A study by the University of Oxford has found that nearly one in five people diagnosed with coronavirus is also diagnosed with a psychiatric disorder like anxiety, depression or insomnia within three months. People recovering from COVID-19 were about twice as likely to be diagnosed with a mental health disorder as compared with someone who had the flu.

The study also found that people with a psychiatric diagnosis were about 65% more likely to be diagnosed with COVID-19 than people without. Writers of the study say more research must be done to determine why the connection between the coronavirus and mental health disorders exists.

MORE ON THE PANDEMIC

As coronavirus infections continue to grow and a widely available vaccine remains months away, governors nationwide are urging lawmakers to provide more financial help to meet budget shortfalls.

Governors face an unprecedented challenge as new restrictions on businesses, overwhelmed hospitals and the ending of unemployment benefits for millions of Americans create a dire picture of the months ahead. According to some estimates, state and local governments could be facing a shortfall of $400 billion or more between now and June 2022.

The Food and Drug Administration has allowed emergency use for the first at-home rapid coronavirus test. Users will collect their own nasal swab and swirl it into a vial of solution that plugs into a portable device. The test will require a prescription and results will be delivered in 30 minutes.

Health experts are optimistic that the new at-home test will reduce the window of potential virus spread. In a statement, the FDA advised that “anyone who tests positive should isolate and seek care from a health professional.” Those who test negative but still display Covid-19 symptoms should consult a doctor.

The latest surge of new coronavirus cases is prompting retailers to put limits on purchases of many items as people begin to stockpile again. On Tuesday, Walmart reported it’s having trouble keeping up with demand for cleaning supplies in some of its stores while Kroger and Publix are placing purchasing limits on toilet paper and paper towels.

Although consumers are currently purchasing more paper products, manufacturers don’t anticipate a replay of the bare store shelves seen early in the pandemic as stores and consumers are better prepared.

The pandemic has put an end to next year’s Mardi Gras celebration. City spokesman Beau Tidwell announced that no parades will be held during the weeks leading up to and including Fat Tuesday due to Covid-19 infection risks.

Mardi Gras is a popular tourist attraction for the Big Easy, injecting $145 million into the city’s economy in 2020. This year’s celebration is also believed to be the main driver of a virus outbreak in New Orleans early in the crisis.

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