“This phylogeny shows evolutionary relationships of hCoV-19 (or SARS-CoV-2) viruses from the ongoing novel coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. This phylogeny shows an initial emergence in Wuhan, China, in Nov-Dec 2019 followed by sustained human-to-human transmission leading to sampled infections. Although the genetic relationships among sampled viruses are quite clear, there is considerable uncertainty surrounding estimates of transmission dates and in reconstruction of geographic spread. Please be aware that specific inferred transmission patterns are only a hypothesis.”
“We are not epidemiologists—we are the design, engineering, and support teams at a mapping company. Just as we don’t spend every moment thinking about how to track and slow the spread of infectious disease, most public health teams we work with are not experts in spatial data visualization. In the environment of a growing epidemic, maps have a way of spreading fast, too — making it imperative that they are accurate, informative, and thoughtfully designed. To answer common questions and help our partners make thoughtful design decisions while mapping this and other health crises, we have put together a number of best practices and common pitfalls to avoid.”
“We’re exploring ways that aggregated anonymized location information could help in the fight against COVID-19. One example could be helping health authorities determine the impact of social distancing, similar to the way we show popular restaurant times and traffic patterns in Google Maps”
“A medical device manufacturer has threatened to sue a group of volunteers in Italy that 3D printed a valve used for life-saving coronavirus treatments. The valve typically costs about $11,000 from the medical device manufacturer, but the volunteers were able to print replicas for about $1”
“Using a machine-learning algorithm, MIT researchers have identified a powerful new antibiotic compound. In laboratory tests, the drug killed many of the world’s most problematic disease-causing bacteria, including some strains that are resistant to all known antibiotics. It also cleared infections in two different mouse models. The computer model, which can screen more than a hundred million chemical compounds in a matter of days, is designed to pick out potential antibiotics that kill bacteria using different mechanisms than those of existing drugs.”
“A pop-up would appear, asking about a patient’s level of pain. Then, a drop-down menu would list treatments ranging from a referral to a pain specialist to a prescription for an opioid painkiller. Click a button, and the program would create a treatment plan. From 2016 to spring 2019, the alert went off about 230 million times. The tool existed thanks to a secret deal. Its maker, a software company called Practice Fusion, was paid by a major opioid manufacturer to design it in an effort to boost prescriptions for addictive pain pills — even though overdose deaths had almost tripled during the previous 15 years, creating a public-health disaster. The software was used by tens of thousands of doctors’ offices.”
drug names entered into Drugs.com were sent to Google’s ad unit DoubleClick.
symptoms inputted into WebMD’s symptom checker, and diagnoses received, including “drug overdose”, were shared with Facebook.
menstrual and ovulation cycle information from BabyCentre ended up with Amazon Marketing, among others.
keywords such as “heart disease” and “considering abortion” were shared from sites like the British Heart Foundation, Bupa and Healthline to companies including Scorecard Research and Blue Kai (owned by software giant Oracle).
In eight cases (with the exception of Healthline and Mind), a specific identifier linked to the web browser was also transmitted — potentially allowing the information to be tied to an individual — and tracker cookies were dropped before consent was given. Healthline confirmed that it also shared unique identifiers with third parties.
None of the websites tested asked for this type of explicit and detailed consent.”
“Le CHU a, en tout cas, fortement pâti de cet épisode. Tout le système informatique a dû être arrêté, et le personnel est repassé « à la bonne vieille méthode du papier et du crayon », selon les propos de Rémi Heym, directeur de la communication du CHU, recueillis par l’Agence France-Presse. « Cela a entraîné des délais très longs de prise en charge, même s’il n’y a pas eu de mise en péril de la santé des personnes hospitalisées. » Depuis l’épisode du rançongiciel WannaCry en 2017, les hôpitaux français, et plus largement le secteur de la santé, inquiètent les autorités spécialisées. Les établissements de santé conjuguent en effet un triple facteur de risque : des moyens parfois limités consacrés à la sécurité informatique ; des données extrêmement précieuses, dont les pirates savent qu’ils peuvent exiger le prix fort pour en restaurer l’accès ; et de nombreux appareils médicaux, de plus en plus connectés et pas forcément sécurisés.”
“Neither patients nor doctors have been notified. At least 150 Google employees already have access to much of the data on tens of millions of patients, according to a person familiar with the matter and the documents. In a news release issued after The Wall Street Journal reported on Project Nightingale on Monday, the companies said the initiative is compliant with federal health law and includes robust protections for patient data. Some Ascension employees have raised questions about the way the data is being collected and shared, both from a technological and ethical perspective, according to the people familiar with the project. But privacy experts said it appeared to be permissible under federal law. That law, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, generally allows hospitals to share data with business partners without telling patients, as long as the information is used “only to help the covered entity carry out its health care functions.””
“Yisroel Mirsky, Yuval Elovici and two others at the Ben-Gurion University Cyber Security Research Center in Israel who created the malware say that attackers could target a presidential candidate or other politicians to trick them into believing they have a serious illness and cause them to withdraw from a race to seek treatment. The research isn’t theoretical. In a blind study the researchers conducted involving real CT lung scans, 70 of which were altered by their malware, they were able to trick three skilled radiologists into misdiagnosing conditions nearly every time. In the case of scans with fabricated cancerous nodules, the radiologists diagnosed cancer 99 percent of the time. In cases where the malware removed real cancerous nodules from scans, the radiologists said those patients were healthy 94 percent of the time.”