Hospitals

medicine

UW Medicine to reschedule some procedures; hospitals agree to share surge

Responding to a surge in COVID-19 caseloads, UW Medicine has decided to postpone surgeries that are not urgent but would require hospitalization afterward, according to an internal email and confirmed by a spokesperson. 

UW Medicine’s action comes as Washington state’s hospitals earlier this week reached an agreement on how to handle the ongoing rise of COVID-19 patients statewide — committing to one another that “no hospital will go into crisis standards alone.” 

Crisis standards are when hospitals are so overwhelmed they cannot provide the typical standard of care, and they are left to triage resources and decide who will receive treatment and who will be left to die. 

The hospitals’ commitment — which expand on agreements reached before the first surge of COVID-19 in spring — says all of the state’s acute care hospitals will make “concrete plans” to scale back on elective procedures as needed, reserve intensive care units for COVID-19 or emergency cases, and readily accept patient transfers from other parts of the state.

It aims to ensure hospitals will work closely with one another and communicate to prevent individual facilities from becoming overwhelmed when others have capacity.  

“It’s essentially to try to manage — all across the system — the capacity,” said Cassie Sauer, of the Washington State Hospital Association (WSHA), which convened a videoconference Monday for the state’s hospital leaders. “In the places that have gone to crisis standards, those doctors and nurses, I’m not sure their soul will ever be the same.” 

Sauer said hospitals hope to create more slack in the system by collaborating closely together and establishing clear communication. Hospitals must document if they deny the transfer of a patient and inform their chief executive officer if a transfer is denied. 

Statewide, as of 4 p.m. Friday, 78% of acute care beds were occupied, according to WSHA. Nearly 84% of intensive care unit (ICU) beds and almost 75% of the ICU beds in airborne infection isolation rooms were in use — numbers higher than two weeks ago.

Sauer said many Washington hospitals, including UW Medicine and Swedish, are beginning to more aggressively scale back on elective procedures.  

“All non-urgent patients who need to occupy a bed [post-operation] for any length of time will be rescheduled,” wrote UW Medical Center CEO Cindy Hecker and Harborview Medical Center CEO Paul Hayes in a message to colleagues Nov. 19. The rescheduling will begin Nov. 23 and continue through Feb. 1, according to the message.  

Procedures for outpatients and in urgent or emergent cases will continue, Hecker and Hayes wrote. 

UW Medicine spokesperson Susan Gregg said the hospital system is “actively contacting” patients whose surgeries will be postponed. 

“Each individual case is being reviewed based on medical urgency and whether the patient would need to be hospitalized after the surgery,” Gregg said in a statement Friday.  

UW Medicine was caring for 77 COVID-19 patients across its campuses as of Thursday. On Oct. 1, the hospital system was caring for 20.  

Dr. Elizabeth Wako, chief medical officer at

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medicine

Michigan Medicine joins country’s top hospitals in #MaskUp campaign as COVID-19 surges nationwide

ANN ARBOR – Michigan Medicine has partnered with about 100 of the country’s top health care systems urging Americans to mask up as COVID-19 cases reach record-breaking highs.

The news comes as Michigan reached its highest-ever single-day record Friday with 9,779 new cases.

Just this past week alone, one million Americans have tested positive for the novel virus, with 11.5 million testing positive since cases emerged earlier this year. More than 250,000 Americans to date have died from the disease.

As cases surge and more people choose to gather indoors as temperatures drop, hospital leaders are worried that their facilities could reach capacity quickly and experience shortages of healthy caregivers. Over the past two weeks, more than 900 medical workers at Mayo Clinic tested positive for COVID-19. The hospital system said the infections were due mostly to community spread.

Medical experts maintain that wearing a face mask is the best way to protect yourself from contracting the virus. Masks prevent the inhalation of harmful pathogens by the wearer and prevents potential harmful particles to be exhaled by the wearer and expose others.

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Ads for the new #MaskUp campaign are currently running in some of the nation’s top publications. The message reads:

“As the top nationally-ranked hospitals, we know it’s tough that we all need to do our part and keep wearing masks. But, here’s what we also know: The science has not changed. Masks slow the spread of COVID-19. So, please join us as we all embrace this simple ask: Wear. Care. Share with #MaskUp. Together, wearing is caring. And together, we are saving lives.”

The messages will also appear on social media and other digital platforms in order to reach a broader audience.

