Posts tagged with "COVID-19 pandemic"

Art by Mina Tocalini for use by 360 Magazine

Scientists Mapping Next Pandemic

An international team of scientists has created a powerful new resource to speed the development of vaccines and treatments to battle the next pandemic.

University of Virginia School of Medicine researcher Wladek Minor, PhD, and collaborators in China and Poland have developed an Internet information system, called virusMED, that lays out all we know about the atomic structure and potential vulnerabilities of more than 800 virus strains from 75 different virus families, including SARS-CoV-2, influenza, Ebola and HIV‑1. Several of the collaborators, including the lead investigator, Heping Zheng, are former students and members of Minor’s lab at UVA. 

This new panorama of the proteins of potential threats will help scientists respond quickly and effectively against the next pathogen poised to wreak havoc on humanity. Minor and his collaborators compare the resource to Google Maps, in that it organizes and annotates major points of interest on a virus that scientists can use as a roadmap in drug and vaccine development.

“The battle with COVID-19 is not over yet, but we cannot wait to start preparing for the next pandemic. VirusMED is a step towards an advanced information system that brings together researchers with diverse expertise to tackle complex biomedical challenges,” said Minor, the Harrison Distinguished Professor of Molecular Physiology and Biological Physics at UVA. “The information contained in virusMED will help viral researchers from many disciplines, especially those working on drug design or anti-viral therapies. We provide novel structural analysis and integrate pertinent information from various resources to provide a comprehensive picture of the proteins’ most important and vulnerable regions.”

Virus Hotspots

By quickly unlocking the SARS-CoV-2 virus mechanism of action, scientists were able to develop safe and effective vaccines for COVID-19. Minor’s new database aims to put that type of critical information at scientists’ fingertips in one convenient location.

VirusMED contains extensive information on virus species and strains, hosts, viral proteins and antibodies, as well as drugs that have already been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, among other important scientific data. The researchers call the points of interest on a virus its “hotspots,” and these hotspots make for strong starting points for drug and vaccine development.

“One of the most promising strain-indifferent antibody therapies developed for the treatment of COVID-19 used this type of information to improve upon a unique antibody isolated from a survivor who was infected by the SARS virus back in 2003,” said David Cooper, PhD, research faculty in Minor’s lab. “People who are surprised by rapid drug and vaccine design don’t realize that researchers today are building upon decades of previous research.”

One of virusMED’s major advantages is that it brings together the extant knowledge about viruses in one location, Minor said. Previously, that data was spread across multiple resources and often “siloed” so that it was not easily accessible. With virusMED, researchers can browse the information by virus or by their hotspot of interest.

The free and accessible database can be found HERE.

“One of the goals of my lab is to make tools that other scientists can use. We look at the forest and find ways to help others focus on the trees,” Minor said. “Resource generation is not glamorous, but the ultimate goal of science is to make life better. One of the anonymous peer-reviewers of the paper claimed they instantly became an enthusiastic user of the system. We expect virusMED to really make a difference.”

Findings Published

The researchers have published their findings in the scientific IUCr Journal. The work will be featured on the journal’s cover. The research team consisted of HuiHui Zhang, Pei Chen, Haojie Ma, Magdalena Woinska, Dejian Liu, Cooper, Guo Peng, Yousong Peng, Lei Deng, Minor and Zheng. .

To keep up with the latest medical research news from UVA, subscribe to the Making of Medicine blog.

AHCA/NCAL Is Facing A Workforce Crisis

Nearly Every U.S. Nursing Home And Assisted Living Community Is Facing A Workforce Crisis

86 percent of nursing homes and 77 percent of assisted living providers said their workforce situation has gotten worse over the last three months.

58 percent of nursing homes limiting new admissions due to shortages.

The American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL), representing more than 14,000 nursing homes and long term care facilities across the country, released a survey of nursing home and assisted living providers across the U.S. Results from the survey highlight an urgent need for Congress to address the labor shortage facing the long term care industry.

Key findings include:

86 percent of nursing homes and 77 percent of assisted living providers said their workforce situation has gotten worse over the last three months.

Nearly every nursing home (99 percent) and assisted living facility (96 percent) in the U.S. is facing a staffing shortage. 59 percent of nursing homes and nearly one-third of assisted living providers are experiencing a high level of staffing shortages.

