Healthcare – Pfizer to expand domestic manufacturing of Paxlovid
A stray sled dog who went missing three months ago – named Leon – has been found safe in Alaska about 150 miles from where he fled.
Today we’ll be looking at Pfizer’s announcement that it will spend $120 million to expand manufacturing of its COVID-19 antiviral treatment in Michigan. Plus, how the push for normality is winning out as the third summer of the coronavirus pandemic approaches.
Welcome to night health care, where we follow the latest developments in policies and news concerning your health. For The Hill, we are Peter Sullivan, Nathaniel Weixel and Joseph Choi. Subscribe here.
Pfizer pledges $120 million to boost production of COVID pills
Pfizer announced on Monday that it is investing $120 million to increase production of its COVID-19 treatment pills in the United States.
What they say : The move will create more than 250 jobs at its plant in Kalamazoo, Michigan, the company said, as it seeks to ramp up production of Paxlovid.
The investment “will enable Pfizer to increase supply by an additional 4 million Paxlovid packs, enabling us to meet global demand and help increase overall access,” the Pfizer spokeswoman said. , Julia Cohen.
- Increasing the availability and use of Paxlovid has been a primary goal of the Biden administration. Health officials acknowledged that in the first days after it was cleared in December, drug supplies were limited and many doctors were reluctant to prescribe it for all but the most at-risk patients.
- Paxlovid is considered a key component in making COVID-19 more manageable, given that the treatment has been shown to reduce the risk of hospitalization or death by around 90%.
Learn more here.
Pushing for normality prevails in COVID wars
As Americans enter a living third summer amid the coronavirus spectrum, their attitude to the pandemic has changed.
Even as infections rise to levels four to five times higher than at the same point last year, the push towards normality is winning.
The times have changed: Experts say this is not surprising; due to the widespread availability of vaccines and treatments, many people no longer see the virus as the threat it once was.
- Today, almost all masks or vaccine requirements have been deliberately waived or overturned by the courts.
- The United States averages about 100,000 new cases each day, but movie studios are showing summer blockbusters to crowded theaters, families are celebrating weddings, and bars and restaurants are full.
A new normal: Living with the threat of COVID-19 infection has become the new normal for Americans who are ready to move on.
“People are tired of the changes they’ve had to make in their lives related to COVID-19 and are so eager to get back to normal,” said Mercedes Carnethon, an epidemiologist at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine.
- While many across the country are looking to regain a sense of normalcy this summer, not everyone is on the same footing.
- Millions of people are still vulnerable, especially racial minorities and low-income populations who don’t have the luxury of working from home or avoiding public transportation.
Learn more here.
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FIRST POSSIBLE CASE OF MONKEYPOX REPORTED IN DC
The first possible case of monkeypox in Washington, DC, has been identified in a resident who recently traveled to Europe.
What we know: DC Health said the resident was confirmed to be positive for orthopox, the family of viruses that includes monkeypox, on Saturday.
- Samples were collected and sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for further testing and confirmation of monkeypox.
- The infected resident is in isolation and close contacts are identified and monitored. According to DC Health, no further cases were identified on Sunday and the risk to the public remains low.
Across the country: About 25 cases of monkeypox have been identified in at least 11 states so far, according to the CDC, with no deaths reported.
- The majority of cases in the United States have been found in men who have sex with men, although one case has been confirmed in a woman with a heterosexual sex life.
- The gender and sexual orientation of the DC resident who tested positive was not shared.
Learn more here.
WHITE HOUSE CRITICIZES LOUISIANA ABORTION BILL AS “RADICAL”
The White House on Monday strongly criticized a bill passed by the Louisiana state legislature that would ban most abortions and impose criminal penalties on doctors who perform the procedure if the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade.
What they say : “The Louisiana Legislature has taken the final step in a growing assault on basic American freedoms,” White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said in a statement.
“The President is committed to protecting the constitutional rights of Americans granted by Roe for nearly 50 years and to ensuring that women can make their own choices about their lives, bodies, and families,” he said. she continued. “An overwhelming majority of the American people agree and reject these kinds of drastic measures.”
The governor should sign: The Louisiana State Senate gave final approval to the bill on Sunday, sending it to the office of Gov. John Bel Edwards (D). The Democratic governor, who opposes abortion, is expected to sign the bill.
It would ban abortion in most cases with no exceptions for rape or incest and shut down abortion clinics in the state. It authorizes abortions if a pregnancy threatens the life of the mother. Doctors who perform abortions would also face criminal penalties.
Learn more here.
Biden announces fifth infant formula mission and expedition
President Biden on Monday announced a fifth mission to bring infant formula to the United States from overseas, with the latest shipment arriving from Cologne, Germany.
- The shipment of Nestlé infant formula will be transported to Fort Worth, Texas on June 9. The products will be distributed through Nestlé/Gerber distribution channels, according to the White House, with additional shipments expected to be announced in the coming days.
- The delivery will include 110,000 pounds of Nestlé NAN SupremePro Stage 1 infant formula as well as approximately 1.6 million 8-ounce bottles. Previous deliveries of infant formula were from the UK and Australia.
Back home: Nationally, Abbott Nutrition’s infant formula plant in Sturgis, Michigan resumed operations on Saturday after reaching a consent agreement with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) last month.
- The company said it expects the products to hit shelves later this month. But the opening won’t immediately lead to more formula on the shelves, and the White House acknowledged that in a Monday memo.
- Citing data from research firm IRI, the administration noted that inventory was lower at the end of May compared to the start of the month, but sales have increased in volume, meaning parents are buying the formula as soon as it appears on the shelves.
Learn more here.
WHAT WE READ
- If Roe is knocked down, ripples could affect IVF and genetic testing of embryos, experts warn (Stat)
- Unexpected Cancer Trial Result: Remission in Every Patient (The New York Times)
- US has wasted more than 82 million doses of Covid vaccine (NBC News)
STATE BY STATE
- California aims to cut insulin prices and challenge Big Pharma. Can he succeed? (Los Angeles Times)
- WA State hospitals ‘remarkably strained’ by COVID-19 community spread, officials say (The Bellingham Herald)
- Mississippi’s medical marijuana application portal already has more than 1,800 users (Mississippi Today)
OP-EDS ON THE HILL
That’s all for today, thanks for reading. Check out The Hill’s healthcare page for the latest news and coverage. Until tomorrow.
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