“After many months of living in social isolation and refraining from some of our favorite activities, this is not easy. We are all fatigued and stressed. However now is exactly the wrong time to let up,” Marschall S. Runge, CEO of Michigan Medicine and dean of the U-M Medical School said in a statement.

“We all must be vigilant in the behaviors that will protect us, our families, and our neighbors: wear a mask, socially distance, and practice frequent hand hygiene. These practices are our best defense against a disease that we still are trying to understand.”

At one point this week, Michigan Medicine had 75 COVID-19 positive patients at the same time, with roughly 20 of them requiring intensive care.

“Scientists and clinicians are learning more and more from this disease, and the outlook for more effective treatment and vaccination looks promising,” Laraine Washer, medical director of infection prevention and epidemiology at Michigan Medicine said in statement. “But for now, we have to use the tools that we know work: wearing masks, staying socially distant and washing hands.

“This, of course, makes the upcoming holidays a challenge. But the traditional gatherings of multiple households is a high risk situation for exposures to

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medicine

UAB Medicine listed among “Most Wired” hospitals for 2020 – News

For the seventh consecutive year, UAB Medicine has earned “Most Wired” status for use of information technology in improving patient care.

UAB MedicineUAB University Hospital signage on sidewalk with the O'Neal Comprehensive Cancer Center, the North Pavilion, and blue sky and white clouds in the background, April 2020. has been named one of “HealthCare’s Most Wired” for 2020, by the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives.

CHIME has recognized 71 hospitals for achieving Level 9 status from its 2020 HealthCare’s Most Wired program. CHIME’s Most Wired list acknowledges health care organizations that have adopted and deployed information technology to improve patient safety and health outcomes across the industry. UAB Hospital is the only Alabama hospital to achieve Level 9 status this year.

This is the seventh consecutive year UAB Medicine has earned Most Wired recognition. 

The mission of the CHIME HealthCare’s Most Wired program is to elevate the health and health care of communities around the world through the optimal use of information technology. The annual survey is designed to identify and recognize health care organizations that exemplify best practices through their adoption, implementation and use of information technology. 

According to CHIME, hospitals and health systems at the forefront of using health care IT to improve the delivery of care have maximized the benefits of foundational technologies and are embracing new technologies that support population management and value-based care. The most successful organizations not only adopt technology but apply it strategically to achieve great outcomes.

Source Article

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medicine

Harrington Discovery Institute At University Hospitals And Case Western Reserve School Of Medicine Open Call For 2021 Harrington-MSTP Scholar Award

CLEVELAND, Nov. 10, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Harrington Discovery Institute at University Hospitals and Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine have issued a call for proposals for the 2021 Harrington-MSTP (Medical Scientist Training Program) Scholar Award to help the next generation of physician-scientists advance their discoveries into breakthrough medicines. This program is a two-year scholarship for MSTP students at the School of Medicine whose work has been identified as innovative, creative and having potential to progress towards clinical application.

Since its founding in 2012, Harrington Discovery Institute–part of The Harrington Project for Discovery & Development–has supported 137 drugs-in-the-making in the US, Canada and the United Kingdom. Core to its mission, Harrington Discovery Institute recognizes and supports inventive physician-scientists through dedicated programs, including the global Harrington Prize (partnered with The American Society for Clinical Investigation), North American Scholar-Innovator Award, and the Cleveland, Ohio-based Harrington Investigator programs. With this program, now in its second year, the Institute has expanded its model to include the next generation of physician-scientists early in their career.

Through this award, Harrington Discovery Institute and the School of Medicine combine resources and capabilities to advance into new medicines the most promising research of Case MSTP students. Awardees will receive grant funding and dedicated therapeutic development support from Harrington Discovery Institute’s Therapeutics Development team, who are pharma-experienced industry leaders with a track record of bringing drugs to market.

“We are committed to helping physician-scientists improve the standard of care and address unmet needs in healthcare through their research. This program helps students take promising scientific discoveries and chart a path forward that maximizes potential for clinical success. Now more than ever, it is essential that we help close the gap between breakthroughs in the lab and much-needed treatments for patients. We are pleased to work closely with Case Western Reserve University to provide this opportunity,” said Jonathan S. Stamler, MD, President, Harrington Discovery Institute, Robert S. and Sylvia K. Reitman Family Foundation Distinguished Chair of Cardiovascular Innovation and Professor of Medicine at University Hospitals and Case Western Reserve University.

