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Merck antiviral COVID pill shows success in study; NYC vaccine mandate

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A important federal advisory committee assembly has been scheduled, and its timing suggests children age 5 to 11 may begin getting vaccinated in opposition to COVID-19 in time for Halloween.

Within the coming weeks the FDA is predicted to evaluate after which authorize Pfizer-BioNTech’s vaccine for youngsters ages 5-11 at one-third the dose offered to adolescents and adults. On Friday, it scheduled a gathering of the impartial committee, which advises the Meals and Drug Administration on vaccine and drug approvals, for Oct. 26. 

Pfizer-BioNTech submitted their scientific trial information to the FDA on Wednesday. The corporate says the information reveals their vaccine is protected and efficient in kids ages 5 to 11 at one-third the dose utilized in adolescents and adults.

If FDA authorizes the use, and if a second federal advisory committee additionally agrees, the vaccine may develop into accessible to kids inside days of the ultimate assembly.

“We all know from our huge expertise with different pediatric vaccines that kids are usually not small adults,” appearing FDA Commissioner Dr. Janet Woodcock stated in a press release. The FDA will conduct a complete analysis of scientific trial information submitted in assist of the protection and effectiveness of the vaccine to be used in kids, she stated.

As the speed of Individuals getting their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine stays at its lowest level this 12 months, states with larger vaccination charges are seeing far decrease case counts, hospitalizations and deaths in comparison with these with low vaccination charges, the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention director stated Friday.

Additionally within the information:

Grocery shopping has gotten more expensive. In August, grocery retailer costs crept up one other 0.4%, leaving them 3% above their degree a 12 months earlier and seven.6% larger than they have been two years in the past, earlier than the COVID-19 pandemic upended the U.S. financial system.

►A bunch of lecturers requested the Supreme Courtroom on Thursday for an emergency injunction blocking implementation of New York City’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate for public schools staff.

Virtually half of oldsters with kids between ages 12 and 17 stated their baby has acquired at the least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, a Kaiser Family Foundation survey found. About one third of surveyed dad and mom with kids between ages 5 and 11 stated they might vaccinate their baby “instantly” as soon as a vaccine is permitted for them.

Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb renewed the state’s public well being emergency order for the nineteenth time on Thursday.

►Well being officers in Michigan’s Livingston County are warning of a possible COVID-19 outbreak after a Luke Bryant concert earlier this month. Officers say 27 individuals who attended the nation music live performance have examined constructive for the reason that present. 

📈Right this moment’s numbers: The U.S. has recorded greater than 43.4 million confirmed COVID-19 instances and greater than 698,300 deaths, in accordance to Johns Hopkins University data. World totals: Greater than 233.9 million instances and 4.7 million deaths. Greater than 184 million Individuals — 55% of the inhabitants — are absolutely vaccinated, in accordance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

📘What we’re studying: As Qamil Wright struggled with intense coronavirus signs all through August, she briefly questioned if she would ever perform again

Hold refreshing this web page for the most recent information. Need extra? Join USA TODAY’s Coronavirus Watch newsletter to obtain updates on to your inbox and join our Facebook group.

A healthcare professional holding a syringe and needle up to a vaccine vial.

Supreme Courtroom declines to dam New York Metropolis’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate for lecturers

The Supreme Courtroom on Friday declined to block New York City’s requirement that public faculty lecturers obtain COVID-19 vaccinations, marking the second time the nation’s excessive courtroom has declined to wade into the difficulty. 

A bunch of lecturers in New York had requested the Supreme Courtroom for an emergency injunction to dam implementation of the mandate, which required them to obtain a shot by 5 p.m. Friday or face suspension with out pay when colleges open Monday.

Affiliate Justice Sonia Sotomayor denied the emergency request with out remark. A federal appeals courtroom earlier within the week permitted New York’s mandate. Read more here.

– John Fritze

California turns into first state to announce plans to mandate vaccine for schoolchildren

California will require eligible students to be vaccinated against COVID-19 to attend faculty in-person, however solely after the Meals and Drug Administration absolutely approves the vaccine for extra school-aged kids, Gov. Gavin Newsom introduced Friday.

“I imagine we’ll be the primary state in America to maneuver ahead with this mandate and requirement,” Newsom stated from a college in San Francisco.

He added that pupil vaccine mandates will assist hold extra children protected and studying constantly in lecture rooms. The vaccine mandate could be rolled out in two phases, pending FDA approval: The primary for college students in center and highschool, after which for elementary faculty college students.

Newsom stated he expects the mandate to be in place for by July 1 of subsequent 12 months for college students in seventh by way of twelfth grade. Read more here.

– Erin Richards

Examine: Antiviral tablet extremely efficient at stopping COVID hospitalizations

An experimental drug successfully treated half of COVID-19 infections, stopping instances from progressing to hospitalization, in accordance with a examine launched Friday. The information presents new hope that the virus may quickly be handled by a tablet.