More than 7 out of 10 nursing homes and assisted living communities said a lack of qualified candidates and unemployment benefits have been the biggest obstacles in hiring new staff.

Due to these shortages, nearly every nursing home and assisted living community is asking staff to work overtime or extra shifts. Nearly 70 percent of nursing homes are having to hire expensive agency staff. 58 percent of nursing homes are limiting new admissions.

78 percent of nursing homes and 71 percent of assisted living facilities are concerned workforce challenges might force them to close. More than one-third of nursing homes are very concerned about having to shut down their facility(ies).

“The survey demonstrates the severe workforce challenges long term care providers are facing due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Too many facilities are struggling to hire and retain staff that are needed to serve millions of vulnerable residents,” said Mark Parkinson, president and CEO of AHCA/NCAL. “Lawmakers across the country must prioritize long term care and that begins with providing resources to address workforce challenges. When facilities have the means to offer competitive wages and training programs, workers will follow. We have laid out key proposals in our Care for Our Seniors Act, which will allow us to boost our workforce, but without the help from Congress and state legislators, this will not be possible.”

Parkinson said the reconciliation package currently under construction is an appropriate vehicle for Congress to fund a long term solution to addressing chronic staffing shortages in nursing homes and other long term care facilities.

“Congress has the opportunity right now, through budget reconciliation, to include meaningful investments in long term care, which will help address key staffing challenges. Our caregivers are the backbone of long term care, and they deserve the full support of our lawmakers. We cannot allow facilities to close because of these challenges, which will directly impact residents and their families, especially when lawmakers have the means to help solve this dire situation,” concluded Parkinson.

Art by Mina Tocalini of 360 Magazine for use by 360 Magazine

Fabtech Conference 2021

By: Skyler Johnson

Coronavirus affected every single aspect of society, including factory labor. The Fabtech 2021 conference showcased the top metal forming brands in Taiwan, discussing the unique ways they were able to adapt to Covid-19. 

Mechalogix was the first company that spoke. They designed a system designed to lower labor costs through computers that actually monitor the performance of the machines and send back statistics to the operator, allowing the user to gain statistics from the strength of a saw blade to overall performance. If something needs to be replaced, the user will know, and a mechanic can be sent to the machine. But, no one needs to be watching the machines, which allows for a decrease in labor costs.

SEYI has developed a computer program that allows for users to interface with a lot of different aspects of the press, figuring out the analysis of the machine, including operation analysis and downtime analysis. Like with Mechalogix, the technology is able to send messages immediately to maintenance personnel.

Tailift has implemented a system to help in decreasing the time between taking orders and delivering products by using different web services that cut out the middleman between taking orders and delivering products, and have secured high speed internet and a strong firewall to do so. The company has also invested in technology including utilizing robot arms which help to increase efficiency and decrease maintenance costs

Da Jie is utilizing automated technology in order to avoid human cluster as a result of the pandemic, thus leading to more efficiency in production and 50% of the material being saved. SImilar to Tailift, the company uses robotic arms and other devices in order to save on cost. 

Ultimately, metal forming companies have implemented a lot of changes in order to deal with the pandemic, making their systems smarter and more efficient in the process. The pandemic has hurt everyone, but these factories were able to adapt.

Art Exhibition illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

LA Art Show

The LA Art Show returns July 29th – August 1st. They’re not unaware that they aren’t considered the “cool kids” in the landscape of art fairs in LA, but they are the oldest (26 years) and frankly, the most popular with 60k visitors per year. Obviously this will be a different year but with their new director, Kassandra Voyagis and a primarily female team we have made a hard focus on what’s now.

The future is now.

Vellum LA, the first physical gallery for NFT-backed digital art in Los Angeles opens on Melrose Ave in September, and is presenting a world first major art fair NFT exhibition at the LA Art Show.

Titled Sea Change, the exhibit was created with top NFT marketplace SuperRare (also an official partner of the fair, their first), and curated by Nxt Museum curator Jesse Damiani with Vellum LA curator Sinziana Velicescu. It will also be the first public appearance of a brand new technology for displaying digital artworks in the real world, built by award-winning StandardVision.

Importantly, this first-of-its-kind show features only women and non-binary artists.

