Tots’ COVID Vax Authorized; Patient Info Sent to Facebook; Birx on ‘What Went Wrong’

Tots’ COVID Vax Authorized; Patient Info Sent to Facebook; Birx on ‘What Went Wrong’

June 17, 2022 0 By Jennifer Walker

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The FDA issued emergency use authorizations for COVID-19 vaccines in the youngest kids: ages 6 months to 4 years for Pfizer’s vaccine and 6 months to 5 years for Moderna’s. The agency also authorized Moderna’s vaccine for kids and adolescents ages 6 to 17 years.

After 5 consecutive weeks of declining COVID deaths, global fatalities spiked upward by 4% last week. (AP)

An electronic tracker installed on many U.S. hospitals’ websites has been collecting sensitive health information about patients and transmitting it to Facebook. (The Markup)

More than 100 million Americans, including 41% of adults, have healthcare debts that they are unable to pay. (Kaiser Health News)

Stating that COVID vaccines have not been adequately studied in children younger than 5 — an age group that has “zero risk of getting anything” — Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) said the state will not support COVID vaccination for the youngsters. (Politico)

COVID vaccines developed to target the original Omicron may not offer broad protection against its newer subvariants BA.2.12.1, BA.4, and B.5, researchers reported in Nature.

The nation’s workers have begun to push back against employer-sponsored wellness programs that require routine health checkups. (USA Today)

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) accused the Biden administration of providing “patently false information” to support a request for a $10 billion COVID funding package that subsequently stalled over squabbles about immigration policy. (STAT)

As of Friday at 8:00 a.m. EDT, the unofficial U.S. COVID toll had reached 86,046,735 infections and 1,011,977 deaths, increases of 145,835 and 449, respectively, since this time yesterday.

Leading up to the pandemic, life expectancy was improving for most, but not all, Americans. (The Lancet)

Rhythm Pharmaceuticals announced a label expansion for setmelanotide (Imcivree) as treatment for chronic weight management in adult and pediatric patients age 6 and older with Bardet-Biedl syndrome; FDA declined a similar indication for patients with Alström syndrome.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission announced a recall of more than 400,000 bottles of over-the-counter medication because the containers did not meet child-proofing standards. (The Hill)

The Federal Trade Commission announced a plan to crackdown on illegal rebate schemes and bribes that block patients’ access to lower-cost drugs.

Deborah Birx, MD, former coronavirus response coordinator for the Trump administration, will testify at a House subcommittee hearing about “what went wrong” with the response. (NBC News)

In a rare display of bipartisanship, the Senate overwhelmingly passed legislation that will provide enhanced medical coverage to military veterans exposed to burn pits in Afghanistan and Iraq. (CBS News)

Scientists working in Kyrgyzstan think they’ve taken a major step toward tracking down the origin of the Black Death that wiped out more than half of Europe’s population during a 7-year period during the Middle Ages. (CNN)

Health officials in some areas have resorted to birth control for rats in an effort to control infestations of the pests. (Fox News)

While many industries struggled to keep their business afloat last year, Big Pharma had another banner year, particularly these top 10 earners.

Actor Bradley Cooper talks about his struggles with addiction and how fellow actor and comedian Will Arnett helped him get sober. (CNN)

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    Charles Bankhead is senior editor for oncology and also covers urology, dermatology, and ophthalmology. He joined MedPage Today in 2007. Follow