Coronavirus update: Pfizer CEO recommends fourth shot

Photo (c) Andriy Onufriyenko - Getty Images

Study says pandemic disrupted cancer screenings

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

Total‌ ‌U.S.‌ ‌confirmed‌ ‌cases:‌ 79,517,492 (79,517,042)

Total‌ ‌U.S.‌ ‌deaths:‌ 967,552 (967,032)

Total‌ ‌global‌ ‌cases:‌ 456,908,767 (453,897,953)

Total ‌global‌ ‌deaths:‌ 6,041,077 (6,040,835)‌

Pfizer CEO recommends a fourth shot

Albert Bourla, CEO of vaccine-maker Pfizer, warns that the pandemic is not over yet. On CBS’ Face The Nation Sunday, he said people who have had a two-shot vaccination and a booster will probably need a fourth jab.

"Many variants are coming, and Omicron was the first one that was able to evade -- in a skillful way -- the immune protection that we're giving," Bourla told CBS. 

China is grappling with a new outbreak of the coronavirus, but cases have dropped dramatically in the U.S., at least for now. According to John’s Hopkins University, there were only 6,382 new cases reported in the U.S. Sunday. That compares to 49,557 reported cases on March 13, 2021.

Pandemic significantly reduced cancer screenings, study finds

Once COVID-19 began its surge two years ago, significantly fewer people went to the doctor for cancer screenings. Canadian researchers estimate that screenings for cancer declined by 34% at the start of the pandemic.

“The pandemic has caused dramatic changes in the health care system, including a worrisome decline in cancer screening,” said Dr. Harold Burstein of the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, who was not involved with the study.

The study’s authors conclude that many cancers have gone undetected due to the disruptions in the healthcare system in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. “This is concerning because a delay in diagnosis for cancer is associated with a lower chance of cure,” said Dr. Antoine Eskander, one of the researchers.

Obama tests positive

Former President Barack Obama reported over the weekend that he tested positive for COVID-19. However, he appears to be weathering it well.

“I’ve had a scratchy throat for a couple days, but am feeling fine otherwise,” Obama posted on Twitter. “Michelle and I are grateful to be vaccinated and boosted, and she has tested negative.”

The former president said it’s a reminder for everyone to be “vaccinated if you haven’t already, even as cases go down.”

Around the nation

  • New York: Cases across the state continue to fall. Health officials report that new cases have fallen sharply and deaths are becoming increasingly rare. The New York City health department reports that the death rate is close to zero. The city’s Health Department recorded three probable COVID-19 deaths back on March 4 but none since then.

  • Colorado: The latest health statistics show that the death rate in Colorado has been less than the national rate. Adjusting for population, there have been a total of 292 COVID-19-related deaths for every 100,000 Americans nationwide. In Colorado, deaths attributable to the coronavirus per capita give the state the 10th lowest death rate per capita.

  • Pennsylvania: Pennsylvania logged the state’s smallest increase in COVID-19 cases since mid-July while Centre County recorded single-digit cases for the fifth time in the last week. The Pennsylvania Department of Health counted only three new positives in the county on Sunday.

  • California: This is the first week without many COVID-19 rules and restrictions that have been in place across the state since the start of the pandemic. State officials let the mandates expire at the end of last week because California’s positivity rate has fallen below 2%.

  • Iowa: A new poll suggests that the bitter debate over the COVID-19 vaccine has diminished parents’ support for long-standing school requirements for vaccinations against childhood diseases. The Des Moines Register poll showed that 25% of respondents believe the state should have no laws regarding childhood vaccinations.

Get a health screening near you

Get Peace of Mind or Early Detection with Life Line Screening

Get started