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Long COVID symptoms lasted a median of 15 months, study finds

CHICAGO — People with long COVID-19 who visited a Northwestern Medicine clinic were still experiencing symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, fatigue and brain fog for a median of 15 months after first falling ill, despite never needing hospitalization, according to a new Northwestern study.

The study looked at 52 patients who were seen at Northwestern’s Neuro COVID-19 clinic between May 2020 and November 2020, who initially had mild COVID-19 symptoms. Study senior author Dr. Igor Koralnik said the study is the first to look, over such a long time period, at neurological symptoms in people who didn’t need to be hospitalized for COVID-19.

The study was published Tuesday in peer-reviewed journal Annals of Clinical and Translational Neurology.

“It’s important because ... long COVID is not going to be going away,” said Koralnik, who is chief of Neuro-infectious Diseases and Global Neurology at Northwestern Medicine and oversees the Neuro COVID-19 Clinic.

—Chicago Tribune

Pro-Confederate law doesn’t protect Madison Cawthorn from Jan. 6 challenge, court rules

RALEIGH, N.C. — North Carolina Rep. Madison Cawthorn lost his reelection bid last week, but that doesn’t necessarily mean a legal battle over his eligibility to serve in Congress is also finished.

On Tuesday, he lost a case in a federal appeals court over whether North Carolina elections officials have the power to ban him from running for office in the future.

Cawthorn had argued they can’t ban him, and he won that argument at trial, with a favorable ruling from a judge who was appointed by Republican President Donald Trump. But now the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals has overturned that ruling, potentially paving the way for Cawthorn to be kept off the ballot in the future if he tries to run for office again.

Opponents of the far-right Republican congressman had filed a challenge with state election officials, seeking to have Cawthorn banned from running for office. They say he supported and possibly even helped plan the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on Congress carried out by Trump supporters.

Cawthorn has denied those claims. But he said even if they are true, a law from the 1870s that gave amnesty to Confederate rebels should also apply into the future for all anti-government insurrectionists, protecting him, too.

—The News & Observer

 

Virginia Gov. Youngkin restores voting rights to nearly 3,500 felons

RICHMOND, Va. — Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin announced Friday that he had restored voting rights to 3,496 felons — but a local legislator who spearheaded a push to restore voting rights to all felons who’ve served their time said it isn’t enough.

Sen. Mamie Locke, D-Hampton, said backing the constitutional amendment she introduced would have been a better option if the governor was concerned about supporting voting rights.

“Instead, he and his fellow Republicans in the General Assembly killed the measure, ensuring at least two more years of continuing discrimination at the ballot box,” Locke wrote to The Virginian-Pilot on Monday.

Locke introduced a constitutional amendment in 2021 that would have automatically restored voting rights to all felons after they completed their sentences. Constitutional amendments must pass the General Assembly two years in a row, and then be approved by voters in a referendum, before taking effect.

—The Virginian-Pilot

Turkey to meet with Sweden, Finland Wednesday to discuss NATO

Swedish and Finnish officials will travel to Ankara on Wednesday to try to overcome Turkey’s objections to the two nations’ bids to join NATO.

Sweden’s state secretary, Oscar Stenstrom, and his Finnish counterpart Jukka Salovaara, will meet with Turkey’s chief presidential aide, Ibrahim Kalin, according to a statement from the Turkish foreign ministry.

The formal acceptance of the Swedish and Finnish bids to join the North Atlantic Treaty Organization has been stalled by Turkey, which alleges they support Kurdish militants it regards as terrorists. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has also signaled his concerns extend to how other NATO members handle the Kurdish groups.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu told reporters that Turkey’s security concerns remain in place and he renewed demands for the two Nordic countries to lift an arms export embargo, according to private broadcaster NTV.

—Bloomberg News

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