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Daily News Pulse for February 16, 2023

Summary: Clark County, NV has seen an increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations and wastewater surveillance showing signs of the virus spreading throughout the community. Hawaii reported 17 additional coronavirus deaths and 619 new cases in the past seven days. The World Health Organization has canceled its investigation into the origins of COVID-19 due to lack of cooperation from China.
  • NEW: COVID-19 hospitalizations up, signs virus might be spreading again in Clark County: COVID-19 hospitalizations increased in Clark County, NV over the past week, and wastewater surveillance showed signs of the virus spreading throughout the community. Cases were only slightly up, with a 14-day moving average increasing by 2.1% in Clark County and 5.4% statewide. Sewer samples taken a week ago showed higher levels of COVID-19 DNA at all monitoring stations in the valley and Boulder City.
  • China’s Hidden COVID Catastrophe – Foreign Affairs: In the past three months, the Chinese government has faced a series of crises due to public discontent and the end of its “zero COVID” measures. This has led to a public health emergency with the virus spreading across 80% of the population, resulting in overflowing hospitals and morgues. The government has responded by increasing testing and contact tracing, as well as providing financial aid to those affected.
  • Hawaii reports 17 COVID deaths, over 600 new cases in past week: Hawaii reported 17 additional coronavirus deaths and 619 new cases in the past seven days, bringing the statewide total since the start of the pandemic to 379,100 and the death toll to 1,822. The state now issues its COVID data on a weekly basis.
  • Arizona Gov. Hobbs invalidates $210M in COVID-19 grants from Ducey – AZCentral: Katie Hobbs accused her Republican predecessor of illegally awarding $210 million in COVID-19 response grants.
  • EU regulator expects eventually to introduce annual COVID shots – Reuters: The European Medicines Agency expects COVID vaccination campaigns to be conducted annually, similar to the approach with flu inoculation. There is a marked decline in new COVID cases, hospitalisations and deaths in Europe, but the virus continues to evolve.
  • China shifts COVID origin blame after WHO abandons study into virus beginnings: The World Health Organization has canceled the second phase of its investigation into the origins of COVID-19 due to lack of cooperation from China.
  • U.S. backs Moderna, says government should face COVID-19 vaccine lawsuit | Reuters: The US Department of Justice has argued that the US government should be liable for any patent infringement of Arbutus Biopharma and Genevant Sciences’ patents related to Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine, rather than Moderna itself. Genevant declined to comment on the filing.
  • Omicron Can Raise the Risk of Diabetes, Study Says – TIME: A study of 24,000 patients during the Omicron era of COVID-19 showed that those infected with the virus had an increased risk of diabetes and related diseases in the 90 days after infection. Vaccination was found to reduce these risks.
  • Daily briefing: WHO abandons second phase of COVID-origins investigation – Nature: The World Health Organization’s investigation into the source of SARS-CoV-2 has been shelved due to challenges in conducting studies in China. The WHO’s first report deemed the ‘lab leak’ hypothesis “extremely unlikely”. Understanding how the virus first infected people is important for preventing future outbreaks.
  • Vaccination Could Reduce Risk of Long COVID, Study Shows – WebMD: A new study suggests that getting vaccinated could reduce the risk of long COVID and make its symptoms less severe. Researchers at Rush University Medical Center found that the differences in long COVID symptoms across variants became less important when adjusted for vaccination status.
  • Organ damage persists in 59% of long Covid patients a year after diagnosis: Study: A new study has found that 59% of long Covid patients still have organ damage a year after initial symptoms, even if they weren’t severely affected when first diagnosed. 29% of long Covid patients had multi-organ impairment at 6 and 12 months, with extreme breathlessness, cognitive dysfunction and poor health-related quality of life. 13% of the 536 patients studied were hospitalized when first diagnosed with COVID-19.
  • Mississippi Covid-19 Update : February 15, 2023 | The Enterprise Journal: In Mississippi, there were 3,594 new cases of COVID-19 reported from February 07 – February 13. Updates will now be made weekly on Tuesdays.
  • Lummis co-sponsors bill to push back on COVID vaccine mandates in hospitals – Buckrail: Senator Lummis and Kentucky Senator Rand Paul introduced the “COVID-19 Vaccination Non-Discrimination Act” to prohibit federal taxpayer dollars from supporting healthcare facilities that deny care to patients based on their COVID-19 vaccination status. The bill was introduced following reports that healthcare facilities are denying patients lifesaving treatments if they are not vaccinated against COVID-19.
  • What Not to Ask Me About My Long COVID – The Atlantic: When interacting with people who have long COVID, it is important to be mindful of their sensitivities and frustrations. Be patient and understanding, and try to be as supportive as possible.
  • Republicans introduce ‘COVID-19 Vaccination Non-Discrimination Act’ | Just The News: Sen. Rand Paul and Rep. Dan Bishop, Republicans, introduced the “COVID-19 Vaccination Non-Discrimination Act” to protect vulnerable patients’ rights to make their own healthcare choices and ensure that federal funds are not given to medical facilities that deny care based on vaccination status.
  • Wyoming Senator Lummis: Equal Healthcare for Non-Vaccinated Americans: Senator Cynthia Lummis (R-WY) has cosponsored the COVID-19 Vaccination Non-Discrimination Act with Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) to ensure that people in Wyoming receive the best health care possible, regardless of their COVID-19 vaccination status. The bill will prohibit federal taxpayer dollars from supporting healthcare facilities that deny care to patients based on their vaccination status.
  • GOP lawmakers file a bill in NC House to end COVID-19 vaccine mandates – CBS 17: Four Republican representatives from the Piedmont Triad have filed a bill in the North Carolina House that would forbid the state from establishing or enforcing COVID-19 vaccine mandates. The bill, called the “Medical Freedom Act,” would prohibit discrimination against people who refuse to get vaccinated.
  • Sanders to grill Moderna CEO over proposed COVID vaccine price hike | The Hill: Sen. Bernie Sanders will question Moderna’s CEO Stéphane Bancel at a hearing on March 22 about the company’s plans to quadruple the price of its COVID-19 vaccine. Sanders has said he wants to focus on the cost of prescription drugs and highlight drug company profiteering.
  • Illinois Senate President tests positive for COVID: Illinois Senate President Don Harmon tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday after two negative home tests and one positive SHIELD Illinois test. He will isolate and not attend legislative session and functions this week per CDC guidelines, and anyone exposed to COVID-19 should wear a high-quality mask for 10 days and get tested on day five.
  • COVID conversations continue at Legislature – Minot Daily News: Rep. Jeff Hoverson, R-Minot, introduced a bill that would have required the state Department of Health and Human Services to cover the costs of treatment and diagnostics for injuries related to any COVID-19 vaccine, but it failed to get legislative support in the North Dakota House this week.
  • Two Euclid Men Charged with Stealing COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Insurance Benefits: Robert Nathaniel Andre Thomas III and Montareo Banks, both of Euclid, Ohio, have been indicted by a federal grand jury on thirteen counts of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, mail fraud, wire fraud, and aggravated identity theft. The two are accused of stealing approximately $44,000 in pandemic unemployment insurance benefits from the federal government and the States of Ohio, Arizona, California, and New Jersey.
  • R.I. worker sues Lifespan over long COVID discrimination – The Brown Daily Herald: Dawn Desilets has filed a federal lawsuit against the Lifespan Corporation for disability discrimination and retaliation after being fired in 2021 for contracting long-haul COVID. Desilets is claiming that her termination was unlawful due to her disability.
  • Telemedicine Consequences Resulting from the End of the COVID-19 Public Health … – JD Supra: The Biden Administration announced that the COVID-19 public health emergency will end on May 11, 2023, and as a result, some flexibilities created to expand access to telemedicine will go away while others will continue on a permanent or semi-permanent basis. Health care providers and plans must assess current telehealth practices and make necessary adjustments during the transition period.
  • 112 new COVID-19 Cases Identified in Camden County Wednesday: The Camden County Department of Health has announced 112 new positive cases of COVID-19, including 84 from Wednesday, Feb. 15 and 28 from antigen testing. The total number of confirmed cases in Camden County is 137,839, with 1,783 fatalities. 12 of the new cases are among patients under 18 years old, and the average age of the newly infected is 49 years old.
  • GeoVax, EmVenio partner for clinical facility to expand Covid-19 trial: GeoVax Labs and EmVenio Research have partnered to deploy a mobile clinical facility in Claremont, California for a Phase II Covid-19 booster vaccine study. The trial will explore the potential of GEO-CM04S1 as a more robust and durable Covid-19 booster than currently approved vaccines.

