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19 May 2020

Dear colleagues,

Please find below the latest edition of ESCMID Weekly News.

With kind regards,
ESCMID Executive Office.


Claudio Viscoli (1949-2020)

ESCMID was saddened by the news that Prof. Claudio Viscoli, one of the world’s most recognized Italian Infectious Diseases physicians and scientists, passed away on Sunday May 3.

obituary has been published by ESCMID, which can be read on our website.

› Read more

ESCMID Conference on Corona Virus Disease (ECCVID) – Emerging threats, emerging solutions

ESCMID is very pleased to announce that it will be hosting the first virtual congress specifically dedicated to COVID-19. The ESCMID Conference on Corona Virus Disease, (ECCVID), will take place across three days from Wednesday 23rd to Friday 25th September 2020, and will cover all aspects of the COVID-19 threat.

We hope you will join us for this incredible experience as we explore this global threat.

More information will follow as the conference draws nearer.
Stay up to date with the latest information by following us on our social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

ESCMID Webinars on COVID-19 – Catch the replays

Over the last month, ESCMID has conducted a series of webinars addressing various aspects of the COVID-19, including infection control, diagnosis and international perspectives.

You can watch a replays of the webinars on the
ESCMID E-Academy.

Follow ESCMID on 
Twitter or Facebook to stay up to date with the announcement of future webinars.

› Read more

ESCMID Office Profile: Solomon Mengistu

Over the last 6 months, Solomon Mengistu has been working in the ESCMID Office in Basel as an Intern assisting with Scientific Projects.

In June 2020, his time with ESCMID will come to an end, and he will be looking to utilise his qualifications and skills in a new position. His unique mixture of skills and experience makes him an asset to a scientific organisation or NGO.

Read an in-depth article about Solomon's personal and professional journey here.

Read Solomon's CV here.

If you would like to make Solomon a part of your team, please do not hesitate to contact office[at]escmid.org, or write to ESCMID at Gerbergasse 14, Basel 4001, Switzerland.

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Important EMA communication: EMA recommends expanding remdesivir compassionate use to patients not on mechanical ventilation

EMA’s human medicines committee (CHMP) has recommended expanding the compassionate use of the investigational medicine remdesivir so that more patients with severe COVID 19 can be treated.

In addition to patients undergoing invasive mechanical ventilation, the compassionate use recommendations now cover the treatment of hospitalised patients requiring supplemental oxygen, non-invasive ventilation, high-flow oxygen devices or ECMO (extracorporeal membrane oxygenation).

The updated recommendations are based on preliminary results from the NIAID-ACTT study, which suggest a beneficial effect of remdesivir in the treatment of hospitalised patients with severe COVID-19. EMA is currently evaluating these data in the context of the rolling review of remdesivir.

In addition, a treatment duration of 5 days has been introduced alongside the longer 10-day course, based on preliminary results from another study (GS-US-540-5773) suggesting that for patients not requiring mechanical ventilation or ECMO, the treatment course may be shortened from 10 to 5 days without any loss of efficacy. Patients who receive a 5-day treatment course but do not show clinical improvement will be eligible to continue receiving remdesivir for an additional 5 days. The option to shorten treatment duration also means that more patients may be able to receive the medicine, which is in very high demand worldwide.

Although remdesivir is not yet authorised for marketing in the European Union, these recommendations for compassionate use will help some patients with severe COVID-19 access the medicine while EMA evaluates data on its benefits and risks. When the evaluation is complete, EMA will make a recommendation on whether or not remdesivir should receive a marketing authorisation.

For more information, please click here.

› Read more

CMI highlight: SARS-CoV-2 positivity in a discharged COVID-19 patient – a case report

More than 60 000 patients infected with SARS-CoV-2 have recovered and been discharged since the outbreak of COVID-19 in Wuhan, China. Occurrence of positive reverse transcription (RT) PCR results for the presence of SARS-CoV-2 can be seen in healthy, culture-negative COVID-19 patients even weeks after complete recovery. Here Li et al. present a case study of a discharged COVID-19 patient. A patient was admitted to a hospital in Wuhan after presenting COVID-19 symptoms. After 20 days they were released following two consecutively negative RT-PCR test results separated by at least 1 day.

After hospital discharge, the patient was asked to continue the quarantine protocol at home for at least 2 weeks. However, similar to what has been reported recently, this patient had two positive RT-PCR test results again on illness days 34 and 38 and was thus rehospitalized. The authors suggest that, in order to prevent further transmission, discharged patients must undergo a 14-day quarantine and close follow-up at home or in a centralized rehabilitation institution, according to government policies.

› Read more
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The ESCMID Newsletter is issued on behalf of the European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (ESCMID) by the ESCMID Executive Office. It contains announcements of ESCMID-related matters and other information of interest to professionals in the infection field.

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