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Life Time Fitness Files For Data Evidence On COVID Spread, Arging They’re Not Super-Spreaders

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — One of the largest gyms in the country, based right here in Minnesota, argues gyms are not super spreaders.

On Friday, Life Time CEO Braham Akradi filed a request for access to government data to see the exact amount of virus spread happening in health clubs in Minnesota.

“The clubs are amongst the lowest places that they’re spreading this virus,” said Akradi.

Life Time said in a statement, “We have had approximately 3.15 million visits to its Minnesota clubs since they reopened on June 10. Since that time 352 positive cases of COVID-19 have been reported by members and/or team members. This equates to .0001% of the total amount of cases in the state.”

Life Time Fitness in Edina was the one part of Samantha Maroney’s daily routine that she didn’t cut out during this pandemic. Unlike many other activities she enjoys, she felt this was one was the safest.

“It’s really what eliminates all the worry,” said Maroney. “When you’re greeted, there’s the temperature check.”

Many other Life Time members agree. Sean Shannon says masks were required at all times in locker rooms and walking between equipment.

“Some on the equipment if they’re doing cardio, they’ll take them off, but they’re social distanced between the next piece of equipment, so nobody is right there,” said Shannon.

Maroney said her gym went beyond CDC protocols to make classes safe and getting creative. Her favorite cycle classes were held on the rooftop of the gym on sunny days.

“We were all up there on our bikes, waving our towels around, we were all socially distanced,” said Maroney.

While some want gyms to stay open this winter for the physical health. Many also crave the mental wellbeing that comes from working out.

“I come here for mind, body and soul. I come here to not only to stay in shape, but to keep my anxiety at bay and everything,” said Russell Burton, a Life Time member.

Right now, gym patrons and staff are just hoping Gov. Tim Walz doesn’t extend the closure longer than a month.

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Trainers happy to spread the virtual fitness bug

When I asked Myrika Schneider, the studio director at PUSH Fitness in St. Paul, if the class she’d invited me to would kick my butt, she giggled.

“You’ll love it,” she said. “You’ll be with Connie.”

At 6 a.m. on a Tuesday morning, I logged into a virtual Tabata class — my first time doing the circuit exercise — taught by a 58-year-old Black woman named Connie Sheehan, the founder and owner of PUSH Fitness, from a living room in Chicago, where she’s caring for her mother who recently suffered a heart attack.

She did not have any weights or equipment, but her vibrant demeanor and energized presentation proved sufficient.

“Today is going to be the best day of your life!” she told the class, while “Best Day of My Life” by American Authors played in the background. “You didn’t know that when you woke up, did you?”

I’d caught the virtual bug after I canceled my gym membership a few months after the COVID shutdown, bought a discount exercise bike and started online spin classes.

The positive vibe of the instructors is infectious. It was also an important barometer. They could pedal at 120 revolutions per minute in a hip-hop spin class while rapping every word of Warren G’s “Regulate.” At that time, I had barely reached the humming phase of my pandemic fitness journey. I had — have — work to do.

“I’m here for you,” said Schneider, who teaches classes at PUSH Fitness. “I hope that I’m always giving that vibe and energy out.”

I am at this crucial stage as a 37-year-old African American man with a family history of diabetes and other ailments. It haunts me. The pandemic has only complicated my pursuit. Yes, I like to work out, but sometimes Netflix and chips are a welcoming distraction.

While African Americans have a disproportionate susceptibility to a variety of health challenges, the pandemic has only heightened our collective awareness as studies have shown we’re also one of the most vulnerable groups facing the coronavirus.

“As a voice for the Black community, it’s kind of our job to keep the message going,” said Maurice Buchanan, co-owner of Wurk, a fitness and boxing gym in Minnetonka. “Please take care of yourself, even if you’re at home.”

That’s why Sheehan and others like her act as critical motivators, especially as winter approaches and 2020 adds more chaos to its list of calamities. To muster the energy to lead people through any form of exercise — therapeutic for its participants — is an incredible task. For a Black instructor, it seems miraculous.

“I’ve never, ever had a workout where I said I wish I hadn’t done that,” Sheehan said. “Even if it’s hard, even if it’s like a crappy run, you’re still like, ‘OK, my body feels better.’ ”

This month, she’ll celebrate the fifth anniversary of PUSH Fitness, a gym she started in her 50s upon leaving the corporate world. After one class with Sheehan, it was easy

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health

Does weather affect the spread of the coronavirus outside?

Does weather affect the spread of the coronavirus outside?

Not really.

