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COVID-19 cases in the Americas increased 10.4 percent last week from the previous one, but countries must also pay attention to a rise in other respiratory viruses in the region, the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) said on Wednesday.

Countries have agreed to an initial U.S.-led push to reform the rules around disease outbreaks, known as the International Health Regulations, after early opposition from Africa and others was overcome this week, sources told Reuters on Friday.

In the months before it acknowledged its first official COVID-19 outbreak, North Korea suddenly imported millions of face masks, 1,000 ventilators, and possibly vaccines from China, trade data released by Beijing showed.

Lawmakers grilled U.S. Food and Drug Administration officials on Wednesday over what they saw as a lack of urgency in the agency’s response to complaints about possible baby formula contamination at a now shuttered Abbott Laboratories plant that led to severe nationwide shortages.

The number of births in the United States grew 1% in 2021 from a pandemic low in 2020, marking the first increase since 2014, according to a report by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the war in Ukraine, rising fuel costs, manufacturing concerns and the ripple of other global events have led to supply chain issues across the world that, in the United States, has been most recently highlighted by a shortage of baby formula.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration set June 14-15 as the new meeting date to review Moderna Inc.’s emergency authorization request for the company’s COVID-19 vaccine for children aged 6 months to 5 years and Pfizer Inc.’s vaccine for those aged 6 months through 4 years.

Ocugen Inc. said on May 23 the U.S. drug regulator has lifted the clinical hold on a mid-to-late stage trial of the COVID-19 vaccine being developed by the company’s Indian partner Bharat Biotech.

As organizations continue to evaluate and implement automation and AI technology, it is important to consider how increased use of technology should align with both industry best practices and regulations – and to proactively address how technology adoption will impact stakeholders involved in routine pharmacovigilance activities while ensuring deployment and implementation poses no risk to breaching guidelines or regulations.