Artist List

Claudia HartAuriea HarveyKrista KimMarjan MoghaddamItzel Yard (Ix Shells)Blake KathrynNicole RuggieroSam Clover (PLANTTDADDII)Sabrina Ratté and more.

Each NFT at Vellum LA’s inaugural Sea Change Exhibition will be showcased on Luma Canvas displays, developed by Vellum LA’s technology partner Standard Vision to be the first ever collector digital art displays. Luma Canvas offers a museum-grade LED display ideal for digital art and NFTs, available in a variety of sizes for different viewing environments and artwork types. The Luma Canvas software allows owners to automatically upload their NFT collection directly onto Luma Canvas displays, which boast vivid, three dimensional qualities optimal for presenting digital works in a physical way.

LA Art Show will be one of the first major art fairs to hold live NFTs on the floor.

DIVERSEartLA

Curator Marisa Caichiolo returns with a focus on the presence, contributions, research and documentation of women and non-binary artists at the forefront of work at the intersection of art, science and technology represented by guests Museums and Institutions.

San Marcos Museum of Art (MASM) from Lima, Perú, which will bring a new media project by Peruvian artist Angie Bonino. “The Symphony Of Now,” consists of a video installation, and interactive sound installation focusing on the Andean techno de-colonial shamanism.

Museum La Neomudejar from Madrid is bringing DATA | ergo sum RELOADED by artist Ana Marcos, an interactive art installation that visualizes the capability of viewing machines using artificial intelligence to extract data by a simple observation of visitors.

Art Museum of the Americas (AMA) has joined with a special project curated by Fabian Goncálves, that will feature a compilation of material and an exhibition of the work of women artists who have played a central role in the development of new media practices throughout history and women and non-binary people whose forward-thinking practices are currently reshaping the field.

UCLA Chicano Studies Research Center is bringing a special project curated by Chon Noriega titled Immersive Distancing by LA-based artists Carmen Argote and Zeynep Abes, which will examine recent media art produced during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Now Art LA and Building Bridges Art Exchange have joined forces as local non-profit organizations to exhibit the work Agua by Luciana Abait, a video projection created as part of LUMINEX Project by Now Art LA. This work is inspired by the flood-myth motif that occurs in many cultures, in which water acts a healing and rebirth tool, often referencing ideas of creation, purification, and sustaining life. The projected FLOOD will run down the main aisle of the LA Art Show.

The most unconventional and anticipated contribution to the section is Tiffany Trenda, a multidisciplinary performance artist, known for exploring the relationship of the female body to today’s ever-changing technologies.

Galleries

While we won’t have as many international galleries, we have managed to bring together a fantastic roster of galleries that celebrate the experimental vibe that is LA.

2021 brings legendary LA galleries: Track-16 (first fair) and Coagula Curatorial. Plus 14 year-old wonder kid and LA native, Tex Hammond exhibits at his first fair under Acosta Arts.

Returning: Arcadia Contemporary, Caldwell Snyder Gallery, Simard Bilodeau Contemporary, and Rebecca Hossack Art Gallery from London for the lineup of Modern + Contemporary.

The show will once again have an international presence with the Pigment Gallery returning from Spain, In The Gallery returning from Denmark, Gallery KITAI from Japan, and exploring new territory, the Spaceless Gallery based in Paris and operating through a circuit of innovative pop-up locations all over the world, looks beyond the walls of a traditional white cube space to provide an ever-changing experience for both our artists and audience. The gallery’s nomadic nature ties in with its decentralized art programs that aim to establish fresh dialogues between the exhibition venue, the works and the viewer integrating all art forms, including music and performance art.

image for use by 360 Magazine

SAFELYTHRIVE × CITYZENITH — POSSIBLE SOLUTION TO DELTA VARIANT

As the world reels from the threat of COVID-19’s new and highly contagious Delta variant, two US companies say their new alliance offers real hope of safe co-existence with the virus and potential future infectious diseases.

SafelyThrive offers an all-in-one health and safety infrastructure solution for businesses and schools during the ‘COVID era.’ As the pandemic evolves, SafelyThrive identifies capabilities that reduce the ‘time to action,’ getting information to leaders in a format that makes it easier to react with appropriate risk mitigation strategies.

