CDC

Is It Time to Change the Definition of ‘Fully Vaccinated’?

As more indoor venues require proof of vaccination for entrance and with winter — as well as omicron, a new covid variant — looming, scientists and public health officials are debating when it will be time to change the definition of “fully vaccinated” to include a booster shot. It’s been more than six months since …

Is It Time to Change the Definition of ‘Fully Vaccinated’? Read More »

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: The Big Biden Budget Bill Passes the House

Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on Acast. You can also listen on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Pocket Casts or wherever you listen to podcasts. President Joe Biden’s “Build Back Better” social spending bill passed the House last week, but the legislation faces a new and different set of hurdles in the …

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FDA, CDC COVID jab decisions ‘will simplify booster messaging’

Three hurdles to allowing booster COVID-19 vaccinations for all adults in the US fell in swift succession on Friday, clearing the way for wider use of the Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna shots. The FDA cleared emergency use of the two vaccines on Friday, which was swiftly followed by a recommendation from a Centres for Disease Control …

FDA, CDC COVID jab decisions ‘will simplify booster messaging’ Read More »

Schools, Pediatricians Look to Make Up Lost Ground on Non-Covid Vaccinations

WESTMINSTER, Colo. — Melissa Blatzer was determined to get her three children caught up on their routine immunizations on a recent Saturday morning at a walk-in clinic in this Denver suburb. It had been about a year since the kids’ last shots, a delay Blatzer chalked up to the pandemic. Two-year-old Lincoln Blatzer, in his …

Schools, Pediatricians Look to Make Up Lost Ground on Non-Covid Vaccinations Read More »

Quarantine and Tracing Rules Are All Over the Map for Students

At this point in the pandemic, most parents are familiar with “covid notification” letters. But the letters’ instruction on whether your kid must quarantine or not varies wildly from school to school. In Minneapolis, students exposed to covid-19 at school are supposed to quarantine for 10 days. In the suburban Anoka-Hennepin school district, a single …

Quarantine and Tracing Rules Are All Over the Map for Students Read More »

Live Performers Find Red State Rules a Tough Act to Follow

MISSOULA, Mont. — There was something a little different on stage at a recent performance of the musical “Sister Amnesia’s Country Western Nunsense Jamboree,” the first production for the Missoula Community Theatre since the beginning of the pandemic. All the actors wore clear face masks. That way, the audience could better see the actors’ expressions, …

Live Performers Find Red State Rules a Tough Act to Follow Read More »

US backs COVID jabs for young kids – should others follow?

The US is now pressing ahead with plans to extend its COVID-19 vaccination campaign to younger children aged five and over, prompting a debate about the policy in other countries. It follows the decision by Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Rochelle Walensky to back a widening of vaccination shot from the current …

US backs COVID jabs for young kids – should others follow? Read More »

COVID jabs much more effective than virus at preventing infection

A US study has found that the immunity afforded by COVID-19 vaccines is much stronger than that stimulated by infection with SARS-CoV-2 in unvaccinated individuals. The report by the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), based on an analysis of dozens of research studies and its own data, suggests that both vaccination and infection …

COVID jabs much more effective than virus at preventing infection Read More »

CDC director backs COVID-19 jab for 5 to 11s, plus a fourth shot

The US looks set to see a big expansion of the country’s COVID-19 vaccination drive, with shots looking likely for children aged five to 11 as well as a fourth dose for adults who are immunocompromised. FDA advisors gave a green light to Pfizer and BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine Comirnaty for children in that younger age …

CDC director backs COVID-19 jab for 5 to 11s, plus a fourth shot Read More »

Pfizer’s Prevnar 20 (Pneumococcal 20-Valent Conjugate Vaccine) Receives the CDC’s Advisory Committee Recommendation for Invasive Disease and Pneumonia

Shots: The CDC’s ACIP has voted to recommend Prevnar 20 (Pneumococcal 20-valent Conjugate Vaccine) to protect adults against invasive disease and pneumonia caused by the 20 S. pneumoniae serotypes The ACIP has recommended one dose of Prevnar 20 for adults aged ≥65 & for ≥19yrs. with risk conditions who have not previously received a pneumococcal …

Pfizer’s Prevnar 20 (Pneumococcal 20-Valent Conjugate Vaccine) Receives the CDC’s Advisory Committee Recommendation for Invasive Disease and Pneumonia Read More »

Journalists Drill Down on Covid Vaccine Boosters, Misinformation Online

KHN Midwest correspondent Lauren Weber discussed how hospitals are dealing with covid-19 on WOSU’s “All Sides With Ann Fisher” on Tuesday. Weber also discussed the Food and Drug Administration’s approval of a covid vaccine booster on WAMU’s “1A” on Sept. 24. Click here to hear Weber on WOSU Read Weber’s “Covid Is Killing Rural Americans …

Journalists Drill Down on Covid Vaccine Boosters, Misinformation Online Read More »

Who Qualifies for a Covid Booster? The List Is Growing Longer

On Friday, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Rochelle Walensky said people whose jobs put them at risk of coronavirus infection qualify for a shot to boost the protection of their covid-19 vaccination. That step to include people with “institutional and occupational exposure” overrules the recommendation of her agency’s advisory panel, and the move …

Who Qualifies for a Covid Booster? The List Is Growing Longer Read More »

From the FDA’s Empty Seat to Chock-Full ICUs, Journalists Recap the Week’s Stories

