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The Emergent BioSolutions plant in Baltimore in April 2021. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

The Baltimore Emergent BioSolutions manufacturing plant that ruined 15 million doses of Johnson & Johnson's coronavirus vaccine had multiple procedural failures, including unsanitary conditions near sensitive manufacturing areas, the Food and Drug Administration stated in a report Wednesday

Why it matters: The FDA faulted Emergent for failing to thoroughly review the incident, which halted the potential production and shipment tens of millions of Johnson & Johnson doses this month.

Context: Workers at the plant, which had been producing vaccine materials for Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca, conflated ingredients between the two different types of vaccines, destroying 15 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

The FDA said the plant suffered from multiple unsanitary conditions, including peeling paint in sensitive manufacturing areas and waste that was not decontaminated.

  • The administration said workers at the plant were also seen on surveillance footage mishandling medical waste.

What they're saying: Emergent told the Washington Post that it was working to correct problems identified in the inspection report.

  • "While we are never satisfied to see shortcomings in our manufacturing facilities or process, they are correctable and we will take swift action to remedy them,'' the company said.

Go deeper

Oregon governor sending 1,500 National Guard troops to assist hospitals

Photo: Nathan Howard via Getty Images

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown said Friday she is deploying up to 1,500 National Guard troops to support hospitals as Delta continues to reach across the United States.

Why it matters: 733 Oregonians are currently hospitalized with severe cases, including 185 in intensive care, Brown said.

Aug 14, 2021 - Health

Excess COVID cases, deaths linked to wildfire smoke in new study

Flames rise during the fire in the village of Peyki as firefigters and residents continue to respond on the fifth day of a wildfire in the area north of the island of Evia, Greece, on Aug. 8. Photo: Dimitris Lampropoulos/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Exposure to high levels of fine particle pollution produced by wildfires may have led to thousands more COVID cases and deaths, according to a new study published in the journal Science Advances.

Why it matters: Research has shown that smoke can have dangerous health impacts, a correlation that is putting more and more at risk as the pandemic collides with the climate crisis.

Biden administration offers aid to Florida schools defying DeSantis order

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (left) and Education Secretary Miguel Cardona. Photos: Joe Raedle and Win McNamee via Getty Images

The Biden administration is stepping in to offer financial assistance to Florida educators defying Gov. Ron DeSantis' law banning local K-12 mask mandates.

Why it matters: The battle over mask mandates in schools has been brewing for weeks. The Republican governor recently threatened to withhold pay from superintendents and school board members who go against his ban.

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