocate reported.

The woman told detectives that Toviano had recorded them having sex in the past without her consent and she told him she did not want to be recorded.

Toviano, in an interview with detectives, admitted using a hidden camera to record the sexual encounters, the arrest warrant states.

Bond information was not immediately available. It was unknown if Toviano has an attorney who could speak on his behalf.

Toviano “has been suspended from all team activities, in accordance with departmental policies,” LSU said in a statement.

“We will not have further comment out of respect for the legal process,” the university said.

Toviano signed with LSU last year. He appeared in every game as a freshman and made three starts over the last five games. He finished his freshman season with 33 tackles and one pass breakup.

LSU begins preseason practice on Aug. 1, and Toviano was expected to compete for playing time at cornerback.

The Canadian Press. All rights reserved.



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Beltré, Helton, Mauer and Leyland inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame

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COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. (AP) — Adrian Beltré, Joe Mauer and Todd Helton were pegged as athletic phenoms from a young age and all three lived up to expectations with their induction to the Baseball Hall of Fame on Sunday.

The Los Angeles Dodgers were so sold on Beltré early on that they broke MLB rules to sign him before he turned 16.

Beltré reached the big leagues just after his 19th birthday and was quickly considered one of the best prospects in sports as a teenager.

In Beltré’s induction speech, he says he played for his first team at the age of 13 and was a second baseman because his dad told him that’s the position he should play.

After a teammate asked him to switch and play third base, Beltré obliged and the decision paid off.

Beltré played 21 years for the Dodgers, Seattle Mariners, Boston Red Sox and Texas Rangers. He became a five-time Gold Glove winner and is the first third baseman with at least 450 home runs and 3,000 hits.

During his playing days, Beltré made it clear that he did not like anyone touching his head so of course, his teammates ignored the request and made a habit of touching his head anyways. At Sunday’s ceremony, fellow Hall of Famer David Ortiz continued the tradition by touching Beltré’s head prior to his speech.

“That never relaxes me,” Beltré said with a laugh. “(But) it was a little cute to go back to my playing days. …It’s just part of being in this fraternity. Even though I don’t love it, I don’t like it, but it felt like I’m open to people to be able to play around with me. I always like that.”

Mauer was a high school phenom in both football and baseball in St. Paul, Minnesota, and was named USA Today’s High School Player of the Year in football in 200 and baseball in 2001.

He was drafted by his hometown Twins with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2001 MLB Draft.

“It was truly an honor to be a (Minnesota Twin) and represent my hometown team,” Mauer said.

The future six-time All-Star catcher spent just three years in the minors before spending all 15 years of his big league career with the Twins.

Mauer finished his career with one Most Valuable Player award, three batting titles and is the only catcher in history with at least 2,000 hits, a .300 batting average and a .380 on-base percentage.

Mauer noted the emotion he felt seeing all the Minnesota fans throughout the weekend.

“It’s not easy to get to Cooperstown and especially with the events that have happened this last week,” he said. “But to see that many Twins fans out there, I just felt the love and I was just hoping that I could deliver the speech that I wrote down.”

Helton was also a football and baseball star and played both sports at the University of Tennessee.

Despite his dominance in both sports at an early age, Helton never felt comfortable in the spotlight or felt like a Hall of Famer.

“Those of you who know me know I’d be more comfortable doing anything other than standing up here talking about myself,” Helton said to open his speech. “I’m just a ball player and anyone in the media can attest to that fact.”

Helton’s claim to fame could have been that he was the quarterback at the University of Tennessee between future first-round draft picks Heath Shuler and Peyton Manning, but he was destined for bigger things on the baseball diamond.

After a knee injury in 1994 paved the way for Manning to become Tennessee’s quarterback, Helton shifted all of his focus to baseball where he was named the winner of the Dick Howser Award by the American Baseball Coaches Association and named Player of the Year by Baseball America.

Helton was selected by the Colorado Rockies with the No. 8 overall pick in the 1995 amateur draft and never left the Mile High City.

After becoming the starting first baseman in 1995, Helton finished second in the NL Rookie of the Year voting and posted a .315 batting average with 25 home runs and 97 RBIs.

He went on to become one of just three players to record multiple seasons with 100-plus extra-base hits in his career and helped the Rockies reach the 2007 World Series.

While Helton began the weekend feeling out of place, the second Rockies Hall of Famer knows he is where he belongs now.

“Just standing back there waiting to go up onto the stage, the guys were so kind, but they all came by and offered me advice,” Helton said. “For me, that was the beginning of feeling that I belong. But we have a players-only dinner tonight and I’ll probably feel like I belong after that.”

Jim Leyland was elected by the Contemporary Baseball Era Committee. He managed for 22 seasons, won three Manager of the Year awards, the 1997 World Series, had a 1,769-1,728 career record as a manager and was the manager of the U.S. Olympic team in 2017 when the Americans won their only World Baseball Classic.

Leyland made sure to acknowledge the importance of the fans to the game of baseball.

“No matter which Hall of Famer you’re here to support today, or which team you cheer for, your presence is always felt,” Leyland said. “On your feet in the ninth with the home team clinging to a one-run lead, turning on your television for the first game in the World Series and seeing 50,000 fans hoping and praying that this may be their year, or a little boy or girl getting their first autograph scurrying back to the stands to show mom and dad what they just did. Ladies and gentlemen, that’s you. That’s baseball. And this is the Hall of Fame.”

Beltré led this year’s class with 95.1% of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America vote in his first year on the ballot. Helton followed with 79.7% of the vote in his sixth year of eligibility and Mauer received 76.1% of the BBWAA vote in his first year.

Other players included on this year’s ballot who fell short of the 75% threshold were Billy Wagner (73.8%), Gary Sheffield (63.9%), Andruw Jones (61.6%), Carlos Beltrán (57.1%), Alex Rodriguez (34.8%), Manny Ramirez (32.5%), Chase Utley (28.8%), Omar Vizquel (17.7%), Bobby Abreu (14.8%), Jimmy Rollins (14.8%), Andy Pettitte (13.5%), Mark Buehrle (8.3%), Francisco Rodriguez (7.8%), Torii Hunter (7.3%), David Wright (6.2%), José Bautista (1.6%), Victor Martinez (1.6%), Bartolo Colon (1.3%), Matt Holliday (1%), Adrián González (0.8%), Brandon Phillips (0.3%), Jose Reyes (0%) and James Shields (0%).

Sheffield was on the ballot for the 10th time without reaching the 75% mark and is no longer eligible for BBWAA consideration. Bautista, Martinez, Colon, Holliday, González, Phillips, Reyes and Shields did not receive the minimum requirement of 5% of the vote and are also no longer eligible for BBWAA consideration.

Joe Castiglione and Gerry Fraley were also honored during Hall of Fame weekend. Castiglione has been the Boston Red Sox radio broadcaster for a record 42 seasons and received the Ford C. Frick Award. Fraley was posthumously honored with the BBWAA Career Excellence Award for his work as a writer. During his career, Fraley covered the Philadelphia Phillies, Atlanta Braves, Texas Rangers and worked as the national baseball writer for the Dallas Morning News.

___

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