KHN correspondent Rachana Pradhan discussed why President Joe Biden hasn’t yet nominated a permanent leader for the Food and Drug Administration on Newsy’s “Morning Rush” on Thursday. Click here to hear Pradhan on “Morning Rush“ Read Pradhan’s “Public Health Experts ‘Flabbergasted’ That Biden Still Hasn’t Picked an FDA Chief” KHN freelancer Nick Ehli discussed Montana’s …

From the FDA’s Empty Seat to Chock-Full ICUs, Journalists Recap the Week’s Stories Read More »

Mounting Covid Deaths Fuel School Bus Drivers’ Fears

GRIFFIN, Ga. — Natalia D’Angelo got sick right after school started in August. She was driving a school bus for special education students in Griffin-Spalding County School System about 40 miles south of Atlanta and contracted covid-19. One of her three sons, Julian Rodriguez-D’Angelo, said his mother, who was not vaccinated against the covid virus, …

Mounting Covid Deaths Fuel School Bus Drivers’ Fears Read More »

CDC overrules its advisors, backing COVID booster for health workers

The Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the US has backed booster doses of Pfizer and BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine Comirnaty in line with its recent FDA approval, overruling the advice of its own expert advisors. The CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunisation Practices (ACIP) voted unanimously yesterday to recommend a third dose of Comirnaty …

CDC overrules its advisors, backing COVID booster for health workers Read More »

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: The Autumn of Democrats’ Discontent

Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. You can also listen on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Pocket Casts or wherever you listen to podcasts. Democrats in Congress and the White House are feverishly negotiating to pass as much of President Joe Biden’s domestic agenda as they can agree on, even as …

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La máscara de tela, ¿es suficiente para proteger contra la variante delta?

En los últimos meses, algunas compañías aéreas europeas han prohibido el uso de máscaras de tela para controlar la propagación del coronavirus durante los vuelos, en favor de las quirúrgicas y los respiradores N95.       Se trata de un nuevo debate sobre la eficacia del popular cubrebocas de tela, cuyo uso se extendió desde los …

La máscara de tela, ¿es suficiente para proteger contra la variante delta? Read More »

Ask KHN-PolitiFact: Is My Cloth Mask Good Enough to Face the Delta Variant?

In recent months, some European airlines have banned the use of cloth face coverings to control the spread of the coronavirus during air travel, instead favoring surgical masks — sometimes referred to as medical or disposable — and N95 respirators. It’s another salvo in the debate over the effectiveness of the ubiquitous cloth mask, which …

Ask KHN-PolitiFact: Is My Cloth Mask Good Enough to Face the Delta Variant? Read More »

Scientists Examine Kids’ Unique Immune Systems as More Fall Victim to Covid

Eighteen months into the covid-19 pandemic, with the delta variant fueling a massive resurgence of disease, many hospitals are hitting a heartbreaking new low. They’re now losing babies to the coronavirus. The first reported covid-related death of a newborn occurred in Orange County, Florida, and an infant has died in Mississippi. Merced County in California …

Scientists Examine Kids’ Unique Immune Systems as More Fall Victim to Covid Read More »

How Fauci and the NIH Got Ahead of the FDA and CDC in Backing Boosters

In January — long before the first jabs of covid-19 vaccine were even available to most Americans — scientists working under Dr. Anthony Fauci at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases were already thinking about potential booster shots. A month later, they organized an international group of epidemiologists, virologists and biostatisticians to track …

How Fauci and the NIH Got Ahead of the FDA and CDC in Backing Boosters Read More »

V-Safe: How Everyday People Help the CDC Track Covid Vaccine Safety With Their Phones

Of the 203 million people who have received at least one dose of a covid-19 vaccine, more than 9 million have enrolled in a program to share information about their health since getting the shot. The initiative was created for the covid-19 vaccines to complement the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s vaccine safety monitoring …

V-Safe: How Everyday People Help the CDC Track Covid Vaccine Safety With Their Phones Read More »

To Quarantine or Not: The Hard Choices Schools Are Leaving to Parents and Staff

On the second day of high school in Texas, Natosha Daniels’ 14-year-old daughter went all day without eating because she did not want to remove her mask. The teen’s school has a couple of thousand students, and the cafeteria was crowded. Plus Round Rock Independent School District outside Austin didn’t require masks, so some students …

To Quarantine or Not: The Hard Choices Schools Are Leaving to Parents and Staff Read More »

Analysis: Care for the unvaccinated may be costing U.S. healthcare system $2.3B

The report, released by Kaiser Family Foundation and the Peterson Center on Healthcare, details the high cost of Covid care for the unvaccinated. In fact, the analysis indicates the figure could be even higher than $2.3 billion, as the authors did not take into account the cost of outpatient treatment for Covid-19.

New Nursing Home Vaccine Requirements Could Trigger Staffing Scramble in Post-Acute Care

The U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced a new emergency regulation Wednesday requiring staff COVID-19 vaccinations within all nursing homes reimbursed by Medicare and Medicaid. Up until now, health care providers in many states have been left to develop their own in-house vaccination policies for workers. In some instances, however, health care providers …

New Nursing Home Vaccine Requirements Could Trigger Staffing Scramble in Post-Acute Care Read More »

Lo que debes saber sobre el refuerzo de la vacuna contra covid

La administración de Biden anunció el miércoles 18 de agosto planes para ofrecer refuerzos de la vacuna contra covid-19 a todos los adultos estadounidenses a partir del próximo mes, y dijo que los datos recientes, incluidos algunos disponibles solo en los últimos días, jugaron un papel en esa decisión. “Si esperan a que suceda algo …

