Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Every treatment has some side effects — including social distancing.

The big picture: Prolonged isolation, coupled with sustained job losses, could increase the risk of depression, as people are removed from the community support system that keeps them going.

  • That could in turn increase the risk of suicide, as a recent opinion piece in JAMA Psychiatry explains.
  • "A grim tradeoff is already being made between saving different lives: Saving the lives of those who are most vulnerable to COVID-19 versus saving the lives of those who are most vulnerable to suicide, substance abuse, and domestic violence," experts at Johns Hopkins write.

What to watch: Virtual check-ins are all the more important here — from simply keeping in touch with friends and family, to online support groups, to telehealth visits with mental health professionals.

None of this means social distancing was a bad idea, or that it needs to end quickly — it's definitely less deadly than the coronavirus. But even the most necessary interventions still need some careful management.

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-8255) provides 24/7, free and confidential support for anyone in distress, in addition to prevention and crisis resources. Also available for online chat.

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Updated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 10 p.m. ET: 30,393,591 — Total deaths: 950,344— Total recoveries: 20,679,272Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 10 p.m. ET: 6,722,699 — Total deaths: 198,484 — Total recoveries: 2,556,465 — Total tests: 92,163,649Map.
  3. Politics: In reversal, CDC again recommends coronavirus testing for asymptomatic people.
  4. Health: Massive USPS face mask operation called off The risks of moving too fast on a vaccine.
  5. Business: Unemployment drop-off reverses course 1 million mortgage-holders fall through safety netHow the pandemic has deepened Boeing's 737 MAX crunch.
  6. Education: At least 42% of school employees are vulnerable.
Updated Sep 18, 2020 - Health

World coronavirus updates

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Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Axios Visuals

Though health workers represent less than 3% of the population in many countries, they account for around 14% of the coronavirus cases reported to the World Health Organization, WHO announced Thursday.

Why it matters: The WHO called on governments and health care leaders to address threats facing the health and safety of these workers, adding that the pandemic has highlighted how protecting them is needed to ensure a functioning health care system.

Coronavirus cases fell by 15% this week

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Data: The COVID Tracking Project, state health departments; Map: Andrew Witherspoon, Sara Wise/Axios

New coronavirus infections fell by almost 15% over the past week, continuing a steady downward trend.

Why it matters: The standard caveats still apply — progress can always fall apart, the U.S. is climbing down from a very high number of cases, and this is far from over. But this is undeniably good news. Things are getting better.