February 27, 2021

Dr. Stuart Weiss: COVID-19 Update Friday 19-Feb-2021

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Rapid Test Center of New York
Dr. Stuart Weiss, FACEP, FAAP, CBCP

By Dr. Stuart Weiss, Intelligent Crowd Solutions – Rapid Test Center of NY

February 17, 2021

CoViD-19 News and Information you can trust.Welcome new readers from the Rapid Test Center.

Topics: Pfizer vaccine update

New Testing Centers Open!We have opened our testing center in Chelsea in Manhattan and will open our center in lower Westchester County on Sunday. Beside rt-PCR with rapid results, we do antibody testing. We hope to give vaccinations as soon as the supply increases.

Pfizer Vaccine Update

There are two updates for the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine. The first update is a result of a study out of Israel. As you may recall from my newsletter earlier this week, Israel has the second highest percentage of its population vaccinated in the world after UAE. They are somewhere around 60% vaccinated with at least one shot.

The study, published yesterday in the medical journal Lancet, looked at 9100 Israeli healthcare workers. The study showed that Pfizer’s vaccine was 85% effective 15-28 days after receiving the first dose. Pfizer phase three trials had shown that their vaccine was 95% effective after the two dose regimen. While the single dose percentage sounds good, no one yet knows how long the antibodies created after only one dose last. Some experts think that you need two doses to maintain longer lasting antibody levels. Additionally, although the vaccine does protect against the B.1.1.7 (UK) variant, no one knows if that protection will be good after only a single dose.

Here in the US, the FDA is still recommending a two dose regimen. In the U.K., they have chosen to prioritize the first dose and have been delaying second doses up to 12 weeks. We will have to see which strategy works best.

The second announcement is that the Pfizer vaccine may be stable for a short time at normal freezer temperatures. Previously, the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine had to be stored in -112 to -76 degree F temperatures. That made it hard for smaller vaccine sites and doctor’s offices to store that vaccine. If the FDA approves the new temperature data, the vaccine will be able to be stored in a standard freezer for up to 2 weeks. That will help with distribution.

So if the changes are approved for the Pfizer vaccine and the FDA approves the Johnson and Johnson vaccine in the next week or two, our supply chain of vaccines should continue to improve.

If you are eligible, get vaccinated so we can all get through this together.
Dr. Stu Weiss
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Coronavirus update for February 19, 2021

World Wide Updates

Wales extends Covid-19 lockdown for further three weeks
This tiny remote Ascension Island could be the first fully vaccinated territory in the world
G7 countries pledge $4 billion to Covid-19 vaccine initiatives
30% of people with Covid-19 continue to have symptoms up to 9 months after infection, study finds
Johnson & Johnson applies for WHO authorization that could make its vaccine available in 190+ countries
EU doubles contribution to COVAX global vaccine effort
German politician drops out of volunteering in a vaccine center after getting threats
Caught in vaccine limbo, some European states are scrambling for Chinese and Russian shots
Macron urges European countries to allocate 4-5% of vaccine supply to developing countries
More than 20 million years of life lost to Covid-19, study suggests
Hong Kong receives 1 million doses of Covid-19 Sinovac vaccines
Russian MFA says it offered coronavirus vaccine to all foreign embassies 
UK Covid-19 variant detected in every 5th new infection in Germany
One dose of Pfizer vaccine reduces symptomatic Covid-19 by 85% after a month, study shows
G20 should establish a vaccine task force, UN secretary general says
Indian state announces fresh Covid-19 restrictions as cases surge
Taiwan blames “external forces” for blocking BioNTech vaccine deal
Paraguay to start Covid-19 vaccinations next week
New COVID-19 strain discovered in Finland, researchers claim
The Irish Department of Health reports three cases of the Brazilian variant
Philippines records highest death toll in 5 months
South African virus variant confirmed in Poland
British government broke law in opaque billion pound PPE procurement deals, court rules
Dutch government fights legal challenges against night curfew
Total Cases Worldwide: 111,189,160
Total Deaths Worldwide: 2,461,266
Total Recovered: 86,012,587

US Updates

Biden explains why he can’t say when every American who wants a vaccine will get one
AOC calls for investigation of Cuomo’s COVID nursing home scandal
US cases, deaths and hospitalizations from Covid-19 all dropping, CDC director says
California will set aside 10% of Covid-19 vaccine doses for teachers
Biden tours Pfizer vaccine manufacturing facility in Michigan 
New York City’s indoor dining capacity will increase by next Friday, governor says
Schools can open at any stage of community spread of virus, CDC director says
US should have Covid-19 vaccine safety data for high school kids by fall, Fauci says
It’s too risky to go to a single-dose coronavirus vaccine regimen, Fauci says
White House announces new Covid-19 vaccination centers in Florida and Pennsylvania
Delaware governor signs order easing Covid-19 restrictions on indoor gatherings
Nearly 28 million coronavirus cases have been reported in the US since the pandemic began
Serious adverse reactions to Covid-19 vaccines are rare, CDC study says
US senator calls on social media to stop the spread of antivax disinformation targeting pregnant women
Leading Democratic senator says he still hopes US Covid-19 relief can be bipartisan
People of color are underrepresented in US vaccine trials, new study finds
US may have enough vaccines to fully vaccinate its population by July
Walgreens’ Covid-19 vaccine allocation in US will increase by more than 300,000 doses next week
Pfizer/BioNTech submits new data to show its Covid-19 vaccine can be stored at warmer temperatures
A drop in Covid-19 cases can be deceptive, official warns
US reports more than 69,000 new Covid cases on Thursday
More than 1,500 reported cases of concerning variants in the US, CDC says
Pregnant women are at a 70% higher risk for Covid-19 infection, study finds
US pharmacies see high Covid-19 vaccine demand “outweigh inventory”
Visitors allowed back in NY nursing homes as Cuomo claims he should have been ‘more aggressive’ in countering critics 
2 Florida women dressed up as ‘grannies’ to get COVID vaccine
Total US cases: 28,589,243
Total US deaths: 507,250
Total Recovered: 18,766,676
Total Tested in US: 336,330,183
Total cases in CA: 3,502,559
Total deaths in CA: 48,576
Total cases in TX: 2,586,166
Total deaths in TX: 41,883
Total cases in FL: 1,856,427
Total deaths in FL: 29,692
Total cases in NY: 1,612,067
Total deaths in NY: 46,812
Total cases in IL: 1,170,902
Total deaths in IL: 22,368
Total Vaccines Administered in US: 57,737,767
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