Health News Roundup: UNICEF study shows kids make up 40% of Haiti's cholera cases; Measles now an imminent global threat due to pandemic, say WHO and CDC and more
Excluding imported cases, the number of new local cases was 31,444 on Nov. 23, of which 3,927 were symptomatic and 27,517 were asymptomatic, health authorities said on Thursday. Measles now an imminent global threat due to pandemic, say WHO and CDC There is now an imminent threat of measles spreading in various regions globally, as COVID-19 led to a steady decline in vaccination coverage and weakened surveillance of the disease, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the U.S. public health agency said on Wednesday.
Following is a summary of current health news briefs.
UNICEF study shows kids make up 40% of Haiti's cholera cases
Some two in five of Haiti's growing number of cholera cases are among children, the United Nation's children's agency warned on Wednesday, saying youth suffering from severe malnutrition ran three times the risk of dying from the bacterial disease. Haiti, the poorest country in the Americas, has suffered a series of disasters in recent years, including a presidential assassination last year followed by a massive earthquake.
Measles now an imminent global threat due to pandemic, say WHO and CDC
There is now an imminent threat of measles spreading in various regions globally, as COVID-19 led to a steady decline in vaccination coverage and weakened surveillance of the disease, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the U.S. public health agency said on Wednesday. Measles is one of the most contagious human viruses and is almost entirely preventable through vaccination. However, it requires 95% vaccine coverage to prevent outbreaks among populations.
U.S. extends tariff exclusions on Chinese COVID-related medical products
The Biden administration on Wednesday said it would extend tariff exclusions on 81 COVID-19-related medical products from China for another 90 days, avoiding a scheduled expiration on Nov. 30. "In light of the continuing efforts to combat COVID, the exclusions have been extended for an additional 90 days, through February 28, 2023," USTR said in a statement.
Top Georgia court orders the U.S. state's abortion law back into effect
Georgia can enforce a law banning abortion after six weeks of pregnancy while the state appeals a lower court order striking it down, the state's highest court ruled on Wednesday. The Supreme Court of Georgia did not give a reason for its unanimous order. The state law, which originally took effect this past summer, has been challenged by Planned Parenthood and other abortion rights groups.
FDA classifies Baxter's hospital bed system recall as most serious
The U.S. health regulator on Wednesday classified the recall of hospital bed systems by Baxter International Inc, as the most serious type, on concerns it could lead to life-threatening injuries or death. Baxter initiated the recall of its WatchCare Incontinence Management System, which is used to discreetly alert an incontinent patient's caregiver of involuntary urination or defecation, by sending a correction letter to its customers in late September.
South Africa's Biovac in new oral cholera vaccine deal
South Africa's Biovac Institute has signed a licensing and technology transfer deal with the International Vaccine Institute (IVI) to develop and make oral cholera vaccine for African and global markets, the companies said on Wednesday. The partnership with non-profit IVI, headquartered in South Korea, aims to boost output and reduce vaccine shortages amid a spate of global outbreaks that spurred the World Health Organization (WHO) to temporarily change its dosage regime.
China's daily COVID cases hit record high
China on Wednesday reported the highest number of daily COVID-19 cases since the start of the pandemic began nearly three years ago, official data showed. Excluding imported cases, the number of new local cases was 31,444 on Nov. 23, of which 3,927 were symptomatic and 27,517 were asymptomatic, health authorities said on Thursday.
Shionogi seeks Japan approval for COVID-19 vaccine
Shionogi & Co Ltd said on Thursday it had filed for approval in Japan of its experimental COVID-19 vaccine. The move comes two days after Japanese regulators granted emergency approval for Shionogi's oral treatment for COVID, the first for a domestic drugmaker.
FDA says Philips filed 21,000 reports on bad foam Aug-Oct
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Wednesday said Philips filed 21,000 medical device reports in connection with faulty foam in its ventilation and sleep apnoea devices in the Aug-Oct 2022 period. Philips has been recalling 5.5 million such devices since June 2021 after it became aware that a foam part can deteriorate and threaten users' health.
World Cup gatherings may fuel Brazil's latest COVID wave, experts warn
Brazil faces a new wave of COVID cases just as the soccer-crazed nation is gathering en masse to follow the World Cup, with new coronavirus sub-variants and delayed vaccine boosters raising alarms among public health specialists. On World Cup game days, many Brazilians get time off work to pack into bars and restaurants or gather for home barbecues to watch the games, rooting for a national team seeking its sixth world champion title in Qatar.
(With inputs from agencies.)