The average daily death rate over the past week remains above 3,000.Jan 31, 2021 - Health
As bad as this year was, humanity is still far better off than it has been for nearly all of our history.Dec 24, 2020 - Health
More than 35 states across the country have mandated facial coverings.Updated Dec 8, 2020 - Health
Three major candidates now reporting efficacy rates of more than 90%.Updated Nov 30, 2020 - Health
Long quarantines were a necessary tool to slow the COVID-19 pandemic during its first phases, but better and faster tests — plus vaccines — mean they can be scaled back considerably.
Why it matters: Quick tests and regular surveillance methods that identify who is actually infectious can take the place of the two-week or longer isolation periods that have been common for travelers and people who might have been exposed to the virus, speeding the safe reopening of schools and workplaces.
The CDC acknowledged Friday that airborne spread of COVID-19 among people more than 6 feet apart "has been repeatedly documented."
Why it matters: This is "a change from the agency’s previous position that most infections were acquired through 'close contact, not airborne transmission,'" the N.Y. Times reports.
Oklahoma has secured a $2.6 million refund for a malaria drug purchase once touted by former President Trump as a treatment for COVID-19, the state's attorney general announced Friday.
Why it matters: Trump repeatedly promoted hydroxychloroquine last year despite health officials warning that the drug should not be prescribed for treating COVID-19 outside of research or hospital settings due to serious side effects. Oklahoma purchased 1.2 million hydroxychloroquine pills in April 2020, per AP.
The World Health Organization authorized China’s Sinopharm’s COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use on Friday, making it the sixth vaccine to receive clearance from the global health agency.
Why it matters: The authorization will allow COVAX, the WHO's initiative to equitably develop and distribute coronavirus vaccines, to purchase Sinopharm's vaccine and bolster its supply, according to the New York Times.
Amazon told CNBC Thursday it is delaying its annual Prime Day sales in Canada and India as both countries struggle to control surges in new coronavirus cases.
Why it matters: In an email reviewed by Bloomberg, the company said the delay was needed to protect "the health and safety of our employees and customers," though Amazon didn’t give a rescheduled date in either country.
Americans are slowly getting ready to fly again, with 44% of U.S. adults now saying they plan to fly in the next six months, data from CivicScience show.
By the numbers: That’s a 1 percentage-point bump from March and an 8 percentage-point increase from September. However, it's still well below pre-pandemic levels.
Former FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said on CNBC Thursday night that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should consider lifting indoor mask mandates since vaccination rates have rapidly increased in the U.S.
Why it matters: The CDC said late last month that people who have been fully vaccinated against the virus don't have to wear masks outdoors and had previously said that vaccinated people can take fewer precautions in certain situations.
Pfizer and BioNTech announced Friday that they have initiated the process of applying for full FDA approval of their COVID-19 vaccine for people 16 and older.
Why it matters: It's the first coronavirus vaccine to seek a Biologics License Application (BLA), which requires at least six months of data, according to CNBC.
Most Americans support requiring proof they've been vaccinated against COVID-19 before traveling, going to school or going to work, a recent survey by Verywell found.
Why it matters: The idea of vaccine "passports" emerged early as a potential tool to reopen economies. But they've turned into a political flashpoint in several Republican-led states — and raised plenty of logistical challenges.