Tag: COVID19

HEALTH
Canada sees COVID-19 contagion heading into Christmas as first vaccinations loom

OTTAWA (Reuters) – Canada’s second wave of the novel coronavirus is worsening as the holidays approach and some areas are imposing stricter restrictions, authorities said on Friday, with the first vaccinations due next week.

FILE PHOTO: Paramedics transport a patient to Mount Sinai Hospital as the city enters the first day of a renewed coronavirus disease (COVID-19) lockdown due to a case numbers spike in Toronto, Ontario, Canada November 23, 2020. REUTERS/Carlos Osorio

Although many of the 10 provinces have already clamped down on businesses and limited gatherings as numbers continue to spike, chief public health officer Theresa Tam said more action was needed to reduce pressure on the healthcare system as hospitalizations soar.

“The current daily case count far exceeds the peak of the first wave … There is little indication that this upward trajectory will change without further intensifying public health measures,” she

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HEALTH
Walgreens to hire 25,000 as part of plan to give COVID-19 vaccine to nursing home residents and staff before Christmas

Walgreens expects to receive its first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine Dec. 21 and plans to inoculate nursing home residents and workers at more than 30,000 long-term care facilities nationwide.



a group of people walking in front of a store: The Walgreens store at State and Randolph Streets in Chicago.


© Nancy Stone, Chicago Tribune/Chicago Tribune/TNS
The Walgreens store at State and Randolph Streets in Chicago.

The company plans to hire about 25,000 people across the U.S., including up to 9,000 pharmacists and other health care workers, to administer the vaccine, once approved, to long-term care facilities through a partnership with pharmacy service provider PharMerica, the companies said during a panel discussion Friday on the vaccine rollout.

CVS Health and Walmart are also gearing up to administer doses in nursing homes and assisted living centers. CVS Health is preparing 10,000 health care professionals to give the shots, CEO Larry Merlo said Thursday in a CNBC interview.

Walmart is preparing more than 5,000 in-store pharmacies to receive the vaccine, setting up

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HEALTH
U.S. readies COVID-19 vaccine rollout as death toll climbs

NEW YORK/INDIANAPOLIS (Reuters) -Health authorities, shipping services and hospitals, expecting imminent federal regulatory approval of the first COVID-19 vaccine in the United States, put final plans in place on Friday to launch a mass-inoculation campaign of unparalleled dimension.

Last-minute preparations for the vaccine rollout came as the U.S. death toll from the coronavirus pandemic approached 300,000 to date, capping weeks of ominously surging infections and hospitalizations that have strained healthcare systems to their limits.

Another 2,902 U.S. deaths were reported on Thursday, a day after a record 3,253, a pace projected to continue over the next two to three months even as distribution of available vaccine supplies ramps up. The process could start as soon as Monday.

Moving with unprecedented speed, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Friday was on the cusp of approving emergency use of the coronavirus vaccine developed by Pfizer

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HEALTH
Overnight Health Care: White House presses FDA chief over COVID-19 vaccine | Committees reach bipartisan deal to protect patients from surprise medical bills

Welcome to Friday’s Overnight Health Care.



a man wearing a suit and tie: Overnight Health Care: White House presses FDA chief over COVID-19 vaccine | Committees reach bipartisan deal to protect patients from surprise medical bills | Sanders, Hawley vow fight next week over stimulus checks


© Getty Images
Overnight Health Care: White House presses FDA chief over COVID-19 vaccine | Committees reach bipartisan deal to protect patients from surprise medical bills | Sanders, Hawley vow fight next week over stimulus checks

FDA authorization of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine candidate is expected soon, but the White House is pushing the agency to move even quicker. Meanwhile, the Trump administration is buying another 100 million doses of a similar candidate from Moderna. And a surprise billing fix might happen after all.

Let’s start with the COVID vaccine:

White House presses FDA chief over COVID-19 vaccine

Top Trump administration officials are turning up the heat on the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to quickly authorize emergency use of the country’s first coronavirus vaccine.

White House chief of staff Mark Meadows phoned FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn on Friday and pushed him to clear

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HEALTH
SC Shatters Daily Record With Nearly 3,200 COVID-19 Cases | South Carolina News

By MICHELLE LIU, Associated Press/Report for America

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A week after announcing a record-shattering 2,470 COVID-19 cases in one day, South Carolina health officials said Friday the state had eclipsed that figure by several hundred.

The Department of Health and Environmental Control reported 3,137 confirmed cases and 47 additional deaths Friday. More than 220,000 cases have been recorded in the state since the beginning of the outbreak, and 4,332 South Carolinians have died due to COVID-19, according to the health agency.

The rising numbers come as the state lays out its plan to vaccinate frontline healthcare workers and then eventually the rest of the population. Officials say that with limited supplies, the vaccine isn’t an immediate solution.

“While the arriving vaccine is the light at the end of the tunnel, it will be months before there is enough vaccine available for everyone,” said a statement from Brannon

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HEALTH
VA Announces Plan for COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution


As vaccine supplies increase, additional veterans will receive vaccinations based on age, existing health problems and other factors that increase the risk of severe illness or death from COVID-19. The vaccines will be offered at no cost to all service members enrolled in VA health care, it said.

“VA is well prepared and positioned to begin COVID-19 vaccinations,” said VA Secretary Robert Wilkie in a press statement. “Our ultimate goal is to offer it to all veterans and employees who want to be vaccinated.”

‘Herculean effort’

The VA submitted an order for 73,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine and an additional 122,000 doses of the Moderna vaccine to be distributed once it has authorization from the Food and Drug Administration.

“It is not an adequate amount,” said Richard Stone, M.D., executive in charge at the VA’s Veterans Health Administration at a recent Senate hearing. “This will be a long process

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HEALTH
COVID-19 vaccine is recommended even if you already had the virus

More than 15 million Americans have been infected by the COVID-19 virus, and many may be questioning whether they need to receive one of the two coronavirus vaccines now on the verge of approval from U.S. regulators.

Short answer: Yes.

“They will be asked to stand in line and get a vaccine also,” said Dr. William Schaffner, a professor of infectious diseases at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tenn. “There will be no distinction made, in part because we think there’s no adverse event that will occur, and also the protection from the vaccine actually may be more long-lived, of longer duration than that you get from the natural infection.”

Coronaviruses are notorious for prompting a flawed and incomplete immune response in humans, infectious disease experts say.

It’s one reason why science has yet to come up with a cure for the common cold.

“With the four seasonal beta

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