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 Nov. 29 to Dec. 3, 2021. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal studies and other trusted sources that is most likely to affect clinical practice.
Odds of SARS-CoV-2 Infection Down After Third BNT162b2 Dose
FRIDAY, Dec. 3, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Receipt of a third booster BNT162b2 dose is associated with a reduction in the odds of testing positive for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, according to a study published online Nov. 30 in JAMA Internal Medicine.
One in Five Adults May Have Avoided Health Care During the Pandemic
FRIDAY, Dec. 3, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- One in five individuals avoided health care during COVID-19 lockdowns, often for potentially urgent symptoms, according to a Dutch study published online Nov. 23 in PLOS Medicine.
Omicron Variant May Overcome Prior COVID-19 Infection
FRIDAY, Dec. 3, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- People who have already had COVID-19 have a higher risk of reinfection with the omicron coronavirus variant than with earlier variants, new research shows. The South African scientists who reported the findings believe that vaccination will have the power to stop severe illness, however.
Most Vaccinated Adults Plan to Get Boosters: Poll
FRIDAY, Dec. 3, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Most vaccinated American adults have every intention of getting booster shots, a new poll finds.
New York Reports Five Omicron Cases, U.S. Total Rises to Nine
FRIDAY, Dec. 3, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Five cases of the omicron coronavirus variant have been detected in New York state, one in Minnesota, and one in Hawaii, officials in those states announced Thursday. That brings the known total in the United States to nine, with California and Colorado previously announcing one case each.
mRNA-1273 Has High Vaccine Effectiveness After Five Months
FRIDAY, Dec. 3, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- The vaccine effectiveness of two doses of Moderna mRNA-1273 is 87.4 percent against COVID-19 infection and 95.8 and 97.9 percent against COVID-19 hospitalization and hospital death, respectively, according to a study published online Nov. 25 in The Lancet Regional Health: Americas.
COVID-19 Hospital Admission Up for Children With Uncontrolled Asthma
FRIDAY, Dec. 3, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- School-aged children with uncontrolled asthma have increased risk of COVID-19 hospital admission, according to a study published online Nov. 30 in The Lancet Respiratory Medicine.
Care for Eating Disorders Up During Pandemic
THURSDAY, Dec. 2, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- The number of patients receiving inpatient or outpatient care for eating disorders has increased during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a research letter published online Nov. 16 in JAMA Network Open.
Second Omicron Case Reported in Man Who Traveled to NYC Anime Convention
THURSDAY, Dec. 2, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Just one day after the first omicron case was reported in the United States, federal officials announced a second case on Thursday, this time in a Minnesota man who had traveled to an Anime convention in New York City in November.
mRNA-1273, BNT162b2 Vaccines Comparable for Lowering COVID-19 Risk
THURSDAY, Dec. 2, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- The 24-week risk for COVID-19 outcomes is slightly lower after vaccination with mRNA-1273 than BNT162b2, according to a study published online Dec. 1 in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Obstetric Morbidities More Common in Women With COVID-19
THURSDAY, Dec. 2, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Maternal morbidities are more common among pregnant women diagnosed with COVID-19 versus pregnant women without COVID-19, according to a study published online Nov. 30 in PLOS Medicine.
Biden to Announce Plan to Battle Omicron, Delta Variants This Winter
THURSDAY, Dec. 2, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- President Joe Biden plans to announce a new round of measures to protect Americans against the spread of coronavirus variants on Thursday.
First U.S. Omicron Case Reported in California
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 1, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- The first confirmed U.S. case of the omicron variant has been reported in California, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Wednesday.
CDC to Toughen COVID-19 Testing for International Travelers
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 1, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- As the world struggles with ways to stem the spread of the new omicron variant, the U.S. Centers of Disease Control and Prevention announced Tuesday that international travelers to the United States will soon have to provide a negative result from a COVID-19 test taken within 24 hours of departure.
Most Immunosuppressive Meds Not Tied to Worse COVID-19 Outcomes
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 1, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Overall, people taking immunosuppressive medications do not have a higher risk for dying from COVID-19 or being put on a ventilator compared with nonimmunosuppressed hospitalized COVID-19 patients, according to a study published online online Nov. 15 in The Lancet Rheumatology.
FDA Panel Mulls Merck COVID-19 Antiviral Pill
TUESDAY, Nov. 30, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- A U.S. Food and Drug Administration advisory panel is meeting Tuesday to weigh both the safety and power of the new Merck antiviral pill in preventing severe COVID-19.
Omicron Variant Spurs New York Officials to Recommend Masking Indoors
TUESDAY, Nov. 30. 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Amid growing concerns about the new omicron variant, New York Governor Kathy Hochul and New York City Health Commissioner Dave Chokshi, M.D., have advised all residents to wear masks while indoors.
Pfizer to Seek FDA Approval of Boosters for Teens Ages 16 to 17
TUESDAY, Nov. 30, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Pfizer Inc. is expected to seek approval this week for emergency use of its booster shots among American teens ages 16 to 17 years.
Regeneron Says Its Antibody Cocktail Likely Weakened by Omicron Variant
TUESDAY, Nov. 30, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Regeneron Pharmaceuticals said Tuesday that its antibody cocktail, which is used widely to treat COVID-19 patients, may be less effective against the omicron variant.
Colchicine No Benefit Over Supportive Care for COVID-19
TUESDAY, Nov. 30, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Colchicine does not seem to offer benefit over supportive care for management of patients with COVID-19, according to research published online Nov. 22 in Rheumatic & Musculoskeletal Diseases.
Merck's COVID-19 Pill Appears Effective, but May Pose Pregnancy Risks: FDA
MONDAY, Nov. 29, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Merck's experimental COVID-19 antiviral pill appears effective, but may pose risks for pregnant women, including birth defects and toxicity to developing fetuses, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Biden Pushes Vaccines, Masks as Best Defense Against Omicron Variant
MONDAY, Nov. 29, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Vaccines and masks will be the United States' first line of defense against the new omicron variant, not lockdowns or border closures, President Joe Biden told the nation Monday.
Vaccine Makers Already Testing Their Shots Against Omicron Variant
MONDAY, Nov. 29, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- As concerns about the new omicron variant grow, vaccine makers say they are already working on ways to protect people against the potential new threat.
Thanksgiving Weekend Brought New COVID-19 Concerns: the Omicron Variant
MONDAY, Nov. 29, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Hopes for an easing of the pandemic were dealt a major setback over the Thanksgiving weekend, with news that a variant first spotted in southern Africa carries a multiplicity of mutations that might make it resistant to approved vaccines.
Decline in Infectious Conjunctivitis During COVID-19 Pandemic
MONDAY, Nov. 29, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- There was a population-wide decrease in the rate of infectious conjunctivitis in association with public health interventions adopted to curb COVID-19, according to a study published online Nov. 18 in JAMA Ophthalmology.
SARS-CoV-2 Infection Up >90 Days Since Second BNT162b2 Dose
MONDAY, Nov. 29, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- The risk of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection increases at time intervals >90 days since the second dose of Pfizer-BioNTech BNT162b2 mRNA vaccine, according to a study published online Nov. 25 in The BMJ.