The first single-dose Covid-19 vaccine is here


The United States faces a very real risk of losing all of its recent achievements in the battle against the virus, as highly contagious variants prey on Americans loosening up on security measures.

There are already worrying signs. While Covid-19 cases and hospitalizations in the US have been trending down for several weeks, they are still alarmingly high. And that downward trend now appears to have stopped. The most recent seven-day average of new cases shows an increase of just over 2% compared to the previous week, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, said yesterday. A similar increase in the most recent seven-day average death was reported, he added.

“Please hear me clearly,” Walensky said. “At this level of variant cases that are spreading, we can completely lose our hard-won ground. These variants are a very real threat to our people and our progress.”

Dr. Zeke Emanuel, who was a former Obama White House health adviser and a member of the Biden Transition Covid-19 Advisory Board, said Americans must maintain strict security measures for another two to three months. “We shouldn’t relax, allow indoor dining, large groups … get rid of the mandates of the masks,” he said.
The World Health Organization (WHO) raised a similar concern yesterday, after the number of new cases globally rose last week for the first time in seven weeks. WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said the increase was “disappointing but not surprising,” adding that the agency is working to better understand increases in transmission.

“Some of this appears to be due to the relaxation of public health measures, the continued circulation of variants, and people lowering their guard,” Tedros said. “Even as vaccines continue to roll out, we urge all governments and individuals to remember that vaccines alone will not keep you safe.”

YOU ASKED. WE RESPOND

Q: Q: What Covid-19 vaccine should I get?

A: There are now three Covid-19 vaccines licensed for use in the US, and many people wonder which one they should receive.

We asked CNN Medical Analyst Dr. Leana Wen to participate. His main advice: “Take the vaccine they offer you. All three vaccines are safe and effective. Think about other vaccines we take, like the flu vaccine. Don’t ask which company makes it. We only care that it works.”
Submit your questions here. Are you a healthcare worker fighting Covid-19? Send us a message on WhatsApp about the challenges you face: +1 347-322-0415.

WHAT IS IMPORTANT TODAY

Vaccines dramatically reduced the risk of hospitalization by more than 80, real-world data shows

A single dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccines reduces the risk of hospitalization for Covid-19 by more than 80% in people over the age of 80, new data from Public Health England shows.

The effect was observed three to four weeks after vaccination. People older than 70 years were also shown to have up to 61% protection against symptomatic disease with the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine and up to 73% with the Oxford-Astra-Zeneca vaccine.

The UK has given Covid-19 injections to more than 20 million people, with campaigns targeting first those over 80 who are most vulnerable to the disease. The new data supports the country’s decision to use the Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccines at a time when other countries in Europe were concerned about the use of the AstraZeneca injection in older people. Meera Senthilingam Report

Unable to cope with the new variants, Brazilian hospitals reach a breaking point

Intensive care units are approaching their limits across Brazil as health experts and state officials plead with the government to impose stricter measures to reduce the transmission of the coronavirus. The country is struggling to control the most infectious new variants of the coronavirus. “The mutated virus has three times the contaminating capacity, and the speed may surprise governors in terms of structure and support,” said Health Minister Eduardo Pazuello. This is the reality that we have today in Brazil. “

United Kingdom seeks a person infected with the Covid-19 variant

British health officials are rushing to locate a person who has been infected with a variant of Covid-19 first identified in the Brazilian city of Manaus. The person is one of six cases of variant P.1 in the UK. The variant carries a pattern of mutations that appears to make the virus more easily transmitted. The unidentified person did not complete a registration card associated with their test, so officials cannot easily find it.

ON OUR RADAR

  • A WHO expert panel has advised against the use of hydroxychloroquine to prevent Covid-19 after reviewing all existing studies on the subject.
  • A batch of Covid-19 vaccines had to be rescued by ship after heavy rains threatened the power supply at a Kentucky health center.
  • Former United States President Donald Trump and former First Lady Melania Trump received a Covid-19 vaccine at the White House in January, a Trump adviser told CNN.
  • A Trader Joe’s worker says he was fired after writing directly to the chain’s CEO asking for stricter Covid-19 security protocols at his store.
  • The first shipment of Covid-19 vaccines sent through the COVAX program to Latin America landed yesterday in Colombia.
  • The European Commission has started laying the groundwork for a vaccine passport that could allow citizens of the European Union to travel this summer.
  • China plans to vaccinate more than 500 million people by the end of June, respiratory disease expert Zhong Nanshan revealed.
  • The trial of a California doctor was delayed after he appeared for a virtual court hearing while simultaneously performing surgery.

BETTER ADVICE

While many Americans stay home for their own safety during the pandemic, the home can be the most dangerous place for victims of domestic violence. The usual places victims escaped to in the past are not always available now.

Incidents of domestic violence increased in the US by approximately 8.1% after the imposition of closures related to the pandemic, according to an analysis by the National Commission on Covid-19 and Criminal Justice.
But there is help available. If you or someone you know is being affected by domestic violence, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline / 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) / TTY 1-800-787-3224. UN Women provides a worldwide list of directories. You can also find a list of national agencies at The Pixel Project.

TODAY’S PODCAST

“When you are an inch away from all your aspirations and the Games can even be canceled entirely, it is heartbreaking.” – Sandi Morris, 2016 Olympic silver medalist

Almost a year ago, athletes around the world learned that the Olympics would be postponed. For those hoping to compete in the games, navigating this additional year has been challenging, especially as Covid restrictions forced many professional sports facilities to close. Pole vaulter Sandi Morris and long jumper Tyrone Smith share their training experience to compete in one last Olympiad together, as a married couple. Listen now.

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