Global manufacturers of COVID-19 vaccines are rapidly increasing production and expressed optimism on Tuesday that the United States will have sufficient supplies to vaccinate all Americans who want it by the end of July, as the said President Joe Biden.
Representatives of pharmaceutical companies also said they are working on vaccine modifications to combat variants if needed.
John Young, chief commercial officer of Pfizer, said in a hearing before the Chamber of Energy and Commerce committee that his company would have delivered 120 million doses by the end of March and reach 300 million by the end of July. That’s enough of the two-dose diet for 150 million Americans, and Young said the company is working to make sure it is safe and effective for children.
“We are conducting studies in patients aged 12 to 15 and hope to begin studies in children under 11 soon,” Young said.
Stephen Hoge, president of Moderna, said his company also hopes to deliver 300 million doses by the end of July. And Richard Nettles, vice president of medical affairs for Johnson & Johnson, said that if his company gets clearance from the Food and Drug Administration for emergency use, J&J hopes to deliver 100 million doses of its single-dose vaccine. ‘by the end of June.
Also in the news:
►States will receive around 14.5 million doses of the vaccine this week, marking an almost 70% increase in dose distribution over the past month, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said on Tuesday. . Psaki also said governors were told on Tuesday that the number of doses sent directly to pharmacies would increase by around 100,000 this week.
►The head of the World Health Organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, calls for better access to the COVID-19 vaccine for poor countries, saying: “More than 210 countries have not yet administered a single dose.”
► British Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s plans to slowly ease a nationwide lockdown have heightened optimism that travel restrictions will be lifted in time for the summer holiday season. TUI, the UK’s largest tour operator, said on Tuesday that bookings were up six-fold on Monday, the company’s busiest day in more than a month.
►Health officials in Texas were optimistic that vaccine distribution would resume by the end of the week. Last week’s electricity crisis resulted in shipping delays, canceled appointments and destroyed more than 900 doses of the vaccine statewide.
📈 Today’s numbers: The United States has more than 28.2 million confirmed cases of coronavirus and 502,400 deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. Global totals: over 112 million cases and 2.48 million deaths. More than 82.1 million doses of the vaccine have been distributed in the United States and about 65 million have been administered, according to the CDC.
📘 What we read: Why get vaccinated against COVID-19 if you always have to wear a mask? Better to get sick, say health experts.
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Biden administration to send millions of masks across country
President Joe Biden, who has asked all Americans to wear masks for the first 100 days of his tenure to limit the spread of the coronavirus, said on Tuesday his administration intended to send millions of face covers soon. to people across the country.
Biden confirmed the plan during a virtual roundtable with four essential black workers, saying, “We’re probably going to be sending huge numbers of masks across the country, millions of them very soon.”
He did not give details on when or what type of mask is being considered.
California stimulus package with $ 600 payments includes undocumented immigrants
California Governor Gavin Newsom on Tuesday signed a coronavirus relief program that includes $ 600 in one-time payments for 5.7 million low-to-moderate-income residents of the state. The $ 7.6 billion package, funded by a windfall of $ 15 billion in higher than expected tax revenue, also aims to support small businesses.
Low-income undocumented immigrants living in California who have an individual taxpayer identification number will be eligible for payments of $ 600. They were among those hardest hit by the economic downturn caused by the pandemic and are not eligible for federal stimulus checks or unemployment insurance.
“Those who were left behind in the federal stimulus, California will not leave you behind,” Newsom said.
2,400 doses of vaccine wasted in Tennessee
Tennessee’s most populous county will not be allowed to allocate COVID vaccines after more than 2,400 doses were wasted there last month. Instead, officials in the Memphis County Seat City, as well as hospitals, clinics, and pharmacies, will take care of the distribution.
The state Department of Health opened an investigation over the weekend into a report that recent winter storms resulted in the release of 1,000 doses in Shelby County, but Health Commissioner Lisa Piercey said the problems were much more widespread.
Piercey said issues dating back to Feb. 3 included multiple incidents of spoiled doses, excessive vaccine inventory, insufficient record keeping and a lack of a formal process to manage vaccines that are about to expire. A federal investigation is also expected.
Many would give up sex for the chance to travel, Trivago poll finds
We knew Americans were desperate to travel again – but we didn’t know how much until now: 38% of Americans polled by Trivago said they would give up sex for a year if they could start again. travel immediately. For the British, the number was even higher: 40%. Almost half of Americans surveyed said they would give up their jobs as well.
