#childsafety | ‘What’s Happening With Them?’: Steep Decline In Child Abuse Cases In NYC Keeps Authorities On Edge About Safety Of Their Clients

For many children, the pandemic has confined them to their homes, the most dangerous place they can be and with people who are likely to abuse them. That’s why the drop in the number of cases in NYC by 51% from the same time last year is keeping child welfare advocates awake at night. Public health news is on new friends for seniors, risks facing older employees, front-line help from 3-D print hobbyists, challenges of pregnancy, confronting cancer, intellectually challenged patients, navigating elevators and the stress-load on postal workers, as well.

The New York Times:
Child Abuse Cases Drop 51 Percent. The Authorities Are Very Worried.

Reports of child abuse in New York City have dropped sharply since the coronavirus crisis began. And that is worrying the authorities. The steep decline could be a sign that an unseen epidemic of abuse is spreading behind locked doors, according to the police, prosecutors and child protection officials. As the virus has shuttered the city, the fragile system of safeguards designed to protect children has fallen apart. Teachers are normally the leading reporters of suspected abuse, calling for help when they notice bruises or signs of hunger or mistreatment at home. (Stewart, 6/9)

The New York Times:
Older Adults Remain Isolated Despite Reopening. These Programs Help.

Sally Love Saunders, 80, was stuck in a retirement home in San Francisco, desperate for someone to teach her to use Zoom so she could connect with people outside the building. Nearby, Sarah Hinkfuss, 32, had grown weary of video calls with friends and family. She craved the spontaneity of new relationships and unplanned conversations — hard to come by in a world that is only now beginning to reopen after being shuttered by a pandemic. Both women, strangers at the time, joined the volunteer phone bank of Mon Ami, which has connected thousands of older adults with younger volunteers across the country in recent months. Ms. Saunders and Ms. Hinkfuss had their first phone conversation on April 12. (Padilla, 6/8)

The Wall Street Journal:
Older Workers Grapple With Risk Of Getting Covid-19 On The Job

At 78 years old, Saul Sanchez took pride in his routine: showing up before 5 a.m. at a Greeley, Colo., beef processing plant to snag a good parking space and read the Bible before his shift. After work he would shower, eat dinner and go to sleep. On March 19, Mr. Sanchez came home, showered and went straight to bed, his daughter said. He told family members he was tired but went to work the next day at the plant owned by JBS USA Holdings Inc. It turned out to be his last day on the processing line where he had cut meat for three decades. (Bunge, Berzon and Maher, 6/9)

The Wall Street Journal:
The Coronavirus Pandemic Is A Call To Serve For 3-D-Printing Hobbyists

Practically overnight, 3-D-printing enthusiasts have remolded their home-based hobby into an emergency production line for scarce personal protective equipment for front-line workers. Thousands of volunteers have banded together on several continents to help in the face of the pandemic crisis. Since March, some 8,000 members of a British design group called 3D Crowd UK have printed parts for more than 170,000 face shields using 3-D printers in their homes. The group also arranges for the face shields’ assembly and distribution to hospitals and other health organizations in Britain. (McConnon, 6/8)

The New York Times:
Growing A Family In The Shadow Of A Pandemic

The threat of coronavirus has tormented us in many ways, but perhaps this is one of the most profound: Deciding whether to start or expand a family has suddenly become even harder. While there’s never a perfect time to have a baby, getting pregnant during the pandemic isn’t the scenario most people would choose. But waiting to conceive carries its own risks, especially for older parents. Thousands of families across the United States are facing this dilemma, and experts are wary of offering definitive advice. (Caron, 6/8)

Experts Offer Advice For Pregnancy, Birth In Pandemic

Women with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 should either stay in different hospital rooms than their newborns or use other infection-control measures to minimize the risk of transmission, according to expert recommendations for pregnant or postpartum women and those planning a pregnancy published late last week in JAMA. The authors, from the University of Florida at Gainesville and Emory University in Atlanta, synthesize guidelines from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and professional organizations for women hospitalized for childbirth. (Van Beusekom, 6/8)

The Wall Street Journal:
She’s Confronting Cancer In The Middle Of The Coronavirus Pandemic

While the rest of the country watched news of the new coronavirus spreading across the country sheltered in place at home, Shahonna Anderson watched in her hospital room at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, the pandemic’s epicenter. Doctors removed an orange-size tumor from Ms. Anderson’s chest on March 18 at Mount Sinai. She recovered in the hospital alone for a week as Covid-19 protocols barred most visitors. She heard the constant scream of the ambulances outside. Doctors treated the Covid-19 patients one floor below her. (Reddy, 6/8)

Kaiser Health News:
The Elevator Arises As The Latest Logjam In Getting Back To Work

When the American Medical Association moved its headquarters to a famous Chicago skyscraper in 2013, the floor-to-ceiling views from the 47th-floor conference space were a spectacular selling point. But now, those glimpses of the Chicago River at the Ludwig Mies van der Rohe-designed landmark, now known as AMA Plaza, come with a trade-off: navigating the elevator in the time of COVID-19. Once the epitome of efficiency for moving masses of people quickly to where they needed to go, the elevator is the antithesis of social distancing and a risk-multiplying bottleneck. (Weber, 6/9)

PBS NewsHour:
Pandemic Increases Workload, Health Risks For Postal And Delivery Employees

In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, millions of Americans are relying on mail carriers and delivery workers for essential supplies. The workload for many of these employees has increased significantly with so many consumers ordering from home. Stress and fatigue are at high levels, as workers worry about virus exposure — and take extra precautions not to bring it home. (Nawaz, Natour and Frazee, 6/8)

This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.

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