June 5 Daily Round-Up: NEC Members Contribute to COVID-19 Crisis Response

As our region and our nation continue to grapple with the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) pandemic, The New England Council is using our blog as a platform to highlight some of the incredible work our members have undertaken to respond to the outbreak.  Each day, we’ll post a round-up of updates on some of the initiatives underway among Council members throughout the region.  We are also sharing these updates via our social media, and encourage our members to share with us any information on their efforts so that we can be sure to include them in these daily round-ups.

You can find all the Council’s information and resources related to the crisis in the special COVID-19 section of our website.  This includes our COVID-19 Virtual Events Calendar, which provides information on upcoming COVID-19 Congressional town halls and webinars presented by NEC members, as well as our newly-released Federal Agency COVID-19 Guidance for Businesses page.

Here is today’s (June 5, 2020) roundup:

Medical Response

  • Amgen Enters Clinical Trials for COVID-19 Therapy Amgen is entering one of its own drugs in the search for a potential COVID-19 therapy. The prescription drug Otezla is usually prescribed for arthritis, but has shown promise in lessening the respiratory symptoms of infection. The Pacific Coast Business Times reports.
  • MGH, Harvard, MIT Enter Partnerships to Develop Vaccine Candidate – The Ragon Institute of Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), Harvard University, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) are partnering with Codiak BioSciences on two projects to develop a COVID-19 vaccine candidate. The collaboration aims to use antibodies to develop immunity using new bioengineering techniques. Read more.

Economic/Business Continuity Response

  • USS Constitution Museum Offers Virtual Tours – The USS Constitution Museum is offering daily tours on its social media accounts while the museum remains closed. Hosted every morning, the tours have allowed more than 2 million visitors from across Boston and the country to learn the history of “Old Ironsides” and experience the museum. Boston 25 News has more.
  • Aflac Launches Live Service Platform for Remote Claims – Insurer Aflac has released a new live chat service for customers to file claims virtually and easily. The service consists of an intelligent chatbot that can answer the most common questions customers have, as well as retain information regarding an ongoing claim in one place. Read more.
  • MITRE Hosts INTERPOL Digital Forensics Group Conference on Future of Cybersecurity MITRE Corporation, in partnership with the University of New Haven, is hosting INTERPOL’s Digital Forensics Expert Group conference to discuss the future of digital forensics and cybersecurity in a post-pandemic age. The virtual event will offer speakers and collaborative workshops from academics, international law professionals, and nonprofit organization leaders. Read more.

Community Response

  • UnitedHealth Group Commits $500 Million for Housing InsecurityUnitedHealth Group has pledged to increase its investments in affordable housing to $500 million to combat housing insecurity. As the pandemic has increased financial strain and housing insecurity, the network is providing the funds to community organizations addressing this and other social determinants of health. Forbes reports.

Stay tuned for more updates each day, and follow us on Twitter for more frequent updates on how Council members are contributing to the response to this global health crisis.

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