Coronavirus News Roundup: Pfizer, BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine Receives UK Authorization, Moderna Requests EUA for Vaccine in US

December 4, 2020

Here’s a roundup of the latest coronavirus-related news.

The number of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases in the United States continue to reach record highs, with approximately 100,226 COVID-19––related hospitalizations as of December 2, according to The COVID Tracking Project. This week, the United Kingdom authorized Pfizer’s mRNA vaccine for COVID-19 and Moderna requested emergency FDA authorization for its own vaccine candidate.

Here’s a roundup of the latest coronavirus-related news:

ACIP: Prioritize Health Care Personnel, LTC Residents for COVID-19 Vaccination

With a decision by the FDA on whether to authorize the use of 2 COVID-19 candidates expected in the coming weeks, the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) COVID-19 Vaccines Work Group met on December 1 to discuss the phased allocation of future vaccines to priority groups.

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CVS Health to Administer COVID-19 Antibody Therapy in Pilot Program

CVS Health will pilot the administration of a limited supply of the monoclonal antibody therapy bamlanivimab with eligible patients at-with COVID-19 at risk of severe infection or complications resulting from the virus.

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Survey: Majority of Pharmacists Ready to Receive, Administer COVID-19 Vaccines

A majority of pharmacists said their pharmacy practices will be ready to administer COVID-19 vaccines when they are available, and more than three quarters plan to be vaccinated themselves, according to a new survey.

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Pfizer, BioNTech Vaccine for COVID-19 Receives UK Authorization

The United Kingdom Medicines & Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency has authorized the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, making the UK the first western country in the world to OK a vaccine to combat the pandemic.

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COVID-19 and Herpes Zoster Co-infections Identified

Reports of cases of COVID-19 and herpes zoster (shingles) co-infections are beginning to emerge in medical literature. Given the nature of shingles—a latent infection caused by the varicella zoster virus whose reemergence is most commonly linked to stress—more co-infection cases are likely to follow.

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Study Suggests Link Between Social Isolation Amid Pandemic and High Blood Pressure

A recent study reported a link between social isolation as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and high blood pressure, according to investigators.

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Mental Health Conditions, Substance Use Heightened in Young Adults Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Results of a recent study published in the Journal of Psychoactive Drugs showed that an alarming number of young adult respondents reported significant loneliness, depressive symptoms, and moderate-to-severe anxiety during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Moderna to Request Emergency FDA Authorization for COVID-19 Vaccine

Moderna announced its plan to apply for emergency FDA authorization for its COVID-19 vaccine candidate, the company said in a press release.

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