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World Roundup: • Prospects grim for diabetics • SoKor limit

One in 10 diabetics with coronavirus dies within seven days of hospital admission, according to a study of more than 1,300 patients published Friday in the journal Diabetologia.

Two-thirds of the patients were men, and the average age across both sexes was 70, the study found.

“The presence of diabetic complications and increased age increase the risk of death,” the researchers said in a statement.

“Increased BMI” – body mass index, a ratio of height to weight – “is associated with both increased risk of needing mechanical ventilation and with increased risk of death,” they said.

So-called microvascular complications – affecting the eyes, kidney and nerves – were found in nearly half of the patients, who were admitted to 53 French hospitals from March 10 to March 31.

Problems related to larger arteries in the heart, brain and legs were reported in more than 40 percent of the patients.

Other significant risk factors included heart disease, high blood pressure, and a history of lung disease.

The number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 worldwide is approaching six million, with the actual number thought to be an order of magnitude higher. More than 354,000 deaths have been registered.

Sokor limits school numbers over virus spike

South Korea on Friday imposed limits on the number of pupils going to schools in and around Seoul as officials scramble to tackle fresh coronavirus cases that threaten the country’s success in containing the epidemic.

Only one in three pupils at kindergartens, elementary and middle schools in the Seoul metropolitan area – home to half the population – will be allowed to physically attend school each day, authorities said, with the others remote learning.

And a total of 502 schools near locations linked to cases in the capital area will remain closed to all pupils, a ministry official told AFP.

Social distancing rules were relaxed and the country was returning largely to normal until this week, when it re-imposed some measures in the capital and the surrounding region following fresh clusters of cases.

The South on Thursday reported its biggest spike in new infections in nearly two months.

Bazil: Record number of virus cases

Brazil registered a new record in COVID-19 cases and more than 1,000 dead in a 24 hour period, according to official figures.

According to Health Ministry data, 26,417 new cases were confirmed in a 24 hour-period ending late Thursday. In that same period Brazil experienced its third highest number of virus deaths since the start of the pandemic: 1,156, bringing the total death toll to 26,754, the sixth highest in the world.

The South American country has the world’s second highest number of confirmed novel coronavirus cases – 438,238 – after the United States.

Some experts, however, believe that the actual virus infection rate could be up to 15 times higher because there has been no widespread testing in Brazil.

Most states have imposed partial lockdowns, but President Jair Bolsonaro wants them to end and for the economy to open quickly.

Topics: COVID-19 , Diabetes , Diabetologia , Death , body mass index , Brazil , South Korea
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