Lo que debes saber sobre el refuerzo de la vacuna contra covid Read More »

Science Shows Mask-Wearing Is Largely Safe for Children

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is one of a handful of Republican governors trying to block school districts from requiring masks in the classroom.  Under DeSantis’ direction, the state health department adopted a rule that lets families opt out of locally ordered school mask mandates. The State Board of Education approved another rule that allows parents to secure vouchers for their …

Science Shows Mask-Wearing Is Largely Safe for Children Read More »

Heces: la nueva herramienta de detección de covid y otras enfermedades

Desde la reapertura del campus de la Universidad de California-San Diego, el pasado verano, la institución ha recurrido a estrategias de salud pública de probada eficacia, como las pruebas y el rastreo de contactos. Pero también ha añadido una herramienta a su arsenal: excrementos. Esta herramienta alertó a los investigadores de un 85% de los …

Heces: la nueva herramienta de detección de covid y otras enfermedades Read More »

The Newest Disease Detection Tool for Covid and Beyond: Poop

Since reopening campus at the University of California-San Diego last summer, university officials have relied on the tried-and-true public health strategies of testing and contact tracing. But they have also added a new tool to their arsenal: excrement. That tool alerted researchers to about 85% of cases in dorms before they were diagnosed, according to …

The Newest Disease Detection Tool for Covid and Beyond: Poop Read More »

Mensaje del CEO de Pfizer al público: confíen en nosotros con el refuerzo de la vacuna contra covid

El CEO de Pfizer, Albert Bourla, confiaba en junio en la capacidad de la vacuna de su empresa para proteger contra la variante delta, altamente contagiosa, mientras se diseminaba por el mundo y llenaba de pacientes los hospitales estadounidenses. Apenas unas semanas después, Pfizer comunicó que solicitaría autorización para una vacuna de refuerzo, después que …

Mensaje del CEO de Pfizer al público: confíen en nosotros con el refuerzo de la vacuna contra covid Read More »

Pfizer CEO to Public: Just Trust Us on the Covid Booster

Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla was confident in June about the ability of his company’s vaccine to protect against the highly contagious delta variant, as it marched across the globe and filled U.S. hospitals with patients. “I feel quite comfortable that we cover it,” Bourla said. Just weeks later, Pfizer said it would seek authorization for …

Pfizer CEO to Public: Just Trust Us on the Covid Booster Read More »

Más embarazadas con covid en cuidados intensivos, expertos enfatizan que deben vacunarse

Los Centros para el Control y Prevención de Enfermedades (CDC) están duplicando su recomendación de que las mujeres embarazadas reciban la vacuna contra covid-19, a la luz de nuevos datos que subrayan su seguridad y eficacia durante el embarazo. Esta recomendación llega en un momento en que los médicos de todo el país informan de …

Más embarazadas con covid en cuidados intensivos, expertos enfatizan que deben vacunarse Read More »

Reading, ’Rithmetic and Resisting Covid: The New 3 R’s as Kids Head Back to School

When kids head back to school this fall, for some it will be the first time they’ve been in a real classroom with other students since the pandemic began. Even if they attended classes in person last year, the spread of the highly transmissible delta variant of covid-19 will require a new safety calculation, particularly …

Reading, ’Rithmetic and Resisting Covid: The New 3 R’s as Kids Head Back to School Read More »

Getting a Covid Vaccine During Pregnancy Even More Urgent as ICU Beds Fill Up

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is doubling down on its recommendation that people who are pregnant get the covid-19 vaccine, in light of new data underscoring its safety and effectiveness throughout pregnancy. This recommendation comes at a time when doctors across the country are reporting an uptick in the number of unvaccinated pregnant …

Getting a Covid Vaccine During Pregnancy Even More Urgent as ICU Beds Fill Up Read More »

DeSantis’ Executive Order Is Misleading About Lack of Scientific Support for Masking in Schools

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s recent guidance on students and masking “lacks a well-grounded scientific justification.” Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis in a July 30 executive order On July 30, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis issued an executive order stating that schools couldn’t mandate that their students wear masks, and that it should be up …

DeSantis’ Executive Order Is Misleading About Lack of Scientific Support for Masking in Schools Read More »

More Aggressive Delta Variant Causing Home Health Providers to Navigate New Phase of the Pandemic

Since the onset of the COVID-19 emergency in early 2020, home-based care providers have had to navigate seemingly countless challenges around keeping both patients and staff safe. Providers are now gearing up to face a new and more aggressive strain of the coronavirus: the Delta variant. Among its major distinctions, the Delta variant is more …

More Aggressive Delta Variant Causing Home Health Providers to Navigate New Phase of the Pandemic Read More »

Clarity on Covid Count: Pandemic’s Toll on Seniors Extended Well Beyond Nursing Homes

As covid-19 resurges across the country, driven by the highly infectious delta variant, experts are extending our understanding of the pandemic’s toll on older adults — the age group hit hardest by the pandemic. New research offers unexpected insights. Older adults living in their own homes and apartments had a significantly heightened risk of dying …

Clarity on Covid Count: Pandemic’s Toll on Seniors Extended Well Beyond Nursing Homes Read More »

“Sabiduría y miedo” llevan al 90% de los adultos mayores de EE.UU. a vacunarse contra covid

En medio del último aumento de casos de covid-19 y hospitalizaciones, Estados Unidos alcanzó el martes 3 de agosto un hito que algunos pensaban que era inalcanzable: el 90% de las personas de 65 años o más están al menos parcialmente vacunadas contra la enfermedad. Esto es más de 49 millones de adultos mayores vacunados. …