The antiviral drug molnupiravir, made by Merck & Co. and Ridgeback Biotherapeutics of Miami, was given to 385 individuals inside 5 days of their prognosis with COVID-19. One other 377 volunteers who examined constructive got a placebo. All individuals had at the least one danger issue for extreme COVID-19.

Of the individuals who acquired molnupiravir, 7.3% have been hospitalized through the monthlong trial. Within the placebo group, 14% have been hospitalized and eight of them died.

The examine was presupposed to enroll one other 750 individuals, however an impartial monitoring board determined the drug was so efficient it might be unethical to proceed giving anybody a placebo. The corporate plans to use for emergency use authorization as rapidly as doable.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, head of the Nationwide Institute of Allergy and Infectious Ailments, known as the information “spectacular.”

– Karen Weintraub

Justice Brett Kavanaugh assessments constructive for COVID-19

Supreme Courtroom Affiliate Justice Brett Kavanaugh tested positive for COVID-19 simply days earlier than the justices have been set to return to the courtroom to start a brand new time period, the courtroom introduced Friday.

Kavanaugh, who together with the opposite Supreme Courtroom justices has been vaccinated, isn’t experiencing signs, the courtroom stated. He was examined Thursday forward of an investiture ceremony for Affiliate Justice Amy Coney Barrett set for Friday. 

– John Fritze

Extra Individuals died in September than earlier 3 months mixed

With 56,662 reported deaths by COVID-19, the US’ September was greater than twice as lethal as its August. It was far deadlier than June, July and August mixed.

America fared barely higher on instances, with 4.14 million instances reported in comparison with August’s 4.28 million. The numbers made September America’s fifth deadliest month of your entire pandemic, and the fifth-worst for instances.

The deaths have been worse within the South and America’s outlying territories. Florida reported 10,448 deaths and Texas reported 8,159 deaths, every about twice as many as August’s. Florida’s deaths have been about 90% worse than the earlier month on report.

Hawaii and Alaska additionally set information and noticed a few 58% worse dying toll than their earlier worst months.

– Mike Stucka

Why do professional sports activities leagues’ gamers unions oppose vaccine mandates?

The NFL, NBA, NHL and Main League Baseball all have required sure key staff to be vaccinated in opposition to COVID-19, particularly those that may come into shut contact with their most necessary belongings – the gamers. However the one huge exception: the gamers themselves.

Gamers unions have opposed or averted such vaccine mandates in what has become a delicate subject in pro sports.

Some, together with former NBA Gamers Affiliation government director Charles Grantham, say gamers union management is failing its members if it is not pushing for vaccine mandates.

Others see it in another way. In these instances, vaccine mandates for gamers must be collectively bargained between league administration and the gamers unions. Gamers unions have fought to win different rights and advantages in collective bargaining, they usually typically don’t wish to give an inch for a shot if it means league administration may begin to suppose it will probably take a mile later for one thing else. Read more here.

– Brent Schrotenboer

College board group asks President Joe Biden for assist policing threats

A bunch representing faculty board members across the nation requested President Joe Biden on Thursday for federal help to research and cease threats remodeled insurance policies, together with masks mandates, likening the vitriol to a type of home terrorism.

The request by the Nationwide College Boards Affiliation demonstrates the extent of unruliness that has engulfed native schooling conferences throughout the nation through the pandemic, with board members often confronted and threatened by indignant protesters.

“No matter you are feeling about masks, it mustn’t attain this degree of rhetoric,” NSBA Interim Govt Director Chip Slaven informed The Related Press by telephone.

White Home press secretary Jen Psaki stated duty for safeguarding faculty boards falls largely to native legislation enforcement however “we’re persevering with to discover if extra may be executed from throughout the administration.”

The affiliation requested for the federal authorities to get entangled to research instances the place threats or violence may very well be dealt with as violations of federal legal guidelines defending civil rights. It additionally requested for the Justice Division, FBI, Homeland Safety and Secret Service to assist monitor menace ranges and assess dangers to college students, educators, board members and faculty buildings.

Federal invoice goals to drive vacationers to point out proof of vaccination

Home flyers inside the US might quickly must show they’re doubtless COVID-free if a proposed bill Wednesday becomes law.

The U.S. Air Journey Public Security Act, launched by California Sen. Dianne Feinstein, would require all U.S. passengers to be absolutely vaccinated, absolutely recovered or take a look at adverse for the coronavirus earlier than boarding a home flight. 

“We all know that air journey through the 2020 vacation season contributed to final winter’s devastating COVID-19 surge,” Feinstein stated in a Wednesday information launch. “We merely can not permit that to occur once more.”

Whereas testing and or exhibiting proof of vaccination is frequent for worldwide air journey, home U.S. air passengers don’t undergo the identical degree of scrutiny. 

The invoice may face an uphill battle to changing into legislation regardless of Democrats, a lot of whom are behind COVID-19 associated mandates, holding a slight majority in Congress.

– Bailey Schulz, Daybreak Gilbertson and Christal Hayes 

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