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Sixty percent of Americans want universal health care, study finds

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sixty percent of americans want universal health care study finds

More than a third of Americans now want the government to create more of a social safety net – ensuring health and unemployment benefits – an increase of 40 percent since the coronavirus pandemic came to the US. 

As of April, 60 percent of Americans favored universal health insurance, according to a new Johns Hopkins University survey.  

Nearly 80 percent of Americans answered that they they want their employers to guarantee two weeks of paid sick leave. 

The pandemic seems to have shifted Americans’ priorities and preferences about the involvement of the government in their health and wellbeing. 

It comes as President Trump pushes for lawmakers to approve an economic stimulus package even larger than the proposed $1.8 trillion relief bill to assist the tens of millions of Americans who lost their jobs amid the pandemic. 

Thousands of people lined up in Kentucky in June to get pandemic unemployment benefits. More than a third of Americans now want expanded benefits to be permanent, including 60 percent who now want universal health care, a new Johns Hopkins University survey found

Thousands of people lined up in Kentucky in June to get pandemic unemployment benefits. More than a third of Americans now want expanded benefits to be permanent, including 60 percent who now want universal health care, a new Johns Hopkins University survey found

Thousands of people lined up in Kentucky in June to get pandemic unemployment benefits. More than a third of Americans now want expanded benefits to be permanent, including 60 percent who now want universal health care, a new Johns Hopkins University survey found

President Trump’s support of a bigger relief package is out of character for the Republican party (and meeting resistance from its members in the Senate), but may be more in-step with voters, the Johns Hopkins study suggests. 

And pleasing the public will undoubtedly be more in the president’s focus than ever, with the election just over two weeks away. 

The US is almost notorious for the baffling gap between its spending on health care and its health outcomes. 

It spends a larger share of its overall budget on its healthcare system than any other of 11 high-income countries, yet had the lowest life expectancy of any of those nations in 2019, according to a Commonwealth Fund study. 

For social welfare spending as a whole, the US falls much lower on down the rankings. 

As of 2019, the US spent 18.7 percent of its overall GDP on social welfare, ranking 22 out of 37 high-income nation – below the UK, France, Germany and Japan, and just above Australia and Canada, according to an OECD database.  

But the coronavirus pandemic has reshaped, if temporarily, the landscape of American welfare programs. 

The number of monthly new jobless claims have plummeted from nearly 7 million to about 1 million between March and October. A growing portion of Americans now want benefits such as larger unemployment checks, universal health care and paid sick leave to be permanent

The number of monthly new jobless claims have plummeted from nearly 7 million to about 1 million between March and October. A growing portion of Americans now want benefits such as larger unemployment checks, universal health care and paid sick leave to be permanent

The number of monthly new jobless claims have plummeted from nearly 7 million to about 1 million between March and October. A growing portion of Americans now want benefits such as larger unemployment checks, universal health care and paid sick leave to be permanent

34441994 0 image a 4 1602805073340

34441994 0 image a 4 1602805073340

Congress passed three pieces of legislation that provided paid sick days, tax credits for companies that kept their employees on, and $600 more in unemployment benefits per week. 

The unemployment benefits for workers out of their jobs due to the pandemic expired in July, but the tax credits will remain in effect until the end of the year. 

Despite the resistance to social welfare and the typically free market-minded Republican party’s hold on the Senate and, of course, the presidency, the Johns Hopkins study found Americans would like to keep the social benefits extended to them amid the coronavirus crisis. 

‘Critical safety net policies passed in the initial phase of the pandemic are expiring or have expired, and finding common ground on extending them has proved difficult,’ says the lead author, Dr Colleen Barry, of Johns Hopkins’s Bloomberg School. 

‘An awareness on the part of policymakers of heightened support for the government aiding individuals and families who have experienced pandemic-related dislocations could make a difference.’ 

Prior to the pandemic, in September 2019, just 24 percent of Americans said they wanted bigger government that took a more active role in shaping society in the US.

34441990 0 image a 5 1602805080987

34441990 0 image a 5 1602805080987

By April 2020, that number had grown to 34 percent of nearly 1,500 survey respondents. 

Among that third, 80 percent said they want the federal minimum wage to be raised from $7.25 an hour, 88 percent were in favor of a permanent federally mandated two weeks of paid sick leave, 77 percent wanted employment education and training included in unemployment benefits packaged and 73 percent wanted universal health care. 

