Health News Roundup: Britain's healthcare backlogs grow to record levels; J&J to end global sales of talc-based baby powder and more
"As part of a worldwide portfolio assessment, we have made the commercial decision to transition to an all cornstarch-based baby powder portfolio," it said, adding that cornstarch-based baby powder is already sold in countries around the world. Long COVID risk up for unvaccinated children; at-home antibody test shows promise The following is a summary of some recent studies on COVID-19.
Following is a summary of current health news briefs.
Britain's healthcare backlogs grow to record levels
The number of people in England waiting to start routine hospital treatment has risen to the highest level since records began 15 years ago, while victims of crime are facing long delays for their cases to be heard in court. As Conservative Party members chose a new leader to succeed Prime Minister Boris Johnson this summer, the problems his successor will have to deal with are stacking up.
J&J to end global sales of talc-based baby powder
Johnson & Johnson will stop selling talc-based baby powder globally in 2023, the drugmaker said on Thursday, more than two years after it ended U.S. sales of a product that drew thousands of consumer safety lawsuits. "As part of a worldwide portfolio assessment, we have made the commercial decision to transition to an all cornstarch-based baby powder portfolio," it said, adding that cornstarch-based baby powder is already sold in countries around the world.
GSK, Sanofi and Halon shares slump on Zantac litigation concerns
Shares in GSK, Sanofi and Halon fell sharply on Thursday, following declines earlier this week, amid growing investor concerns about U.S. litigation focused on a heartburn drug that contained a probable carcinogen. GSK shares fell more than 10%, Sanofi's stock sagged about 3.3% and Haleon's shares slipped nearly 5% at the close of trading on Thursday.
Senate Finance Committee looks at Amgen taxes, widening drugmaker probe
The U.S. Senate Finance Committee is widening its investigation into the tax practices of U.S. drugmakers to include Amgen Inc, according to a letter sent on Thursday by the committee's chairman, Senator Ron Wyden. Amgen is already in the crosshairs of the U.S. Internal Revenue Service over its tax practices, particularly how it allocates profits between the U.S. and Puerto Rico.
Novartis reports Zolgensma caused two deaths from liver failure
Novartis AG on Thursday reported two patient fatalities due to acute liver failure following treatment with Zolgensma gene therapy used to treat spinal muscular atrophy. The company has notified health authorities in markets where the drug is sold, including the FDA, and has informed relevant healthcare professionals as an additional step.
FDA chief backs alternate method for injecting Bavarian Nordic's monkeypox shot
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration chief on Thursday defended a plan to administer Bavarian Nordic's monkeypox shot intradermally after the company raised doubts about the safety of the method, citing a lack of data. The company had on Tuesday said there was some evidence that a shot of Jynneos between the layers of the skin could result in increased reactions compared to the approved method of injecting it underneath the skin.
Several COVID-hit Chinese cities from the country's east to west imposed fresh restrictions and lockdowns on their populations on Thursday to contain flare-ups that are again threatening to disrupt local economies. Reducing people's unnecessary movement for a few days - a softer type of lockdown - as soon as dozens of new cases emerge is a key practice of China's "dynamic COVID-zero" strategy. The aim is to avoid turning efforts to halt an outbreak into the extended nightmares seen in Shanghai and Wuhan.
Long COVID risk up for unvaccinated children; at-home antibody test shows promise
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. Unvaccinated children have a higher long COVID risk
Spain asks EMA to allow 'dose-sparing' for monkeypox vaccine
Spain has asked the European Medicines Agency (EMA) for permission to give more people a smaller dose of monkeypox vaccine, an approach is known as "dose-sparing" to distribute limited supplies as far as possible, the health ministry said. The country has the world's second-largest number of monkeypox infections outside the areas where it is endemic.
U.S. CDC no longer recommends students quarantine for COVID-19 exposure
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will no longer recommend quarantines or test-to-stay programs at schools or daycare centers for people exposed to COVID-19, the agency said in updated guidelines on Thursday. The agency also said it was no longer recommending unvaccinated people quarantine after exposure as around 95% of the U.S. population has either been vaccinated, had COVID-19 already, or both.
(With inputs from agencies.)