“Sabiduría y miedo” llevan al 90% de los adultos mayores de EE.UU. a vacunarse contra covid Read More »

‘Wisdom and Fear’ Lead 90% of U.S. Seniors to Covid Vaccines

Amid the latest surge in covid-19 cases and hospitalizations, the United States on Tuesday hit a milestone that some thought was unattainable: 90% of people 65 and older are at least partly vaccinated against the disease. That’s more than 49 million seniors vaccinated. Overall, 70% of adults have been inoculated, at least partly, and nearly …

‘Wisdom and Fear’ Lead 90% of U.S. Seniors to Covid Vaccines Read More »

Claims That CDC’s PCR Test Can’t Tell Covid From Flu Are Wrong

Claim: “CDC has just announced they will revoke the emergency use authorization of the RT-PCR tests first introduced in 2/20. … Translation: They’ve been adding flu cases to Covid cases when using that test.” Facebook post, July 25, 2021 Posts circulating on Facebook and Instagram claim the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will stop …

Claims That CDC’s PCR Test Can’t Tell Covid From Flu Are Wrong Read More »

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Hot Covid Summer

Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. You can also listen on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Pocket Casts or wherever you listen to podcasts. Predictions of a “hot vax summer” that would let Americans who had their covid immunizations celebrate the waning of the pandemic are turning out to have been …

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Hot Covid Summer Read More »

Delta Variant Surges in Colorado as the Bands Play On

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. — Dr. Rachel LaCount grasped a metal hoop at a playground and spun in circles with her 7-year-old son, turning the distant mesas of the Colorado National Monument into a red-tinged blur. LaCount has lived in this western Colorado city of 64,000 nearly her whole life. As a hospital pathologist, she knows …

Delta Variant Surges in Colorado as the Bands Play On Read More »

Not All Experts Are Ready to Vaccinate Kids Against Covid

Lucien Wiggins, 12, arrived at Tufts Children’s Hospital by ambulance June 7 with chest pains, dizziness and high levels of a protein in his blood that indicated inflammation of his heart. The symptoms had begun a day earlier, the morning after his second vaccination with the Pfizer-BioNTech mRNA shot. For Dr. Sara Ross, chief of …

Not All Experts Are Ready to Vaccinate Kids Against Covid Read More »

Being Vaccinated Doesn’t Mean You Must Go Maskless. Here’s Why.

For more than a year, public health officials have repeatedly told us that masks save lives. They’ve warned us to keep our distance from our neighbors, who’ve morphed into disease vectors before our eyes. Now they are telling us that if we’re vaccinated, we no longer need to wear masks or physically distance ourselves in …

Being Vaccinated Doesn’t Mean You Must Go Maskless. Here’s Why. Read More »

Many New Moms Get Kicked Off Medicaid 2 Months After Giving Birth. Illinois Will Change That.

The U.S. is the only industrialized nation in which the maternal death rate has been rising. Each year, about 700 deaths are due to pregnancy, childbirth or subsequent complications, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This story also ran on NPR. It can be republished for free. When someone dies while pregnant or within a …

Many New Moms Get Kicked Off Medicaid 2 Months After Giving Birth. Illinois Will Change That. Read More »

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Roe v. Wade on the Ropes

Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. The Supreme Court agreed to hear a case next term that could result in a significant modification or overturn of Roe v. Wade, the 1973 case that legalized abortion nationwide. At issue is a Mississippi law that would ban the procedure after 15 weeks of …

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Stark Racial Disparities Persist in Vaccinations, State-Level CDC Data Shows

Black Americans’ covid-19 vaccination rates are still lagging months into the nation’s campaign, while Hispanics are closing the gap and Native Americans show the highest rates overall, according to federal data obtained by KHN. This story also ran on CNN. It can be republished for free. The data, provided by the Centers for Disease Control …

Stark Racial Disparities Persist in Vaccinations, State-Level CDC Data Shows Read More »

Riding Herd on Mental Health in Colorado Ranching Country

[Editor’s note: If you or someone you know is in a crisis, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741741. In Colorado, you can also contact Colorado Crisis Services at 1-844-493-TALK (8255) or text TALK to 38255.] KIOWA, Colo. — The yellow-and-green …

Riding Herd on Mental Health in Colorado Ranching Country Read More »

CVS and Walgreens Have Wasted More Vaccine Doses Than Most States Combined

Two national pharmacy chains that the federal government entrusted to inoculate people against covid-19 account for the lion’s share of wasted vaccine doses, according to government data obtained by KHN. This story also ran on NBC News. It can be republished for free. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recorded 182,874 wasted doses as …

CVS and Walgreens Have Wasted More Vaccine Doses Than Most States Combined Read More »

Detecting Rare Blood Clots Was a Win, But US Vaccine Safety System Still Has Gaps

The quick detection of an ultra-rare blood clotting reaction in some covid-19 vaccine recipients showed the power of a federal warning system for vaccine safety issues, but experts worry that blind spots in the program could hamper detection of other unexpected side effects. This story also ran on NBC News. It can be republished for …

Detecting Rare Blood Clots Was a Win, But US Vaccine Safety System Still Has Gaps Read More »

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: 100 Days of Health Policy

Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. It’s been a busy 100 days for the Biden administration on health policy. The promise Joe Biden made as president-elect to get 100 million covid vaccinations in arms was doubled, healthcare.gov reopened to those without insurance, and steps were taken to undo a raft of …

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Expertos en salud pública temen que los fondos desaparezcan cuando termine la pandemia

