Overnight health care — Maternal deaths increased in the first year of the pandemic

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A convoy of trucks protesting the COVID-19 rules has from California and heads to DC as authorities prepare for protests around the State of the Union next week.

Pregnancy-related deaths are on the rise and stark racial disparities persist, according to a new report.

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Maternal deaths increased in 2020: CDC

The number of pregnancy-related deaths in the United States rose in 2020, the first year of the pandemic, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

the report finds there were 861 maternal deaths in 2020, compared to 754 in 2019 and 658 in 2018. This translated to 23.8 deaths per 100,000 live births in 2020, compared to 20.1 in 2019.

Major racial disparities: The maternal mortality rate for black women was about three times higher than for white women, at 55.3 deaths per 100,000 births versus 19.1 deaths per 100,000 births.

“Rates for non-Hispanic black women were significantly higher than rates for non-Hispanic white and Hispanic women,” the report said. “The increases from 2019 to 2020 for Black and Hispanic non-Hispanic women were significant.”

The report does not look at the role the pandemic may have played in the increase in maternal deaths, but it is possible that people delaying care and trips to hospital played a role.

Lawmakers have pushed to address maternal deaths. For example, the American Rescue Plan Act, signed by President BidenJoe BidenPentagon approves National Guard deployment request ahead of DC truck convoy Lee Harris discusses past of new Development Finance Corporation CEO Defense and national security: US and allies hit Russia with sanctions MORE last year, allows states to extend Medicaid coverage for a full year after childbirth, instead of 60 days.

Learn more here.


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has released new COVID-19 mRNA vaccine guidelines, extending the recommended time between the first two vaccine doses to eight weeks for some people over 12, especially young people. men.

The recommended interval between initial doses was three weeks for the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine and four weeks for the Moderna vaccine. This time frame is still recommended by the CDC for people who are immunocompromised, over the age of 65, or in need of rapid protection against the coronavirus.

According to the CDC, however, allowing more time between the first two doses of COVID-19 mRNA vaccines may reduce the risk of serious side effects such as myocarditis or inflammation of the heart wall.

“COVID-19 mRNA vaccines are safe and effective at FDA-approved or FDA-cleared intervals, but a longer interval may be considered for some populations,” the CDC said. “Although the absolute risk remains low, the relative risk of myocarditis is higher in men aged 12 to 39, and this risk could be reduced by lengthening the interval between the first and second dose.”

Learn more here.

Another COVID-19 vaccine could be coming

Sanofi and GSK announced on Wednesday that they plan to submit their COVID-19 vaccine for licensing following “strong” results in a phase 3 trial.

What makes it different: The latest incoming COVID-19 vaccine could play an important role in helping vaccinate the world, given that it is easier to store than mRNA vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna.

The vaccine was 100% effective against serious illnesses and hospitalizations. Efficacy against any infection was 57.9%. While this is lower than originally reported for Pfizer and Moderna, Sanofi and GSK said the results reflect the latest variants and are “consistent with expected vaccine efficacy in today’s variant-dominated environment of concern. “.

The companies also said the vaccine had a “favorable safety profile”.

They plan to submit for authorization the Food and Drug Administration and the European Medicines Agency.

“We are very pleased with this data, which confirms our strong science and the benefits of our COVID-19 vaccine,” said Thomas Triomphe, Executive Vice President of Sanofi Vaccines.

The Sanofi-GSK uses more traditional vaccine technology, as opposed to the new mRNA used by Pfizer and Moderna. Therefore, it could both convince some people who are skeptical of mRNA vaccines to get vaccinated and, importantly, help reach low-income countries due to easier storage conditions.

Learn more here.


Firearms are now the leading cause of injury-related deaths in the United States, according to a study released Tuesday, overtaking motor vehicle accidents as the leading cause of years of potential life lost.

Researchers at Westchester Medical Center came to this conclusion after reviewing data from recent years in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) National Vital Statistics Reports.

The CDC calculates potential years of life lost by subtracting an individual’s age at death from the standard year of 80, which is roughly equal to life expectancy in the United States. The agency then adds up the number of years lost for different causes of death.

The study looked at data from 2009 to 2018. In the early years the researchers looked at, motor vehicle crashes accounted for more years of potential life lost than firearms. However, in 2017 firearms overtook motor vehicle accidents and continued to do so through 2018.

In the decade examined by the researchers, firearms accounted for 12.6 million years of potential life lost. Over the decade, accidents accounted for more potential years lost at 12.9 million years.

Learn more here.

New COVID-19 infections drop worldwide for third week

The World Health Organization (WHO) announced on Tuesday that global cases of COVID-19 had fallen by 21% in the past week.

Worldwide, WHO data showed that more than 12 million new cases and 67,000 new deaths have been reported in the past seven days.

In terms of COVID-19-related deaths, the data showed that number had fallen by 8%, marking the first week since early January that the death rate has fallen.

Germany and Russia, which both recorded more than a million weekly cases, led the world last week in the number of reported cases. They were followed by Brazil, which had more than 728,000 cases.

The agency’s data also indicated that cases in the United States in particular had fallen by around 40%.

The only region that has reported an overall spike in cases is the Western Pacific, with a 29% increase.

Learn more here.

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  • Supply of Covid vaccines for global program exceeds demand for first time (Reuters)
  • Twenty years ago, a landmark report shed light on systemic racism in medicine. Why has it changed so little? (Statistical)
  • Tracy Kidder remembers Paul Farmer: “He wanted to make the whole world his patient” (New York Times)


  • Whitmer signs bills in hopes of ‘meaningful’ impact on prescription drug prices (Detroit News)
  • School mask terms ending in New Hampshire (Associated press)
  • The Doctor giving DeSantis’ pandemic policies a stamp of approval (New York Times)


That’s all for today, thanks for reading. Discover The Hill’s health care page for the latest news and coverage. On Thursday.

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