MMWR News Synopsis

Friday, August 7, 2020

Alcohol Use and Co-use of Other Substances Among Pregnant Females Aged 12–44 Years — United States, 2015–2018

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This report found that about 40% of pregnant women who reported current alcohol use also reported current use of one or more other substances, most commonly tobacco and marijuana. Increased screening and interventions for alcohol and other substances in pregnancy could improve the health of women and their children. Using 2015–2018 data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, this report found that about 10% of pregnant women reported current alcohol use (at least one alcoholic drink in the past 30 days). Alcohol use among women in the first trimester was higher than among women in the second or third trimester. The use of other substances was common among pregnant women who reported alcohol use — about 40% reported current use of one or more other substances, most commonly tobacco and marijuana. Alcohol use during pregnancy can cause birth defects and developmental disabilities known as fetal alcohol spectrum disorders.

COVID-19 Outbreak Among Employees at a Meat Processing Facility – South Dakota, March-April 2020

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This report highlights the potential for rapid spread of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, among employees in meat processing facilities. COVID-19 spread rapidly among employees at a meat processing facility in South Dakota. From March 16 to April 25 (5 weeks) the total number of cases surpassed 900. Employers should prioritize implementing multiple control measures to limit the risk of exposure to the virus that causes COVID-19. Examples include setting up physical barriers, staggering shifts, encouraging use of masks, and posting visual safety reminders. CDC and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration have published detailed guidelines that meat and poultry processing plants can follow: Meat and Poultry Processing Workers and Employers

SARS-CoV-2 Transmission and Infection Among Attendees of an Overnight Camp — Georgia, June 2020 (Early release July 31, 2020)

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Characteristics and Outcomes of Contacts of COVID-19 Patients Monitored Using an Automated Symptom Monitoring Tool — Maine, May–June 2020 (Early release: August 3, 2020)

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Vital Signs: Clinical Characteristics of Patients with Confirmed Acute Flaccid Myelitis, United States, 2018 (Early release August 4, 2020)

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Increase in Antiretroviral Therapy Enrollment Among Persons with HIV Infection during the Lusaka HIV Treatment Surge — Lusaka Province, Zambia, January 2018–June 2019

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The Lusaka Province HIV Treatment Surge increased the number of HIV-positive people receiving antiretroviral therapy by more than 44,000 and doubled the number of people with documented viral load suppression, meaning they are unable to transmit the virus. This success can be replicated in other settings with high rates of HIV through greater collaboration between key stakeholders, focus on improved facility-level performance, and shared best practices. The 2016 Zambia Population-based HIV Impact Assessment (ZAMPHIA) supported by the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) estimated up to 15.7 percent of adults in Lusaka Province were HIV-positive. A CDC analysis of recent PEPFAR data from the Lusaka Province HIV Treatment Surge (Surge Project), launched to increase enrollment of people with HIV infection into antiretroviral therapy (ART), shows the number of HIV-positive people currently receiving ART in Lusaka increased by almost 44,000. Additionally, the number of people with documented viral load suppression more than doubled. Lessons learned from the Surge project, including collaborative leadership, efforts to improve facility-level performance, and innovative ways of sharing and encouraging successful best-practices, could increase HIV treatment rates in other high-prevalence settings.

Notes from the Field

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COVID-19 spread rapidly among employees at a meat processing facility in Nebraska. Meat processing facilities can prevent and slow the spread of COVID-19 in the workplace by creating physical barriers between workers, screening employees for symptoms, encouraging physical distancing and correct and consistent use of masks, and ensuring flexible sick leave policies. Employees at meat processing facilities often work close to one another on processing lines and may have frequent contact with fellow workers. During April 2020, CDC partnered with the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services to investigate COVID-19 among workers at a Nebraska meat processing facility. Out of 375 Nebraska-resident meat processing workers who tested positive for the virus that causes COVID-19, 241 were interviewed by case investigators. Among these 241, nearly 1 in 3 reported having close contact with an ill person at work. Almost half of employees worked in roles that consistently put them in close contact with others. Employers can review CDC’s interim guidance for Meat and Poultry Processing Workers and Employers for additional information on how to slow the spread of COVID-19.

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Page last reviewed: August 6, 2020