May 23, 2022

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Charlie O’Neill received part of her husband’s liver in a 2013 living donor transplant and has been taking drugs that suppress her immune system ever since to prevent her body from attacking the organ.

“I frequently get infections,” she said. “Just being an immune-compromised person, you are faced with just every little cold and flu.”

O’Neill lives in the small town of Pony in southwestern Montana’s Madison Valley. Despite living in an uncrowded rural setting, O’Neill said, the first year of the coronavirus pandemic was terrifying. She rarely left home, waiting for COVID-19 vaccines to become available.

Even now, after being vaccinated, O’Neill said the virus is always on her mind when she drives into nearby Bozeman for groceries and other basic needs. She wears a mask and avoids people as much as she can. While vaccinations provide robust protection against hospitalization and death for the typical individual, they are far less effective in those who are immunocompromised.

O’Neill developed abscesses on her liver, requiring daily visits to the Bozeman hospital for antibiotic infusions. In a state where the governor has encouraged health workers to seek vaccination exemptions, she worried about which of the many people involved in her care were instead putting her at risk: the people checking her in at the front desk, the traveling nurses, the imaging technicians?

Related: Latest COVID variant is rising overseas. How will Florida fare?

Gov. Greg Gianforte’s office estimates that “thousands of health care workers” have obtained religious exemptions and “remain in the workforce,” according to a recent press release.

“I so boldly ask people often just if they’re vaccinated, especially if I have to take my mask off for MRIs or something like that,” O’Neill said. She said she’d request someone else if a worker told her he or she were unvaccinated or declined to answer, but that hasn’t happened.

Most medical staffers across the U.S. are now required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 under a federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services rule. While, legally, requests for religious or medical exemptions must be allowed at every institution, in much of the country they are reviewed carefully and approved judiciously. In New York City’s 12-hospital public system, for example, 100 percent of staff members inside the hospitals are vaccinated; the few who were granted exemptions are assigned outside tasks.

But in Montana, the pendulum has swung in a different direction.

Gianforte, a Republican who opposed the federal mandate, encouraged health workers to seek religious exemptions before the Feb. 14 deadline to receive one dose of vaccine. His administration provided guidance to hospitals that said the validity of health care workers’ religious beliefs shouldn’t be questioned in seeking exemptions. Gianforte also told the state health department to create an application for religious exemptions, which is posted at the top of its website to download.

When asked for an interview with Gianforte, spokesperson Brooke Stroyke referred to the governor’s open letter to health workers dated Feb. 10.

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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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Scientists at the College of Washington Medicine Retrovirology Lab at Harborview Health care Center in Seattle method samples from Novavax’s phase 3 COVID-19 vaccine clinical demo in February 2021.

Karen Ducey/Getty Photographs


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Scientists at the University of Washington Medicine Retrovirology Lab at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle method samples from Novavax’s section 3 COVID-19 vaccine clinical demo in February 2021.

Karen Ducey/Getty Visuals

A new variety of COVID-19 vaccine is about to roll out close to the environment. While it is not going to swap the very thriving vaccines at the moment out there, it could make a variation in the course of the pandemic, in particular in decrease resourced international locations.

These new vaccines are what’s called protein subunit vaccines. They perform by injecting people today with a tiny portion of the virus. In the circumstance of the COVID-19 vaccine, that tiny portion is the so-known as spike protein essential for the virus to enter cells.

An benefit of protein subunit vaccines is they are likely to be incredibly secure, so they will not involve freezers for storage. A standard refrigerator is enough. This can make distributing the vaccine a lot easier.

“We have been assuming that the protein subunit vaccines would enjoy a massive purpose in accelerating advancement of a COVID vaccine,” claims Julie McElrath directs the vaccine and infectious ailment division at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Investigation Heart in Seattle. McElrath claimed she and her colleagues’ self-assurance came due to the fact there have been by now subunit vaccines on the industry for infectious conditions.

When Procedure Warp Velocity commenced shelling out billions of pounds to aid the enhancement of a COVID-19 vaccine, it selected 3 vaccine systems to back: mRNA vaccines remaining formulated Pfizer and Moderna, a viral vector vaccine proposed by Johnson & Johnson, and protein subunit vaccines to be made by Sanofi and Novavax.

The initially two technologies had been prosperous, and there are now billions of vaccine doses in this place and close to the planet.

A year ago, Novavax was assured its vaccine would also be out there.

“We have a significant variety of folks doing work on scaling up our vaccine,” Gregg Glenn, Novavax’s president of investigate and growth stated in an interview in September 2020. “I am pretty optimistic by the year-conclude we’ll have a large amount of product or service and we’re chatting about more than 2 billion doses in 2021.”

But Glenn’s optimism was misguided. A substantial study of the vaccine took extended to entire than was hoped, and the corporation ran into producing troubles.

Sanofi stumbled with its protein subunit vaccine, much too.

McElrath is convinced that subunit vaccines can still play an critical function in bringing the pandemic below control. “It’s just that they’re just a very little further powering than the other people,” she suggests.

“Possessing multiple possibilities is generally a good plan,” suggests Ali Ellebedy, an immunologist at Washington College in St.

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WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court declined Friday to block Maine’s requirement for health care workers to receive a Covid-19 vaccine, even though it doesn’t contain a religious exemption.

Justices Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito and Neil Gorsuch dissented, saying they would have blocked the mandate. Two of the court’s other conservatives, Amy Coney Barrett and Brett Kavanaugh, said they agreed the court should not take the case, because it came on an emergency appeal without benefit of a full briefing.

The state requirement was challenged by health care workers who opposed the Covid-19 vaccination mandate on religious grounds. State officials began enforcing the new rule on Friday.

Maine’s order applies to health workers in hospitals, nursing homes and doctor’s offices. State officials said most of those covered by the order have complied.

Maine allowed religious exemptions in the past for health care workers, daycare employees, school children and college students. But the state eliminated all non-medical vaccination exemptions in 2019. It said falling inoculation rates were causing communicable diseases to spread more rapidly.

A group of health care workers sued when the Covid-19 vaccine was required, saying they objected because the vaccine was developed with the aid of “fetal cell lines that originated in elective abortions.” The rule forced them to decide “what is more important to them — their deeply held religious beliefs or their ability to work anywhere in their state so that they can feed their families.”

None of the Covid-19 vaccines contain fetal cells, according to published data about their composition. During the testing stages for their vaccines, Moderna and Pfizer used cell lines replicated from fetal cells taken 50 years ago. Johnson &Johnson used a different cell line in some of the production phases of its vaccine.

Lawyers for the state told the court that Maine was not engaging in religious discrimination, because the law applies to all healthcare workers and is not intended to restrict any particular religious practice. “The object of the recent amendment to the rule is to prevent the spread of Covid-19 among healthcare workers in high-risk settings, protect patients and individuals from disease and death, and protect Maine’s healthcare system,” the attorneys wrote.

“Most healthcare facility outbreaks in Maine are the result of healthcare workers bringing Covid-19 into the facility,” the state told the Supreme Court.

Writing for the three dissenters, Gorsuch said the state was not treating all healthcare workers equally, because those with a medical objection could refuse to take the vaccine, while those with religious objections cannot.

“Health care workers who have served on the front line of a pandemic for the last 18 months are now being fired and their practices shuttered. All for adhering to their constitutionally protected religious beliefs. Their plight is worthy of our attention,” he said.

https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/supreme-court/supreme-court-declines-block-vaccine-mandate-health-workers-maine-n1282757… Read More...

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