government

New York taps meditation app Headspace to help the public calm down

New York taps meditation app Headspace to help the public calm down

Many people are feeling various negative emotions related to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic: fear, loneliness, despair, and more. These feelings can be overwhelming, particularly when so many are forced to remain isolated in their homes with few things to distract them. According to meditation company Headspace, New York Governor Cuomo's office recently reached out in hopes of helping the public calm down.

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FDA expands on 2 coronavirus treatment trials

FDA expands on 2 coronavirus treatment trials

The FDA announced expansions of clinical trials and potential for expanded access programs for two treatments for COVID-19. The FDA announced this latest national effort to bring blood-related therapies for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) global pandemic this afternoon. The two potential treatment products are called convalescent plasma and hyperimmune globulin.

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That 2-minute coronavirus test FDA approval was a “misunderstanding”

That 2-minute coronavirus test FDA approval was a “misunderstanding”

After claiming they'd received FDA authorization for a 2-minute coronavirus antibody test earlier this week, a company called Bodysphere just changed their tune. They made clear in their press release released at the tail end of March, 2020, that the Food and Drug Administration had approved their coronavirus (COVID-19) testing kit. It all seemed too good to be true. Turns out, it was.

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Census Day is here: How to fill out the 2020 Census online

Census Day is here: How to fill out the 2020 Census online

With all of the attention the coronavirus outbreak has been getting lately, it's been pretty easy to forget that it's a Census year here in the United States. Moreover, today is Census Day, but while that may suggest that this is a deadline for filling out the Census, it actually isn't. April 1st is designated as Census Day because this is the date that the Census references - meaning residents are asked to declare where they live as of April 1st, 2020.

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12,000+ people applied to be a NASA astronaut for missions to our Moon and Mars

12,000+ people applied to be a NASA astronaut for missions to our Moon and Mars

More than 12,000 individuals applied for the job of astronaut in NASA's 2020 call for interest in the Artemis Generation. Those chosen for the program will be involved in Artemis missions to our Moon and beyond. "We've entered a bold new era of space exploration with the Artemis program," said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine. "We are thrilled to see so many incredible Americans apply to join us."

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The EPA just suspended environmental rules indefinitely, citing coronavirus

The EPA just suspended environmental rules indefinitely, citing coronavirus

An announcement from the EPA* effectively suspended environmental rules for organizations in the USA for an indefinite amount of time. The EPA's document claims that because the COVID-19 pandemic is constraining the abilities of groups normally regulated by the EPA, that those groups will not be subject to the same rules as normal. This "temporary policy" is in effect until the EPA says it's done.

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NIH Doctors warn of new coronavirus threat for smokers

NIH Doctors warn of new coronavirus threat for smokers

A report from Dr. Nora Volkow of the National Institute on Drug Abuse warned that those with substance abuse disorders have a higher potential for harm when it comes to COVID-19 (novel coronavirus). Dr. Volkow warned those with substance use disorders (SUDs) and those with opioid use disorder (OUD) and methamphetamine use disorder may be hit harder than the general population. "Because it attacks the lungs, the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 could be an especially serious threat to those who smoke tobacco or marijuana or who vape."

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FDA takes drastic step to get hand sanitizer on sale again

FDA takes drastic step to get hand sanitizer on sale again

Two new bits of Guidance were released today by the FDA in order to get hand sanitizer back in the hands on people that need it the most during our current COVID-19 health emergency. "These guidances provide flexibility to help meet demand during this outbreak," said FDA Commissioner Stephen M. Hahn, M.D. "We will continue to work with manufacturers, compounders, state boards of pharmacy and the public to increase the supply of alcohol-based hand sanitizer available to Americans."

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Tax day changed in USA, refunds apparently unaffected

Tax day changed in USA, refunds apparently unaffected

Novel Coronavirus, COVID-19 fallout has created a situation in which tax day in the USA needed a change. Generally the official filing deadline for all tax return documents is April 15. An announcement from Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin today... made via Tweet... changed the date from April 15 to July 15, 2020.

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FDA says coronavirus vaccine could take 1 year, despite Trump’s malaria drug claims

FDA says coronavirus vaccine could take 1 year, despite Trump’s malaria drug claims

A vaccine trial currently being performed by the FDA is expected to take "12 months" according to FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn. This came right after President Donald Trump suggested that the drug hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) showed "very encouraging results" with COVID-19, and that "we're going to be able to make that drug available almost immediately."

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NASA SpaceX final Crew Dragon test date: A first since last space shuttle in 2011

NASA SpaceX final Crew Dragon test date: A first since last space shuttle in 2011

NASA announced the SpaceX Demo-2 flight test date and additional details on how they'll be running a world's first since the final "space shuttle" mission on July 8, 2011. This will be the "return of human spaceflight launch capabilities to the United States" in full effect. It'll also be the first launch of American astronauts aboard an American rocket and spacecraft since that 2011 date, the date of NASA's final space shuttle mission.

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Trump invokes Defense Production Act: Here’s what that means for coronavirus

Trump invokes Defense Production Act: Here’s what that means for coronavirus

COVID-19 in the USA was the reason for President Donald Trump's invoking of the Defense Production Act (DPA). This act was originally put in place by President Truman during the Korean War, and has been changed significantly since then. As laid out in the last major change of provisions in the act, in a CRS (Congressional Research Service) Report for Congress by Daniel H. Else, Specialist in National Defense, on May 14, 2009, "DPA authorities are not permanent."

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