Cityzenith, the global leader in Digital Twin visualization technology, digitally replicates a building or community and enables real-time visualization of risks as well as recovery paths. The companies have partnered to introduce Cityzenith’s SmartWorldOS™ into the existing SafelyThrive health and safety response service platform.

Together, they offer public and private sector entities increased confidence in the identification and mitigation of not just COVID risks, but a broader set of risks to businesses, communities and governance presented as a single integrated solution.

“Our company name says everything about our customer objectives in education, government, entertainment and travel,” said SafelyThrive CEO Kevin Murdock.

“Enterprise customers thrive when they restore service and revenue faster. Their employees thrive as they return to their offices and restore income in a lower risk environment.

“Community members, students and clients thrive with increased interaction, recreation and education. The Cityzenith technology speeds decisions that help communities thrive sooner.

“The emergence, and now global acceleration of the Delta variant confirms the ongoing COVID threat and continuously changing face of the disease. Further, reports indicate reduced vaccine efficacy over time and evolution in COVID may drive the need for boosters and frequent vaccine formulation changes to dampen its ongoing effects.

“The Digital Twin partnership between SafelyThrive and Cityzenith enhances our offering for the near-term COVID threat and provides a proactive health-safety critical infrastructure response that can support a broader set of threats by expanding all-in-one screening, testing and tracking with faster and more informed response.”

Jeff Hrush, Vice President of Sales at SafelyThrive, also commented: “The SmartWorldOS™ Digital Twin platform enhances SafelyThrive offerings beyond pandemic response. Cityzenith’s rich user interface preserves the value of the risk management investment. Visualization of viral positivity, strain identification, on-site proximity monitoring and protective best practices expands into disaster recover, mass casualty and workplace violence risk reduction.”

Cityzenith CEO Michael Jansen responded: “We are proud to be part of such an important public health initiative as SafelyThrive. SmartWorldOS™ enhances SafelyThrive’s managed service platform using detailed community and event data to optimize health, safety, security and environment. The trust we established with global real estate, energy and infrastructure leaders will accelerate our combined efforts to improve health and safety.”

Lost Kings image for "ME, MYSELF AND ADDERALL" via Kehoe, Meghan, RCA Records for use by 360 Magazine

LOST KINGS – ME, MYSELF AND ADDERALL

LOST KINGS RELEASE NEW TRACK “ME, MYSELF AND ADDERALL” FEATURING GOODY GRACE TODAY – LISTEN HERE

Miss The Future Tour Kicks Of August 26th  

Confirmed to play sets at Lollapolooza and EDC Las Vegas

Los Angeles based producers Lost Kings release their latest track “Me, Myself And Adderall” ft. singer/songwriter/producer Goody Grace today via Disruptor/RCA Records. Listen to the track hereThe duo will debut the track live for the first time at Lollapalooza on Saturday, July 31 at Perry’s stage. Lost Kings shared their excitement about getting back on the stage for their fans in an interview with CBS Chicago. Check out the interview here.

Last month, the two released the music video to their track “I Miss The Future” ft. Jordan Shaw (click here to watch). The deeply personal music video was directed by Kyle Cogan and takes a look at the past year and what they missed. The music video simultaneously pays tribute to Rob’s father and those lost during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Lost Kings are hitting the road this summer on their Miss The Future Tour.  The 15-date tour will kick off on August 26 in Durham, NC, and end Denver, Colorado on October 1, with two stops at NYC’s historic Webster Hall. For more information on the tour and specific presales please visit here. The two will also make stops at Lollapolooza and EDC Las Vegas, with more to be announced soon.