“This program provides tremendous value for the students selected, which they will carry with them throughout their careers. In working with former pharma executives, awardees are able to build new skills and gain a broader understanding of their research in relation to industry. The Case MSTP program has always focused on cultivating an innovation mindset with our students and providing them with the tools necessary for a successful career,” said Derek Abbott, MD, PhD, Program Director, Medical Scientist Training Program, Case Western Reserve School of Medicine.

Interested applicants from Case Western Reserve University’s MSTP program are asked to submit a Letter of Intent by December 7, 2020. Up to two award recipients will be selected and announced in spring 2021. For more information, visit: HarringtonDiscovery.org/MSTP.

Harrington Discovery Institute

The Harrington Discovery Institute at University Hospitals in Cleveland, OH — part of The Harrington Project for Discovery & Development — aims to advance

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health

The Health 202: Doctors, hospitals blast Trump’s baseless claims they inflate coronavirus deaths for money

“You know that, right?” Trump said at a Michigan rally on Friday. “I mean our doctors are very smart people. So what they do is they say, ‘I’m sorry, but everybody dies of covid.’” 

Chip Kahn, president of the Federation of American Hospitals, said “it is so offensive.” 

There is no evidence that hospitals and doctors are lying about the number of covid-19 patients. 

That would be fraud and something the Department of Justice could prosecute. “It’s unethical, it’s illegal and it’s inappropriate,” Kahn said.

Without naming the president, the American Medical Association called Trump’s statement a “malicious, outrageous and completely misguided charge” and defended front-line health care workers. “They did it because duty called and because of the sacred oath they took,” said AMA President Susan Bailey.

The pandemic has actually cost medical facilities money, although by how much is unclear. 

Elective surgical procedures, which hospitals were forced to cancel or postpone for much of the spring, generate the most revenue for them. In contrast, carrying for severely ill coronavirus patients for weeks on end consumes lots of staffing hours and bed space for hospitals.

“Frankly, these are very expensive cases on average … the hospitalizations are long and so even the reimbursement is probably way below cost,” Kahn said. 

And hospitals don’t get extra money if a coronavirus patient dies. 

Hospitals bill the government and private insurers for specific services related to specific illnesses, regardless of the outcome.

“Hospitals do not receive extra funds when patients die from covid-19,” the American Hospital Association wrote in a blog post yesterday addressing the claims. “They are not over-reporting covid-19 cases. And, they are not making money on treating covid-19.”

Ashish Jha, dean of Brown University School of Public Health:

However, there is a coronavirus “bonus” for uninsured covid-19 patients.

The coronavirus relief package passed by Congress includes money to pay hospitals for treating uninsured covid-19 patients. The package allows hospitals to be paid 120 percent of typical Medicare rates. 

Yet Kahn feels that, if anything, hospitals aren’t getting paid as much as they need for caring for coronavirus patients. Trump’s comments, he feels, reflected little-to-no understanding of how the coding system works. 

Hospitals can only submit claims for the payments that list covid-19 as a patient’s primary diagnosis. For example, a patient admitted with sepsis due to the coronavirus would be given “sepsis” as a primary diagnosis and “covid-19” as a secondary diagnosis — even though the virus caused the sepsis to begin with. 

Hospitals have asked the Department of Health and Human Services to loosen those rules, charging that the majority of claims for coronavirus testing and treatment would be rejected and ineligible for reimbursement under the program.

Trump’s claim was just the tip of the iceberg in how he talked about the pandemic.

The president switched between blaming others for focusing on the pandemic while simultaneously promising a widespread vaccine within weeks.

He offered extreme depictions of a pandemic response might look like under a Biden administration.

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health

Medicare Fines Hospitals for Too Many Readmissions



 

Nearly half the nation’s hospitals, many of which are still wrestling with the financial fallout of the unexpected coronavirus, will get lower payments for all Medicare patients because of their history of readmitting patients, federal records show.

The penalties are the ninth annual round of the Hospital Readmissions Reduction Program created as part of the Affordable Care Act’s broader effort to improve quality and lower costs. The latest penalties are calculated using each hospital case history between July 2016 and June 2019, so the flood of coronavirus patients that have swamped hospitals this year were not included.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced in September it may suspend the penalty program in the future if the chaos surrounding the pandemic, including the spring’s moratorium on elective surgeries, makes it too difficult to assess hospital performance.

