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Cemetery workers in protective suits carry the coffin of a COVID-19 victim at a cemetery in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

This year's global coronavirus death toll has already surpassed that of 2020's, with poor and developing countries accounting for a significant rise in coronavirus deaths in 2021, according to a Wall Street analysis of Johns Hopkins data.

Why it matters: While Americans are returning to activities they haven't done since before the pandemic, the reality is very different in many other parts of the world.

What they found: Africa, South America, and Asia make up more than 80% of daily coronavirus cases and three-quarters of daily COVID-related deaths, the WSJ reports, citing data from the University of Oxford.

  • High case rates coupled with low vaccinations have spelled disaster.

What to watch: The Biden administration will ship the first batch of 500 million doses of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines to 92 countries and the African Union from August, the White House announced Thursday morning.

  • "200 million doses will be delivered by the end of this year and the remaining 300 million will be delivered in the first half of 2022," the White House said in a statement.

Go deeper

Sep 17, 2021 - Health

FDA advisory panel recommends Pfizer boosters for those 65 and older

A healthcare worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine at the Key Biscayne Community Center on Aug. 24, 2021. Photo: Eva Marie Uzcategui/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A key Food and Drug Administration advisory panel on Friday overwhelmingly voted against recommending Pfizer vaccine booster shots for younger Americans, but unanimously recommended approving the third shots for individuals 65 and older, as well as those at high-risk of severe COVID-19.

Why it matters: While the votes are non-binding, and the FDA must still make a final decision, Friday's move pours cold water on the Biden administration's plan to begin administering boosters to most individuals who received the Pfizer vaccine later this month.

Tina Reed, author of Vitals
Sep 17, 2021 - Health

Key FDA committee takes on the big booster question

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

A key FDA advisory committee is meeting today to discuss Pfizer's proposal for a COVID vaccine booster — but it will set the stage for the entire booster debate.

The big question: Not only whether experts believe there’s enough evidence to support boosters, but also whether they believe additional shots should be made available for everyone or limited to older Americans and the immunocompromised.

Sep 17, 2021 - Health

CDC: Moderna vaccine most effective against hospitalization in U.S.

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

Overall healthy adults with the Moderna COVID vaccine had 93% vaccine effectiveness against hospitalization over five months compared to those with 88% protection with Pfizer and 71% from the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, a new report out Friday from the CDC shows.

Why it matters: The report comes as the Food and Drug Administrations meets Friday to consider whether to endorse a contentious plan for booster shots among the fully vaccinated.