En respuesta a la pandemia de covid-19, el Congreso ha invertido decenas de miles de millones de dólares en los departamentos de salud pública estatales y locales, pagando por máscaras, rastreadores de contactos y campañas educativas para persuadir a las personas de que se vacunen. Sus funcionarios, que han manejado presupuestos famélicos durante años, están …

Expertos en salud pública temen que los fondos desaparezcan cuando termine la pandemia Read More »

Public Health Experts Worry About Boom-Bust Cycle of Support

Congress has poured tens of billions of dollars into state and local public health departments in response to the covid-19 pandemic, paying for masks, contact tracers and education campaigns to persuade people to get vaccinated. This story also ran on The Associated Press. It can be republished for free. Public health officials who have juggled …

Public Health Experts Worry About Boom-Bust Cycle of Support Read More »

The Shock and Reality of Catching Covid After Being Vaccinated

Robin Hauser, a pediatrician in Tampa, Fla., got covid in February. What separates her from the vast majority of the tens of millions of other Americans who have come down with the virus is this: She got sick seven weeks after her second dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. Use Our Content It can be republished …

The Shock and Reality of Catching Covid After Being Vaccinated Read More »

Ask KHN-PolitiFact: I’ve Recovered From Covid. Why Do I Still Have to Mask Up?

More than 120 million Americans have joined arguably the most sought-after club on Earth: those immunized against the coronavirus. Fully vaccinated people were given the green light in March by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to gather with other fully vaccinated people or with low-risk unvaccinated people from one other household without a …

Ask KHN-PolitiFact: I’ve Recovered From Covid. Why Do I Still Have to Mask Up? Read More »

Public health, racial equity, climate action drive Biden’s budget requests for healthcare

President Joe Biden has submitted his discretionary budget for 2022 to Congress. Among its healthcare provisions are funding requests for the CDC, mental health and social determinants of health programs. But there are some unusual requests as well, such as funding for an Office of Climate Change and Health Equity.

A Year Into Pandemic, Federal Officials Design New Mask Guidelines to Better Protect More Workers

Federal officials announced new measures to help get fresh, new N95 masks to health care workers and expand their use in other industries after scientists argued that the highly protective masks are essential to keep workers safe from covid-19. Use Our Content It can be republished for free. The changes come as U.S. mask-makers say …

A Year Into Pandemic, Federal Officials Design New Mask Guidelines to Better Protect More Workers Read More »

KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: Health Care as Infrastructure

Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. Health care makes some surprising appearances in President Joe Biden’s $2 trillion infrastructure plan, even though more health proposals are expected in a second proposal later this month. The bill that would help rebuild roads, bridges and broadband capabilities also includes $400 billion to help …

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Analysis: How the US Invested in the War on Terrorism at the Cost of Public Health

This story also ran on Los Angeles Times. It can be republished for free. Here’s one big takeaway from our country’s disastrous 2020 covid response: For 20 years, we’ve lavished attention and money on fighting human terrorism and forgot that the terrorism of nature is equally deadly, deserving equal preparation. Today, with more than 545,000 …

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How One State’s Public Health Defunding Led to Vaccination Chaos

ST. LOUIS — Missourians have driven hours to find vaccines in rural counties — at least those with cars and the time. Tens of thousands of doses are waiting to be distributed, slowly being rolled out in a federal long-term care program. Waitlists are hundreds of thousands of people long. Black residents are getting left …

How One State’s Public Health Defunding Led to Vaccination Chaos Read More »

Birx Joins Air-Cleaning Industry Amid Land Grab for Billions in Federal Covid Relief

The former top White House coronavirus adviser under President Donald Trump, Dr. Deborah Birx, has joined an air-cleaning company that built its business, in part, on technology that is now banned in California due to health hazards. This story also ran on NBC News. It can be republished for free. The company is one of …

Birx Joins Air-Cleaning Industry Amid Land Grab for Billions in Federal Covid Relief Read More »

Ya te has vacunado contra covid. ¿Y ahora qué?

El esfuerzo de vacunación contra covid en este país ha sido un parto doloroso: problemas de registro, mala comunicación, datos incorrectos y un escaso suministro de vacunas; todo ello exacerbado por una asignación desigual, un supuesto favoritismo político y una indecorosa competencia por las vacunas. Aun sí, ya se han administrado 129 millones de dosis, …

Ya te has vacunado contra covid. ¿Y ahora qué? Read More »

So You’re Vaccinated Against Covid. Now What?

As you surely know, this country’s covid vaccination effort has been plagued by major birth pangs: registration snafus, poor communication, faulty data and a scant supply of vaccine — all exacerbated by inequitable allocation, alleged political favoritism and unseemly jockeying for shots. Use Our Content It can be republished for free. Still, as of Friday, …

So You’re Vaccinated Against Covid. Now What? Read More »

For Spring Season, Young Athletes Get Back in the Game Despite Covid Risk

This story also ran on USA Today. It can be republished for free. This spring, high school senior Nathan Kassis will play baseball in the shadow of covid-19 — wearing a neck gaiter under his catcher’s mask, sitting 6 feet from teammates in the dugout and trading elbow bumps for hugs after wins. “We’re looking …

For Spring Season, Young Athletes Get Back in the Game Despite Covid Risk Read More »

CDC’s ‘Huge Mistake’: Did Misguided Mask Advice Drive Up Covid Death Toll for Health Workers?

