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Moderna booster effective against omicron; new infections up 41%

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The primary information out there for Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine suggests a 3rd booster dose shall be efficient in opposition to omicron, the variant that’s quickly taking on the world.

The encouraging revelation got here hours earlier than former President Donald Trump mentioned he has acquired a coronavirus booster shot. Trump was showing on Invoice O’Reilly’s “Historical past Tour” on the American Airways Heart in Dallas when the host requested if he was boosted. “Sure,” Trump replied to a smattering of boos.

Public well being officers have been urging Individuals to get booster pictures. Moderna mentioned early Monday that in a lab examine, blood from 20 individuals who acquired the 50-microgram Moderna booster had 37 occasions the variety of neutralizing antibodies as in comparison with blood from the identical quantity of people that solely acquired two pictures. Moderna had decreased the dose of its booster to half the dose of the unique two pictures to restrict unwanted side effects resembling fever, muscle aches and fatigue.

A gaggle that acquired a 3rd shot of the upper, 100-microgram dose noticed an 83-fold leap in neutralizing antibodies in opposition to omicron. Dr. Eric Topol, founder and director of the Scripps Analysis Translational Institute, mentioned such an enormous enhance isn’t essential to supply safety.

A study released earlier this month by Pfizer and its partner BioNTech confirmed {that a} third dose of their COVID-19 vaccine boosted neutralizing antibodies in opposition to omicron greater than 25-fold, which must be protecting, Topol mentioned, although real-world research are wanted to show it.

“I feel it’s fairly encouraging,” he mentioned. “We’ll take any constructive we are able to get.”

Additionally within the information:

►The USA has reported greater than 51 million COVID-19 circumstances, Johns Hopkins College information confirmed late Monday. Additionally on Monday, Kansas turned the thirty second state to report at the least 500,000 circumstances. And the world has reported greater than 275 million circumstances.

►Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser declared a state of emergency and reinstated an indoor masks order lifted a month in the past. The mandate goes into impact at 6 a.m. ET Tuesday and runs by January. Town is going through its highest day by day an infection totals for the reason that pandemic started.

►Idaho well being officers on Monday deactivated disaster pointers for rationing care at medical services in northern Idaho. A decline in new infections was cited.

►The New Yr’s Eve celebration deliberate for downtown Los Angeles’ Grand Park won’t have an in-person viewers due to the rising variety of coronavirus circumstances, organizers mentioned. The “NYELA Countdown to 2022” occasion shall be streamed, because it was final 12 months.

►Boston Mayor Michelle Wu mentioned that beginning Jan. 15, patrons of indoor eating, bars, nightclubs and gymnasiums should present proof of at least one vaccine dose. Proof of full vaccination shall be required for adults Feb. 15, and metropolis staff should get vaccinated, she mentioned at a Metropolis Corridor information convention as protesters shouted “Disgrace on Wu.”

►Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan mentioned he acquired a constructive coronavirus speedy take a look at Monday. “I’ve been vaccinated and boosted, and I’m feeling tremendous in the intervening time,” Hogan tweeted. He additionally urged Marylanders to get vaccinated and/or boosted.

📈In the present day’s numbers: The U.S. has recorded greater than 51 million confirmed COVID-19 circumstances and greater than 807,000 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University data. World totals: Greater than 275.2 million circumstances and 5.3 million deaths. Greater than 203.9 million Individuals – 61.4% of the inhabitants – are absolutely vaccinated, according to the CDC.

📘What we’re studying: A examine by Oregon researchers finds that folks absolutely vaccinated in opposition to COVID-19 who’ve breakthrough infections find yourself with what the authors call “super immunity.” They warning the vaccinated mustn’t search COVID-19 an infection, however the “hybrid immunity” affords some solace for individuals who catch one regardless of having been vaccinated. 

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

Omicron now 82% of Houston Methodist’s new symptomatic circumstances

The Houston Methodist hospital system experiences that the omicron variant accounts for 82% of latest symptomatic circumstances it’s treating. Dr. S. Wesley Lengthy, medical director of diagnostic microbiology, mentioned the omicron variant is now in Houston “in full drive.” The omicron variant turned the “reason for the supermajority” of latest Houston Methodist circumstances in lower than three weeks, he mentioned. As compared, the delta variant took three months through the summer season earlier than it was the reason for greater than 80% of circumstances.

“Omicron in our information has a doubling time of two.2 days,” Lengthy tweeted.

‘Somebody’s received to do it’: Vaccines examined in children below 5 years previous

There aren’t any licensed COVID-19 vaccines within the U.S. for kids youthful than 5 years previous. However children like Dr. Alicia Carrasco’s 1-year-old twins and 3-year-old son Matías are participating in Moderna’s trial and are serving to to vary that. The twins acquired their second jab a number of weeks in the past, and Matías is scheduled to get his subsequent shot in a number of weeks. Velocity Scientific Analysis, a scientific trial website group, enrolled about 650 kids at 4 areas throughout the nation. 1 / 4 of the kids acquired the placebo and the remainder have been vaccinated with Moderna’s vaccine. Nobody is aware of for sure which they got, however the inner drugs doctor is assured the sudden fever she noticed within the twins is an indication they have been jabbed with the energetic vaccine.

