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Coronavirus update: McDonald’s to distribute vaccine information, office openings lead to more jobs

The FDA has issued another warning about false COVID-19 claims

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Coronavirus (COVID-19) tally as compiled by Johns Hopkins University. (Previous numbers in parentheses.)

Total U.S. confirmed cases: 32,780,283 (32,745,835)

Total U.S. deaths: 582,867 (582,183)

Total global cases: 159,784,683 (159,073,559)

Total global deaths: 3,320,036 (3,306,550)

McDonald’s joins campaign to promote vaccinations

McDonald’s is the latest company to throw its support behind the government’s effort to promote vaccinations against the coronavirus (COVID-19). 

Later this month, the fast-food chain will use its billboard in New York’s Times Square to post vaccine information from trusted third parties. In July, McDonald's hot McCafé cups and McDelivery seal stickers will urge customers to visit vaccines.gov to learn more about the vaccination process.

"Getting vaccinated is easy. More than 150 million people have already gotten at least one dose of vaccine, and millions more are getting vaccinated every day," said HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra. "Thanks to McDonald’s, people will now be able to get trusted information about vaccines when they grab a cup of coffee or order a meal.”

Lots of employees won’t return to the office if it means moving

Remember all those people who moved out of their apartments and bought houses once they started working from home? Many moved pretty far from the office, so they’ve got a big decision to make now that these spaces are reopening. 

A new survey from realtor.com shows that nearly 60% of new homeowners who purchased within the last twelve months are working from home, and 62% prefer it. About a quarter of those in the survey said they haven’t decided if they’ll quit if they are required to resume their commute.

"Throughout the last year we have seen homebuyers across the country, empowered by the newfound ability to work remotely, moving farther and farther from crowded urban downtowns in search of more space, higher quality of life, and a lower cost of living," said George Ratiu, senior economist for realtor.com. "Our survey data shows that people are really enjoying their new communities and larger homes, and aren't willing to give them up anytime soon.”

FDA warns another marketer about COVID-19 claims

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has fired off a warning letter to Covalon Technologies Inc. for selling unapproved products with fraudulent COVID-19 claims. Consumers concerned about COVID-19 should consult with their health care provider, the agency said. 

The FDA has also updated its COVID-19 Response At-A-Glance Summary, which provides a quick look at facts, figures, and highlights on the FDA's response efforts.

Veterinarians now face stress and burnout

Hospitals were nearly overwhelmed with sick patients at the height of the pandemic, and that took a heavy mental and physical toll on hospital personnel. The same burnout factor now appears to be affecting the nation’s veterinarians.

When the pandemic forced most Americans to shelter in their homes, many sought the comfort of a new pet. Those adoptions all required a visit to the vet, and animal clinics saw their patient loads surge overnight. Apparently, it hasn’t let up.

Veterinarians interviewed by the Associated Press report that they have to work longer hours and hire more people. Some clinics have closed their doors to new patients.

New York Yankees report an outbreak

Getting a vaccination doesn’t mean you can’t get COVID-19, but cases should be rarer. Tell that to the New York Yankees, which announced that three people associated with the club -- all fully vaccinated -- have tested positive.

Third base coach Phil Nevin was the first to be identified as one of the positive cases. The team also announced that first base coach Reggie Willits tested positive. One other person who works on the Yankees’ support staff and was not identified has also been infected.

The three vaccines currently in use in the U.S. all have efficacy ratings of over 90%. They also have been shown to reduce the severity of symptoms in instances where someone with a vaccination gets the virus.

Around the nation

  • Maine: Hospitals across the state are coping with a large increase in unvaccinated COVID-19 patients who require critical care. Most of the patients are young. “The good news is that we are seeing vaccinations work in the older populations that have been vaccinated – they’re not in the hospital or becoming critically ill,” said Dr. Joan Boomsma, chief medical officer for MaineHealth.

  • Tennessee: Governor Bill Lee has announced that Tennessee will end participation in all federal pandemic unemployment compensation programs on July 3. One of the programs provides an extra $300 a week in unemployment benefits.

  • Ohio: Supplies of the COVID-19 vaccines are exceeding demand. State health officials say they only took 20% of their allotted amount this week because of surpluses. The state is holding onto nearly 140,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine in anticipation of beginning vaccinations of adolescents.

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