In summary, they found:   

  • 77 percent of adults supported employer-guaranteed two-weeks paid sick leave
  • 60 percent supported universal health insurance
  • 58 percent supported increasing the federal minimum wage
  • 52 percent supported extension of unemployment benefits
  • 66 percent supported tax credits to businesses to retain and hire workers
  • 68 percent supported employment education and training programs
  • 71 percent supported public spending on construction projects like building roads or highways

‘As Congress debates continued relief for Americans suffering health and economic consequences from the pandemic, our data shows there is growing support for passing the kind of policies that they have been unable to pass in the last few months,’ said co-author Dr Hahrie Han, PhD, director of the SNF Agora Institute at Johns Hopkins University. 

This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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Man Who Likely Ate a Gecko on a Dare Dies of Salmonella 10 Days Later: He ‘Basically Rotted from the Inside Out’

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Olympian Allyson Felix Breaks Usain Bolt’s Record—10 Months After Emergency C-Section

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Where’s REALLY had the most Covid-19 deaths? Study says Belgium but data reveals SAN MARINO

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wheres really had the most covid 19 deaths study says belgium but data reveals san marino
A US study of 19 countries found Belgium has had the highest death toll per 100,000 people. It was followed by Spain, the UK and US

A US study of 19 countries found Belgium has had the highest death toll per 100,000 people. It was followed by Spain, the UK and US

A US study of 19 countries found Belgium has had the highest death toll per 100,000 people. It was followed by Spain, the UK and US

Belgium has suffered the most coronavirus deaths for the size of its population – while the UK and US are third and fourth, according to a study.

Researchers analysed data from 19 countries with more than five million citizens and compared how many Covid-19 victims there has been for every 100,000 people living there up until September 19.

It revealed Belgium had the worst mortality rate (86.8), followed by Spain (65), the UK (62.6) and the US (60.3). For comparison, South Korea’s stood at just 0.7 – 85 times smaller than that of Britain or America. 

But when statistics for every country in the world is taken into account, Belgium falls to being the third worst-hit nation. The tiny European state of San Marino claims the grim accolade, followed by Peru and then Belgium. 

San Marino, a mountainous state surrounded by Italy, has only seen 42 Covid-19 deaths since February. But this equates to a rate of 123 per 100,000 residents when its tiny population of 33,800 is taken into account. Peru – which is home to 32million people – actually has a rate of 101 deaths per 100,000. 

Our World in Data, a website that publishes figures on large global problems using official sources, reveals the UK is 11th and the US 12th, with Andorra, Ecuador, and Mexico higher. 

India, on the other hand, has had the third highest cumulative deaths in the world, with 112,161. But due to its huge population, it places 87th in deaths per population. 

The US study, published in a medical journal, was designed to work out how many excess deaths there had been in America compared with 18 other countries.

All countries analysed were chosen because they had more than five million citizens and a GDP of at least $25,000 (£19,300) per capita, the researchers explain in their paper published in JAMA.

It showed the pandemic has directly or indirectly led to 225,000 deaths in the US, whether those people died of Covid-19 itself or an issue linked to the pandemic, such as delayed medical care over fears of going to hospitals amid outbreaks of the disease.

Looking at all the countries in the world, Belgium is actually not the worst-hit nation. San Marino is followed by Peru and then Belgium

Looking at all the countries in the world, Belgium is actually not the worst-hit nation. San Marino is followed by Peru and then Belgium

Looking at all the countries in the world, Belgium is actually not the worst-hit nation. San Marino is followed by Peru and then Belgium

Researchers at University of Pennsylvania showed 150,000 people died of Covid-19 between March and August 1. But an additional 75,000 deaths had occurred beyond what would be expected for that time period. 

The team said as of September 19, the US reported a total of 198,589 Covid-19 deaths – 60.3 deaths per 100 000.

Had it had a death toll comparable to Australia (3.3 deaths per 100 000), the US could have avoided 94 per cent of its deaths (187,661 fewer), the researchers revealed, as they blamed ‘weak public health infrastructure and a decentralised, inconsistent US response to the pandemic’.

But the US did not have the highest death toll from March to September, according to the small analysis. It was fourth, following Belgium (86.8), Spain (65) and the UK (62.6).

At the bottom of the table, South Korea and Japan have had less than one death (0.7) per 100,000 people, despite being two of the first countries to report coronavirus cases.

But the study does not paint a full picture because it’s only a small analysis of 19 countries.

