'Real Housewives' Babies! See Which Bravo Stars Gave Birth

Welcome to the world! When it comes to adding more babies to their broods, these Real Housewives have been busy.

Meghan King Edmonds, who appeared on Real Housewives of Orange County for three seasons, has three children ages two and under. The former reality star gave birth to her daughter, Aspen, in 2016 — and she and her husband, Jim Edmonds, welcomed twin boys, Hart and Hayes, 18 months later.

“You guys, I’m IN IT right now,” the Missouri native captioned an August 2019 pic with her tiny trio, one month after revealing that Hart had been diagnosed with “irreversible brain damage.”

“Hart and I leave for several weeks of intensive therapy and I’m going to miss the tar out of the rest of the fam,” Meghan wrote at the time. “Some days I feel less like a person and more like a machine going through the motions. Thank you to everyone who has made me feel like a person: preschool moms organizing last minute play dates, my sister for letting me nap for an hour, my nanny for watching Netflix with me.”

Another former RHOC star Gretchen Rossi welcomed her first child with her fiancé, Slade Smiley, in July 2019 after doing in vitro fertilization. She gushed over her husband after her C-section, telling Us Weekly exclusively, “Slade has been the best support any woman could dream of. He is a rock of strength!”

The former Bravo personality went on to praise her own body on Instagram, writing three weeks after birth: “I went into labor and delivery at 170 pounds and I think I’m down to 145 and I’m not even trying. … I’m pretty amazed about how amazing the body is. It can grow a little baby and go back like that. It’s just crazy what happens.”

Keep scrolling to take a look at more former and current Bravo stars who have recently given birth, from Real Housewives of Atlanta’s Porsha Williams and Kenya Moore to Real Housewives of Potomac’s Ashley Darby and Monique Samuels.

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Massive dataset reveals which governments have best responded to COVID-19 pandemic

Are our political institutions up for the task of managing the COVID-19 pandemic and any possible future similar threats? A research team led by faculty at Binghamton University, State University of New York has compiled an extensive dataset tracking public health government responses to COVID-19 at national and subnational levels of government throughout the world.

The coronavirus pandemic provides a unique opportunity to evaluate the response of different types of government to a global crisis, according to Binghamton University Professor of Political Science Olga Shvetsova. Other types of catastrophic events, such as war and national disasters, affect select countries or regions and do not allow one to draw global comparisons.

“We are motivated by events to figure out what happened and is happening, and develop new understandings of how government works and politicians function and respond to crises,” Shvetsova said of the collaborative lab.

As the pandemic unfolded over the spring and summer, Shvetsova’s lab compiled a massive database comparing pandemic-related governmental policies in 64 countries on both the national and subnational levels, as part of the COVID-19 Protective Policy Index (PPI) project. The data runs from January through May 2020, and is publically available for researchers’ use, while data collection is underway for the period between May and November.

The lab began collecting data on March 12. Policies tracked by the database fall into multiple categories, including: international and domestic border closures, school closures, social gathering and social distance restrictions, lockdowns and curfews, medical isolation and quarantine, the restriction of nonessential businesses and services, states of emergency, and mandates requiring personal protective equipment.

In addition to political science professors and doctoral students with the department, the project has drawn colleagues from around the country and even around the world, including Canada, the United Kingdom and Russia. Undergraduate students joined the effort, too, as research assistants. The lab is collaborative, with members pitching in on data collection, brainstorming, writing and responding to requests during the peer review process.

“Pandemic policy-making is a truly global experiment in how different types of government work. It is a check on how resilient we are, and what the constitutional sources of that resilience are,” Shvetsova said of the ongoing pandemic research.

The data has already sparked two papers, with more in the pipeline. “Institutional Origins of Protective COVID-19 Public Health Policy Responses” will appear in an upcoming issue of the Journal of Political Institutions and Political Economy, and takes a global look at the advent of pandemic-related policies. Published in September by Canadian Public Policy/Analyse de politiques, “COVID-19 Policy Response and the Rise of the Sub-National Governments” compares the advent of policies in Canada and the United States, on both the federal and state/province levels.

The lab will continue to collect data on the pandemic for as long as it remains feasible. The team hopes to make another round of data, from May through July, available by the end of the year. Additional variables as well as more countries will also be added to the database.

Currently, the lab is writing and publishing work on incentives and disincentives for pandemic response in democracies, looking at the impact of governmental structure, political parties and the way governments are held accountable for the health of their populations. Other projects will likely emerge as data continues to accumulate.

