More than 6 million coronavirus vaccine doses have been reported administered Saturday-Sunday because the tempo of vaccinations continues to extend throughout the nation.
Almost one-quarter of the whole U.S. inhabitants – and nearly one-third of the grownup inhabitants – has obtained a minimum of one dose, in accordance with data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
And extra vaccines could possibly be on the best way – AstraZeneca mentioned Monday that superior trial information from a U.S. research on its vaccine shows it is 79% effective at preventing symptomatic COVID-19 and 100% efficient in stopping extreme illness and hospitalization. The U.S. research comprised 30,000 volunteers, 20,000 of whom got the vaccine whereas the remainder received dummy pictures.
“We are preparing to submit these findings to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and for the rollout of millions of doses across America should the vaccine be granted U.S.Emergency Use Authorization,” said Mene Pangalos, executive vice president of BioPharmaceuticals R&D.
Investigators said no increased risk of blood clots was found. Use of the AstraZeneca vaccine was suspended in several European countries last week amid reports of blood clots in a small number of patients, but the European Medicines Agency subsequently said the vaccine was safe and effective.
Also in the news:
►Kristy Kreme is providing a sweet incentive to encourage vaccinations – free doughnuts through the end of 2021. Starting today, consumers who show a valid COVID-19 vaccination card at locations nationwide will get a free Original Glazed doughnut. The freebie is valid at all 369 Krispy Kreme shops in 41 states.
►On Sunday, Florida became the first state to have more than 1,000 known cases of coronavirus variants. The U.S. reported another 834 variant cases since Thursday alone and now has 6,638 known cases; almost 6,400 of them are of the B.1.1.7 type, the one first found in the United Kingdom, CDC data shows.
►Students in California classrooms can sit three feet apart instead of six under new guidelines adopted by the state, which follows Friday’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations.
►1 in 4 Americans in recent weeks have seen someone blame Asian American people for the coronavirus epidemic, a new USA TODAY/Ipsos Poll finds. The nationwide survey was taken Thursday and Friday, in the wake of last week’s mass shooting in Georgia of eight people, six of them women of Asian descent.
📈 Today’s numbers: The U.S. has over 29.8 million confirmed coronavirus cases and more than 542,000 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University data. The global totals: 123.2 million cases and 2.71 million deaths. More than 156.7 million vaccine doses have been distributed in the U.S. and 124.4 million have been administered, according to the CDC.
📘 What we’re studying: From grade college to graduate college, creating younger minds in shut bodily proximity halted abruptly in mid-March 2020. Here’s what happened next.
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- Funeral homes knew something was wrong before COVID became a crisis
- Kamala Harris visiting Florida to promote stimulus package
- Sen. Rand Paul dismissive of Fauci’s mask messages
- Miami Beach declares state of emergency because of spring breakers
- Pressure grows for White House to issue reopening guidelines for borders
- Schools testing for virus to allow in-person class: ‘It’s worth it’
- Telemedicine’s boom may not end with pandemic
Funeral dwelling operators knew as early as January 2020, earlier than the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention started notifying most of the people, that one thing new was killing folks. The operators knew before COVID-19 was ever listed as a cause of death, Maine funeral dwelling operator Jeffrey Pelkey says.
Pelkey, who is 54, recalled an unprecedented day when two elderly couples, both from local nursing homes, arrived within 24 hours. Soon cemeteries closed, concerned about the risk for their workers. Funeral homes became storage facilities for the dead, waiting to be buried.
“It was almost like a reality television series hit us that we didn’t sign up for,” Pelkey said.
Vice President Kamala Harris will journey to Jacksonville, Florida, on Monday to tout the administration’s $1.9 trillion coronavirus stimulus plan.
It will be her first visit since crisscrossing Florida last fall during the presidential campaign. Details of next week’s visit were not yet revealed. But Harris’ stop in the Sunshine State is part of the administration’s “Help is Here” tour to highlight what it says are the benefits of the American Rescue Plan that President Joe Biden signed into law on March 11.