More than half of those polled said they had adopted a new hobby during the pandemic, and once that was all over, about two-thirds said they would likely choose a vacation related to that hobby.
The travel accommodation platform surveyed 2,000 Britons and Americans over the course of a week in early January.
– Jayme deerwester
COVID-19 Vaccine Craving: It’s Not Just Meghan McCain from ‘The View’
Two months after the vaccine was launched, most Americans still don’t know the happy feeling that comes with getting a first dose. Public health officials warned that it would take time to vaccinate anyone who wanted to, but most people did not expect the confusion and inconsistencies that have plagued immunization schedules. They probably couldn’t prepare for the feeling of watching some people on the verge of getting back to normal while they continue to wait.
Meghan McCain, co-host of “The View,” directed her frustration at Dr Anthony Fauci and took the heat of social media for it. But it doesn’t corner the market for vaccine cravings, experts say.
“Anytime you have a little bit of hope, and it’s broken, you’re going to be depressed, angry, or resentful,” said therapist Steven Stosny. “And sometimes you’re going to blame it on another person, even though it’s the system that’s really causing the stress.” Learn more here.
‘Saturday Night Live’ shoots fire for joke about Israel’s vaccination program
Saturday Night Live is under fire for a joke about Israel’s COVID vaccination program.
Israel allows anyone over 16 to access vaccines and has vaccinated almost half of its population. Michael Che, SNL “Weekend Update” presenter, joked, “I’m going to guess it’s half Jewish.”
Palestinians living in the Israel-controlled West Bank and Gaza Strip are not included in the statistics and have little access to vaccines. Israel maintains that the territories are responsible for the health care of their people.
Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan Greenblatt was among those who challenged Che’s humor. Greenblatt cited “factual inaccuracies”, accusing Che of “playing in an anti-Semitic trope”.
Dr Anthony Fauci says politics contributed to COVID death toll
Political divisions in America are partly to blame for pushing the death toll from COVID-19 to over 500,000, Dr Anthony Fauci said Tuesday. Fauci, speaking on CNN, declined to specifically call former President Donald Trump, but said months spent downplaying the severity of the pandemic by political leaders have discouraged mitigation efforts such as port masks and social distancing promoted by public health experts.
“You’re trying to signal to the country that it really needs to get down to it and address the kinds of mitigation strategies that we are proposing,” said Fauci, one of President Joe Biden’s senior health advisers. “And signals come in saying, ‘It’s not that bad, we’re in pretty good shape …’ It wasn’t helpful. ‘
Fauci said it was painful to hear people calling the pandemic “fake news” as hospitals were overrun with patients infected with the virus. “I mean, how could you say when the people of your own state, your own town, your own county die?” Said Fauci.
Community health centers rely on vaccination of low-income patients
The Biden administration is targeting community health centers, which serve about 30 million patients nationwide, as vaccine distribution centers. Two-thirds of these patients live in poverty level or below, half are racial or ethnic minorities and most are uninsured or on Medicaid.
Dr. Marcella Nunez-Smith, chair of the COVID-19 Health Equity Task Force, announced earlier this month that the administration would begin shipping doses to 250 centers, at least one in each state or territory.
At the Southeast Mississippi Rural Health Initiative, operations director Janice Robinson said more than 3,000 patients are on waiting lists for an injection at the network’s 17 community health centers.
“We don’t have enough,” Robinson said. “It will definitely make a change.”
– Nada Hassanein
Woman dies after contracting virus from lung donor
A woman who died after undergoing a double lung transplant at the University of Michigan School of Medicine in Ann Arbor is the first known person to contract COVID-19 from a donor lung, according to a new case report published in the American Journal of Transplantation.
The case is rare and represents “the worst possible scenario” to play in a pandemic that has killed half a million Americans, said Bruce Nicely, clinical director of Gift of Life Michigan, the organ recovery and recovery program. fabrics designated by the federal government. . Nicely noted that Gift of Life Michigan was not involved in this donation. The transplant took place at the end of October.
“To my knowledge, this is the first, and indeed the only, documented transmission of COVID-19 to a recipient” from donated organs, Nicely said.
– Kristen Jordan Shamus, Detroit Free Press
Contribute: The Associated Press