Long-term, the coronavirus may offer a metric with which to judge the efficacy of different styles of government in responding to crisis. That would require reliable statistics that other disciplines are gathering: of the number of cases and deaths, along with strong mathematical epidemiological models of factors determining spread and mortality.

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New study shows which medical procedures pose COVID-19 risk to health-care providers

Autopsy, airway suctioning and cardiopulmonary resuscitation are among the list of medical procedures that pose a risk of spreading COVID-19 from a patient to their health-care provider by creating aerosols, according to new research published in the journal BMJ Open Respiratory Research by an international team of experts including occupational health, preventive medicine and infectious disease specialists.

The team, led by University of Alberta medicine professor Sebastian Straube, carried out a systematic review of public health guidelines, research papers and policy documents from around the globe to determine which procedures are classified as aerosol-generating.

“What we sought to do was to understand which procedures generate aerosols and therefore require a higher grade of personal protective equipment,” said Straube, who also heads the preventive medicine division of the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry.

“Where there is 80 percent agreement from a number of different source documents, we are reasonably confident that, yes, the classification of these procedures as aerosol-generating is accurate.”

Straube recommended that further research be done on the short list of procedures for which they found no consensus, such as taking throat swabs.

The team of 19 Canadian, British, American and other researchers includes renowned Oxford University primary care expert Trisha Greenhalgh and first author Tanya Jackson, Straube’s research associate. They came together to share their expertise at the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic and have published rapid reviews on the efficacy of respirator masks versus standard surgical masks, eye protection and shoe covers.

“We are providing a summary of the evidence to inform policy-making decisions and guideline development,” Straube said.

An aerosol is a suspension of fine solid or liquid particles in air, Straube said. “Larger particles settle in a reasonably short distance, and are referred to as ‘droplets’ in the infection control context,” the paper states. “Smaller particles can travel as aerosols on air currents, remaining in the air for longer and distributing over a wide area.”

Straube said the goal is to prevent health-care workers from becoming infected with COVID-19, both to protect them from severe disease as individuals and to maintain staffing levels in health-care systems during the pandemic.

Health-care workers who perform aerosol-generating procedures should wear filtering facepiece respirators, known as N-95 masks in North America, Straube said, along with other personal protective equipment (PPE) such as gloves, gowns and eye protection.

“PPE is typically displayed at the bottom rung of the hierarchy of hazard controls,” Straube said.

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New test better predicts which babies will develop type 1 diabetes

A new approach to predicting which babies will develop type 1 diabetes moves a step closer to routine testing for newborns which could avoid life-threatening complications.

Scientists at seven international sites have followed 7,798 children at high risk of developing type 1 diabetes from birth, over nine years, in The Environmental Determinants of Diabetes in the Young (TEDDY) Study. The TEDDY Study is a large international study funded primarily by the US National Institutes of Health and U.S. Centers for Disease Control, as well as by the charity JDRF.

In research published in Nature Medicine, scientists at the University of Exeter and the Pacific Northwest Research Institute in Seattle used the TEDDY data to develop a method of combining multiple factors that could influence whether a child is likely to develop type 1 diabetes. The combined risk score approach incorporates genetics, clinical factors such as family history of diabetes, and their count of islet autoantibodies—biomarkers known to be implicated in type 1 diabetes.

The research team found that the new combined approach dramatically improved prediction of which children would develop type 1 diabetes, potentially allowing better diabetes risk counseling of families. Most importantly, the new approach doubled the efficiency of programs to screen newborns to prevent the potentially deadly condition of ketoacidosis, a consequence of type 1 diabetes in which insulin deficiency causes the blood to become too acidic. Identifying which children are at highest risk will also benefit clinical trials on drugs that are showing promise in preventing the condition.

Dr. Lauric Ferrat at the University of Exeter Medical School, said: “At the moment, 40 per cent of children who are diagnosed with type 1 diabetes have the severe complication of ketoacidosis. For the very young this is life-threatening, resulting in long intensive hospitalizations and in some cases even paralysis or death. Using our new combined approach to identify which babies will develop diabetes can prevent these tragedies, and ensure children are on the right treatment pathway earlier in life, meaning better health.”

Professor William Hagopian of the Pacific Northwest Research Institute, said: “We’re really excited by these findings. They suggest that the routine heel prick testing of babies done at birth, could go a long way towards preventing early sickness as well as predicting which children will get type 1 diabetes years later. We’re now putting this to the test in a trial in Washington State. We hope it will ultimately be used internationally to identify the condition as early as possible, and to power efforts to prevent the disease.”

Researchers believe the combined approach can also be rolled out to predict the onset of other diseases with a strong genetic component that are identifiable in childhood, such as celiac disease.

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