This week in COVID: Biden still positive; disparities in booster uptake; new research on rebound cases

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President Joe Biden continued to test positive for COVID-19 on Friday, The day he could end isolation from a rebound infection, according to guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Biden, 79, first tested positive on July 21 and received a five-day treatment of Paxlovid, given to people at high risk for serious illness. He tested negative on 26 and 27 July, prompting him to end isolation. But three days later, on July 30, the president tested positive again and returned to isolation. Biden’s physician, Dr. Kevin O’Connor, said his symptoms did not reappear.

Re-infection can occur after taking Paxlovid. Biden’s chief medical adviser, Dr. Anthony Fauci, experienced a similar transition. However, most people are not tested as often as the president and the actual rate of rebound cases is probably around 5%, White House COVID response coordinator Dr Ashish Jha said in a series of tweets.


It is not clear whether a relapse after taking the antiviral Paxlovid is different from a relapse without the drug. In the trial that led to the authorization of Paxlovid, the percentage of people who developed a rebound infection was similar between those who took the drug and those who did not.

A preprint study posted on Tuesday found 27% of people People who recovered from COVID-19 saw a rebound in symptoms even if they were treated with Paxlovid. The study has yet to be peer-reviewed.

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Also in the news:

CDC may update its COVID-19 guidance, including in schools, easing quarantine recommendations and emphasizing regular testing, According to a report by CNN.

I a federally sponsored study Neutralizing antibodies against Omicron decreased significantly within three months of receiving a COVID-19 booster.

I The US government has received 66 million doses of Moderna’s new booster vaccine, targeting the BA.4 and BA.5 strains of the Omicron variant. According to the company’s statement.

I A large study looking at life expectancy of Californians from 2015 to 2021 found that it decreased from 81.4 to 78.37 years during the COVID-19 pandemic.

IWhat we are reading: Are these cute creatures responsible for the COVID pandemic? The study found ‘proper’ origin in raccoon dogs. Read more here.

want more? sign up for USA Today’s Coronavirus Watch newsletter To receive updates straight to your inbox and visit our . join in Facebook group.

US trapped in ‘terrible plateau’ of COVID-19 deaths

“COVID is over” may be trending in social media circles, but the weekly US death figures tell a different story.

Despite being around 400 per day in July, the pace of COVID-19 deaths has remained steady since May, according to a USA Today analysis of Johns Hopkins University data. In July, more than 12,500 Americans died from COVID-19.

“We are sitting on this terrible plateau,” Dr. Daniel Griffin, an infectious disease specialist with Pro Health Care in New York and clinical instructor of medicine at Columbia University.

Experts said most Americans who died of COVID-19 were immunocompromised or over the age of 75. These patients were in a state of vaccination – from being unvaccinated to receiving all recommended vaccines and boosters.

Griffin said the biggest difference between patients who recover or die from COVID-19 appears to be whether they receive treatment within the first week of diagnosis.

Study finds racial and ethnic disparities in COVID booster uptake

As it became clear that the COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated existing health disparities, officials invested in focused, programmatic efforts to bridge the gap. But a recent report suggests those disparities have continued with booster uptake.

As of March, black people were 15% less likely to get a booster and Hispanics were 21% less likely than the population average. Asians were 24% more likely to get their boosters and white people were 7% more likely, According to the study published Monday in Health Affairs.

“Across dosing, we found large racial and ethnic disparities in COVID-19 vaccination,” the study authors wrote. “Vaccination drives results: Relative to those who received boosters, the mortality rate is 78 times higher for those who have not been vaccinated.”

Booster uptake followed the same trend as the first dose in all racial and ethnic groups, except for Hispanics. While they were less likely to get a booster, the number of Hispanics who got the first dose was 26% higher than the population average.

“Vaccination campaigns focused on Hispanic people seek to promote booster doses to address low rates of uptake among populations that demonstrated both willingness to receive and ability to receive the first dose,” wrote the study’s authors. Is.”

Nursing homes fail to replace staff leaving amid COVID outbreak

Nursing home workers shrank in the weeks and months following the severe COVID-19 outbreak, according to a new study, and federal data shows most facilities have lost more than half of their nurses and nurses in the past year, according to a new study. Allies are lost.

The study found that facilities have struggled to refill the openings, particularly certified nursing assistants, who provide the majority of bedside care — findings that reflect President Biden’s push to establish staffing-level requirements nationwide. complicate and underscore the need.

An increased staffing of nurses is linked to better health outcomes for nursing-home residents, with registered nurses playing a particularly important role in managing the spread of infectious diseases. That reality gained widespread importance during the COVID-19 pandemic, raising public awareness of nursing-home shortages.

The pandemic also drew attention to the challenges facing nursing-home workers, who have historically been paid less than their counterparts in hospitals or government-run health programs.

– Jayme Fraser, USA Today

Contribution: Maureen Gropp, USA Today. Follow Adriana Rodriguez on Twitter: @AdriannaUSAT.

Health and patient safety coverage at USA TODAY is made possible by a grant from the Massimo Foundation for Ethics, Innovation and Competition in Healthcare. The Massimo Foundation does not provide editorial input.


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