Merck & Co. will help make rival Johnson & Johnson’s Covid-19 vaccine in order to boost the slower-than-promised production of the one-dose shot, U.S. President Joe Biden said on March 2.
The drug hydroxychloroquine, once touted by Donald Trump as a pandemic “game-changer,” should not be used to prevent Covid-19 and has no meaningful effect on patients already infected, a World Health Organization expert panel said.
Top U.S. infectious disease official Dr. Anthony Fauci said on Feb. 28 he was encouraging Americans to accept any of the three available Covid-19 vaccines, including the newly approved Johnson & Johnson shot.
The U.S. government on Feb. 27 authorized Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose Covid-19 vaccine, enabling millions more Americans to be vaccinated in the coming weeks and setting the vaccine up for additional approvals around the world.
President Joe Biden scored his first legislative win as the House of Representatives passed his $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package early Feb. 27, though Democrats face challenges to their hopes of using the bill to raise the minimum wage.
The head of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said on Feb. 26 that a recent decline in COVID-19 cases may be stalling, a development she described as concerning while urging that safeguards to fight the virus remain in place.
The United States expects to roll out 3 to 4 million doses of Johnson & Johnson’s Covid-19 vaccine during the first week of March, pending authorization from the Food and Drug Administration, White House Covid-19 response coordinator Jeff Zients said on Feb. 24.
The Biden administration will deliver more than 25 million masks to community health centers, food pantries and soup kitchens from March through May as part of the battle against the coronavirus pandemic, the White House said in a statement.
Covid-19 vaccine makers told Congress on Feb. 23 that U.S. supplies should surge in the coming weeks due to manufacturing expansions and new vaccine authorizations.
Johnson & Johnson expects to be able to ship nearly 4 million doses of the company’s Covid-19 vaccine upon authorization in the U.S., an executive said at a hearing in the U.S. House of Representatives on Feb. 23.