Miss The Future Tour Dates

August 26, 2021          Durham, NC                The Fruit

August 27, 2021          Charlotte, NC              World

August 28, 2021          Atlanta, GA                 District

September 3, 2021      Austin, TX                    Vulcan

September 4, 2021      Houston, TX                Stereo Live

September 5, 2021      Dallas, TX                    Stereo Live

September 10, 2021    New York, NY              Webster Hall

September 11, 2021    New York, NY              Webster Hall

September 16, 2021    Philadelphia, PA          NOTO

September 17, 2021    Washington, DC         Echostage

September 23, 2021    Salt Lake City, UT        SKY

September 24, 2021    San Francisco, CA       August Hall

September 25, 2021    San Francisco, CA       August Hall

September 30, 2021    Portland, OR               45 East

October 1, 2021          Denver, CO                  Church

About Lost Kings

Lost Kings consists of Los Angeles based duo Rob Gainley and Nick Shanholtz. The two have risen up through the ranks of new producer talents, gaining over 800 million combined streams worldwide. In the process, they have released various original music and remixes, released two EP’s, Paper Crowns and Lost Angeles, and sold out major markets across the US–including New York’s Webster Hall and Chicago’s Bottom Lounge. The group’s EP’s featured artists from all genres of music including Wiz Khalifa, Ally Brooke, A$AP Ferg, Marc E. Bassy, Loren Gray, Social House, Anna Clendening and more.

In 2020 the group released a string of songs including “Hurt,” which features DeathbyRomy’s powerful, rich vocals. Additionally, their current single “Oops” features multiple Grammy-nominated hitmaker Ty Dolla $ign and critically acclaimed recording artist GASHI. Other features include MASN on “Mountains” and “Runaway” featuring Destiny Rogers.  All four of the tracks have over 26 million streams worldwide and will also be featured on the upcoming EP.

Alec Benjamin photograph by Matty Vogel from Collin Citron, Elektra Records for use by 360 Magazine

ALEC BENJAMIN TOUR × VIDEO – THE WAY YOU FELT

Multi-platinum singer-songwriter Alec Benjamin has unveiled an official music video for his latest single “The Way You Felt.” In the Miles & AJ-directed visual, Alec confronts a past relationship by revisiting stops along their shared history and reliving pivotal moments – even though he’s alone this time. Watch it on his official YouTube channel here.

“I love music videos that have the ability to tell the story beyond the lyrics of a song,” Alec shared. “When I wrote ‘The Way You Felt,’ I found myself thinking about an ex-girlfriend, so when it came time to shoot the video, I felt inspired to go back to all of the places where our relationship unfolded. I thought it was the perfect way to process some good and bad memories, and maybe get a little closure, which I obviously needed because I’m still writing about it.”

“The Way You Felt” is available to stream and download now here via Elektra Records. Upon release, Billboard praised, “The pain feels genuine, and Benjamin’s soothing delivery creates the impression that the shock hasn’t fully registered.” Alec recently delivered the song’s network television performance on The Late Late Show with James Corden. Watch the clip here. To celebrate Mother’s Day, Corden and his mother Margaret also welcomed Alec and his mother Janet onto the show for a special interview. Watch it here.

Adding further dimensions to the track, Alec also recently shared an acoustic version and a Mandarin version entitled “你的目光(The Way You Felt).” The song marked Alec’s first official Mandarin release, and debuted at #1 on NetEase Music’s Western New Music Chart in China, surpassing new releases from artists including Lorde and Maroon 5. Competing with both domestic and international releases, the track also climbed to #2 on the platform’s Viral Chart and #8 on the New Music Chart. After resuming his study of the language during the COVID-19 pandemic, he collaborated with Chinese actress and singer Zhao Lusi on a Mandarin version of his hit single “Water Fountain” earlier this year. Watch their duet on his YouTube channel here.

This Fall, Alec will return to the road for a North American tour with support from Harry Hudson. The 23-city trek kicks off on September 14 in Santa Cruz, CA, and wraps on October 21 in Pomona, CA. Due to overwhelming demand, he has already added second nights in multiple markets and upgraded his Dallas, TX show from Canton Hall to The Bomb Factory.

Remaining tickets for the tour are available now here.

The Way You Felt” follows Alec’s critically acclaimed 2020 debut studio album,These Two Windows. Generating nearly half-a-billion streams in under a year, it boasts the hit singles “Jesus In LA,” “Oh My God,” and “Mind Is A Prison.” Attracting widespread praise, People raved, “The album is a major milestone,” and Stereogum christened him “A fascinating voice in modern pop.” In addition to plugs from The New York Times, American Songwriter and more, Billboard noted, “The rising pop singer-songwriter succeeds in making the matter distinctive by how much his lyrics read like a heart-to-heart conversation.”

