An expert panel advising the CDC has scheduled an emergency meeting Friday to discuss the possibility of allowing additional COVID-19 vaccine doses to all adults, adding reports suggesting booster shots will soon become more widespread.
The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practice (ACIP) has already approved boosters for specific groups, including those over 65, younger adults at high risk for severe COVID-19, and people whose jobs or living conditions put them at high risk for infection. The Food and Drug Administration is expected to sign the plan before Friday’s meeting without convening its own expert committee.
New York Times reported Tuesday that the FDA can approve Pfizer-BioNTech boosters for all Americans 18 years and older by Thursday. Booster recipients must complete their Pfizer or Moderna vaccinations at least six months before receiving the extra dose. For the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, the waiting time is only two months.
The final step – the CDC’s official recommendation – could come shortly after Friday’s advisory panel meeting, which means that the availability of boostershots can be expanded nationwide as early as this weekend.
Some jurisdictions, including California, Colorado, New Mexico, and New York City, have already approved boosters for all adults.
– Karen Weintraub
Also in the news:
“Washington, DC,” said Mayor Muriel Bowser the city would lift mandates for the indoor mask from Monday, with a number of exceptions, including public transport vehicles and stations, schools, libraries, nursing homes and other community centers, as well as any private companies that choose the requirement.
►Cases are rising in 31 states, shows a USA TODAY analysis of data from Johns Hopkins University. The incidence for the week ending Monday was 584,449, a 15% increase from a recent low of the week ending October 26th.
►CDC moved four European travel destinations on Monday – Hungary, Iceland, the Czech Republic and Guernsey – at its highest risk, “Level 4” category. The CDC recommends avoiding travel to destinations in this category that have an incidence rate of more than 500 new COVID-19 cases per 100,000 persons over the past 28 days.
►Maine surpassed his record for the number of people in the state hospitalized with COVID-19 when that number reached 261 on Monday, 72 of them in critical care.
► A hospital in Houston temporarily suspended a doctor for spreading false information about COVID-19 to its patients and on social media.
Tal Today’s numbers: The United States has recorded more than 47 million confirmed COVID-19 cases and more than 764,000 deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. Global totals: More than 253 million cases and 5.1 million deaths. More than 195 million Americans – 58.8% of the population – are fully vaccinated, According to the CDC.
📘 What we read: While doctors’ offices and pharmacies are filling appointments to vaccinate children, parents across the country are looking forward to the freedoms their children can enjoy after receiving their syringe. But The issue of masking – especially in schools – is still pending.
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An agreement between US drugmaker Pfizer and a UN-backed public health organization could provide a promising COVID-19 pill to more than half the world’s population, an important step towards speeding up the end of the pandemic.
Pfizer said Tuesday it would grant a license for the antiviral pill Paxlovid to the Geneva-based Medicines Patent Pool (MPP), which would let generic drug companies produce the pill for use in 95 low- and middle-income countries, which make up about 53% of the global population. The agreement follows a similar agreement was reached in October between MPP and New Jersey-based Merck for its own experimental COVID-19 drug, molnupiravir.
Also on Tuesday, Pfizer applied for an emergency use permit for Paxlovid from the Food and Drug Administration. Preliminary data showed that the drug reduced the risk of hospitalization or death by 89% in COVID patients who took it within three days after the onset of symptoms.
“We believe that oral antiviral therapies can play a crucial role in reducing the severity of COVID-19 infections, reducing the burden on our healthcare systems and saving lives,” Pfizer’s chairman and CEO Albert Bourla said in a statement.
Health officials said the fact that the deal was signed even before Pfizer’s pill has been approved anywhere could help end the pandemic sooner.
“It is quite important that we will be able to provide access to a drug that seems to be effective and has just been developed to more than 4 billion people,” said Esteban Burrone, head of policy at Medicines Patent Pool, which estimated production. of birth control pills would begin within months.
The President’s Medical Adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci said people who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 should feel safe meeting during the holidays with their loved ones who have also been vaccinated.
“If you get vaccinated and your family is vaccinated, you can enjoy a typical Thanksgiving, Christmas with your family and close friends,” Fauci said on Monday. interview organized by the Bipartisan Policy Center.
With still many cases, Fauci urged Americans to wear masks when in groups of people indoors.
“But when you’re with your family at home, enjoy it with your parents, your children, your grandparents,” he said. “There’s no reason not to.”
Pfizer has formally requested an emergency permit from the Food and Drug Administration to deliver its COVID-19 antiviral drug Paxlovid to the US public.
A recent study showed that the drug reduced the risk of hospitalization and death by 89% compared to placebo when given within three days of the onset of COVID-19 symptoms. The subjects in the trial all had a high risk of serious illness. An independent audit firm stopped the study early because of its effectiveness. The drug, which limits the replication of the virus, is delivered as three pills taken for five days.
– Karen Weintraub
Audiences will be welcome again at New York City’s iconic New Year’s Eve in Times Square – provided participants are vaccinated against COVID-19.
After limiting the presence mostly to first-aiders in socially distant pods last year when coronavirus raged across the country, Mayor Bill de Blasio said the city would open its arms to “hundreds of thousands of people there to celebrate it. We can finally find together again again. It’s going to be great. ”
At least for those who have gotten their shots. Persons aged 5 and over must present proof of vaccination along with a valid photo ID to gain access to the viewing area. Persons under 5 years of age and therefore not eligible for the vaccine must be accompanied by a vaccinated adult and must always wear face mask.
– Jordan Mendoza
A new report from a panel of government, academic and journalistic leaders called for a clearer federal strategy to address misinformation about the COVID-19 pandemic as part of 15 broad recommendations to reduce the “damage chain reaction” caused by false information.
The report, released Monday by the Aspen Institute’s Commission on Information Disorder, followed a six-month investigation into the spread of COVID-related misinformation. It stressed the need for a “comprehensive federal approach” with clearly defined responsibilities across the executive.
“At the time of writing, the federal government lacks any clear leadership and strategy for the disinformation problem despite its own recognition of the impact on public health, elections, businesses, technology and continued campaigns on colored communities, including immigrants and refugees,” the report said. “This lack of leadership, ownership or strategy hampers efforts, delays response times and overlaps efforts.”
The panel also called for social media platforms for more transparency in sharing background information about viral postings and how they are disseminated, among other recommendations.
A teacher in Palm Beach County, Florida, who was at the center of a fight to get a hospital to administer an unproven drug against her worsening COVID-19 symptoms is dead from the disease.
Tamara Drock, 47, of Loxahatchee, Florida, died of complications from COVID-19 Friday, 12 weeks after being admitted to Palm Beach Gardens Medical Center for treatment, her husband said.
While battling the disease, her husband, Ryan Drock, sued the hospital last month in an attempt to require it to administer ivermectin, an FDA-approved drug to treat conditions caused by parasitic worms but not COVID-19.
The closely monitored case became one of several across the country trying to force hospitals to administer the drug, which has gained popularity in conservative circles as a potential treatment for severe cases of the disease. The FDA says ivermectin has not been shown to be effective against COVID-19 in preclinical trials.
– Andrew Marra, Palm Beach Post
Starring: Associated Press
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