Having Brushed Off Coronavirus Threat, Southeast Asia Begins to Confront It

BANGKOK — For months, many Southeast Asian countries played down the threat posed by the new coronavirus. Some officials said that prayer would keep the disease away. Others expressed optimism that the tropical heat would slow the spread of the virus. Life continued as usual. Malaysia allowed large religious gatherings. Thailand kept open its hugely…

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Did Federal Officials Really Question W.H.O. Tests for Coronavirus?

At a time when the Trump administration is facing intense criticism for its failure to make coronavirus tests available to millions of nervous Americans, remarks by a federal health official on Tuesday appeared to suggest that the World Health Organization’s diagnostic tests were wildly inaccurate. In a somewhat rambling answer to a question related to…

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How Long Will Coronavirus Live on Surfaces or in the Air Around You?

The coronavirus can live for three days on some surfaces, like plastic and steel, new research suggests. Experts say the risk of consumers getting infected from touching those materials is still low, although they offered additional warnings about how long the virus survives in air, which may have important implications for medical workers. The new…

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Tracking the Coronavirus: How Crowded Asian Cities Tackled an Epidemic

SINGAPORE — Two hours. That’s all the time medical teams in Singapore are given to uncover the first details of how patients contracted the coronavirus and which people they might infect. Did they travel abroad? Do they have a link to one of the five clusters of contagion identified across the city-state? Did they cough…

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This Mysterious Ancient Structure Was Made of Mammoth Bones

Ice Age hunter-gatherers, foraging the bone-chilling, unforgiving steppes of what today is Russia, somehow completed a remarkable construction project: a 40-foot-wide, circular structure made from the skulls, skeletons and tusks of more than 60 woolly mammoths. The reason remains a mystery to archaeologists. “The sheer number of bones that our Paleolithic ancestors had sourced from…

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Is Ibuprofen Really Risky for Coronavirus Patients?

The health minister of France, Olivier Véran, has issued a blunt warning about painkillers taken by people ill with the coronavirus: Stay away from drugs like ibuprofen and aspirin. Take acetaminophen instead, he advised in a tweet on Saturday. So-called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories like ibuprofen worsened symptoms of the illness caused by the coronavirus, he said.…

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Food, a Basic Pleasure, Is Suddenly Fraught

The white-tablecloth restaurants and the dive bars are closed. The ample buffets that feed America’s tech work force and Las Vegas gamblers have been shut down, along with millions of school cafeterias. On Monday, McDonald’s joined other fast-food companies and closed its restaurants except for delivery and drive-through. Almost overnight, Americans have had to rethink…

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Is It OK to Take a Walk?

Moments of relief: a solo walker in the city…Credit…Elizabeth Bick for The New York Times And a biker, away from any pack.Credit…Elizabeth Bick for The New York Times In a bygone era — last week, in other words — the best way to cut through New York City stress was, for many, a stroll to…

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Children and Coronavirus: Research Finds Some Become Seriously Ill

The coronavirus raging around the globe has tended to tread gently with children, who account for the smallest percentage of the tens of thousands of infections identified so far. Now, the largest study to date of children and the virus has found that while most develop mild or moderate symptoms, a small percentage — especially…

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Coronavirus Treatment: Hundreds of Scientists Scramble to Find One

Working at a breakneck pace, a team of hundreds of scientists has identified 50 drugs that may be effective treatments for people infected with the coronavirus. Many scientists are seeking drugs that attack the virus itself. But the Quantitative Biosciences Institute Coronavirus Research Group, based at the University of California, San Francisco, is testing an…

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