Since the start of the pandemic, the most terrifying task in health care was thought to be when a doctor put a breathing tube down the trachea of a critically ill covid patient. This story also ran on The Guardian. It can be republished for free. Those performing such “aerosol-generating” procedures, often in an intensive …

CDC’s ‘Huge Mistake’: Did Misguided Mask Advice Drive Up Covid Death Toll for Health Workers? Read More »

Biden’s Straight-Talking CDC Director Has Long Used Data to Save Lives

This story is part of a partnership that includes WBUR, NPR and KHN. It can be republished for free. In early December, Dr. Katy Stephenson was watching TV with her family and scrolling through Twitter when she saw a tweet that made her shout. “I said ‘Oh, my God!’” she recalled. “Super loud. My kids …

Biden’s Straight-Talking CDC Director Has Long Used Data to Save Lives Read More »

Have a Case of a Covid Variant? No One Is Going to Tell You

This story also ran on NBC News. It can be republished for free. Covid-19 infections from variant strains are quickly spreading across the U.S., but there’s one big problem: Lab officials say they can’t tell patients or their doctors whether someone has been infected by a variant. Federal rules around who can be told about …

Have a Case of a Covid Variant? No One Is Going to Tell You Read More »

It’s Time to Get Back to Normal? Not According to Science.

The science says “open the schools, stop wearing masks outside, and everyone at low risk should start living normal lives.” — Blog post by conservative talk show host Buck Sexton posted on Facebook, Feb. 8. This story was produced in partnership with PolitiFact.  It can be republished for free. A popular Facebook and blog post by …

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Prominent Scientists Call on CDC to Better Protect Workers From Covid

A prominent group of academics is pressing the Biden administration to move faster and take stronger action to protect high-risk workers from airborne exposure to the coronavirus, urging enforceable standards to help safeguard risky workplaces including health care, food processing and prisons. The researchers say that even though the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention …

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KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: All About Budget Reconciliation

Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. President Joe Biden has said he still wants a bipartisan bill to provide the next round of covid relief. But in case that doesn’t happen, House committees this week got down to work on a budget reconciliation bill that could pass the Senate with a …

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With Demand Far Exceeding Supply, It Matters That People Are Jumping the Vaccine Line

This story also ran on The New York Times. It can be republished for free. The Biden administration’s much-needed national strategy to end the covid-19 pandemic includes plans to remedy the chaotic vaccination effort with “more people, more places, more supply.” The Federal Emergency Management Agency will open more vaccination sites, the government will buy …

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As Vaccine Rollout Expands, Black Americans Still Left Behind

Black Americans are still receiving covid vaccinations at dramatically lower rates than white Americans even as the chaotic rollout reaches more people, according to a new KHN analysis. Almost seven weeks into the vaccine rollout, states have expanded eligibility beyond front-line health care workers to more of the public — in some states to more …

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Huge Gaps in Vaccine Data Make It Next to Impossible to Know Who Got the Shots

As they rush to vaccinate millions of Americans, health officials are struggling to collect critically important information — such as race, ethnicity and occupation — of every person they jab. The data being collected is so scattered that there’s little insight into which health care workers, or first responders, have been among the people getting …

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When Covid Deaths Aren’t Counted, Families Pay the Price

This story also ran on The Guardian. It can be republished for free. On Sundays, Bishop Bruce Davis preached love. Through his Pentecostal ministry, he organized youth parades and gave computers, bicycles and food to families in need. During the week, Bruce practiced what he preached, caring for prisoners at a Georgia hospital. On March …

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Feeling Left Out: Private Practice Doctors, Patients Wonder When It’s Their Turn for Vaccine

Dr. Andrew Carroll — a family doctor in Chandler, Arizona — wants to help his patients get immunized against covid, so he paid more than $4,000 to buy an ultra-low-temperature freezer from eBay needed to store the Pfizer vaccine. But he’s not sure he’ll get a chance to use it, given health officials have so …

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As the Terror of COVID Struck, Health Care Workers Struggled to Survive. Thousands Lost the Fight.

This story also ran on The Guardian. It can be republished for free. Workers at Garfield Medical Center in suburban Los Angeles were on edge as the pandemic ramped up in March and April. Staffers in a 30-patient unit were rationing a single tub of sanitizing wipes all day. A May memo from the CEO …

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COVID Vaccines Appear Safe and Effective, but Key Questions Remain

Use Our Content It can be republished for free. The recent rollout of two newly authorized COVID-19 vaccines is a bright ray of hope at the pandemic’s darkest hour. We now have a path that can lead us to happier times — even as we watch and suffer from the horrible onslaught of new infections, …

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Many US Health Experts Underestimated the Coronavirus … Until It Was Too Late

Use Our Content It can be republished for free. A year ago, while many Americans were finishing their holiday shopping and finalizing travel plans, doctors in Wuhan, China, were battling a mysterious outbreak of pneumonia with no known cause. Chinese doctors began to fear they were witnessing the return of severe acute respiratory syndrome, or …

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With Vaccine Delivery Imminent, Nursing Homes Must Make a Strong Pitch to Residents

Imagine this: Your elderly mother, who has dementia, is in a nursing home and COVID-19 vaccines are due to arrive in a week or two. You think she should be vaccinated, having heard the vaccine is effective in generating an immune response in older adults. Your brother disagrees. He worries that development of the vaccine …

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Lie of the Year: The Downplay and Denial of the Coronavirus

This story was produced in partnership with PolitiFact. It can be republished for free. A Florida taxi driver and his wife had seen enough conspiracy theories online to believe the virus was overblown, maybe even a hoax. So no masks for them. Then they got sick. She died. A college lecturer had trouble refilling her …