Alec Benjamin North American Tour Dates

September 14, 2021 – Santa Cruz, CA – The Catalyst

September 15, 2021 – San Francisco, CA – The Warfield

September 17, 2021 – Portland, OR – McMenamin’s Crystal Ballroom – SOLD OUT

September 18, 2021 – Seattle, WA – Showbox SoDo – SOLD OUT

September 19, 2021 – Vancouver, BC – Vogue Theatre

September 21, 2021 – Salt Lake City, UT – The Complex

September 22, 2021 – Denver, CO – Mission Ballroom

September 24, 2021 – Minneapolis, MN – Fillmore Minneapolis

September 25, 2021 – Chicago, IL – Riviera Theatre

September 26, 2021 – Royal Oak, MI – Royal Oak Music Theatre – SOLD OUT

September 28, 2021 – Toronto, ON – The Danforth Music Hall – SOLD OUT

September 29, 2021 – Toronto, ON – The Danforth Music Hall

September 30, 2021 – Montreal, QC – MTELUS

October 02, 2021 – Boston, MA – House Of Blues – Boston – SOLD OUT

October 03, 2021 – Boston, MA – House of Blues Boston

October 04, 2021 – Washington, DC – 9:30 Club – SOLD OUT

October 05, 2021 – Washington, DC – 9:30 Club

October 08, 2021 – Philadelphia, PA – Franklin Music Hall

October 10, 2021 – Nashville, TN – Marathon Music Works

October 11, 2021 – Atlanta, GA – Tabernacle

October 12, 2021 – Orlando, FL – The Beacham – SOLD OUT

October 15, 2021 – Houston, TX – House Of Blues – Houston*

October 16, 2021 – Dallas, TX – The Bomb Factory^*

October 17, 2021 – Austin, TX – Emo’s Austin

October 19, 2021 – Phoenix, AZ – The Van Buren – SOLD OUT

October 21, 2021 – Pomona, CA – The Glass House – SOLD OUT

^Upgraded from Canton Hall

*No Harry Hudson

About Alec Benjamin

As popular music gets more and more “genre-less,” Alec Benjamin has only gotten more and more era-less. You can’t pin his candid storytelling, warm melodies, sticky hooks, and natural production to any age. That’s why he’s quietly become his generation’s own troubadour. Thus far, he has amassed nearly four billion streams, 820 million YouTube views, and multiple gold and platinum singles. He has sold out shows on three continents and counts Billie Eilish and John Mayer among his most vocal and ardent fans. Not to mention, he’s collaborated with everyone from Alessia Cara to Chinese superstar Zhao Lusi. His 2018 mixtape, Narrated For You, picked up a gold certification, while the 2020 debut album, These Two Windows, arrived to widespread critical acclaim from Billboard, People, Stereogum, and more. After a Global Pandemic, a year of soul-searching, and countless hours writing, he returns with his new single “The Way You Felt.”

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Children traveling illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

Luxury Travel Safety Study

MEDJET AND WORTH MEDIA RELEASE RESULTS OF LUXURY TRAVEL SAFETY STUDY

Poll Reveals “Massive Misconceptions Among Business and Leisure Travelers of All Ages as to: If, When and How They’re Protected.”

A new study from Medjet, the industry leader in air medical transport and travel security memberships for travelers, and WORTH Media, a leading financial, wealth management and lifestyle media company, finds that a major segment of today’s luxury travel market – both business and leisure – continues to be ill-informed about travel insurance, medical evacuation and personal protection.

The most recent Medjet/WORTH Media poll, which builds on a study originally conducted pre-COVID-19 in fall 2019, was completed in early 2021 to more accurately gauge travelers’ sentiments after such a tumultuous year for the global travel industry. Both times, the results illustrated a significant lack of awareness in regard to travel insurance and medical evacuation coverage, even more so during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The new poll results show that very few travelers plan on sitting this year out; when asked when they would feel ready to travel again, travelers’ responses were as follows:

  • 17.5% are already traveling
  • 15.83% plan on traveling within the next three months
  • 54.17% plan on traveling between 4-12 months from now
  • 12.5% plan on traveling 1+ year from now/are not sure

“The results of both polls are very much in line with what we’ve found in our own anecdotal research and decades of experience as leaders in the field of air medical transport and crisis response,” says Mike Hallman, President & CEO of Medjet, “that there are massive misconceptions among business and leisure travelers of all ages as to: If, when and how they are protected.”

