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Those CDC recommendations last month about forgoing testing for COVID-19 patients’ asymptomatic contacts? Apparently they were not written by agency scientists and were released over their objections. (The New York Times)
Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar is slated to testify before Congress next month regarding why the administration didn’t execute a “science-based national strategy” for corralling the pandemic. (Politico)
Even if the vaccine proves just 70% effective in the late-stage study, Moderna’s chief executive said it’ll request emergency authorization for use in high-risk groups. (Reuters)
And in related news, Pfizer said it expects to have efficacy and safety readouts by the end of October. (Reuters)
As of 8:00 a.m. ET Friday, the unofficial U.S. COVID-19 toll stood at 6,676,410 cases and 197,655 deaths — up 44,842 and 824, respectively, in the past 24 hours.
And globally, about one in seven COVID-19 cases are among healthcare workers, according to a WHO report; the proportion reaches 35% in some countries. (The Hill)
The FDA granted emergency use authorization to Silicon Valley startup Visby Medical’s handheld PCR COVID-19 test kit. (Reuters)
This comes as Vice President Mike Pence’s former top aide on the coronavirus response, Olivia Troye, told The Washington Post she now backs Joe Biden due to President Trump’s “flat-out disregard for human life” during his pandemic response.
One woman detailed her experience as Patient 1133 in Pfizer’s vaccine trial. (The New York Times)
CNN obtained an internal AstraZeneca document confirming transverse myelitis in a previously healthy volunteer as the adverse event that halted the company’s vaccine trials — temporarily in some countries but still on hold in the U.S.
An intranasal povidone-iodine nasal antiseptic was able to rapidly inactivate COVID-19 in an in vitro lab study. Paired with personal protective equipment, this could serve as another method to curb transmission. (JAMA Otolaryngology – Head & Neck Surgery)
Hundreds of testers in France went on strike yesterday, with one lab technician calling working conditions “like Stalingrad.” (U.S. News & World Report)
Gatherings exceeding 20 people are now a jail-worthy offense in Jordan. (Reuters)
In other news:
- New CDC data for 2019 show 12 states had adult obesity prevalences of 35% or higher — a jump from nine states in 2018 and six states in 2017.
- Johnson & Johnson was accused of insurance fraud in a civil lawsuit filed by New York state, claiming the giant downplayed risks of opioids to both doctors and elderly patients. (New York Post)
- Facebook announced new policies aimed at limiting certain groups spreading unverified health advice. (CNBC)
- Immunomedics released favorable top-line results for sacituzumab govitecan (Trodelvy) in an early-stage brain cancer trial.
Last Updated September 18, 2020