Philadelphia Fitness Coalition Forms to Protest Shutdown Without Aid

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The group, made up of 30-plus fitness studios and gyms in the region, is petitioning the city to change its latest coronavirus restrictions.


Philadelphia Fitness coalition logo

The Philadelphia Fitness Coalition has launched to protest the recent city shutdown with a petition and a workout outside City Hall. | Photograph courtesy of Philadelphia Fitness Coalition

Last week, the City of Philadelphia launched new “Safer At Home” restrictions to curb the spread of the coronavirus amid rising cases that have led to a current high risk of community transmission. The new rules put many local gym and studio owners, who have received limited government aid, in a position of facing down mounting bills and further reduced revenue over the holidays. Without action from officials, it may be impossible for Philly’s gyms to keep their doors open through the winter.

Many small gym and studio owners have made dramatic changes to their business models in order to keep patrons and members as safe as possible during the COVID-19 crisis. Some, however, have flouted the safety restrictions, hurting the case of the fitness centers who were complying with the previous rules. Despite best efforts by some, it’s hard to know where cases are being contracted and spread, which is why many small businesses are looking for a government lifeline to get them through the winter while they keep their doors shut.

Others want to stay open and be declared essential businesses, in addition to calling for increased grants from the state and federal government. On Sunday, November 23rd, a group called the Philadelphia Fitness Coalition, comprised of 30-plus local gyms and fitness studios, launched with an appeal to officials regarding the recent shutdown. The coalition was spearheaded by Gavin McKay, founder of Unite Fitness, with leadership partnership from Osayi Osunde, founder of Fit Academy; Shoshana Katz, founder of BPM Fitness; and Stephanie Luongo, founder of Sculpt 360, among others. The group has started a Change.org petition (a previous petition from a different source already exists) under the heading “Reopen Fitness Providers As Essential Health Services and Provide Funding To Sustain Them.”

In the petition they explain that the gyms and studios in their coalition have collected data on over 260,000-plus indoor visits from July to November 2020, and that “only 30 reported cases walked into our locations,” citing a “0% transmission rate traced from person to person” among reported, known cases. It’s important to note that this claim derives from self-reported and self-collected data from the gyms. And, unfortunately in a city and state where contact tracing has been conducted poorly or not at all (and where citizens are not complying with tracing), it’s impossible to know the reality of where cases are originating and spreading.

Nonetheless, McKay argues that in small studios particularly “the communities are tight” — that people know one another and communicate if there’s been potential exposure. “We’ve been put in the wrong

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Philadelphia Fitness Coalition protesting restrictions on city gyms amid coronavirus pandemic

More than two dozen gyms in Philadelphia are joining forces, demanding that the city allows them to reopen.

Philly Fitness Coalition is fighing the restrictions for gyms in the city

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They have created the Philadelphia Fitness Coalition and have gathered more than 1,500 signatures in opposition to the new restrictions.

As the number of covid-19 cases rises, the city required gyms to shut down indoor activities at the end of last week.

But gym owners say it is unfair because of the safety precautions they have put in place.

They plan to protest outside of City Hall on Tuesday.

Last week, the city’s top health official, Dr. Thomas Farley, defended the city’s decision to tighten restrictions, saying now is the riskiest time for the transmission of the virus.

“What was now safe is now dangerous with the change in the weather. Many businesses feel they put safety measures in place, sure they have, and I’m sure there’s no spread there and that’s true in many places. Remember, there are more people than ever with the virus,” said Farley.

City officials said dramatic action is needed to respond to an exponential growth in cases and hospitalizations.

On Thursday, health officials announced 765 additional confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Philadelphia. That brings the number of confirmed cases to 57,237.

The number of residents who have died from the virus in Philadelphia is 1,945.

How is 2nd wave of COVID-19 impacting local hospitals?

As the second wave of COVID-19 hits the Philadelphia region, doctors and medical professionals discuss how the virus is impacting hospitals.

Grey Lodge Pub in Mayfair closing

The new round of COVID-19 regulations was the final straw for one Philadelphia restaurant. The Grey Lodge Pub in Mayfair is closing its doors for good after 70 years in business. The Lucky Cat Brewing Company, which is a standalone business inside the pub, will remain open.

Philadelphia museums knocked back down by new COVID-19 restrictions

The new restrictions put in place to tackle the surge of COVID-19 cases in Philadelphia are hitting museums in the area hard. After going through a five-month shutdown during the first wave, they are being shut down again, which in some cases, will cause hard economic pain and uncertainty for employees.

National Constitution Center temporarily closes to the public through January 1, 2021

In accordance with health guidelines from the City of Philadelphia in response to COVID-19, the National Constitution Center is temporarily closed to the public through January 1, 2021. The Center offers a range of free online programs and resources for learners of all ages. CLICK HERE to learn more.