In 2020, 85% of respondents felt they knew about the “same or less” about medevac coverage due to the pandemic. 64% of travelers felt they should know more.

The fall 2019 poll results, even without the threat of COVID-19, showed overwhelmingly that illness was a top traveler concern, and if hospitalized overseas, people would prefer to get home to their own hospital for treatment and recovery. Therefore, continuing to educate people as to the where travel insurance’s medevac coverage leaves off, and transport memberships like Medjet pick up, remain important. 


Both studies targeted professionals across the country whose household’s net worth was valued at $1,000,000 and above. The original Medjet/WORTH poll assessed travelers’ understanding of their health, travel or business insurance coverages, and credit card travel program benefits, finding that nearly two-thirds of respondents who reported being “concerned about their health while traveling” were unaware of the inclusions (and perhaps more importantly exclusions) in their plans or benefits packages. Some of the study’s major findings include:

  • Only 35% of travelers who reported being concerned about their health and well-being while traveling were aware that their health, travel or business insurance, or credit card travel benefits, could ONLY get them to the “nearest acceptable facility.” 65% mistakenly believed their coverage would automatically get them all the way to a hospital at home, or were not sure.
  • While illness and injury were top concerns for travelers, only 34% of business travelers concerned about their health had ever looked into the conditions of their company’s travel and medical evacuation policies.
  • Of those with corporate coverage, one in three respondents (33%) expected that, one way or another, their company would get them home if they became ill or were hospitalized while traveling. “For many companies, that means footing a $30,000 – $180,000 out-of-pocket bill, or potentially falling short on employee ‘duty of care’ expectations,” noted Hallman, “which can present a significant financial and legal risk to an organization.”
  • Of those who reported being self-employed and traveling for business frequently, 77% reported never purchasing travel insurance.
  • Younger respondents proved even less knowledgeable about what their health and travel insurance, or credit card travel benefits would do for them if they needed a medical evacuation; 86% believed it would transport them back to their hospital at home or were unsure.

“The greatest misconception among high-net-worth travelers is that, in the unforeseen event they were to end up hospitalized while out of town – be it in Peoria or Paraguay – they believe their basic travel coverage through a company plan, travel insurance or credit card would get them home,” said Hallman. “More often than not, that is not the case, which is why we see so many stories in the news about travelers stuck abroad, and why so many individuals, families, corporations and organizations (like the NFL) enroll in our membership program.”

“On the bright side,” said Hallman, “we found that 86% of business travelers were interested in purchasing additional medical evacuation coverage that got them all the way home, and 68% of business travelers were interested in purchasing travel security coverage in addition to the coverage offered by their company. So, it looks like there’s plenty of continued growth to look forward to here at Medjet!”

For more information about Medjet, please visit the Medjet website.

Balance illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

3 Tips for Leaders

3 Tips for Leaders to Steady the Ship When Employees Lose Their Balance

Company leaders and managers have a big responsibility in overseeing employees. But they can’t see everything, and sometimes there’s more going on in a worker’s life than meets the eye.

Employee disengagement or burnout isn’t always apparent, and some employers may be in for a surprise if and when the COVID-19 pandemic winds down. One study shows that 57% of U.S. employees say they are burnt out, with many likely to leave their job after the pandemic is over. And a Gallup survey reveals that the percentage of engaged employees – those enthusiastic about their workplace – is under 40%.

What the numbers mean is leaders need to learn how to spot and help out-of-balance employees, says Mark McClain, CEO and co-founder of SailPoint and the ForbesBooks author of Joy and Success at Work: Building Organizations that Don’t Suck (the Life Out of People).

“One challenge leaders and managers routinely face is to recognize when the people around them – peers, colleagues, but especially subordinates – are out of balance or are heading in the wrong direction,” McClain says. “Beyond the potential impacts on their personal lives, you want to try to head off the negative effects such imbalances can have on their roles in the company.

“This may seem imposing, but you have to pay attention as a leader. No employee can run at a crazy pace forever, yet some companies let people run themselves right out of the building. Other workers who are disengaged can be harder to spot initially.”

