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Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Update

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07/20/2021

Congress

  • The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee plans a hearing Tuesday to receive an update on the federal COVID-19 response.

White House and Federal Agencies

  • Secretary of HHS Xavier Becerra signed a 90-day extension of the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE).
  • The White House dispatched dozens of federal employees to Nevada to help the state manage its rising COVID-19 cases.
  • HHS is launching an advertising campaign to encourage enrollment in ACA health plans before the Special Enrollment Period ends on August 15th, 2021.

Economy, Vaccine, Testing and Treatment

  • Pfizer said its COVID-19 vaccine was granted priority review by U.S. regulators, putting it on track for full approval by as early as 2022.
    • NIH’s Francis Collins believes full approval could happen as soon as the end of summer.
  • Half of hospitalized COVID-19 patients experience at least one complication as a result of the illness. However, racial disparities exist with 50 percent of white patients experienced complications, compared to 58 percent of black patients.
  • COVID-19 is resurging among unvaccinated people, as cases have spiked by 70 percent over the past 7 days.
  • A new series of charts published demonstrates the reasons why unvaccinated Americans choose to forego the vaccine.
  • A recent poll shows 48 percent of unvaccinated Americans are the least concerned about the Delta variant, compared to 72 percent of fully vaccinated Americans.
    • A new study found that the COVID-19 Delta variant can carry 1000 time the viral load of infections from previous versions of the Coronavirus.
  • CDC researchers found that 28.7 percent of people between the ages of 18 and 24 have received at least one dose of the vaccine by May, the lowest rate of all age groups.
  • The Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy issued a formal advisory warning about the spread of misinformation specifically relating to COVID-19 and vaccines.
  • The CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) will meet on July 22nd to consider a third shot of the COVID-19 vaccine for the immunocompromised.
  • The FDA may approve the COVID-19 vaccine for children under 12 before the end of the year.
    • CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky is spoke at a town hall aimed at encouraging employers to make childhood vaccinations more accessible.  
  • More than 600,000 white flags will be placed on the National Mall to honor those Americans who lost their lives to COVID-19
  • Roughly 70 percent of military service members have received at least one dose of the vaccine.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Updates