Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with Axios AM/PM. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on the day's biggest business stories

Subscribe to Axios Closer for insights into the day’s business news and trends and why they matter

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Stay on top of the latest market trends

Subscribe to Axios Markets for the latest market trends and economic insights. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sports news worthy of your time

Binge on the stats and stories that drive the sports world with Axios Sports. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tech news worthy of your time

Get our smart take on technology from the Valley and D.C. with Axios Login. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Get the inside stories

Get an insider's guide to the new White House with Axios Sneak Peek. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Denver news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Des Moines news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Twin Cities news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Tampa Bay news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa Bay

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Charlotte news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

A team of researchers at the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health has some warnings about the pandemic causing drug shortages — and some ideas on what to do about it.

Driving the news: COVID is increasing the demand for drugs that are needed to treat patients with the virus — like sedatives and vasopressors, which help patients with low blood pressure, per the report.

  • It's also shutting down the production of important medications, since China produces active pharmaceutical ingredients and it had to close down some of its factories because of the pandemic.
  • And travel bans have created delays that have led to shortages of drugs like propofol, an anesthetic.

The report recommends several steps to address the problems, many of which involve expanding the authority of the FDA:

  • Adding drugs to its shortage list, which would allow it to use strategies to increase manufacturing.
  • Creating quality metrics for manufacturing. (Congress would have to authorize it, since not everyone agrees that the agency has the power to do this.)
  • Creating an FDA database of approved manufacturers of active pharmaceutical ingredients.
  • Requiring manufacturers to prove they have a stockpile of active pharmaceutical ingredients, and approving new drugs or manufacturing changes more quickly (both of which would have to be authorized by Congress).

The catch: Most of these recommendations rely pretty heavily on giving the FDA more regulatory power.

  • That might not be a slam dunk with Republican lawmakers for anything Congress has to approve — although that might matter less now that Democrats are in control. 

Go deeper

Updated Feb 4, 2021 - Health

Wisconsin governor issues new mask mandate after state GOP kills previous order

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers. Photo: Morry Gash-Pool via Getty Images

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers (D) on Thursday issued a new statewide mask mandate almost immediately after the state Legislature voted to repeal his previous order.

Why it matters: Evers' attempts to combat COVID-19 have faced pushback from Republicans since early in the pandemic. Even with a new order, the Legislature could again vote to repeal the mask requirement.

Updated 7 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

  1. Health: Fall and winter COVID surge "unlikely" if people get vaccinated.
  2. Politics: School boards are the next political battleground.
  3. Vaccines: Pfizer begins application for full FDA vaccine approval — Moderna says its COVID booster shot shows promise against variants.
  4. Economy: U.S. adds just 266,000 jobs in April, far below expectations.
  5. World: Asia faces massive new COVID surgeIndia records its deadliest day of the pandemic.
  6. Variant tracker: Where different strains are spreading.

How CRISPR might help diagnose and halt dangerous outbreaks faster

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Gene-editing may lead the next generation of diagnostics that could help to quickly stop disease outbreaks and pandemics.

The big picture: New mRNA vaccine platforms, up-and-coming CRISPR diagnostics and other genomics-based tools may be the key to halting future pandemics. Their "plug and play" characteristics should allow a short turnaround to diagnose a pathogen, contact-trace suspected carriers, and develop a protective vaccine, experts tell Axios.

You’ve caught up. Now what?

Sign up for Mike Allen’s daily Axios AM and PM newsletters to get smarter, faster on the news that matters.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!