For this year, the penalties remain in effect. Retroactive to the federal fiscal year that began Oct. 1, Medicare will lower a year’s worth of payments to 2,545 hospitals, the data show. The average reduction is 0.69%, with 613 hospitals receiving a penalty of 1% or more.

Out of 5,267 hospitals in the country, Congress has exempted 2,176 from the threat of penalties, either because they are critical access hospitals — defined as the only inpatient facility in an area — or hospitals that specialize in psychiatric patients, children, veterans, rehabilitation or long-term care. Of the 3,080 hospitals CMS evaluated, 83% received a penalty.

The number and severity of penalties were comparable to those of recent years, although the number of hospitals receiving the maximum penalty of 3% dropped from 56 to 39. Because the penalties are applied to new admission payments, the total dollar amount each hospital will lose will not be known until after the fiscal year ends on July 30.

“It’s unfortunate that hospitals will face readmission penalties in fiscal year 2021,” said Akin Demehin, director of policy at the American Hospital Association. “Given the financial strain that hospitals are under, every dollar counts, and the impact of any penalty is significant.”

The penalties are based on readmissions of Medicare patients who initially came to the hospital with diagnoses of congestive heart failure, heart attack, pneumonia, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, hip or knee replacement or coronary artery bypass graft surgery. Medicare counts as a readmission any of those patients who ended up back in any hospital within 30 days of discharge, except for planned returns like a second phase of surgery.

A hospital will be penalized if its readmission rate is higher than expected given the national trends in any one of those categories.

The industry has disapproved of the program since its inception, complaining the measures aren’t precise and it unfairly punishes hospitals that treat low-income patients, who often don’t have the resources to ensure their recoveries are successful.

Michael Millenson, a health quality consultant who focuses on patient safety, said the penalties are a useful but imperfect mechanism to push hospitals to improve their care. The designers of

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medicine

Sandoz ships first medicine in collaboration with Civica Rx to supply US hospitals

PRINCETON, N.J., Nov. 2, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Sandoz Inc. today announced that it has shipped pantoprazole sodium for injection, 40 mg to Civica Rx to supply the hospitals it serves as part of a multiyear collaboration to help reduce supply shortages, with several other medicines on the way before the end of the year.

Pantoprazole is the first Sandoz medicine to ship to Civica since entering into the agreement in July. It is a proton pump inhibitor indicated in adults for the short-term treatment (7 to 10 days) of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), associated with a history of erosive esophagitis1

Sandoz previously announced it will supply six injectable medicines under the Civica private label to its 1,200 US hospitals. The agreement is being expanded to include an additional medicine to regulate blood pressure, which is frequently used to treat COVID-19 patients in hospitals.

“Our collaboration with Civica is providing certainty for hospitals, doctors and patients who are too often frustrated by shortages of medicines. This is especially important as healthcare providers continue to manage the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Carol Lynch, President, Sandoz Inc. “We are committed to ensuring our medicines are there for the patients who need them when they need them.”

Civica, a non-profit, was founded in 2018 by leading US hospital systems concerned about generic drug shortages and philanthropic organizations passionate about improving healthcare. To date, more than 50 health systems are Civica members, representing more than 1,200 US hospitals and approximately 30 percent of all licensed US hospital beds including acute care. 

“Within a year since our first medication was administered in a hospital ICU, we’ve been able to help millions of patients,” said Martin VanTrieste, president and CEO of Civica. “With Sandoz, we look forward to helping millions more by providing critical medicines that have often been in short supply.”

INDICATIONS AND USAGE

Pantoprazole sodium is a proton pump inhibitor (PPI) indicated in adults for the following:

  • Short-term treatment (7 to 10 days) of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) associated with a history of Erosive Esophagitis (EE).
  • Pathological hypersecretion conditions including Zollinger-Ellison (ZE) Syndrome.

IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION

CONTRAINDICATIONS

  • Patients with a known hypersensitivity to any component of the formulation or to substituted benzimidazoles.
  • Patients receiving rilpivirine-containing products.

WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS

  • Gastric Malignancy: In adults, symptomatic response to therapy with pantoprazole sodium for injection does not preclude the presence of gastric malignancy. Consider additional follow-up and diagnostic testing.
  • Hypersensitivity and Severe Skin Reactions: Anaphylaxis and other serious reactions such as erythema multiforme, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, and toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN) have been reported.
  • Injection Site Reactions: Thrombophlebitis is associated with the administration of intravenous pantoprazole.
  • Potential Exacerbation of Zinc Deficiency: Consider zinc supplementation in patients who are prone to zinc deficiency. Caution should be used when other EDTA containing products are also co-administered intravenously.
  • Acute Interstitial Nephritis: Observed in patients taking PPIs.
  • Clostridium difficile-Associated Diarrhea: PPI therapy may be associated with increased risk.
  • Bone Fracture: Long-term and multiple daily dose PPI therapy may
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Coronavirus surge sees US hospitals scramble for nurses

As the coronavirus pandemic surges across the nation and infections and hospitalizations rise, medical administrators are scrambling to find enough nursing help — especially in rural areas and at small hospitals.

Nurses are being trained to provide care in fields where they have limited experience. Hospitals are scaling back services to ensure enough staff to handle critically ill patients. And health systems are turning to short-term travel nurses to help fill the gaps.

Adding to the strain, experienced nurses are “burned out with this whole (pandemic)” and some are quitting, said Kevin Fitzpatrick, an emergency room nurse at Hurley Medical Center in Flint, Michigan, where several left just in the past month to work in hospice or home care or at outpatient clinics.

CORONAVIRUS CLAIMS LIFE OF MISSOURI BOY, 13, FAMILY CLAIMS

“And replacing them is not easy,” Fitzpatrick said.

As a result, he said, the ER is operating at about five nurses short of its optimal level at any given time, and each one typically cares for four patients as COVID-19 hospitalizations surge anew. Hospital officials did not respond to requests for comment.

But the departures are not surprising, according to experts, considering not only the mental toll but the fact that many nurses trained in acute care are over 50 and at increased risk of complications if they contract COVID-19, while younger nurses often have children or other family to worry about.

“Who can actually work and who feels safe working are limited by family obligations to protect their own health,” said Karen Donelan, professor of U.S. health policy at Brandeis University’s Heller School for Social Policy and Management. “All of those things have been factors.”

CORONAVIRUS FACE MASKS AT POLLS ENCOURAGED, BUT NOT REQUIRED IN SOME STATES 

Donelan said there is little data so far on how the pandemic, which has killed more than 231,000 people in the country, is affecting nursing overall. But some hospitals had a shortage even before the virus took hold, despite a national rise in the number of nurses over the past decade.

With total confirmed coronavirus cases surpassing 9 million in the U.S. and new daily infections rising in 47 states, the need is only increasing.

Wausau, Wisconsin-based Aspirus Health Care is offering $15,000 signing bonuses for nurses with at least a year of experience and hiring contract nurses through private staffing companies to handle a surge in hospitalizations that prompted the system to almost quadruple the number of beds dedicated to COVID-19 patients.

Aspirus, which operates five hospitals in Wisconsin and four in small communities in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, also is moving nurses around between departments and facilities as hot spots emerge, said Ruth Risley-Gray, senior vice president and chief nursing officer at Aspirus.

ARE POLL WORKERS AT INCREASED RISK FOR CORONAVIRUS? 

Outside help still is needed, in part because some nurses have gotten sick from or were exposed to the cornavirus during the current wave, which “came with a vengeance” starting in August, Risley-Gray said. At

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Hospitals competing for nurses as US coronavirus cases surge

FENTON, Michigan (AP) — As the coronavirus pandemic surges across the nation and infections and hospitalizations rise, medical administrators are scrambling to find enough nursing help — especially in rural areas and at small hospitals.

Nurses are being trained to provide care in fields where they have limited experience. Hospitals are scaling back services to ensure enough staff to handle critically ill patients. And health systems are turning to short-term travel nurses to help fill the gaps.

Adding to the strain, experienced nurses are “burned out with this whole (pandemic)” and some are quitting, said Kevin Fitzpatrick, an emergency room nurse at Hurley Medical Center in Flint, Michigan, where several left just in the past month to work in hospice or home care or at outpatient clinics.

“And replacing them is not easy,” Fitzpatrick said.


As a result, he said, the ER is operating at about five nurses short of its optimal level at any given time, and each one typically cares for four patients as COVID-19 hospitalizations surge anew. Hospital officials did not respond to requests for comment.