Houses of worship in Philly vow to persevere amid new COVID restrictions

The new COVID-19 restrictions in Philadelphia will have a major impact on houses of worship, which for the time being can operate at only 5% capacity. While the Archdiocese of Philadelphia revises its guidance, some churches and synagogues in the city have a variety of innovative plans

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Philadelphia COVID-19 today: Philadelphia Fitness Coalition protesting gym closures in city amid coronavirus pandemic

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) — More than two dozen gyms in Philadelphia are joining forces, demanding that the city allows them to reopen.

They have created the Philadelphia Fitness Coalition and have gathered more than 1,500 signatures in opposition to the new restrictions.

As the number of covid-19 cases rises, the city required gyms to shut down indoor activities at the end of last week.

But gym owners say it is unfair because of the safety precautions they have put in place.

They plan to protest outside of City Hall on Tuesday.

Last week, the city’s top health official, Dr. Thomas Farley, defended the city’s decision to tighten restrictions, saying now is the riskiest time for the transmission of the virus.

“What was now safe is now dangerous with the change in the weather. Many businesses feel they put safety measures in place, sure they have, and I’m sure there’s no spread there and that’s true in many places. Remember, there are more people than ever with the virus,” said Farley.

City officials said dramatic action is needed to respond to an exponential growth in cases and hospitalizations.

On Thursday, health officials announced 765 additional confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Philadelphia. That brings the number of confirmed cases to 57,237.

The number of residents who have died from the virus in Philadelphia is 1,945.

How is 2nd wave of COVID-19 impacting local hospitals?

As the second wave of COVID-19 hits the Philadelphia region, doctors and medical professionals discuss how the virus is impacting hospitals.

Grey Lodge Pub in Mayfair closing

The new round of COVID-19 regulations was the final straw for one Philadelphia restaurant. The Grey Lodge Pub in Mayfair is closing its doors for good after 70 years in business. The Lucky Cat Brewing Company, which is a standalone business inside the pub, will remain open.

Philadelphia museums knocked back down by new COVID-19 restrictions


The new restrictions put in place to tackle the surge of COVID-19 cases in Philadelphia are hitting museums in the area hard. After going through a five-month shutdown during the first wave, they are being shut down again, which in some cases, will cause hard economic pain and uncertainty for employees.

National Constitution Center temporarily closes to the public through January 1, 2021

In accordance with health guidelines from the City of Philadelphia in response to COVID-19, the National Constitution Center is temporarily closed to the public through January 1, 2021. The Center offers a range of free online programs and resources for learners of all ages. CLICK HERE to learn more.

Houses of worship in Philly vow to persevere amid new COVID restrictions


The new COVID-19 restrictions in Philadelphia will have a major impact on houses of worship, which for the time being can operate at only 5% capacity. While the Archdiocese of Philadelphia revises its guidance, some churches and synagogues in the city have a variety of innovative plans to carry on through the holidays.

Philadelphia-area stores stock up as new COVID restrictions set

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Canadian Coalition on Distracted Driving focuses on safety at crash scenes and prevention of first responder critical incident stress

Anatomy of a Road Crash fact sheet

See link in press release to download CCDD Anatomy of a Road Crash
See link in press release to download CCDD Anatomy of a Road Crash
See link in press release to download CCDD Anatomy of a Road Crash

The Impact of Road Crashes on First Responders & Communities: Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder & Critical Incident Stress fact sheet

See link in press release to download CCDD The Impact of Road Crashes on First Responders & Communities: Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder & Critical Incident Stress
See link in press release to download CCDD The Impact of Road Crashes on First Responders & Communities: Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder & Critical Incident Stress
See link in press release to download CCDD The Impact of Road Crashes on First Responders & Communities: Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder & Critical Incident Stress

‘The Road’ © Kylee Bowman 2020

See link in press release to view ‘The Road’ © Kylee Bowman 2020
See link in press release to view ‘The Road’ © Kylee Bowman 2020
See link in press release to view ‘The Road’ © Kylee Bowman 2020

OTTAWA, Oct. 28, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Today, the Traffic Injury Research Foundation (TIRF) released Anatomy of a Road Crash and The Impact of Road Crashes on First Responders & Communities: Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder & Critical Incident Stress in acknowledgement of National First Responders Day. These fact sheets were produced by the Canadian Coalition on Distracted Driving (CCDD), an initiative of TIRF, Drop It And Drive® (DIAD) and The Co-operators.

