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Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Update

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05/04/2021

HBMA COVID-19 Federal Response Update

White House and Federal Agencies

  • The TSA extended its mask wearing requirement for air travel and other public transportation through September 13th
  • U.S. air travel reached a new high since the start of the pandemic.
  • The Department of Defense is sending shipments of COVID-19 supplies to India, which is experiencing a massive surge in COVID-19 cases.
    • Beginning tomorrow, the U.S. will restrict travel to India.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Updates

Economy, Vaccine, Testing and Treatment

  • With over 100 million Americans fully vaccinated, COVID-19 cases have begun to decrease. However, public health officials are growing concerned that the U.S. will not reach the vaccination levels needed to achieve herd immunity unless we can overcome vaccine hesitancy and increase vaccinations.
    • A new survey of over 700,000 respondents found that vaccine hesitancy has decreased from 27.5 percent to 22 percent since March. 
  • The federal government launched a new website, https://www.vaccines.gov/, that people can use to locate COVID-19 vaccines.
  • The NIH is planning to award grants for research projects on the long-term effects of COVID-19.
  • Moderna will provide 500 million COVID-19 vaccine doses to the World Health Organization’s (WHO) COVAX global vaccine distribution initiative. Moderna anticipates it will produce 3 billion doses of its vaccine in 2022.
  • U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai will meet with the World Trade Organization (WTO) to discuss intellectual property (IP) for COVID-19 vaccines. Removing IP restrictions would increase production of COVID-19 vaccines.
  • Many people who are homebound have had difficulty getting vaccinated.
  • New data shows an increase of severe COVID-19 cases among people between the ages of 20 and 60.
  • CVS launched a program to assist employers with facilitating on-site COVID-19 vaccination clinics.
  • President Biden is considering making the COVID-19 vaccine mandatory for military service members.
  • The University of Pennsylvania is training dogs to detect COVID-19 through smell.
  • Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell says the economic recovery is occurring slower for low earners and racial minorities..