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US Approves Third COVID-19 Vaccine

This week in Clipboard Health’s Nursing News round up … 

CDC Clears J&J COVID-19 Vaccine for Use

On Sunday, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advisory panel in charge of recommending COVID-19 vaccines for emergency use authorization approved the Johnson & Johnson one-dose vaccine for use in the United States.

Currently, the J&J vaccine is the only single-dose vaccine for COVID-19 available in the United States. It is the third COVID-19 vaccine to be approved for use in the country. 

In terms of side effects, there have been two reported cases of severe allergic reactions after receiving the J&J vaccine, including one case in South Africa where the individual had anaphylaxis. 

The vaccine doses are being distributed by McKesson Corp, which reported that it began shipping the doses on Monday with the first deliveries arriving on Tuesday. J&J said that it estimates it will be able to ship 20 million doses by the end of March.

New COVID-19 Variant Found in New York

The US is closely watching the progress of a new variant of the COVID-19 virus that was identified in New York last week. 

Currently, the US is tracking four other variants of the virus that may be a threat to public health: one variant from the United Kingdom, one from South Africa, one from Brazil, and one from California.

The CDC estimates that the variant from the United Kingdom will likely become the most dominant strain of the virus in the United States by the end of March.

U.S. Hits 75.2 Million COVID-19 Doses Administered

As of Sunday morning, the United States has administered 75 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines and distributed 96 million. 

Currently, the only two vaccines available are the two-dose courses by Modern and Pfizer-BioNTech. As of Sunday, nearly 50 million people had gotten their first of the two doses of the vaccines and nearly 25 million people had received their second dose.

Decline in COVID-19 Numbers Stalls

After nearly six weeks of declining numbers of total COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths, the numbers began to slowly rise again at the end of last week compared to the week before. 

The head of the CDC encouraged companies and governments to continue following guidelines for wearing masks, working from home, and social distancing, and encouraged those who are eligible to get vaccinated. 

Three New Ebola Cases for Total of 11 Confirmed in Congo

Ebola made a recent resurgence in the Democratic Republic of Congo last month. Three new cases of the disease were recently confirmed in the eastern part of the country for a total of 11 cases. Of the 11 current cases, there have been four deaths. 

According to the CDC, the risk of Ebola in the U.S. is extremely low. However, as a caution, any travelers arriving from the DRC and Guinea will need to travel through one of six U.S. airports.

Medical Studies Round-Up

Here’s a brief round-up of recent medical studies and their findings for you to stay up-to-date with the ever-evolving field of medical research.

  • A study in the United Kingdom found that after one shot of the Pfizer or AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines, people over 80 years old were 80% less likely to be hospitalized.
  • The SARS-CoV-2 virus can be transmitted from person to person via lung transplant, even if COVID-19 swabs of the back of the nose and throat are negative for the virus. 

COVID-19 in the News

To learn more about the top COVID-19 vaccines, vaccination timelines, potential requirements for health care professionals and facilities, and more, check out our COVID-19 Vaccine Information hub.

Here’s some more of the most recent news from the past week concerning the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • On Thursday, the FDA approved the use of standard freezer temperatures to store the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. Previously, the vaccine doses had to be stored in specialized freezers that could reach ultra-cold temperatures. 
  • AstraZeneca and its partner Oxford University announced that it is working on producing the next generation of COVID-19 vaccine to address the new coronavirus variants
  • Dr. Anthony Fauci urges Americans to accept whichever of the three COVID-19 vaccines they can get when they are able to get vaccinated.