McClain offers these tips for leaders to spot, address, and help out-of-balance employees:

  • Make work-life balance part of your culture. “You can expect much from your employees, but you don’t want them to fry themselves,” McClain says. “You don’t want them to harm their health, their family, or their relationships. If you have good people, ideally, you’ll grow them and help them work toward their vision of a healthy work-life balance. The sooner leaders confront imbalance in the equation, the more meat they put on the bones of company culture.”
  • Screen out for potential burnout. Some companies hire knowing they will overwork people or take advantage of their ambition to work extra hard and advance up the corporate ladder, McClain says. But that approach can lead to burnout and departure, which costs companies in terms of replacing them. “There are always going to be ultra-motivated climbers,” McClain says. “But exploiting them is beyond bad. Those who can’t stand it get out, and the HR departments plan on the fact that every four or five years, only 15 to 20 percent of those hires will be able to move up the ranks. These types of organizations instead should invest in pre-hiring assessments to screen out those who value a life outside of work. Doing so would save the companies money and turnover.”
  • Be a counselor. It’s not an invasion of privacy for a manager to show concern in an employee, McClain says, and probing is necessary to help the employee. “Like it or not,” he says, “being a counselor of sorts is part of managing people. Getting to know them as people, and their work styles, is what makes spotting imbalances possible. Its why good managers pull employees aside and say, ‘Hey, you’re here, but you’re not engaged. Is something going on?’ Managers who take that step are able to uncover issues and steer their employees to the help they need.”

“Many companies talk about caring for workers until they’re blue in the face,” McClain says. “But when you put in place the pieces to help them succeed, leaders walk the walk – and everybody wins.”

Medical illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

Mental Illness × Addiction Crisis

With Pandemic Worsening the Mental Illness and Addiction Crisis, Biden Administration to Provide Nearly $2.5 Billion to States, Territories for Treatment, Prevention Aid

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
Funding to Support Comprehensive Community Prevention, Treatment, Recovery and Health Services

The Biden Administration will provide nearly $2.5 billion in funding to states and territories to address the nation’s mental illness and addiction crisis, which has worsened during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will direct $1.65 billion in Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant funding and $825 million in Community Mental Health Services Block Grant funding to states and territories. The Community Mental Health Services Block Grant program allows states and territories to provide comprehensive community mental health services and address needs and gaps in existing treatment services for those with severe mental health conditions. The Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant program allows states and territories to plan, implement and evaluate activities to prevent and treat substance use disorder. This funding will also allow recipients to maximize efficiency in existing treatment and recovery infrastructure, promote support for providers and address unique local needs to deliver substance use disorder prevention.

“We know multiple stressors during the pandemic – isolation, sickness, grief, job loss, food instability, and loss of routines – have devastated many Americans and presented unprecedented challenges for behavioral health providers across the nation,” said Acting Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use Tom Coderre. “During this time of increased urgency, we want to assure them that funding is in place to help states and territories provide pathways to prevention, intervention, treatment, and recovery services, especially for underserved populations.”

Recently, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released data confirming a rise in fatal overdoses during the pandemic. This year’s increases in calls to helplines across the country indicate growing anxiety, depression, and trauma in Americans. The COVID-19 pandemic and the corresponding economic crisis have been especially devastating for Black and Latino communities, which are experiencing a disproportionate number of COVID-19 infections and deaths as well as higher-than-average unemployment rates.

“SAMHSA resources connect Americans to evidence-based treatment and services every day,” said Coderre. “Focusing on both mental and substance use disorders – challenges that pre-date the COVID-19 pandemic but that have worsened over the past year – will be a crucial part of SAMHSA’s approach to helping the nation move forward.”

In addition to the $2.5 billion awarded today, SAMHSA has awarded $686 million in Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics (CCBHC) Expansion Grants; Emergency Grants to Address Mental and Substance Use Disorders During COVID-19 (Emergency Response COVID-19), and supplements to the fiscal year 2020 Emergency Response COVID-19 grant recipients.

Funding allocation tables can be viewed here:

FY 2021 Community Mental Health Block Grant Program COVID-19 Supplemental Awards

FY 2021 Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant Program COVID-19 Supplemental Awards

People searching for treatment for mental or substance use disorders can find treatment by visiting SAMHSA’s website or by calling SAMHSA’s National Helpline,
1-800-662-HELP (4357).