Daily News Pulse for March 13, 2023

Summary: Princeton students have seen an overall improvement in course satisfaction since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. In Japan, many people are still wearing masks despite the government’s easing of guidelines.

Daily Research Pulse for March 13, 2023

Summary: A systematic review examines the prevalence of nurses and physicians leaving their positions in European hospitals and the factors influencing job retention among them. Researchers found that 31.4% of hospitalized patients with cardiac problems and suspected COVID-19 had PTSD during waves 2-5 of the pandemic.

Daily News Pulse for March 10, 2023

Summary: A pilot study by Brigham and Women’s Hospital found that nasal administration of the anti-CD3 monoclonal antibody Foralumab can modulate T cell inflammatory responses in COVID-19. The Washington State Department of Health is ending its free at-home testing program Say Yes! COVID Test on May 11. California Governor Gavin Newsom has tested positive for COVID-19 after a personal trip to Baja California.

Daily Research Pulse for March 10, 2023

Summary: Researchers examined the clinical, laboratory, and cardiac indicators of multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) associated with coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19), and the experiences and behaviors of adults with positive SARS-CoV-2 test results or who were exposed to a confirmed case of COVID-19.

Daily News Pulse for March 09, 2023

Summary: California Governor Gavin Newsom tested positive for COVID-19 and will be in isolation for the next five days. After recovering from a mild case of COVID, many people have developed long-term gastrointestinal symptoms. The US House of Representatives held a public hearing to explore the origins of the virus.