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Desafío en hospitales: a qué trabajadores de salud vacunar primero contra COVID

Si existe una cita con el destino, está escrita en el calendario del doctor Taison Bell. Al mediodía del martes 15 de diciembre, Bell, especialista en cuidados intensivos del Sistema de Salud de la Universidad de Virginia será uno de los primeros en arremangarse para recibir la vacuna que lo protegerá del coronavirus. Bell, de …

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Hospitals Scramble to Prioritize Which Workers Are First for COVID Shots

This story also ran on NBC News. It can be republished for free. If there’s such a thing as a date with destiny, it’s marked on Dr. Taison Bell’s calendar. At noon Tuesday, Bell, a critical care physician, is scheduled to be one of the first health care workers at the University of Virginia Health …

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¿Viajas por las Fiestas? Para muchos es una decisión arriesgada

Vivek Kaliraman, que vive en Los Angeles, ha celebrado todas las navidades desde 2002 con su mejor amigo, que vive en Houston. Pero, este año, por el riesgo de COVID, en lugar de ir en avión, manejó y piensa quedarse varias semanas. El viaje, que le llevaría 24 horas, era demasiado largo para hacerlo en …

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Going Home for the Holidays? For Many Americans, That’s a Risky Decision

Vivek Kaliraman, who lives in Los Angeles, has celebrated every Christmas since 2002 with his best friend, who lives in Houston. But, this year, instead of boarding an airplane, which felt too risky during the COVID pandemic, he took a car and plans to stay with his friend for several weeks. The trip — a …

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Demand for COVID Vaccines Expected to Get Heated — And Fast

Americans have made no secret of their skepticism of COVID-19 vaccines this year, with fears of political interference and a “warp speed” timeline blunting confidence in the shots. As recently as September, nearly half of U.S. adults said they didn’t intend to be inoculated. But with two promising vaccines primed for release, likely within weeks, …

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Hoping to Prevent Community Spread, Home-Based Care Advocates Vie for ‘Critical’ Vaccine Access

A number of national home-based care advocacy organizations have come together to address the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). In a new letter penned to ACIP Chairman Dr. José Romero, the group called for the inclusion of in-home caregivers when it comes to priority access to the COVID-19 vaccine. The letter was born …

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How COVID-19 Highlights the Uncertainty of Medical Testing

Dr. Jacqueline Chu considered the man with a negative coronavirus test on the other end of the phone, and knew, her heart dropping, that the test result was not enough to clear him for work. The man was a grocery store clerk — an essential worker — and the sole earner for his family. A …

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CDC advice on how to celebrate Thanksgiving during COVID-19

Don’t expect any turkey recipes from the CDC, but the do advise a fair amount of caution during this Thanksgiving holiday. More than 1 million COVID-19 cases were reported in the United States over the last 7 days.As cases continue to increase rapidly across the United States, the safest way to celebrate Thanksgiving is to …

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States Starting to Prioritize Home Health, Hospice Workers in Vaccination Plans

Pfizer, Moderna and the University of Oxford are among the organizations to tout highly effective COVID-19 vaccines this month. With “the cavalry coming,” the focus is now shifting to how, when and where vaccines should be distributed. In September, the American Health Care Association (AHCA) and National Center for Assisted Living (NCAL) urged state leaders …

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Fear of Flying Is a COVID-Era Conundrum

The holidays are approaching just as COVID-19 case rates nationwide are increasing at a record-breaking pace, leading to dire warnings from public health experts. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued cautions and updated guidelines related to family gatherings. Dr. Anthony Fauci, a White House coronavirus adviser and director of the National Institute …

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As Faith in Vaccines Falters, Biden Is Under Pressure to Name New FDA Chief Stat

President-elect Joe Biden made COVID-19 a linchpin of his campaign, criticizing President Donald Trump’s leadership on everything from masks and packed campaign rallies to vaccines. That was the easy part. Biden now has the urgent job of filling top health care positions in his administration to help restore public trust in science-driven institutions Trump repeatedly …

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How COVID Death Counts Become the Stuff of Conspiracy Theories

In the waning days of the campaign, President Donald Trump complained repeatedly about how the United States tracks the number of people who have died from COVID-19, claiming, “This country and its reporting systems are just not doing it right.” He went on to blame those reporting systems for inflating the number of deaths, pointing …

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Evictions Damage Public Health. The CDC Aims to Curb Them ― For Now.

In August, Robert Pettigrew was working a series of odd jobs. While washing the windows of a cellphone store he saw a sign, one that he believes the “good Lord” placed there for him. “Facing eviction?” the sign read. “You could be eligible for up to $3,000 in rent assistance. Apply today.” It seemed a …

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Thousands of Minks Dead as COVID Outbreak Escalates on Utah Farms

Thousands of minks at Utah fur farms have died because of the coronavirus in the past 10 days, forcing nine sites in three counties to quarantine, but the state veterinarian said people don’t appear to be at risk from the outbreak. The COVID-19 infections likely were spread from workers at the mink ranches to the …

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Adult Exposure to Lead

“Children in approximately 4 million households in the United States are being exposed to high levels of lead.” As I discuss in my video The Effects of Low-Level Lead Exposure in Adults, “Despite the dramatic decline in children’s blood-lead concentrations over the decades, lead toxicity remains a major public health problem”—and not just for children. …

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COVID + Influenza: éste es un buen año para vacunarse, aconsejan expertos

La temporada de influenza se verá diferente este año, ya que los Estados Unidos se enfrentan a una pandemia de coronavirus que ya ha matado a más de 176.000 personas. Muchos estadounidenses son reacios a ir al médico y los funcionarios de salud pública temen que las personas eviten vacunarse. Aunque a veces se considera …

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COVID + Influenza: This Is a Good Year to Get a Flu Shot, Experts Advise

Flu season will look different this year, as the country grapples with a coronavirus pandemic that has killed more than 172,000 people. Many Americans are reluctant to visit a doctor’s office and public health officials worry people will shy away from being immunized. Although sometimes incorrectly regarded as just another bad cold, flu also kills …

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Drug Overdose Deaths Showed a One-Year Decline in 2018. But There’s More to the Story.

