FDA approves updated Covid boosters from Moderna and Pfizer set to arrive soon: Coronavirus guidelines 2023

Jill Biden tested positive for Covid and is experiencing “mild symptoms”, per a 4 September statement from the White House.

New Covid boosters from Pfizer and Moderna designed to target the XBB.1.5 subvariant have been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration and are expected to be made available later this week.

Health officials say that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will now sign off on it amid rising cases of Covid across the US.

Last week Moderna released a statemen saying the company’s updated boosters are expected to work well against the BA.2.86 variant – unofficially called “Pirola”.

Covid-19 case counts are rising across the US, and public health authorities are monitoring the worrisome new variant. Some experts are urging Americans to wear a mask when necessary to slow the spread of the virus.

Doctors warned that Pirola may be cause for concern as it is a newly-designated, highly-mutated variant of Omicron which triggered a surge in cases in a number of countries including the US.

According to a Thursday bulletin in Yale Medicine, the new variant has more than 30 mutations to its spike protein – located on the outer surface of a coronavirus – which helps it enter and infect human cells.

CDC Covid tracker

18,871 hospitalisations from 27 August to 2 September


Researchers urge the public to get vaccinated for the sake of the healthcare system

With Covid-19 vaccinations rolling out across the country, infectious disease experts are reminding Americans that vaccines do more than protect an individual’s health.

Abraar Karan, an infectious disease researcher at Stanford University, recently tweeted, “One of the issues is that many people think of diseases mainly in terms of their own risk of bad outcomes being low. That works for noncommunicable diseases.” For viruses like Covid, however, there’s more at stake, he said. “But for contagious respiratory viruses with high incidence, you multiply that low risk across hundreds of millions and end up with a big absolute number of bad outcomes.”

Karan previously tweeted research estimating that universal Covid-19 vaccination could prevent at least 200,000 hospitalisations and 15,000 deaths during the next two years.

Maggie O’Neill 14 September 2023 17:45


This is how long you need to wait in between Covid vaccinations, per the FDA

In a 11 September statement, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced who will be eligible for the new Covid vaccines. Everyone six months and older can get a new vaccine; two or three doses are recommended for some children aged six months to four years old.

The statement said that everyone five and up is eligible for a single dose; however, they need to schedule an appointment for the vaccine that is at least two months after their last Covid-19 vaccine.

Maggie O’Neill14 September 2023 14:45


Survey shows how likely Floridians are to believe vaccine misinformation

A new survey from the University of South Florida looked at how likely people in the state are to believe false statements about Covid-19.

The statement found 42% of respondents thought the statement “Vaccines can cause you to get sick with COVID-19” was either “probably true” or “definitely true”.

The same percentage of respondents said “COVID-19 vaccines are causing new variants of the virus to emerge” was “probably true” or “definitely true”.

The survey found that Democratic respondents were “significantly more willing” to continue getting updated Covid boosters than their Republican counterparts.

Maggie O’Neill14 September 2023 10:45


Covid vaccine appointments can now be made at Walgreens

Nationwide appointments will be available starting 18 September, and you can reserve a spot by visiting Walgreens.com/ScheduleVaccine, using the app, or calling 1-800-WALGREENS.

The statement said Walgreens is among a group of select pharmacies the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is working with to help uninsured and underinsured Americans get the vaccine for free.

Maggie O’Neill14 September 2023 05:45


These side effects can occur after getting a Covid vaccine, per the CDC

These include pain, redness, and swelling at the site of the shot; tiredness; muscle pain; headache; chills; fever; and nausea.

Children may experience different side effects. For those aged six months to three years, side effects include pain at the site of the shot, swollen lymph nodes, crying or irritability, sleepiness, and loss of appetite.

For those four to 17 years old, side effects include pain, redness, or swelling at the site of the shot; tiredness; headache; chills; joint or muscle pain; and swollen lymph nodes.

Maggie O’Neill14 September 2023 00:45


New York Governor Kathy Hocul urges residents to take Covid seriously

Governor Kathy Hochul of New York expressed concerns about rising Covid cases on Wednesday.

“I know everyone wants to be done with Covid, but Covid is not done with us,” Governor Hochul said, per reporting from CBS News.

“Hospitalisations are rising. People have questions about new strains, new variants…And as we are approaching the fall season, you see a pattern, when all respiratory illnesses start to creep up.”

Updated Covid vaccines that target new variants are starting to become available nationwide.

Maggie O’Neill13 September 2023 21:45


Covid shots will cost more than $100 a dose, pharmaceutical companies say

Pfizer and BioNTech set their price at $120, and Moderna doses will be $129. Novavax shots will be $130 per dose.

The vaccine is recommended for everyone six months and older. Unvaccinated children six months to four years can get three doses of the updated shots, while vaccinated children in the same age group can get two doses. Everyone in the five and up category is eligible for a single dose.

Maggie O’Neill13 September 2023 18:45


Do Covid tests work after they expire? What to know as case counts rise across the US

The CDC recommends that the public continue testing for Covid-19 to slow the spread of the virus, and the agency has released specific guidance on when and how to monitor yourself.

If you have symptoms, the CDC recommends testing immediately. If you are only going to take a single test, opt for a PCR test, rather than an at-home test, since they are more reliable. If you use an at-home test instead and the result is negative, you’ll want to take another test in 48 hours or take a PCR test immediately to confirm the result.

If you have been exposed to Covid but you don’t have symptoms, the CDC recommends waiting at least five full days before testing yourself. If you’re only going to test once, you should take a PCR test, since they’re more reliable. If you use an at-home test instead and the result is negative, you should re-test yourself in 48 hours. If that second test is negative, you should wait another 48 hours and test a third time. Following these instructions is the best way to assure your tests are accurate, experts say.

Maggie O’Neill13 September 2023 18:03


When will the new Covid vaccines be available?

As case counts rise, US health authorities are urging the public to stay up-to-date on their vaccines. Some experts are also discussing the possibility that masks may help slow the spread of Covid-19 in the coming days as people start doing more activities indoors.

Maggie O’Neill13 September 2023 15:45


Do Covid-19 tests work after they expire?

According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), you should not use a Covid test after it expires. However, some tests have received extended expiration dates from the agency.

A list of products with this designation can be found on the agency’s website. If you find a test in your home that has been given an extended expiration date, it’s safe to use it until that date.

If you find a test that has already expired, you should not assume it will be accurate, per the FDA.

Maggie O’Neill13 September 2023 12:45

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