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Pfizer announced the first data from its phase III COVID-19 booster trial involving 10,000 individuals ages 16 and up. The study showed 95.6% efficacy (95% CI 89.3-98.6) for those who received a booster shot 6 months following their primary series: with five cases in the boosted group versus 109 in the non-boosted group.
After a flurry of COVID-19 vaccine booster authorizations, sources are saying the FDA isn’t done and may soon authorize additional shots for all individuals 40 and up. (CNN)
More reassurance that COVID-19 vaccination does not increase risk for miscarriage. (New England Journal of Medicine)
As of Thursday at 8 a.m. EDT, the unofficial U.S. COVID-19 toll reached 45,220,057 cases and 731,271 deaths, up 79,837 and 2,958, respectively, from this time yesterday.
This total includes over 130,000 new cases among kids for the week ending October 14, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Experts are saying long-COVID in children is a cause for concern. (Fortune)
Lower-income countries may see better access to Merck’s COVID-19 pill thanks to a $120-million boost from the Gates Foundation. (Bloomberg)
CDC’s latest data show that 77.3% of eligible individuals (ages 12 and up) have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, while more than two-thirds are fully vaccinated.
Texas nurse William Davis, RN, was convicted of murder for his role in four patient deaths; prosecutors say Davis injected the patients’ arteries with air following cardiac surgeries. (AP)
The FDA expanded dupilumab’s (Dupixent) approval to include an add-on maintenance indication for moderate-to-severe asthma in children ages 6 to 11 years, Regeneron and Sanofi announced.
The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review recommended a minor price adjustment to make the $650,000 myasthenia gravis drug eculizumab (Soliris) cost-effective — not a 100% reduction (that would be crazy), just a 97-98% reduction.
The FDA is investigating a Salmonella outbreak linked to whole, fresh onions.
In an effort to reduce the price tag of their spending bill, Democrats in Congress are considering chopping pricey dental benefits for Medicare beneficiaries and offering a voucher program instead; new proposed coverage for vision and hearing appears safe for now. (Politico)
More than a third of kids covered by Medicaid in Texas, California, New York, Ohio, and Pennsylvania did not get lead testing as required by CMS. (Houston Chronicle)
CNN‘s Chief National Correspondent, John King, revealed on air that he has multiple sclerosis and thanked those around him for being vaccinated.
In other coronavirus news, nearly 1,900 Washington state employees — roughly 3% — have quit their jobs or been fired after the governor’s vaccine mandate took effect. (USA Today)
New York City will now require all municipal employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19, eliminating a testing option. (ABC7)
Unvaccinated seniors in Moscow have been put on lockdown (for a week) amid surging cases and deaths in the country. (France24)
Meanwhile, the World Health Organization is still weighing whether to recommend Russia’s Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine. (Reuters)