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Public warned about unproven therapies for COVID-19 | Columbia Valley, Cranbrook, East Kootenay, Elk Valley, Kimberley, Ktunaxa Nation – E-Know.ca

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College of Pharmacists of British Columbia joins with College of Physicians and Surgeons of British Columbia, and B.C. College of Nursing Professionals to issue warning on the use of unproven treatments and medications for COVID-19

As the COVID-19 global health pandemic continues to impact nearly every aspect of our lives, health professionals are becoming increasingly aware of online and social media-driven conversations about the use of antibiotics and antiviral therapies that are prescribed to treat Malaria, HIV/AIDS and other conditions to treat COVID-19 patients.

Although all British Columbians are hopeful a cure or treatment can be found quickly, it is critical to note that at this time, a proven treatment for COVID-19 does not exist.

“It is important to understand that there are potential harms to the patient, risks to our understanding of what is truly a beneficial treatment or not, and depleting access to therapies known to be helpful or essential in other disease states. For these reasons, the use of unproven therapies for COVID 19 is not recommended outside clinical trials,” says the BC Center for Disease Control.

These unproven treatment claims may include, but are not limited to, the following drugs: hydroxychloroquine, chloroquine, azithromycin, lopinavir/ritonavir (Kaletra) and colchicine.

Health professionals all have a responsibility to their patients and to their profession to focus only on evidence-based care and not yield to well-intentioned patient pressure around unproven and potentially dangerous uses of existing medications.

Doing so could present significant health risks to those patients as well as other unintended consequences such as critical shortages of these existing medications for patients who need them to treat other conditions.

Information around COVID-19 is rapidly evolving and new recommendations and evidence may become available with time.

Physicians and nurse practitioners are being reminded of their obligation not prescribe these therapies for COVID-19 outside the context of a clinical trial, and pharmacists are being instructed not to dispense them if they do.

For more information on the unproven therapies for COVID-19, see:

The College is continuing to add information on pharmacy’s role in helping fight COVID-19 at bcpharmacists.org/COVID19

College of Pharmacists of British Columbia

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New cat virus found at B.C. SPCA prompts science journal publication – Times Colonist

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VANCOUVER — The outbreak of a fast-spreading disease at the SPCA’s animal centre in Vancouver has led to the discovery of a new feline virus that affected 43 cats in B.C.

It started when eight cats fell ill on a single day in 2018 with symptoms like a human stomach flu, but Dr. Emilia Gordon, the senior manager of animal health, says they became concerned when tests came back negative for parasites.

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Gordon says in a news release they knew within days that they were dealing with a virus or bacteria they hadn’t faced before.

Outbreak tracing found two cats in the Quesnel shelter introduced the illness to Vancouver’s facility, where it spread rapidly before being detected.

A research team at the University of California, San Francisco found the new species of parvovirus, which isn’t related to COVID-19, and those findings were recently published in the science journal Viruses.

Gordon says the high rate of recovery was due to a quick response and stringent control measures, although two of the 43 cats that were ill were euthanized because of other medical problems.

“As soon as we understood we were dealing with something unusual, our first goal was to stop the outbreak so more cats wouldn’t get sick,” Gordon says. “Our second goal was to try to get answers for our teams, for the cats, and for other shelters and veterinarians facing unexplained gastrointestinal outbreaks in cats under their care.”

She says being part of the discovery of the new virus was very exciting, however data from a single outbreak isn’t enough to be certain the virus can cause disease and more research will need to be done.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 28, 2019.

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2 B.C. long-term care homes get extra help to deal with COVID-19 outbreaks – CBC.ca

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Specialized health teams have been sent to fight COVID-19 outbreaks at two Metro Vancouver long-term care homes.

The Fraser Health Authority appointed a pandemic response director on Thursday at Langley Lodge, where more than 20 people have died from the virus in recent weeks.

It also sent extra staff to Nicola Lodge in Port Coquitlam after one resident tested positive Wednesday for COVID-19, said Dr. Martin Lavoie, Fraser Health’s chief medical health officer. The resident was placed in isolation at the lodge, he said.

“Over the past several weeks, we’ve been supporting and offering guidance to Langley Lodge in different ways,” Lavoie said at a news conference.

“Today, we’re taking further action and we have appointed our own director of pandemic response to provide oversight of the COVID-19 response at Langley Lodge and also to further support the facility leadership and staff.”

Dr. Martin Lavoie, Fraser Health’s chief medical health officer, said the COVID-19 outbreak at Langley Lodge has been difficult to control. (Ben Nelms/CBC)

The lodge website says it is a not-for-profit registered charity run by the Langley Care Society.

It says the lodge in Langley provides long-term care for adults who can no longer live safely or independently at home because of their health-care needs. The lodge includes 121 funded spaces and 14 private pay spaces.

An official at the lodge referred questions about the COVID-19 outbreak to Fraser Health on Thursday.

Lavoie said the COVID-19 outbreak at the lodge has been difficult to control.

“It is our hope that these additional measures will support the site in controlling this complex outbreak,” he said. “We’re taking all the necessary steps to minimize the exposure to and transmission of COVID-19.”

Lavoie said extra nurses and staff are being called in, along with infection control specialists who will use a specialized ultraviolet germ sterilization machine.

As of Wednesday, the Health Ministry said 111 people who have died from COVID-19 in the province were connected to long-term care facilities, assisted-living homes or acute-care hospitals. A total of 162 people have died from the virus.

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Research on new cat virus discovered at B.C. SPCA published in scientific journal – CBC.ca

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The outbreak of a fast-spreading disease at the SPCA’s animal centre in Vancouver has led to the discovery of a new feline virus that affected 43 cats in B.C.

It started when eight cats fell ill on a single day in 2018 with symptoms like a human stomach flu, but Dr. Emilia Gordon, the senior manager of animal health, says they became concerned when tests came back negative for parasites.

Gordon says in a news release they knew within days that they were dealing with a virus or bacteria they hadn’t faced before.

Outbreak tracing found two cats in the Quesnel shelter introduced the illness to Vancouver’s facility, where it spread rapidly before being detected.

The exterior the B.C. SPCA’s Vancouver location, as seen in 2019. A research team from the University of California San Francisco found a new virus in some cats in the SPCA’s care. (Google Streetview)

A research team at the University of California San Francisco found the new species of parvovirus, which isn’t related to COVID-19, and those findings were recently published in the science journal Viruses.

Gordon says the high rate of recovery was due to a quick response and stringent control measures, although two of the 43 cats that were ill were euthanized because of other medical problems.

“As soon as we understood we were dealing with something unusual, our first goal was to stop the outbreak so more cats wouldn’t get sick,” Gordon says. “Our second goal was to try to get answers for our teams, for the cats, and for other shelters and veterinarians facing unexplained gastrointestinal outbreaks in cats under their care.”

She says being part of the discovery of the new virus was very exciting, however data from a single outbreak isn’t enough to be certain the virus can cause disease and more research will need to be done.

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