The Democratic National Committee on Monday unveiled billboards in Miami and Tampa to remind voters that Florida’s two U.S. senators, Republicans Marco Rubio and Rick Scott, opposed the measure.
– Antonio Fins, Palm Beach Post
Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul on Sunday continued his clash with Dr. Anthony Fauci over whether vaccinated Americans should continue to wear masks. “Sorry Dr Fauci and different fearmongers, new research exhibits vaccines and naturally acquired immunity DO successfully neutralize COVID variants,” Paul tweeted. “Good information for everybody however bureaucrats and petty tyrants!”
The GOP senator and Fauci tangled at a Senate hearing last week, with Paul dismissing as “theater” Fauci’s claims that vaccinated Americans should continue to wear masks. Fauci cited questions over the impact of virus variants on vaccines. Fauci pressed his case Friday, saying on “CBS This Morning” on Friday that Paul’s claim that mask wearing was unnecessary was “useless flawed”.
Miami Beach’s entertainment district will remain in a state of emergency because an influx of spring breakers has inundated the city. A curfew went into effect at 8 p.m. Saturday and will last at least until the same time Tuesday, Miami Beach Interim City Manager Raul Aguila said. All restaurants, bars, and businesses are required to be closed by 8 p.m.
“At the height of spring break, we’re fairly merely overwhelmed within the leisure district,” Aguila said. “Folks, this isn’t a simple choice to make. We are doing that to guard the general public well being and security.”
On the anniversary of the United States’ closing of its borders to its neighbors to the north and south, lawmakers and households throughout the nation separated by the border proceed to languish with no clear finish in sight. “This has been a 12 months of wrestle for binational households,” said Devon Weber, founder of Let Us Reunite, a campaign of 2,200 families lobbying the U.S. government for greater travel exemptions for communities separated by the border shutdowns.
“Your life is in limbo and it is extraordinarily irritating. Heartbreaking is the phrase that involves thoughts,” Weber mentioned of the state of affairs affecting households on either side of the border. Each month through the pandemic, border restrictions have been reauthorized with no clear end.
– Matthew Brown
As part of the push under President Joe Biden to reopen schools, the administration announced last week that it would make $10 billion available for K-12 schools to expand coronavirus screening of staff and students. Quick, rapid antigen tests that offer results in 15 minutes, like the ones used at McSwain Union Elementary School in Northern California, are likely to be adopted more broadly.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention this week released new recommendations in tandem with Biden’s school-testing initiative. Biden administration officials say more details are coming, but the lack of national coordination so far has states and districts charting their own paths.
Schools that already set up testing regimes adopted different practices. Medical technology companies have raced to meet their needs with testing products and services. Health experts are split on what tests are best. And some staff and students’ families have balked at testing.
Public health experts are optimistic widespread vaccination will drive case counts lower, but testing remains critical to track new cases and variants that might make the virus more contagious or deadly.
“It’s one thing that might have made a world of distinction months in the past,” said Dr. Amesh Adalja, a senior scholar at Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security. “And it can make a world of distinction if we will do it at the moment.”
– Erin Richards, Ken Alltucker
The coronavirus pandemic has changed many aspects of the American health care system, but nothing changed quite as drastically as the rise of telemedicine. While virtual care existed before COVID-19, the practice boomed after state-mandated stay-at-home orders and has since remained strong.
Prior to the pandemic, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts received about 200 telehealth claims per day. That number reached up to 40,0000 claims per day from April to May 2020, and the insurer is still receiving about 30,000 claims per day almost a year later, according to spokesperson Amy McHugh. Athenahealth, a health tech company, released an interactive dashboard that delivered insights on telehealth trends from 18.4 million virtual appointments by 60,000 providers.
“The pandemic has necessitated a new era in medicine in which telehealth appointments are a core aspect of the patient-provider relationship,” said Jessica Sweeney-Platt, the company’s vice president of research and editorial strategy.
– Adrianna Rodriguez
Contributing: Morgan Hines and Mike Stucka, USA TODAY; The Associated Press