Physician's Briefing Weekly Coronavirus Roundup

Weekly Coronavirus Roundup
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Here is what the editors at Physician's Briefing chose as the most important COVID-19 developments for you and your practice for the week of Oct. 25 to 29, 2021. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal studies and other trusted sources that is most likely to affect clinical practice.

FDA Approves Pfizer COVID-19 Vaccine for Children Aged 5 to 11

FRIDAY, Oct. 29, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Friday approved the emergency use of a smaller dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 5 to 11 years, paving the way for 28 million children across the country to get their shots.

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Health Officials Say U.S. COVID-19 Cases Fell 60 Percent Since September

FRIDAY, Oct. 29, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- COVID-19 cases have plunged by 60 percent since mid-September's delta-driven peak, U.S. health officials said earlier this week. But with winter on the way, they warned that Americans still need to protect themselves and others against the virus.

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For Fully Vaccinated, Immunity Against SARS-CoV-2 Wanes Over Time

FRIDAY, Oct. 29, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- In all age groups, immunity against the delta variant of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 decreased a few months after receipt of the second dose of the BNT162b2 vaccine, according to a study published online Oct. 27 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Cognitive Dysfunction Fairly Common After COVID-19 Infection

FRIDAY, Oct. 29, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- A substantial proportion of relatively young COVID-19 survivors exhibit cognitive dysfunction several months after recovering from COVID-19, according to a research letter published online Oct. 22 in JAMA Network Open.

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Higher Dose of Steroid Does Not Improve Outcomes in Severe COVID-19

FRIDAY, Oct. 29, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- The number of days alive without life support at day 28 did not differ among adults with COVID-19 and severe hypoxemia receiving dexamethasone 12 mg/day versus dexamethasone 6 mg/day administered intravenously for up to 10 days, according to a study published online Oct. 21 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Clinically Active IBD Linked to Adverse COVID-19 Outcomes

FRIDAY, Oct. 29, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Clinically active inflammatory bowel disease is associated with adverse COVID-19 outcomes, especially in younger and middle-aged adults, according to a study published online Sept. 27 in the Journal of Crohn's and Colitis.

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Nearly 59,000 Meatpacking Workers Caught COVID-19

THURSDAY, Oct. 28, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- The number of U.S. meatpacking workers who were infected during the COVID-19 pandemic is nearly three times higher than previously thought, a U.S. House report shows.

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COVID-19 Vaccination Not Linked to First-Trimester Miscarriage

THURSDAY, Oct. 28, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- COVID-19 vaccination is not associated with an increased risk for first-trimester miscarriage, according to a research letter published online Oct. 20 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Fluvoxamine Cuts Hospitalizations in High-Risk COVID-19 Outpatients

THURSDAY, Oct. 28, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- For high-risk outpatients with COVID-19, fluvoxamine reduces the need for hospitalization, according to a study published online Oct. 27 in The Lancet Global Health.

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Sotrovimab Cuts Risk for COVID-19 Progression in High-Risk Patients

THURSDAY, Oct. 28, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Sotrovimab reduces the risk for disease progression in high-risk patients with mild-to-moderate COVID-19, according to a study published online Oct. 27 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Vaccination Protects Against Death From SARS-CoV-2 Delta Variant

THURSDAY, Oct. 28, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Vaccination with ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 or BNT162b2 is estimated to be about 90 percent effective for preventing deaths from COVID-19 caused by the B.1.617.2 (delta) variant, according to a research letter published online Oct. 20 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Merck Allows Poor Nations to Make COVID-19 Pill

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 27, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- A deal for the Merck COVID-19 pill to be made and sold cheaply in poor nations has been reached with Medicines Patent Pool, a United Nations-backed nonprofit organization.

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Immunocompromised May Need Fourth COVID-19 Shot: CDC

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 27, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Severely immunocompromised people may require a fourth mRNA COVID-19 shot, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says. The agency did not provide an official recommendation about a fourth shot in its updated guidelines but did say that people should talk to their doctors to determine if one is necessary, CNN reported.

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Cost-Sharing Waivers Did Not Cover All COVID-19 Hospital Care in 2020

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 27, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Many patients were billed for professional and ancillary services related to COVID-19 hospitalizations in 2020, suggesting that insurer cost-sharing waivers did not cover all hospitalization-related care, according to a study published online Oct. 18 in JAMA Network Open.

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For Dialysis Recipients, Antibody Response Lowest With Ad26.COV2.S

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 27, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- For patients receiving dialysis who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, the prevalence of no or diminished response varies by vaccine type and is higher with the attenuated adenovirus Ad26.COV2.S vaccine, according to a research letter published online Oct. 13 in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

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FDA Advisors Approve Emergency Use of Pfizer Vaccine in Children 5 to 11

TUESDAY, Oct. 26, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- A U.S. Food and Drug Administration advisory panel voted Tuesday to recommend emergency use of a smaller dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for children aged 5 to 11 years, advancing plans to offer the shots to 28 million young children across the United States.

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Biden Admin Offers Details of Vaccination Requirements for Foreign Travelers

TUESDAY, Oct. 26, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- The Biden administration on Monday released the specifics of its plan to allow the return of foreign travelers to the United States.

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White House Takes More Steps to Up Supply of Rapid At-Home COVID-19 Tests

TUESDAY, Oct. 26, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- The Biden administration on Monday announced a $70 million program to help the makers of rapid at-home COVID-19 tests get U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval more quickly, in a move meant to boost availability of the tests and cut their cost.

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Adding Interferon Beta-1a to Remdesivir No Better for COVID-19

TUESDAY, Oct. 26, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- For hospitalized adults with COVID-19, time to recovery was not shorter for treatment with interferon beta-1a plus remdesivir compared with remdesivir alone, according to a study published online Oct. 18 in The Lancet Respiratory Medicine.

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Overweight Tied to More Respiratory Symptoms in Milder COVID-19

TUESDAY, Oct. 26, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Adolescents and adults with overweight or obesity experience more respiratory symptoms from COVID-19 despite similar viral loads compared with normal-weight individuals, according to a study published online Oct. 19 in Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses.

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Non-COVID-19 Mortality Not Increased After COVID-19 Vaccination

MONDAY, Oct. 25, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- COVID-19 vaccine recipients do not have an increased risk for non-COVID-19 mortality, according to research published in the Oct. 22 early-release issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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Severe COVID-19 Outcomes Not Up During Delta Predominance

MONDAY, Oct. 25, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- During a period of delta variant predominance, there was no increase in the proportion of patients who were admitted to an intensive care unit, received invasive mechanical ventilation, or died while hospitalized, according to research published in the Oct. 22 early-release issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

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Moderna Says Its COVID-19 Vaccine Works Well in Children Aged 6 to 11

MONDAY, Oct. 25, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Moderna announced Monday that its COVID-19 vaccine safely triggers a strong immune response in children aged 6 to 11 years.

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ACS: Telemedicine Lung Cancer Screenings Offered During Pandemic

MONDAY, Oct. 25, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- A transition to single-encounter telemedicine lung cancer screening during the COVID-19 pandemic yielded similar results to single-visit lung cancer screening before the pandemic, according to a study presented at the annual meeting of the American College of Surgeons, held virtually from Oct. 23 to 27.

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Statins May Be Tied to Lower Risk for COVID-19 Death

MONDAY, Oct. 25, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Preexisting statin treatment is associated with slightly lower COVID-19 mortality, according to a study published online Oct. 14 in PLOS Medicine.

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