The World Health Organization says the coronavirus can be transmitted in any kind of weather and that there is no reason to believe that cold weather can kill it.

READ MORE: The essential coronavirus FAQ

The U.N. health agency says the virus is mainly spread between people. Rain and snow might dilute any traces of the virus on benches or other outside objects, but transmission from surfaces is not believed to be a major contributor to the pandemic.

Scientists say the real concern about cold weather is that lower temperatures are more likely to keep people indoors — potentially in more crowded spaces where the virus can spread more easily.

Studies have shown that a significant percentage of spread happens within households when people are sharing common areas like kitchens and bathrooms.

WHO and others have also warned that in indoor spaces with poor ventilation, transmission happens more easily because the virus can be spread in the air and infectious particles might remain suspended in the air for several hours.

READ MORE: A public health expert on how Americans ‘can avoid a horrible December’

Superspreader events have been traced to nightclubs, gyms and even choir practices. The coronavirus does not transmit as often outdoors because fresh air disperses the virus particles and people are more easily able to keep their distance from others. But experts caution that if people spend extended periods of time outdoors close to others without wearing masks, coronavirus spread is still possible.

Health officials say the best way to stop transmission of the virus is to wear a mask in public, stay at least 6 feet (2 meters) away from people not in your household and frequently wash your hands.

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Does Weather Affect the Spread of the Coronavirus Outside? | Health News

Does weather affect the spread of the coronavirus outside?

The World Health Organization says the virus can be transmitted in any kind of weather and that there is no reason to believe that cold weather can kill it.

The U.N. health agency says the virus is mainly spread between people. Rain and snow might dilute any traces of the virus on benches or other outside objects, but transmission from surfaces is not believed to be a major contributor to the pandemic.

Scientists say the real concern about cold weather is that lower temperatures are more likely to keep people indoors — potentially in more crowded spaces where the virus can spread more easily.

Studies have shown that a significant percentage of spread happens within households when people are sharing common areas like kitchens and bathrooms.

WHO and others have also warned that in indoor spaces with poor ventilation, transmission happens more easily because the virus can be spread in the air and infectious particles might remain suspended in the air for several hours.

Superspreader events have been traced to nightclubs, gyms and even choir practices. The coronavirus does not transmit as often outdoors because fresh air disperses the virus particles and people are more easily able to keep their distance from others. But experts caution that if people spend extended periods of time outdoors close to others without wearing masks, coronavirus spread is still possible.

Health officials say the best way to stop transmission of the virus is to wear a mask in public, stay at least 6 feet (2 meters) away from people not in your household and frequently wash your hands.

The AP is answering your questions about the coronavirus in this series. Submit them at: [email protected]

Read previous Viral Questions:

How does COVID-19 affect the heart?

Does the flu vaccine affect my chances of getting COVID-19?

Do I need to wear a mask if I’m 6 feet away from others?

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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health

All gatherings pose virus spread risk

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Gatherings large and small are likely to blame for a slight uptick in daily coronavirus cases in California’s largest county, according to a top health official who warned Monday that upcoming holiday parties pose a risk for renewed spread and a spike in hospitalizations.

There’s been a steady increase in the number of residents of Los Angeles County who have been getting together with people from outside their households, according to weekly survey data from the University of Southern California Center for Social and Economic Research.

That may be partly because of championship runs by the Los Angeles Lakers and Dodgers in recent weeks that brought fans together through watch parties and celebrations.


“With our case numbers already on the rise, we are concerned about the upcoming holiday gatherings and cooler weather, where people are more likely to gather indoors are perfect conditions for spreading COVID-19,” said Barbara Ferrer, the county’s public health director. “And while it’s easy to believe that the virus won’t spread among your family and friends, and that none of you are infected, there are so many examples that prove otherwise.”

For the week ending Oct. 20, more than 10% of respondents reported that they’d been at a gathering of 10 or more people in the past seven days, Ferrer said. She warned that if just 10% of Los Angeles County’s 10 million residents attended a gathering outside their households, that translates to about a million people.

“And if we assume that 2% of people can be infected, we could possibly have 20,000 people capable of infecting others who are milling about at these gatherings, each week,” she said.

Los Angeles County, the nation’s most populous, reported more than 1,400 new cases Monday for a total of 310,595. There have been more than 7,000 deaths in the county.

The state is moving more slowly than the reopening last spring that brought with it a dramatic spike in cases, hospitalizations and deaths. California, the most populous state, is second in the nation with more than 930,600 confirmed cases. There have been a total of 17,672 deaths in the state.