PICTURED: Of the countries with the largest cumulative death tolls, these are their death rates per million people

PICTURED: Of the countries with the largest cumulative death tolls, these are their death rates per million people

PICTURED: Of the countries with the largest cumulative death tolls, these are their death rates per million people  

Our World in Data shows South America has had the highest deaths per million people to date (640), followed by North America (550) and Europe (313). Asia has had just 47 deaths per million people in comparison

Our World in Data shows South America has had the highest deaths per million people to date (640), followed by North America (550) and Europe (313). Asia has had just 47 deaths per million people in comparison

Our World in Data shows South America has had the highest deaths per million people to date (640), followed by North America (550) and Europe (313). Asia has had just 47 deaths per million people in comparison

20 COUNTRIES WITH THE WORST DEATHS

The data shows the countries with the highest death toll per 100,000 people, and their cumulative death toll in brackets.

San Marino: 123.7 (42)

Peru: 101.8 (33,577)

Belgium: 88.7 (10,327)

Andorra: 76.3 (59)

Bolivia: 72 (8,407)

Spain: 71.7 (33,553)

Brazil: 71.7 (152,513)

Chile: 70.2 (13,434)

Ecuador: 69.7 (12,306)

Mexico: 66.1 (85,285)

United States: 65.7 (220,889)

United Kingdom: 63.7 (43,293)

Italy: 60.1 (36,372)

Panama: 58.6 (2,529)

Sweden: 58.5 (5,918)

Argentina: 56 (25,342)

Colombia: 55.9 (28,457)

Sint Maarten (Dutch part): 51.3 (22)

France: 50.7 (33,125)

Macedonia: 39.1 (815)

Source: Our World in Data 

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Our World in Data shows that of all the 198 countries in the world, San Marino has had the highest death toll per 100,000 people by far (123.7).

It has only reported 742 confirmed Covid-19 cases since its first on February 27. But due to its small population, it means the coronavirus is highly prevalent, relative to the rest of the world. 

It has had more than 22,000 cases per million people in total – the equivalent of two people in every 100 (two per cent). It’s twice the official rate of the UK – which has recorded 9,600 cases per million people, the equivalent of 0.9 people in every 100. 

But experts insist at least 10 per cent of Britain has actually been infected since the virus first landed on UK soil in January. Millions of infected patients were never spotted because of the Government’s lacklustre testing regime.

San Marino’s estimate of prevalence is also likely to be an underestimate because a huge proportion of infected people are thought to never show any symptoms, meaning they never get swabbed. 

San Marino was declared ‘Covid-free’ on 26 June although has had several small outbreaks since, and is now recording cases every day once more, albeit it in low numbers. 

The seven-day average has hovered between one and four cases in the past week, according to Our World in Data. But no new fatalities have been recorded since June.

However, San Marino has just been added to the UK’s quarantine travel list, meaning anyone that travels there has to self isolate for 14 days on their return to the UK.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps also announced that Italy and Vatican City State have lost their exemptions from the UK’s quarantine requirements as of Sunday at 4am.

It came after Italy recorded its biggest single-day jump in infections since the start of the outbreak, adding another 8,804 cases on Thursday. 

Looking at cumulative deaths per million people, San Marino is followed by Peru (101.8), with a number of other South American countries – Bolivia (72), Brazil (71.7), Chile (70.2) and Ecuador (69.7) – in the top 10 worst-hit nations.

Belgium (88.7), Andorra (76.3), Spain (71.7), the UK (63.7) and Italy (60.1) have had the highest death tolls per capita in Europe, after San Marino. 

They come above countries that on the surface look like they have had the highest death toll when looking only at cumulative figures.

San Marino was declared 'Covid-free' on 26 June although has had several outbreaks since, and is now recording cases every day once more, albeit it in low numbers

San Marino was declared 'Covid-free' on 26 June although has had several outbreaks since, and is now recording cases every day once more, albeit it in low numbers

San Marino was declared ‘Covid-free’ on 26 June although has had several outbreaks since, and is now recording cases every day once more, albeit it in low numbers

WHO URGES EUROPE TO STEP UP COVID-19 CONTROL 

Imposing tighter controls to curb COVID-19 contagion could save hundreds of thousands of lives across Europe before February as the continent battles an exponential surge in infections, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Thursday. 

The WHO’s European director Dr Hans Kluge cited projections from what he described as ‘reliable epidemiological models’ and said they were ‘not optimistic’ for the European region.

‘These models indicate that prolonged relaxing policies could propel – by January 2021 – daily mortality at levels 4 to 5 times higher than what we recorded in April,’ he said.

