Below is a summary of current health news briefs.
China reports 997 new COVID cases for Oct 20 vs. 962 the day before
China reported 997 new COVID-19 infections on Oct. 20, of which 214 were symptomatic and 783 asymptomatic, the National Health Commission said on Friday. That compares with 962 new cases the day before: 211 symptomatic and 751 asymptomatic infections, which China counts separately.
Pfizer expects to raise price of US COVID vaccine to $110-$130 per dose
Pfizer Inc expects to roughly quadruple the price of its COVID-19 vaccine to around $110 to $130 per dose after the current US government purchase program expires, Pfizer executive Angela Lukin said on Thursday. Lukin said she hopes the vaccine, which the government currently provides free to everyone, will be available at no cost to people who have private insurance or government-paid insurance.
Analysis: Falling demand for COVID boosters puts price hikes on the table
With most Americans delaying or skipping new COVID-19 booster shots, analysts and investors are now predicting that far fewer will be given each year, putting the number of vaccines far below annual vaccines against the flu. With fewer injections needed, vaccine makers including Pfizer Inc, partner BioNTech SE, rival Moderna Inc and Novavax Inc may have to raise prices to three times current levels if they hope to meet Wall Street revenue forecasts. for injections for 2023 and beyond. several analysts said. Last year, many on Wall Street estimated that the number of COVID-19 vaccines would be in line with the annual flu shot, which is the vaccine market leader with more than 160 million shots per year in the United States. United States and 600 million vaccines worldwide.
Chinese capital steps up COVID measures as cases quadruple
China’s capital Beijing has stepped up measures to stop COVID, tightening public controls and closing some residential complexes after quadrupling its caseload in recent weeks, just as a key Communist Party congress went into full swing. The city of 21 million people on Thursday reported 18 new locally transmitted cases the day before, bringing the tally for the past 10 days to 197. That’s four times more than the 49 infections detected in the previous 10-day period.
Indonesia Finds Drugs With Ingredients Linked to Deadly Childhood Kidney Injuries
Some medicinal syrups available in Indonesia contained ingredients linked to fatal acute kidney injury (AKI) in children, its health minister said on Thursday, as it investigates a rise in cases and 99 child deaths this year. Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin was also quoted in the media as saying that some of those syrups were produced locally.
Walmart to pay $215 million to settle Florida opioid claims
Walmart Inc has agreed to pay $215 million to settle claims that its pharmacies fueled an epidemic of opioid addiction in Florida, the state attorney general announced Thursday. As part of the settlement, Walmart also agreed to give 672,000 treatment kits containing the overdose drug naloxone to first responders in the state.
WHO says COVID-19 remains a global health emergency
The World Health Organization said on Wednesday that COVID-19 remains a global emergency, nearly three years after it was first declared such. The WHO emergency committee first made the declaration of COVID-19 on January 30, 2020. Such a determination can help accelerate research, funding, and international public health measures to contain the disease.
Ebola Outbreak in Uganda Remains a Manageable Risk – Africa CDC
Africa’s top public health agency said on Thursday there was a risk the Ebola outbreak in Uganda could spread but it was still manageable at this stage and no emergency measures were needed. “The risk is there, but it is a manageable risk,” Ahmed Ogwell Ouma, acting director of the Africa CDC, told reporters in an online briefing.
Switzerland to destroy 9 million expired Moderna COVID-19 jabs
Switzerland will destroy 9 million doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine that have reached their expiration date, and another 5.1 million vaccine injections will meet the same fate in February, the government said on Wednesday. The waste reflects Switzerland’s strategy of ordering more vaccine than it needs to ensure its population of around 8.7 million gets enough supplies even in the event of bottlenecks or quality issues.
US CDC Advisors Approve Adding COVID Vaccines to Immunization Schedules
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) vaccine advisory committee on Thursday approved adding COVID-19 vaccines to the agency’s recommended immunization schedules for children and adults. The CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) voted unanimously to add the vaccines to the schedules, which contain recommendations for doctors about which vaccines their patients should receive and when.
(With contributions from agencies).