The Latest: stimulus relief, vitamin D rumors, and climbing cases
“We’re all in this together” is a common refrain today. Cities, states, and nations worldwide are relying on individuals to do their part to help control the pandemic. Personal stories are powerful right now. Like the women giving birth during the pandemic, the grocery store manager working seven days a week, and the Crisis Text Line counselor responding to an uptick in anxiety. As a reminder, you can share your own story on Medium, too.
- Stimulus bill passed: The House passed the $2 trillion economic rescue package. It is now sent to Trump for his signature. Want to know if you get relief? Read here.
- The U.S. is the epicenter: The United States now leads the world in the most confirmed cases of coronavirus. As of Friday at 2:10 p.m. EDT, there are 94,238 confirmed cases stateside.
- Leaders in quarantine: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has tested positive for Covid-19.
- Workers need aid: A record 3.28 million people have filed for unemployment benefits. The industries most impacted include hotels, airlines, restaurants, and automakers.
- Curry asked the tough questions: If you missed NBA star Steph Curry’s interview with Dr. Anthony Fauci, we have the most important takeaways.
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We’ve curated some essential stories below. And by the way, if you’re feeling overwhelmed, here’s a science-backed way to take control.
Editor, Medium Coronavirus Blog
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A Quick Q&A:
Does vitamin D protect against coronavirus?
Now that most people are sheltering in place, we’re probably getting even less vitamin D from sun exposure than before, so in theory, taking a vitamin D supplement makes sense. One 2017 meta-analysis reported people who took daily or weekly vitamin D reduced their risk of developing a respiratory tract infection. However, the benefit was only found in people who were vitamin D deficient; if people were not deficient, there was no benefit. (There has been no research on vitamin D and Covid-19, specifically.)
What’s the verdict? If you’re worried about your vitamin D levels or been told by a doctor you’re deficient, taking a supplement makes sense (though now is probably not the time to get tested). Taking vitamin D isn’t an excuse not to be obsessive about hand-washing and adhere to social distancing. — Dana Smith, senior writer, Elemental
Essential How-Tos and Explainers:
Tough Questions — Answered
6 Smart Reads:
Inside the Story of How H-E-B Planned for the Pandemic (Texas Monthly)