But taking simple, swift tightening measures now – such as enforcing widespread mask-wearing and controlling social gatherings in public or private spaces – could save up to 281,000 lives by February across the 53 countries that make up the WHO European region, he said.

Urging governments to ‘step up’ swiftly to contain in a second wave of the coronavirus pandemic, Dr Kluge said the current situation was, ‘more than ever, pandemic times for Europe’.

New infections are hitting 100,000 daily in Europe, and the region has just registered the highest weekly incidence of Covid-19 cases since the beginning of the pandemic, with almost 700,000 cases reported.

‘The fall (autumn) and winter surge continues to unfold in Europe, with exponential increases in daily cases and matching percentage increases in daily deaths,’ Kluge told an online media briefing.

‘It’s time To step up. The message to governments is: don’t hold back with relatively small actions to avoid the painful damaging actions we saw in the first round (in March and April).’  

‘Under proportionately more stringent scenarios, the models are reliably much more optimistic, he said, adding: ‘Pandemic times do not necessarily mean “dark times”.’

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India, for example, has suffered exponentially as a result of Covid-19, with 112,161 deaths. But home to 1.3billion people, it means it comes 87th in the league table of deaths per population.

Similarly Iran is 28th, despite having the 9th highest cumulative death toll (29,605).

China, where the coronavirus first emerged in December 2019, has a staggeringly low figure of three deaths per million people, putting it at 183rd place.

Singapore (0.4), South Korea (0.8) and Japan (1.3) also appear to have escaped lightly relative to the rest of the world. Thailand (0.85) and Vietnam (0.36) are within the ten countries with the lowest death per capita despite being among the first to report coronavirus cases in January this year.

It is not clear why deaths rates per capita are slightly different for the countries included in both the list given by Our World in Data, and by the US researchers. For example Spain’s is 71 per 100,000 in the former and 65 in the latter. But it’s likely because they use different data sources and collected their figures roughly one month apart.

The findings lay bare how the crisis has led to more destruction in Western countries than in Asia.

Our World in Data shows South America has had the highest deaths per million people to date (640), followed by North America (550) and Europe (313). Asia has had just 47 deaths per million people in comparison.

Experts often put down to the fact Asia is more familiar with epidemic control, and was therefore prepared to fight against a highly contagious virus.

The south-east region has been stung with a history of emerging infectious diseases going back more than two decades, the most recent being SARS – a coronavirus similar to that which has caused the current pandemic – in 2004.

Dealing with outbreaks allowed the governments there to establish robust contact tracing systems and an action plan for when things escalate.

Behaviours such as wearing face masks were also widespread before the virus hit, making it easier to control the outbreak.

European countries, on the other hand, have not had to use contact tracing systems on a nation scale and face-mask wearing is an alien concept.

For example, it took months for the UK to set one up with potential to control the outbreak. Even now it is failing to track down a third of close contacts of Covid-19 positive cases.

And wearing a face mask in public places was not made compulsory until at least June, despite the worst of the coronavirus crisis being over.

There have now been more than one million deaths in the world from Covid-19 and 38million cases. While some countries are seeing a lull in deaths, they are accelerating in others.

EUROPE CASES AND DEATHS: Infections have been on a different path to fatalities for some time, with cases surging thanks to mass testing while hospital cases and deaths grow more slowly in much of Europe

EUROPE CASES AND DEATHS: Infections have been on a different path to fatalities for some time, with cases surging thanks to mass testing while hospital cases and deaths grow more slowly in much of Europe

EUROPE CASES AND DEATHS: Infections have been on a different path to fatalities for some time, with cases surging thanks to mass testing while hospital cases and deaths grow more slowly in much of Europe 

EUROPE 7-DAY AVERAGE DAILY NEW CASES PER MILLION PEOPLE: The Czech Republic, in purple, has the highest infection rate in Europe - ahead of hard-hit Western European countries such as the Netherlands (in red), France (in blue) and Spain (in orange)

EUROPE 7-DAY AVERAGE DAILY NEW CASES PER MILLION PEOPLE: The Czech Republic, in purple, has the highest infection rate in Europe - ahead of hard-hit Western European countries such as the Netherlands (in red), France (in blue) and Spain (in orange)

EUROPE 7-DAY AVERAGE DAILY NEW CASES PER MILLION PEOPLE: The Czech Republic, in purple, has the highest infection rate in Europe – ahead of hard-hit Western European countries such as the Netherlands (in red), France (in blue) and Spain (in orange)

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