Each year, collisions on Canadian roads have devastating consequences for communities across the country, and distracted driving is a contributing factor in one in four fatalities. Concern understandably centres on the victims, families and communities who are directly impacted. But the immediate and long-term consequences for first responders, including police, fire and paramedics, who attend crash scenes is not always recognized.

“Police services and first responders are committed to protecting the lives and safety of everyone on the roads, regardless of circumstances. These professionals willingly place themselves in harm’s way to enforce traffic laws and mitigate loss of life when crashes occur,” says Robyn Robertson, President & CEO, TIRF. “First responders attend far too many crash scenes throughout their career and carry with them the tragic outcomes every day. Their contribution to the CCDD National Action Plan on distracted driving was vital to prevent other Canadian families from experiencing such losses.”

Between 2013 and 2017, there were 8,573 fatal collisions which claimed 9,436 lives and 582,067 injury collisions resulting in serious and minor injuries among 793,684 individuals. These crashes are not just numbers. For all of those involved, including first responders, it is very personal.

“A moment’s inattention while driving is all it takes to become part of tragedy. Having supervised more than 1,000 crashes during my career, I can attest that sitting with a family trying to explain why someone is no longer coming home, or is forever changed because of a bad choice is something you don’t forget,”, says retired Ontario Provincial Police Inspector Mark Andrews. “It is simple, really, distraction kills people. If people accept that, and accept the responsibility that driving safely is everyone’s job, we can stop the tragedies.”

Results from a 2017 national study from the

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Global Coalition for Adaptive Research, Amgen, and Eisai Announce First Patient Enrolled in International COVID-19 Trial

Amgen and Eisai to Participate in the Immune Modulation Domain of REMAP-COVID, an Adaptive Clinical Trial to Test Interventions for Patients Hospitalized With COVID-19

Amgen’s Apremilast and Eisai’s Eritoran to Be Evaluated Across Multiple International Trial Sites Within the REMAP Network

Global Coalition for Adaptive Research (LOS ANGELES, CA), Amgen (THOUSAND OAKS, CA), and Eisai Co., Ltd. (TOKYO, Japan “Eisai”) — The Global Coalition for Adaptive Research (GCAR) in collaboration with Amgen and Eisai Co., Ltd., today announced enrollment of the first patient in the immune modulation domain of REMAP-COVID, a sub-study of REMAP-CAP (A Randomized, Embedded, Multifactorial, Adaptive Platform trial for Community-Acquired Pneumonia) that tests multiple interventions for the treatment of patients hospitalized with COVID-19. Amgen’s apremilast and Eisai’s investigational eritoran are being evaluated as potential therapeutic agents.

This press release features multimedia. View the full release here: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20201026005657/en/

REMAP-CAP was developed to test treatments for severe pneumonia both in non-pandemic and pandemic settings. In February 2020, REMAP-CAP rapidly pivoted to its pandemic mode (the REMAP-COVID sub-study), as per its original intent, to incorporate additional potential treatment regimens specifically targeting COVID-19 and to expand enrollment to COVID-19 patients. This trial is a multicenter, randomized platform study, with treatments tested within groupings or “domains” based on pathway or mechanism of action.

The trial is being conducted in the multi-hospital UPMC (University of Pittsburgh Medical Center) health system along with over 20 hospitals in the United States. Additional global sites across the trial network will follow. University of Pittsburgh is serving as the U.S. Regional Coordinating Center.

“Partnering with the biopharmaceutical industry to be able to efficiently test well-understood targeted agents is critical to understanding treatment paradigms for COVID-19 patients,” says Derek Angus, MD, MPH, FRCP, U.S. Principal Investigator of REMAP and Chief Healthcare Innovation Officer, UPMC Health System. “Today’s announcement marks an important milestone in the collaboration between industry and the scientific and academic community to work collectively to evaluate potentially promising therapies to support patients hospitalized with COVID-19.”

Amgen’s apremilast is an oral drug which inhibits the activity of PDE4 (Phosphodiesterase 4), an enzyme found in inflammatory cells in the human body. By inhibiting PDE4, apremilast is thought to modulate the production of inflammatory cytokines and other mediators, which may prove helpful in inhibiting the inflammatory response associated with the signs, symptoms and pulmonary involvements observed in some COVID-19 patients. Apremilast is currently approved for use in more than 45 countries as an oral treatment for inflammatory diseases including moderate to severe plaque psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis and oral ulcers associated with Behcet’s disease.

“Amgen believes that, based on its mechanism of action, apremilast might help prevent the respiratory distress seen in moderate to severe-stage adult COVID-19 patients,” said David M. Reese, M.D., Executive Vice President of Research and Development at Amgen. “We are proud to be joining REMAP-COVID, which is an important and innovative effort utilizing a platform approach and has the potential to rapidly identify whether apremilast

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