COVID-19 Diary – Day 171

Despite the lack of report from public health, there’s still lots to talk about today, so let’s dig in!

Researchers from the University of Alberta are currently studying whether a drug used to treat a deadly corona virus in cats, may help prevent COVID-19 infection in humans as well. Since it’s already being used with cats, the researchers are able to skip the animal testing phase, and are currently working on getting permission to test on humans, and also to find easier ways of working with the drug. More info can be found here.

In Scotland on August 14th a ban was put in place on all background music in all bars and restaurants. The ban was put in place to prevent people from needing to raise their voices, possibly also raising the risk of COVID-19 in the process. Now restaurants are complaining that the loss of ambiance is hurting their business, and that the ban had “no logic in it”. Others however feel that you don’t need music to run a restaurant or pub, and that reducing the risk of spreading respiratory droplets or aerosols is worth the lost ambiance. More info can be found here.

A small study was recently done trying to determine if early antibody response to COVID-19 infection could help determine the course of the virus in patients. Researchers believe they may have found key antibody features that could be the difference between surviving the virus or not. The study only included 22 patients however, so it is far from conclusive at this time. Hopefully a larger followup study can be done to assess these early findings. More info can be found here.

For those who have been on CERB, or who have lost their jobs recently, or who lose their jobs in the next little while, this info is for you. CERB started out as a 16 week benefit for those who had their employment affected by the virus. Since its inception back in March, it has been expanded to 28 weeks, almost twice its originally intended time frame. But with major changes to EI having now been made, and it looking like CERB may finally come to an end this time, it’s time to start looking at what comes next. Of course the ideal situation would be everyone being gainfully employed, but that’s an unrealistic expectation for any time soon.

So let’s look at 2 upcoming options:

1) Employment Insurance. For those who had jobs but were laid off, you may be able to collect EI. Due to recent updates, you now only need to have 120 hours of eligible employment in order to apply. Also the minimum weekly payment is now set at $400, and the maximum is now set at $573.

2) There is also the brand new option called the Canadian Recovery Caregiver Benefit (or CRCB), which offers $500/week for up to 26 weeks (per household) and is available to people in caregiver situations.

***Parents who receive advice by a medical professional to keep their kids home due to underlying health conditions WILL be eligible for this payment.***

And for anyone who is employed somewhere that does not offer paid sick leave, there is also the Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (or CRSB) which will provide $500/week for up to two weeks for workers who do not have access to other types of paid sick leave. More info on these options can be found here.

And now on a more personal note, I recently visited Rain City Games and bought a couple of puzzles to put together with my room mates and Divya. The first one up is this one:

That’s all for now! Stay safe everyone ❤

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