After new COVID-19 circumstances fell in latest weeks from their record-high peak in January, President Joe Biden’s high public well being officers warned Monday that the U.S. may “lose the hard-earned floor we now have gained” if circumstances plateau at their present stage.
Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention, mentioned Monday that she was “deeply involved” as new case counts stall however states proceed their rollbacks of virus-related restrictions.
“We can’t be resigned to 70,000 circumstances per day, 2,000 day day deaths,” Walensky mentioned. “We stand to lose the hard-earned floor we now have gained.”
Sunday marked the primary time in additional than a month that most states reported rising case counts, and extra circumstances had been recorded within the newest week than per week earlier, a USA TODAY evaluation of Johns Hopkins College knowledge exhibits.
On Monday, new rollbacks additionally took impact in states together with Virginia eradicating a midnight-to-5 a.m. curfew and rising capability for out of doors gatherings, Wyoming lifting all restrictions on private care companies, New Jersey opening massive leisure venues at 10% capability indoors, and Massachusetts easing restrictions for restaurant capability and permitting a variety of indoor venues to reopen with restrictions.
Additionally within the information:
►Johnson & Johnson started distributing its vaccine Sunday; almost four million doses are anticipated to be equally distributed this week amongst all states and territories. Jeff Zients, the White Home COVID-19 response coordinator, mentioned Monday that J&J’s distribution will gradual after this week as its total stock is shipped out however that it will present 16 million extra doses the top of the month.
►Within the first two months of 2021, the U.S. reported extra useless than it had within the first six lethal months of the pandemic: 160,209 folks, a USA TODAY evaluation of Johns Hopkins College knowledge exhibits.
►Dr. Anthony Fauci, head of the Nationwide Institute of Allergy and Infectious Illnesses, advised NBC’s “Meet The Press” on Sunday that elementary faculty youngsters might begin being vaccinated on the finish of the 12 months or starting of 2022. Excessive schoolers might begin getting their doses within the fall, he mentioned.
►NBA G League guard Jeremy Lin shared on social media that he skilled an act of racism – being known as “coronavirus” – on the basketball court docket, sparking a league investigation.
►The Senate turns into the main focus of President Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion COVID-19 reduction package deal after the Home accepted it Saturday. The measure would supply thousands and thousands of Individuals $1,400 stimulus funds, ramp up vaccine distribution and prolong unemployment assist the summer season.
►Native American leaders throughout California mentioned COVID-19 deaths have shrouded their communities, but state figures present few American Indian folks have died right here in contrast with different states with important Indigenous populations. Leaders and consultants concern deaths of their communities have been undercounted due to a lengthy historical past of Native Individuals being racially misclassified.
📈 Right now’s numbers: The U.S. has greater than 28.6 million confirmed coronavirus circumstances and 513,000 deaths, in keeping with Johns Hopkins College knowledge. The worldwide totals: Greater than 114.2 million circumstances and a couple of.53 million deaths. Greater than 96.four million vaccine doses have been distributed within the U.S. and about 75.2 million have been administered, in keeping with the CDC.
📘 What we’re studying: The variety of COVID-19 circumstances and deaths at America’s nursing houses has dropped considerably since December as thousands and thousands of vaccine doses have been shot into the arms of residents and workers. Learn the total story.
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The U.S. reported 306 new coronavirus variant circumstances Sunday, a file enhance for viruses that may unfold extra simply, dodge some therapies and immunities, or each.
Almost all the brand new circumstances had been in three states: Florida, up 104 circumstances to 605; Michigan, up 85 circumstances to 421; and Texas, up 41 circumstances to 102.
These new circumstances included Florida including 4 circumstances to its earlier one case of P.1, a harmful variant first seen in Brazil. Florida additionally obtained its first reported case of B.1.351, a variant first seen in South Africa. Massachusetts and California reported two and one new circumstances.
Most circumstances – new and current – are of B.1.1.7, a variant first seen in the UK that the CDC says may grow to be America’s predominant model in March.
Over the month of February, recognized variant circumstances quintupled from 471 to 2,463 even as whole coronavirus circumstances had been dropping from a peak in January.
– Mike Stucka
Neighborhood pharmacies can play a vital function in delivering COVID-19 photographs, however, thus far, drugstore giants CVS and Walgreens and big-box shops resembling Walmart and Kroger have been getting the lion’s share of vaccines from the preliminary allotment dedicated to retail pharmacies, unbiased pharmacists say.
Some unbiased pharmacists say they’re annoyed that they aren’t receiving as many vaccines proportionally as main chains are getting from the federal, state and native authorities, they usually reject the suggestion that they do not have the know-how essential to dealing with the scheduling course of
Nonetheless representing about 1 in three of the nation’s 60,000 pharmacies, these companies say their private relationships with their prospects are essential to a profitable vaccine rollout.
Within the 63 main jurisdictions recognized the CDC for distribution of vaccines, domestically owned pharmacies had been initially allotted photographs in solely 17, in keeping with the Nationwide Neighborhood Pharmacists Affiliation. However greater than half of domestically owned pharmacies are based mostly in communities with a “excessive” or “very excessive” ranking on the CDC’s social vulnerability index.
If native pharmacies are ignored, that threatens to forestall Individuals in low-income communities and other people of colour from getting vaccinated rapidly, unbiased pharmacists say. “Native pharmacies need to be concerned,” mentioned B. Douglas Hoey, CEO of the Nationwide Neighborhood Pharmacists Affiliation.
– Nathan Bomey
When Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis in December restricted inoculations to seniors 65 and older, he mentioned, “The vaccines are going to be focused the place the danger is best, and that’s in our aged inhabitants.”
However as vaccinations ramp up statewide, Florida’s oldest residents usually are not getting the share of immunizations equal to the danger they bear from the deadly pathogen, particularly just lately.
Florida seniors 75 and older make up 62% of 30,734 residents killed the coronavirus because the pandemic started, however solely 32% of the 1,642,800 individuals who have obtained their second of the two-shot vaccine, a state report launched Saturday exhibits.
Seniors 65 to 74, in the meantime, account for 21% of the resident dying toll and about 41% of the immunized.
– Chris Persaud, Palm Seashore Submit
Six latest research recommend that individuals who’ve already come down with COVID-19 may not must get a second vaccine dose.
The federal authorities has not modified its advice for a second dose, however research that take a look at the immune response present that whereas a primary shot offers individuals who have recovered from COVID-19 an enormous enhance, the second shot makes little distinction.
“I believe that makes good sense,” mentioned Dr. Paul Offit, director of the Vaccine Schooling Middle at Kids’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Learn extra right here.
– Karen Weintraub
Simply 5 weeks in the past, Los Angeles County was conducting greater than 350,000 weekly coronavirus checks, together with at an enormous drive-thru website at Dodger Stadium, as well being staff raced to comprise the worst COVID-19 scorching spot within the U.S.
Now, county officers say testing has almost collapsed. Greater than 180 government-supported websites are working at solely a 3rd of their capability.
“It is surprising how rapidly we have gone from shifting at 100 miles an hour to about 25,” mentioned Dr. Clemens Hong, who leads the county’s testing operation. After a 12 months of struggling to spice up testing, communities throughout the nation are seeing plummeting demand, shuttering testing websites and even attempting to return provides.
– Matthew Perrone, Palm Springs (Calif.) Desert Solar
Contributing: Mike Stucka, USA TODAY; The Related Press