What We're Reading: Coronavirus Cruise Travelers Return; 1 in 4 Opioid ODs Involve Minors; WHO Insulin Plan

February 17, 2020
AJMC Staff

Passengers of the coronavirus-infected ship Diamond Princess landed in the United States Monday, including 14 infected with the virus; 1 in 4 opioid overdoses were shown in a study to involve children 18 years old and younger; World Health Organization (WHO) initiative on insulin prices gains support.

Passengers of Coronavirus-Stricken Ship Land in US, Including 14 Infected

Passengers of the coronavirus-stricken ship Diamond Princess were flown on chartered planes to the US today, including 14 people infected with the virus, called COVID-19, who were isolated on a separate plane, according to The Wall Street Journal. In the evacuation process for passengers on the cruise, those who were infected were allowed to join at the last minute, with HHS consulting with the US Department of State before making the decision.

1 in 4 Opioid Overdoses Involves Kids, Teens

In study findings to be presented at a meeting of the Society of Critical Care Medicine in Orlando, Florida, researchers discovered that more than a quarter of all opioid overdoses in the United States involve teenagers, and a full fifth of those cases were noted as likely suicide attempts, according to HealthDay News. The analysis included nearly 754,000 American opioid poisoning cases that occurred between 2005 and 2018, of which 208,000 attributed to children 18 years old or younger.

WHO Initiative to Drive Down Insulin Prices Gaining Support

Since the World Health Organization (WHO) launched a pilot program in November to boost the availability of insulin worldwide through working with manufacturers, 7 pharmaceutical companies have shown interest in participating in the program, according to NPR. The news highlights a global issue that had Johnpeter Mwolo, an individual with type 1 diabetes who grew up in Tanzania, rationing his insulin due to high prices. “It was 1 vial to 2 people," said Mwolo. "Many of the necessities that we are supposed to have are not there.”