    Detective Ryan Holets, whose personal story includes the adoption of an infant born to a drug-addicted mother, addressed the Republican National Convention on its second night. He praised President Donald Trump’s efforts in addressing drug and opioid abuse and noted “drug overdose deaths decreased in 2018 for the first time in 30 years.” …

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DeSantis Says COVID Is a Lower Risk for School-Aged Kids Than Flu

Even as his state is a hotbed for COVID-19, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has been pushing schools to reopen so parents have the choice of sending children back to the classroom or keeping them home to learn virtually. The Republican governor has said children without any underlying health conditions would benefit from in-person learning and …

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Democratic Convention, Night 3: Making the Party Lines Clear

The third night of the Democratic National Convention was all about one thing: Sen. Kamala Harris of California becoming the first Black and Indian American woman to accept a major political party’s vice presidential nomination. But key Democratic criticisms — many rooted in health care issues and the COVID-19 pandemic — were repeated throughout the …

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How the Lead Paint and Gas Industries Got Away with It

We have known for thousands of years that lead can be toxic and for more than a century that children could be poisoned by lead paint. Since those first cases, the “lead industry has mobilized against the advances of science,” as I discuss in my video How the Lead Paint Industry Got Away with It. …

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Trabajadores agrícolas en alto riesgo de contraer coronavirus y sin protección federal

KNOXVILLE, Tennessee.- Es una época de mucho trabajo para las granjas productoras de tomate en esta parte del estado. Estas plantaciones cuentan con cientos de trabajadores, la mayoría latinos. Algunos viven allí. Otros son migrantes que viajan de granja en granja, para recoger las cosechas de verano. Otros vienen de México o Centroamérica con visas …

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As Crisis Grows, Farms Try to Balance Health of Field Workers and Food Supply

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — It’s a busy time for the tomato-producing farms in this part of the state. Farms have staffed up with hundreds of workers, most of whom are Latino. Some live locally. Others are migrant workers who travel from farm to farm, chasing the summer growing seasons. Still others come from Mexico or Central …

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Don’t Fall for This Video: Hydroxychloroquine Is Not a COVID-19 Cure

Millions of people, including the president of the United States, have seen or shared a video in which a doctor falsely claims there is a cure for the coronavirus, and it’s a medley starring hydroxychloroquine. The video shows several doctors in white coats giving a press conference outside the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. It persists on social media despite …

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What Exercise Authorities Don’t Tell You About Optimal Duration

Physical fitness authorities seem to have fallen into the same trap as the nutrition authorities, recommending what they think may be achievable, rather than simply informing us of what the science says and letting us make up our own minds. Researchers who accept grants from The Coca-Cola Company may call physical inactivity “the biggest public …

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Must-Reads of the Week

The Friday Breeze Want to read the best and most provocative stories from the week? Welcome to the Friday Breeze, where we compile them all — so you’re set with your weekend reading. While you, loyal reader, wait for a wonderful new permanent Friday Breeze writer to start breezing, welcome to this week’s rundown brought …

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KHN’s ‘What the Health?’: The Trump Administration’s War on Fauci

What The Health? · The Trump Administration’s War on Fauci Can’t see the audio player? Click here to listen on SoundCloud. Julie Rovner Kaiser Health News @jrovner Read Julie’s Stories Erin Mershon STAT @eemershon Read Erin’s Stories Alice Miranda Ollstein Politico @AliceOllstein Read Alice’s Stories Paige Winfield Cunningham The Washington Post @pw_cunningham Read Paige’s Stories Not …

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Listen: A Bureaucratic Shuffle for Hospital COVID Data

Julie Rovner, KHN’s chief Washington correspondent, on Wednesday joined Rob Ferrett, host of “Central Time” on Wisconsin Public Radio, to discuss the Trump administration’s announcement that hospital data on coronavirus cases will no longer be routed to the Centers for Disease and Control and Prevention and instead will go to the Department of Health and …

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Must-Reads Of The Week

The Friday Breeze Want to read the best and most provocative stories from the week? Welcome to the Friday Breeze, where we compile them all — so you’re set with your weekend reading. Another week has gone by, and the biggest news remains that COVID numbers aren’t looking much better as the disease spreads quickly …

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Medical Meat Bias

When famed surgeon Michael DeBakey was asked why his studies published back in the 1930s linking smoking and lung cancer were ignored, he had to remind people about what it was like back then. We were a smoking society. Smoking was in the movies, on airplanes. Medical meetings were held in “a heavy haze of …

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Takeaways from My Webinar on COVID-19

On December 30, 2019, Dr. Li Wenliang, an ophthalmologist at Wuhan Central Hospital in the Hubei province of China, messaged his fellow physicians, alerting them to the appearance of what he thought as SARS. Thirty-nine days later, after becoming infected with the very virus he tried to warn his colleagues about, he was dead at …

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