Statewide hospitalizations have increased by about 11% in the last week to 2,537 while the seven-day daily average is 4,231 confirmed cases, down about 1% from previous week.

Many businesses remain closed as Los Angeles County remains in California’s most restrictive tier, purple. It will likely remain there through November, Ferrer said.

Last Friday, San Francisco said it would temporarily halt the reopening of additional activities and businesses planned for this week because of an increase in case rates and hospitalizations.

California last month eased restrictions to allow up to three households to socialize outdoors, an expansion of rules aimed at people tempted to have even larger gatherings around Halloween, Thanksgiving and end-of-year holidays. State health officials previously discouraged gatherings outside of a single household.

The goal of those rules was not to encourage larger gatherings, Ferrer said, but to recognize the increasing pressure

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health

Global Medical Marijuana Market Demand to Show Superior Growth Despite the Spread of COVID-19

The medical marijuana market is poised to grow by USD 22.33 billion during 2020-2024 progressing at a CAGR of over 24% during the forecast period.

This press release features multimedia. View the full release here: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20201102005680/en/

Technavio has announced its latest market research report titled Global Medical Marijuana Market 2020-2024 (Graphic: Business Wire)

Technavio suggests three forecast scenarios (optimistic, probable, and pessimistic) considering the impact of COVID-19. Download Free Sample Report on COVID-19 Recovery Analysis

The report on the medical marijuana market provides a holistic update, market size and forecast, trends, growth drivers, and challenges, as well as vendor analysis.

The report offers an up-to-date analysis regarding the current global market scenario, the latest trends and drivers, and the overall market environment. The market is driven by the increasing production of medical marijuana.

The medical marijuana market analysis includes application and geography landscape. This study identifies the increase in funding for research and production of medical marijuana as one of the prime reasons driving the medical marijuana market growth during the next few years.

This report presents a detailed picture of the market by the way of study, synthesis, and summation of data from multiple sources by an analysis of key parameters

The Medical Marijuana Market covers the following areas:

Medical Marijuana Market Sizing

Medical Marijuana Market Forecast

Medical Marijuana Market Analysis

Companies Mentioned

  • Aphria Inc.

  • Aurora Cannabis Inc.

  • Cannabis Sativa, Inc.

  • Canopy Growth Corp.

  • Cronos Group Inc.

  • GW Pharmaceuticals Plc

  • mCig Inc.

  • Medical Marijuana, Inc.

  • United Cannabis Corp.

  • Vivo Cannabis, Inc.

Key Topics Covered:

PART 01: EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

PART 02: SCOPE OF THE REPORT

PART 03: MARKET LANDSCAPE

PART 04: MARKET SIZING

PART 05: FIVE FORCES ANALYSIS

PART 06: MARKET SEGMENTATION BY APPLICATION

  • Market segmentation by application

  • Comparison by application

  • Chronic pain – Market size and forecast 2019-2024

  • Nausea – Market size and forecast 2019-2024

  • Others – Market size and forecast 2019-2024

  • Market opportunity by application

PART 07: CUSTOMER LANDSCAPE

PART 08: GEOGRAPHIC LANDSCAPE

  • Geographic segmentation

  • Geographic comparison

  • North America – Market size and forecast 2019-2024

  • Europe – Market size and forecast 2019-2024

  • APAC – Market size and forecast 2019-2024

  • South America – Market size and forecast 2019-2024

  • MEA – Market size and forecast 2019-2024

  • Key leading countries

  • Market opportunity

PART 09: DECISION FRAMEWORK

PART 10: DRIVERS AND CHALLENGES

  • Market drivers

  • Market challenges

PART 11: MARKET TRENDS

  • Increasing number of awareness campaigns

  • Launch of medical marijuana education programs

  • Increase in funding for research and production of medical marijuana

PART 12: VENDOR LANDSCAPE

  • Overview

  • Landscape disruption

  • Competitive scenario

PART 13: VENDOR ANALYSIS

PART 14: APPENDIX

PART 15: EXPLORE TECHNAVIO

About Us

Technavio is a leading global technology research and advisory company. Their research and analysis focuses on emerging market trends and provides actionable insights to help businesses identify market opportunities and develop effective strategies to optimize their market positions. With over 500 specialized analysts, Technavio’s report library consists of more than 17,000 reports and counting, covering 800 technologies, spanning across 50 countries. Their client base consists of enterprises

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health

5 things states must do to curb the spread of COVID-19: ANALYSIS

The dreaded fall and winter COVID-19 wave has arrived and with a vengeance. Much of the nation is experiencing a viral load of infections unlike those previously seen since the start of the pandemic.

