The Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine may not be as effective as those using mRNA technology, according to a new study on Tuesday.
The study, published by bioRxiv, indicates that the 13 million people who received the vaccine may need to receive a second dose, ideally the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine. Although the study has not been peer reviewed or published, the results align with studies of the AstraZeneca vaccine which conclude that one dose of the vaccine is 33% effective against symptomatic Delta variant disease and 60% against the variant after the second dose. .
“The message we wanted to get across was not that people shouldn’t be getting the J. & J. vaccine, but we hope that in the future it will be boosted with another dose of J. & J. or a boost with Pfizer or Moderna, ”Nathaniel Landau, a virologist at the Grossman School of Medicine at New York University who led the study, told The New York Times.
The results contradict studies published by Johnson & Johnson which say that a single dose of their vaccine is effective against the variant.
The delta variant continues to spread in the United States and accounts for about 83% of cases in the country, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Not all vaccines are 100% effective, as shown by the increase in cases among those vaccinated, but they have been shown to save people from serious illness.
Also in the news:
► The head of the World Health Organization said the Tokyo Olympics should not be judged by the number of COVID-19 cases, because eliminating the risks is impossible.
►Las Vegas employees are now required to wear masks indoors, but the mandate will not be extended to tourists strolling the Strip or meeting in crowded casinos, Clark County commissioners have ruled. The new mandate will remain in place at least until August 17.
►Apple has reportedly delayed their return to the office for at least a month until October due to the spread of the delta variant, Bloomberg reported. CEO Tim Cook previously said employees will return to the office three days a week in September.
►A White House official and Assistant to the Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., Tested positive for the coronavirus after attending an event together, a White House official confirmed. Both were fully vaccinated.
► Amazon will no longer test its warehouse workers at the end of the month due to the availability of vaccines and free tests, reported The Information. The initiative began last year when tests were hard to come by and around 1.4% of their workers tested positive at some point in 2020.
Numbers of the day: The United States has recorded more than 34.1 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 and more than 609,000 deaths, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. Global totals: Over 191 million cases and 4.1 million deaths. More than 161.4 million Americans – 48.6% of the population – have been fully immunized, according to the CDC.
What we read: At a time when the infection rate has doubled, many go unvaccinated, and the delta variant is much more contagious than the original, it’s important to recognize that vaccines aren’t perfect.
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Life expectancy in the United States registers the biggest drop since World War II
The United States has seen the biggest one-year drop in life expectancy since World War II during the COVID-19 pandemic, and Hispanic and black populations have seen the biggest declines, data shows government released on Wednesday.
Life expectancy at birth fell from 1.5 years in 2020 to 77.3 – the lowest level since 2003, according to the National Center for Health Statistics of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Between 1942 and 1943, during World War II, life expectancy in the United States declined by 2.9 years.
“The numbers are devastating,” said Chantel Martin, assistant professor of epidemiology at the Gillings School of Global Public Health at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. “The declines that we are seeing, particularly among the Hispanic and non-Hispanic black population, are massive.”
Health experts have said the data on life expectancy is further evidence of the disproportionate effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on communities of color.
Deaths from COVID-19 contributed about 74% of the decline in life expectancy in the general population of the United States, according to the data. Another 11% of the decline can be attributed to an increase in deaths from accidents or unintentional injuries, including drug overdose deaths. Read more here.
– Grace Hauck
1 million children may have been orphaned due to the pandemic
A recent study reveals another devastating impact the coronavirus pandemic has had on children around the world. Researchers at Boston Children’s Hospital estimate that more than a million children may have been orphaned due to a death linked to COVID-19, according to their model published Tuesday in The Lancet. They defined orphans as the loss of at least one parent.
The countries with the largest number of children who have lost their primary caregivers are the United States, South Africa, Peru, India, Brazil and Mexico. Read more here.
Smoke from forest fires may increase the risk of COVID-19
Nevada-based scientists argue in a new study that smoke from wildfires may increase the risk of contracting the coronavirus. A study published last week by scientists at the Desert Research Institute found that coronavirus infection rates rose disproportionately during the wildfire season of 2020, when smoke from fires in neighboring states blanketed a much of northern Nevada.
In an article in the Journal of Exposure Science & Environmental Epidemiology, Desert Research Institute assistant scientist Daniel Kiser and four co-authors note that the test positivity rate in Washoe County increased significantly during times when monitors measured high levels of particles in the air from wildfire smoke.
For every 10 micrograms per cubic meter of small particles known as PM2.5 in the air, the positivity rate increased by about 6.3% two to six days later, according to the study. Kiser said the study was observational and noted that the increase could be attributed to other factors, such as the second increase from last year, students returning to school, or changes in local restrictions. . But he said momentary increases during times of high pollution suggested a link between the smoke and the spread of the virus.
“This temporary association amid a surge in the number of cases overall is what convinced us that something was happening,” he told The Associated Press.
Tennessee’s largest district will need masks this fall
Schools in Shelby County, Tennessee’s largest district, will continue to require masks from all students and staff, regardless of their immunization status, the district said. All students in the district are required to return to in-person learning on August 9, the first time since the district closed in March 2020. Since then, any in-person attendance by students is optional. The teachers were required to return in person last March.
The district says it is encouraging COVID-19 vaccinations, but will not require them from students or employees.
“The district is aware of the increase in cases and the spread of the Delta variant,” the SCS announcement said. The move is in line with American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines released Monday, calling on students to learn in person this school year and that all people, regardless of their immunization status, wear masks in schools.
– Laura Testino, Memphis Commercial Call
Contribution: The Associated Press