But the departures are not surprising, according to experts, considering not only the mental toll but the fact that many nurses trained in acute care are over 50 and at increased risk of complications if they contract COVID-19, while younger nurses often have children or other family to worry about.

“Who can actually work and who feels safe working are limited by family obligations to protect their own health,” said Karen Donelan, professor of U.S. health policy at Brandeis University’s Heller School for Social Policy and Management. “All of those things have been factors.”

Donelan said there is little data so far on how the pandemic, which has killed more than 231,000 people in the country, is affecting nursing overall. But some hospitals had a shortage even before the virus took hold, despite a national rise in the number of nurses over the past decade.

With total confirmed coronavirus cases surpassing 9 million in the U.S. and new daily infections rising in 47 states, the need is only increasing.

Wausau, Wisconsin-based Aspirus Health Care is offering $15,000 signing bonuses for nurses with at least a year of experience and hiring contract nurses through private staffing companies to handle a surge in hospitalizations that prompted the system to almost quadruple the number of beds dedicated to COVID-19 patients.

Aspirus, which operates five hospitals in Wisconsin and four in small communities in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, also is moving nurses around between departments and facilities as hot spots emerge, said Ruth Risley-Gray, senior vice president and chief nursing officer at Aspirus.

Outside help still is needed, in part because some nurses have gotten sick from or were exposed to the cornavirus during the current wave, which “came with a vengeance” starting in August, Risley-Gray said. At one point in mid-October, 215 staffers were in isolation after showing symptoms or being exposed to someone who tested positive, and some are just starting to return to

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health

Midwest hospitals raise alarms on bed capacity

MISSOURI — Missouri hospital leaders are raising alarms about bed capacity as coronavirus cases continue to spike, with some urging Gov. Mike Parson to issue a statewide mask mandate.

Meanwhile, an eastern Missouri eighth-grader died days after his COVID-19 diagnosis, the state’s first child under age 14 to die since the onset of the pandemic. Washington School District Superintendent Lori VanLeer said in a statement that 13-year-old Peyton Baumgarth died over the weekend, less than two weeks after he last attended classes.

The National Center for Health Statistics report for Oct. 28 cited just 80 deaths nationwide among children ages 14 or younger.


Missouri, like many Midwestern states, is seeing a big rise on COVID-19 cases, and many of the illnesses are severe enough to require hospitalization. The state health department on Monday cited 1,659 hospitalizations statewide, eclipsing by 10 the previous record set a day earlier. The state also cited 2,651 more confirmed cases and five additional deaths. All told, Missouri has reported 188,186 confirmed cases and 3,031 deaths from the virus.

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HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE VIRUS OUTBREAK:

— America stands at a crossroads the day before Election Day, facing a stark choice between candidates in the midst of historic pandemic

— U.S. hospitals are scrambling to hire more nurses as the coronavirus pandemic surges, leading to stiff competition and increased costs.

— Germany kicks off a partial lockdown, as several European countries tighten restrictions this week

— Police in Spain are on curfew patrol, wrangling groups of young people who are drinking outside as the country battles a surge in coronavirus infections

— The BBC says Britain’s Prince William had the virus in April, around the same time as his father Prince Charles

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— Follow AP’s coronavirus pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

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HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:

LANSING, Mich. — Meals at Michigan restaurants came with a new side dish Monday: What’s your name and phone number?

Restaurants must be able to contact customers if there’s a virus case linked to the business, according to the latest order from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s health department.

Michigan’s coronavirus cases have risen significantly, setting a new daily high Saturday at 3,792, the health department said.

The Michigan Restaurants & Lodging Association insists COVID-19 transmission doesn’t occur much at restaurants. The group predicts job losses and more financial strife because of the requirement.

“You have guests that feel it’s intruding on their personal liberties and freedoms, and now we’ve got to be the arbitrator of that,” said Jeff Lobdell, president of Restaurant Partners Management, which operates 12 eateries in western Michigan.

Restaurants, bars and other venues must seat no more than six people at a table. The state said indoor settings are much more likely to drive COVID-19 outbreaks than outdoor settings.

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ROME — Italian Premier Giuseppe Conte has announced new national restrictions aimed at halting the increase of coronavirus cases, including closing shopping malls on the weekends, shuttering museums and limiting movements

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