Any one metric by itself doesn’t fully relay the significance of the threat, but coupling it with multiple metrics, like the number of daily new cases, percent positivity rate, infection rate, hospitalization rate and deaths, provide a more complete burden of the illness.

There are 50 epidemics playing out in the United States, each state with its own trajectory and prognosis. Only two states, Maine and Vermont, are trending in the right direction, having control on their epidemic, the remaining 48 states are all trending in the wrong direction.

To curb the spread of COVID-19, these are five measures that must be taken to prevent further amplification of cases, illnesses, hospitalizations and death.

1. Mandate face masks

The verdict is in, masks work. In a study published in Health Affairs, mask mandates in 15 states and the District of Columbia led to a slower daily COVID-19 growth rate that was seen over time.

Currently across the nation, 49% of Americans wear a mask in public, with only some states mandating wearing a face covering. If we increase this to 95%, we could save 129,000 lives, the study said.

PHOTO: A 'masks required' sign is seen at Belmont University near the entrance of the 2020 U.S. presidential election debate hall on Oct. 21, 2020, in Nashville, Tenn. (Eric Baradat/AFP via Getty Images)
PHOTO: A ‘masks required’ sign is seen at Belmont University near the entrance of the 2020 U.S. presidential election debate hall on Oct. 21, 2020, in Nashville, Tenn. (Eric Baradat/AFP via Getty Images)

2. Better risk communication on preventative measures

Communication can make or break any medical response. Countries, like those in Asia, that have been able to curtail the spread of COVID-19 have showcased effective risk communication with the general public — that is — telling the public in layman’s terms the good, the bad, the ugly and what we don’t know yet.

MORE: Massachusetts’ COVID-19 response was science-based, so why are cases rising?

Even more important is saying it with one voice, not mixed messages that erodes trust. During a time when many Americans are experiencing pandemic fatigue, are confused about the evolving science of COVID-19 and want to resume pre-pandemic activities, providing coherent, consistent and reliable guidance has never been more important.

Reliable guidance includes communicating what constitutes low-risk activities (outdoor events) versus high-risk activities (indoors, confined space and poor ventilation), as well as reminding people to stay home when sick, and continue physical distancing and hand-washing.

3. Surveillance at the local level

Early in this pandemic, the nation was blinded by the number of COVID-19 cases that were brewing in our communities. Fast forward 10 months, and we’ve learned a lot about this disease and the various indicators that can help track and trace where the virus is spreading.

PHOTO: A health care worker beckons incoming cars at a drive-thru COVID-19 testing site inside the Alliant Energy Center complex, as the outbreak continues in Madison, Wis., Oct. 31, 2020. (Bing Guan/Reuters)
PHOTO: A health care worker beckons incoming cars at a drive-thru COVID-19 testing site inside the Alliant Energy Center complex, as the outbreak continues in Madison, Wis., Oct. 31, 2020. (Bing Guan/Reuters)

Each

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fitness

Fitness devices ‘could curb the spread of Covid-19’

Wearing a fitness device could help the battle to control the spread of Covid-19.



a hand holding a cellphone


© Steve Brookland/Westend61/Cover Images


Scientists from the Scripps Research Translational Institute believe using a mobile app to collect activity from consenting adults may slow down the global pandemic. The DETECT Study was launched in March and has concluded that wearable devices like the Fitbit could identify Covid-19 symptoms including changes in heart rate, sleep, and activity levels.

“What’s exciting here is that we now have a validated digital signal for Covid-19. The next step is to use this to prevent emerging outbreaks from spreading,” said Eric Topol, MD, director and founder of the Scripps Research Translational Institute. “Roughly 100 million Americans already have a wearable tracker or smartwatch and can help us; all we need is a tiny fraction of them – just 1 per cent or 2 per cent – to use the app.”

Adults living in the U.S. have been invited to participate in the study by downloading the research app MyDataHelps, which will gather diagnostic health changes and also ask people to report any symptoms they may be experiencing. Changes detected by the fitness device will be analysed to see if they are outside of the individual’s normal range for sleep, resting heart rate, or activity level.

“One of the greatest challenges in stopping Covid-19 from spreading is the ability to quickly identify, trace and isolate infected individuals,” explained study author Giorgio Quer, PhD, director of artificial intelligence at Scripps Research Translational Institute. “Early identification of those who are pre-symptomatic or even asymptomatic would be especially valuable, as people may potentially be even more infectious during this period. That’s the ultimate goal.”

Experts are hoping a predictive model may eventually be able to identify coronavirus hotspots early.

