Health News Roundup: Interval between Moderna COVID-19 vaccine second shot and booster still six months - FDA; Australia regulator to review price hike in COVID-19 antigen tests and more
U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Shelley Chapman is serving as the mediator. Delhi chief minister tests positive for COVID-19 as India cases hit highest in months India reported 37,379 new COVID-19 cases in the past 24 hours, the health ministry said on Tuesday, the most since early September as the Omicron coronavirus variant overtakes Delta in places such as the capital New Delhi.
Following is a summary of current health news briefs.
Interval between Moderna COVID-19 vaccine second shot and booster still six months - FDA
The interval between receiving the second dose of Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine and a booster dose remains unchanged at six months, U.S. Food and Drug Administration Acting Commissioner Janet Woodcock said on Monday. "Right now if you got J&J you get a booster after two months, if you got Pfizer as your primary series you can get a booster at five months or beyond, if you got Moderna you can get a booster at six months or beyond whatever you decide to get a booster of," Woodcock said on a press call.
Australia regulator to review price hike in COVID-19 antigen tests
Australia's antitrust regulator said on Tuesday it has contacted suppliers of COVID-19 rapid antigen test kits to examine pricing pressures in the market, as calls grow louder for the government to make the tests free amid a severe shortage of the kits. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) said it will review information received from suppliers, retailers and the public to determine any potential misconduct.
The Omicron coronavirus variant is better at circumventing vaccinated peoples' immunity than the Delta variant, according to a Danish study published last week, helping explain why Omicron is spreading more rapidly. Since the discovery of the heavily mutated Omicron variant in November, scientists have been racing to find out whether it causes less serious disease and why it appears more contagious than the previously dominating Delta variant.
Judge orders mediation for Purdue, Sacklers over opioid settlement
A U.S. judge on Monday ordered mediation in the Purdue Pharma bankruptcy, calling for the company, the Sackler family members that own it and nine states to determine whether they can reach a new opioid litigation settlement by Jan. 14. U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Robert Drain in White Plains, New York, issued an order directing the parties to negotiate changes to a previous deal rejected by another judge in December that provided the Sacklers protection against future opioid litigation. U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Shelley Chapman is serving as the mediator.
Delhi chief minister tests positive for COVID-19 as India cases hit highest in months
India reported 37,379 new COVID-19 cases in the past 24 hours, the health ministry said on Tuesday, the most since early September as the Omicron coronavirus variant overtakes Delta in places such as the capital New Delhi. One of the newly infected people was Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, who spoke at an election rally on Monday without wearing a mask. Similar rallies have been held across states voting in the next few months in upcoming ballots.
Australia COVID-19 cases surge, hospitalisations hit pandemic high in most populous state
Australia's COVID-19 cases touched a fresh pandemic high on Tuesday amid an Omicron surge in its two most populous states as hospitalisations in New South Wales state, home to Sydney, surpassed the record numbers hit during the Delta outbreak. People admitted in New South Wales hospitals rose to 1,344, a new pandemic peak, topping the 1,266 reached last September during the Delta wave. Numbers have more than doubled in a week, straining the health system.
Hong Kong to expand 'vaccine bubble' from Feb. 24 to combat COVID-19 spread
Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam said on Tuesday the government will expand a "vaccine bubble" from Feb. 24 to include venues such as gyms, cinemas and libraries as the city steps up its fight against the spread of coronavirus. Only vaccinated people would be allowed into those venues.
Virus leaves antibodies that may attack healthy tissues; B cell antibodies weakened, not defeated by Omicron
The following is a summary of some recent studies on COVID-19. They include research that warrants further study to corroborate the findings and that has yet to be certified by peer review. Coronavirus leaves survivors with self-attacking antibodies
U.S. FDA authorizes Pfizer's COVID-19 booster for 12- to 15-year-olds
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Monday authorized the use of a third dose of the Pfizer and BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 12 to 15, and narrowed the interval for booster shot eligibility to five months from six. The agency also authorized a third shot for children aged 5 through 11 years who are immunocompromised.
Thousands of U.S. schools delayed this week's scheduled return to classrooms following the holiday break or switched to remote learning as the Omicron variant of the coronavirus pushed COVID-19 cases to record levels. In other school districts, officials pressed on with plans to reopen, including in hard-hit New York City, where one of every three COVID-19 tests over the last week was positive for the virus, according to city data released on Monday.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)