Medical Notes: Week of June 28, 2020

A look at the top medical headlines for the week of June 28, 2020 including: Researchers have been looking for an already existing drug to quickly take on COVID-19, and apparently, now they’ve found one. Meanwhile, the Food and Drug Administration has closed the door on using the malaria treatment Hydroxychloroquine (hy-drox-ee-klor-oh-quin) to treat COVID-19. Then, social isolation has been a lifesaver the last few months, but if it goes on too long, isolation can lead to shorter lifespans. And finally, when employees start going back to the workplace in large numbers you can expect disastrous traffic on the roads.

Loneliness in the Elderly

Loneliness is increasing across all ages, but it’s especially noteworthy among seniors, and it can dramatically affect health. An expert geriatrician who has studied the effects of loneliness and the leader of an organization that provides friendly visitors to the isolated elderly discuss causes of increasing loneliness, its impact, and the effectiveness of visitor programs.

Invisible Girls: Victims of Incest

Experts say incest is the most common of all sexual abuse, but the least discussed openly. This can leave victims isolated and less able to reveal abuse, which can have further psychological ramifications later on. A noted expert on sexual abuse discusses how incest makes girls feel particularly responsible and unable to come forward, and a non-profit organization that seeks to help them.

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18-31 Segment 1: Lonely College Students

Studies show that college students are America’s loneliest people—even more so than the elderly—even though they’re surrounded by people and activities. The role of technology is discussed in isolating students, and the role of changing culture toward children and adolescents having a constantly structured schedule with few breaks for downtime or spontaneity. Experts also discuss how parents, schools and students themselves can overcome social isolation.

15-21 Segment 1: The Health Effects of Loneliness

  Synopsis: Loneliness affects far more than our mental health. Studies are now showing that loneliness and social isolation also have profound effects on our physical health, and increase the risk of death substantially. Experts discuss. Host: Reed Pence. Guests: Dr. Richard Schwartz, Associate Professor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School and co-author, The Lonely American: Drifting … Continue reading 15-21 Segment 1: The Health Effects of Loneliness