June 25, 2022

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(HealthDay)

THURSDAY, Dec. 30, 2021 (HealthDay Information) — New U.S. knowledge based mostly on nearly 9 million doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine shipped to youngsters ages 5 to 11 displays no key security troubles, according to scientists at the U.S. Centers for Sickness Management and Prevention.

The vaccine was initially approved for use in this age group in October. Now the new review demonstrates that these “preliminary security conclusions are identical to these described in the scientific trials” that led to the vaccine’s crisis acceptance, in accordance to a workforce led by Anne Hause of the CDC’s COVID-19 Response Staff.

The report was centered on facts collected by the agency’s Vaccine Adverse Reporting Process (VAERS). It depends on smartphone messages from parents and other guardians of kids to inform the CDC of any health “situations” occurring immediately after a child’s vaccination.

During a 6-7 days period soon after the shots’ approval (Nov. 3 through Dec. 19), VAERS obtained 4,249 reviews of adverse situations after Pfizer vaccination in kids ages 5-11.

The broad the greater part — 97.6% — “had been not major,” Hause’s workforce said, and consisted mainly of reactions often witnessed just after regime immunizations, these arm suffering at the web page of injection, or some transient exhaustion or headache.

Parents “need to be recommended that nearby and systemic reactions [like these] are anticipated immediately after vaccinations,” the CDC investigators stated.

Much more critical effects had been exceedingly rare. Out of about 8.7 million vaccinations delivered for the duration of the analyze period of time, 100 these types of reports were obtained by VAERS. They bundled 29 experiences of fever, 21 experiences of vomiting, and 10 critical studies of seizure, while in some of these seizure scenarios, other fundamental things were being most likely included, the CDC group claimed.

There have been only 15 “preliminary experiences” of the rare coronary heart issue regarded as myocarditis, an swelling of the coronary heart that has also been mentioned, in scarce conditions, among teens and young people today who’ve received the COVID vaccine.

Two girls, aged 5 and 6, who’d gained the Pfizer vaccine died during the study interval. Hause and colleagues famous that each little ones “experienced intricate medical histories and have been in fragile overall health ahead of vaccination,” and they included that “none of the knowledge instructed a causal affiliation between loss of life and vaccination.”

Despite the fact that pediatric deaths from COVID-19 stay uncommon, hundreds of American small children have died from the disease due to the fact the pandemic commenced. So, Hause’s team emphasized that “vaccination is the most efficient way to stop COVID-19 an infection” in youngsters.

Dr. Henry Bernstein is a pediatrician at Cohen Children’s Medical Heart in New Hyde Park, N.Y. Reading through around the new report, he said the new analyze “obviously supports offering the vaccine to young children 5-11 several years of age.

“Of course, there can be community [for example, redness, soreness or swelling at the site of

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THURSDAY, June 17, 2021 (HealthDay News) — Your health and fitness apps may have privacy issues that put your personal information at risk, researchers warn.

“This analysis found serious problems with privacy and inconsistent privacy practices in mHealth [mobile health] apps. Clinicians should be aware of these and articulate them to patients when determining the benefits and risks,” lead study author Muhammad Ikram and his co-authors concluded. He’s a computing lecturer at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia.

The researchers looked at more than 15,000 free health apps in the Google Play store and compared their privacy practices with a random sample of more than 8,000 non-health apps.

Health apps — including step and calorie counters, menstruation trackers and symptom checkers — collected less user data than other types of mobile apps. But 88% of health apps could access and potentially share personal data, the research team discovered.

About two-thirds of health apps could collect ad identifiers or cookies, one-third could snag a user’s email address and about one-quarter could identify the mobile phone tower linked to a user’s device, potentially revealing the user’s location.

Only 4% of health apps transmitted data (mostly user’s name and location information), but that’s a substantial percentage and probably less than actual data transmissions by the apps, according to the authors.

The report was published online June 16 in the BMJ.

The investigators also found that almost 88% of data collection operations and 56% of user data transmissions were on behalf of third-party services, such as external advertisers, analytics and tracking providers. And 23% of user data transmissions occurred on insecure communication channels.

The top 50 third-parties were responsible for most data collection operations (68%), most commonly by a small number of tech companies, including Google, Facebook and Yahoo!, the study authors noted in a journal news release.

The researchers also found that 28% of the mobile health apps did not offer any privacy policy text, and at least one-quarter of user data transmissions violated what was stated in the privacy policies. But just over 1% of user reviews raised concerns about privacy.

While there are some things users can do to safeguard their privacy, “we must also advocate for greater scrutiny, regulation, and accountability on the part of key players behind the scenes — the app stores, digital advertisers and data brokers — to address whether these data should exist and how they should be used, and to ensure accountability for harms that arise,” Canadian researchers wrote in an accompanying editorial.


More information

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission has more on health apps and privacy.


SOURCE: BMJ, news release, June 16, 2021


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