France’s Hydroxychloroquine Ban, an ‘Avalanche’ of Evictions, and a Dispatch From the Beach
A roundup of Covid-19 stories we’re reading today
- On May 22, a large study published in the medical journal The Lancet raised red flags about hydroxychloroquine, the once-promising but controversial drug that President Donald Trump took as a prophylactic for Covid-19 and touted as a “game-changer.” Taking the drug, it suggested, increased the risk of heart problems and death. The World Health Organization has stopped its study of hydroxychloroquine, and now, as Politico reports, France has banned its use for coronavirus treatment entirely.
- New data from the U.S. Census Bureau illustrates the devastating impact of the coronavirus pandemic on mental health. As the Washington Post reports, one-third of Americans are showing signs of clinical anxiety or depression, noting, “It’s not normal for this many Americans to feel depressed.” The proportion is even higher in Southern states, which were hit particularly hard by Covid-19: Nearly half of Mississippians and 43% of Louisianans showed symptoms, compared to 26% in Iowa.
- Low-income tenants are the hardest hit among the millions left unemployed by the pandemic, writes the New York Times, because their rent eats up what’s left of their paychecks and savings. As government relief payments and legal protections for these people run out, says one housing expert, the United States can expect an “avalanche of evictions” unless the government intervenes again.
- Attendance at U.S. beaches over the long weekend painted a confusing summer scene: Some, like Daytona Beach, were overrun by thousands of revelers. Others, like Coney Island, left plenty of space for socially distant sunbathing. In The Atlantic, Russell Berman describes a “hodgepodge” of beach rules being enforced across the United States: “In Los Angeles, beachgoers could swim, but not sunbathe, on Memorial Day In New York City, they could sunbathe, but not swim.” The inconsistency is taking its toll on beach vendors, whose businesses are suffering as confused Americans continue to avoid the shore.