“Somebody’s received to do it,” she mentioned. “My children are an important factor on the earth to me however so is anybody else’s children who’ve been part of trials.” Read more here.

Adrianna Rodriguez

New infections up 41% from a month in the past

The U.S. is shifting towards Christmas in dramatically totally different form than it was earlier than Thanksgiving. A month in the past, case counts had been rising, to about 90,000 per day on common. For a lot of December circumstances appeared to hover round 120,000 however have not too long ago leaped above 130,000 per day, Johns Hopkins information exhibits. In comparison with a month in the past, the tempo of latest circumstances nationally is up 41%.

Total, the CDC says about three-quarters of counties have excessive ranges of transmission. However the place you reside is vital. The tempo of circumstances is up 393% in Hawaii, greater than tripled in Connecticut and New Jersey, and greater than doubled in Delaware, Florida, Illinois, Massachusetts, New York and Rhode Island. However circumstances seem to have fallen in at the least a 3rd of the states – down 72% in Montana, 61% in Wyoming, 58% in Alaska, 46% in Colorado.

Mike Stucka

New Zealand man dies from myocarditis linked to Pfizer vaccine

A 26-year-old man has died from myocarditis linked to the Pfizer vaccine, well being officers in New Zealand mentioned Monday.

Myocarditis, a type of coronary heart irritation, has been detected in a small number of vaccinated individuals. It’s treatable, is not particular to COVID-19 vaccines, and was a typical facet impact of the smallpox vaccine prior to now, in response to the U.S. Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention. 

The person died inside two weeks of receiving his first dose, and a coroner decided that preliminary data has recognized myocarditis because the possible reason for dying, New Zealand’s COVID-19 Vaccine Unbiased Security Monitoring Board mentioned in an announcement.

“With the present out there data, the board has thought-about that the myocarditis was most likely attributable to vaccination on this particular person,” the monitoring board’s assertion mentioned.

The assertion mentioned the advantages of vaccination with the Pfizer vaccine proceed to “drastically outweigh” the danger of such uncommon unwanted side effects, including that the COVID-19 an infection can itself be a reason for myocarditis in addition to different critical diseases.

Extra on myocarditis:

44 individuals on cruise ship take a look at constructive

At the least 48 individuals on board Royal Caribbean’s Symphony of the Seas ship that ended a seven-day cruise in Miami on Saturday were positive for COVID-19 during the sailing, the cruise line mentioned. These 48 individuals who examined constructive represented lower than 1% of the 6,074 passengers and crew members on board Symphony of the Seas, which left Miami on Dec. 11 and made stops in St. Maarten, St. Thomas, and Excellent Day at CocoCay (Royal Caribbean’s non-public island), spokesperson Lyan Sierra-Caro informed USA TODAY.

Connor O’Dell, 29, mentioned a 66-year-old relative reported her signs to Royal Caribbean through the cruise. He mentioned neither a physician nor nurse gave her an in-depth bodily examination or requested her about preexisting situations.

“All of us knew the dangers of occurring the ship,” O’Dell informed USA TODAY. “The issue is that we have been promised a set of protocols (or) satisfactory medical staffing and so they have been by no means adhered to.”

Morgan Hines

Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Cory Booker take a look at constructive for COVID-19

Senators Elizabeth Warren, D-Massachusetts, and Cory Booker, D-New Jersey, and Rep. Jason Crow, D-Colorado, have examined constructive for COVID-19 in breakthrough circumstances with gentle signs, they introduced on Twitter.

“I repeatedly take a look at for COVID & whereas I examined detrimental earlier this week, at the moment I examined constructive with a breakthrough case. Fortunately, I’m solely experiencing gentle signs & am grateful for the safety offered in opposition to critical sickness that comes from being vaccinated & boosted,” Warren wrote

Booker tweeted: “I discovered at the moment that I examined constructive for COVID-19 after first feeling signs on Saturday. My signs are comparatively gentle. I’m past grateful to have acquired two doses of vaccine and, extra not too long ago, a booster – I’m sure that with out them I’d be doing a lot worse.”

The senators from Massachusetts and New Jersey have each been vocal proponents of the COVID-19 vaccine in Washington. Warren lost her older brother to the virus in Could 2020. The Democrats are simply two of a number of senators who’ve examined constructive for COVID regardless of being absolutely vaccinated, together with Lindsay Graham, R-SC and John Hickenlooper, D-Colo.

The newest congrespositive exams come amid an increase of COVID-19 circumstances throughout the nation and the omicron variant, which Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s main infectious illnesses professional, mentioned has an “extraordinary capability of spreading.”

– Celina Tebor, USA TODAY

Contributing: The Related Press; Karen Weintraub, USA TODAY

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