More than 30,500 people had agreed to take part in the study as of 7 June, and scientists are hoping to get at least 100,000 individuals to participate.

The study was published in Nature Medicine.

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School Event Occurs Despite COVID Outbreak, Causes Montco Spread

MONTGOMERY COUNTY, PA — While the fall coronavirus surge is chiefly attributed to cooler weather and more time spent indoors, officials say that decisions made by both institutions and individuals have also been instrumental in foiling suppression.

One string of cases in Montgomery County was traced to a recent recreational event which was held at a private school in Philadelphia. The event occurred even though school officials and participating students knew of a recent outbreak in the school.

>>Montco Warns Of ‘Exponential’ COVID Surge, Hospitalizations Rise

A student from Montgomery County attended the event, and became contagious without showing symptoms, according to Commissioner Val Arkoosh. Not knowing he was infected, he attended a different recreational event in Montgomery County days later, passing the virus on to at least five adults.

Two of those five adults were coaches of youth sports teams, Arkoosh said. Those two coaches then spread it to children on their teams.

“This is an illustration of quickly this can spread, how individuals who are contagious, who don’t have symptoms, can infect a number of individuals,” Arkoosh said. “And how those individuals can continue to spread the virus.”

The county did not specify the nature of the event in Philadelphia or provide details on where the spread occurred in this instance in Montgomery County. But transmission has been everywhere, especially in schools that have reopened.

There have been a total of 564 “close contacts” with the virus in schools that have reopened across the county thus far this school year, officials said Wednesday. They did not say how many of those individuals had tested positive.

The number was a result of the county’s robust contact tracing program. A close contact is defined as any student who is within six feet of a student who is infected.

Where these contacts take place largely depends on the school. Many schools are large enough, or have been able to plan their reopens carefully enough, that students are almost always six feet away from one another in classrooms.

However, there are many places where this is impossible. One infected student could easily become a “close contact” for dozens throughout a single school day, officials note.

This article originally appeared on the Norristown Patch

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Task force sees ‘unrelenting’ COVID-19 spread; daily U.S. cases up by record 91,000

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The White House coronavirus task force warned that much of the country is in the grips of an “unrelenting” surge in COVID-19 cases and urged tough countermeasures, as the number of U.S. infections reported on Thursday hit a new daily record of more than 91,000.

FILE PHOTO: Healthcare workers wearing powered air purifying respirator (PAPR) hoods process COVID-19 test samples at a drive-thru testing site operated by Avera Health inside the former Silverstar Car Wash, as the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak continues in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, U.S., October 28, 2020. REUTERS/Bing Guan/File Photo

The hardest-hit regions in the West and Midwest encompass a number of battleground states expected to play a pivotal role in Tuesday’s U.S. presidential election contest between Republican incumbent Donald Trump and his Democratic challenger, Joe Biden.

“We are on a very difficult trajectory. We’re going in the wrong direction,” said Dr. Anthony Fauci, a leading task force member and director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, said coronavirus cases were on the rise in 47 states, and patients were overwhelming hospitals across the country.

“If things do not change, if they continue on the course we’re on, there’s gonna be a whole lot of pain in this country with regard to additional cases and hospitalizations, and deaths,” Fauci said in a CNBC interview on Wednesday night.

The White House coronavirus task force has warned states in the middle and western parts of the country that aggressive measures will be necessary to curb the virus’ spread, according to weekly state reports seen by CNN.

“We continue to see unrelenting, broad community spread in the Midwest, Upper Midwest and West. This will require aggressive mitigation to control both the silent, asymptomatic spread and symptomatic spread,” one state’s report said.

The ominous assessment was echoed on Thursday by Dr. Ashish Jha, Brown University’s dean of public health, who told Reuters, “things are very, very bad in the United States right now.”

“We are having some of the largest breakouts that we’ve had during the entire pandemic,” he said, adding that the initial waves of infections last spring were more localized.

“And nine, 10 months into this pandemic, we are still largely not quite prepared.”

At least a dozen states – Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio and Oregon – reported record one-day increases in COVID-19 cases on Thursday, according to a Reuters tally.

Seventeen states reported a record number of hospitalizations, a metric that has soared across the country and is independent of how much testing is being done.

Nationally, health authorities on Thursday confirmed 91,248 more people tested positive for COVID-19 over the past 24 hours, the highest single-day increase in cases reported to date, according to a Reuters tally. The previous 24-hour record tally was 84,169 cases, set just last Friday.

The number of Americans hospitalized with COVID-19 stood at

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