Coronavirus update: Moderna seeks vaccine approval for infants

Photo (c) Nikola Stojadinovic - Getty Images

An expert says vaccinations do not negatively impact fertility

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

Total‌ ‌U.S.‌ ‌confirmed‌ ‌cases:‌ 79,805,851 (79,779,913)

Total‌ ‌U.S.‌ ‌deaths:‌ 973,381 (972,681)

Total‌ ‌global‌ ‌cases:‌ 474,340,642 (472,337,660)

Total ‌global‌ ‌deaths:‌ 6,100,583 (6,095,626)‌

Moderna seeks approval to vaccinate young children

Moderna says it is submitting an application to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for low-dose COVID-19 vaccinations for very young children between the ages of 6 months to under 6 years. The company said it will submit the request “in the coming weeks.”

The application will specify two doses of vaccine, with each shot containing 25 micrograms of the vaccine. That amounts to about 25% of the dose administered to adults.

"Given the need for a vaccine against COVID-19 in infants and young children, we are working with the U.S. FDA and regulators globally to submit these data as soon as possible," Moderna CEO Stéphane Bancel said in a statement.

Pregnant women should be vaccinated, expert says

Among the rumors circulating about the COVID-19 vaccine is that it can harm fertility in women. OB-GYN and reproductive infectious disease specialist Dr. Oluwatosin Goje, of the Cleveland Clinic, says not only is that not true, but she warns that being infected with the virus is a very real fertility risk.

Goje traces the vaccine/fertility rumor to December 2020, when a German scientist teamed up with a former Pfizer employee to share a hypothesis about the COVID-19 vaccine and infertility. She said it got traction on social media and has persisted, even though it has been disproven by research.

Goje says women who plan to be pregnant should be vaccinated because studies show that pregnant people who contract COVID-19 have higher rates of preterm birth, low birth weight, and stillbirth.

Hillary Clinton tests positive

Former First Lady, Senator, Secretary of State, and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton says she has tested positive for COVID-19. She made the announcement on Twitter.

“I've got some mild cold symptoms but am feeling fine,” Clinton posted Tuesday afternoon. “I'm more grateful than ever for the protection vaccines can provide against serious illness. Please get vaccinated and boosted if you haven't already!”

Clinton is the latest high-profile political figure to announce that they had been infected. Former President Barack Obama made a similar announcement last week. Clinton said her husband, former President Bill Clinton, tested negative.

Around the nation

  • Illinois: Illinois is one of the states that had eliminated mask mandates for classrooms, but amid an outbreak at some schools, the masks are going back on. Six classrooms at Chicago’s Coonley Elementary School have reverted to universal masking, according to a Chicago Public Schools spokesperson.

  • Alaska: Sen. Dan Sullivan is one of the latest members of Congress to test positive for COVID-19. The senator’s press office says Sullivan tested positive with a breakthrough case after having been fully vaccinated. The senator was in Florida visiting family at the time of the positive test.

  • Wyoming: Wyoming enjoyed a sharp drop in COVID-19 cases over the last two months, with one exception; cases rose at nursing homes across the state. Wyoming had the fifth-highest rate of COVID-19 cases among residents from January to February, with 12.5 cases per 100 residents, according to AARP.

  • Michigan: State health officials report that there has been an uptick in COVID-19 outbreaks, with most occurring in schools. Officials say nine of the 16 outbreaks in the state were associated with K-12 schools, and six of them were linked to long-term care facilities.

  • Pennsylvania: Pennsylvania logged fewer cases of COVID-19 last week than the week before, but some areas of the state remained problematic. Cases declined by more than 16% last week statewide, but Lawrence County reported 45 cases, up from 37 the week before.

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