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Pope Francis met with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Saturday, as he urged lawmakers to overcome "the narrow confines" of partisan politics to fight climate change.Context: Francis spoke to parliamentarians who were in Rome for a meeting before the UN's climate conference, which comes as scientists caution that the window for keeping alive the Paris Agreement's most ambitious temperature target is rapidly closing, Axios' Andrew Freedman reports.He was slated to be the first pontiff to attend a COP, but the Vatican announced Friday that Francis does not plan to attend the summit anymore. The pope underwent intestinal surgery in July.Of note: Francis cited a joint appeal that he and other religious leaders made this week that called on political leaders to make ambitious commitments at the climate conference, which is scheduled for Oct. 31, per the Vatican News."To meet this challenge, everyone has a role to play," Francis said. "That of political and government leaders is especially important, and indeed crucial."The pope said that lawmakers' commitment to fighting climate change "will be illuminated by the two important principles of responsibility and solidarity.""We owe this to th...
— (Axios) (October 9) (Pocket)
STAT+: In May, 10 moderate Democrats opposed major drug pricing reform. Ahead of a key vote, that list is shrinking
WASHINGTON — Ten House Democrats fired a warning shot in the spring that they could cause trouble for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s signature drug pricing reform legislation. But as the House prepares to vote on a multitrillion-dollar spending bill that appears likely to include those drug pricing policies, it’s almost impossible to imagine all 10 voting against the entire package.
— (STAT) (September 27) (Pocket)
Data: Digital Intelligence Strategy; Chart: Axios VisualsSupply chain constraints have gotten so bad that even throwing more people at the problems wouldn’t make them go away immediately. A new snapshot of port activity in California is the latest indication.Driving the news: The number of workers in the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach is down roughly 30% from pre-COVID levels, according to RBC Capital Markets data shared with Axios. RBC approximates foot traffic based on anonymized cellphone location data from geospatial intelligence companyOrbital Insight.“That’s your labor shortage quantified,” says Michael Tran, managing director of digital intelligence strategy at RBC Capital Markets.Why it matters: Companies are eager to find signs of relief in the supply chain in orderto adjust inventory and prices effectively. The data shows how far activity has dropped from pre-pandemic levels and how hard it's been to stabilize this year. State of play: Among the 22 biggest ports in the world, LA and Long Beach this year have experienced the longest turnaround times (how long it takes a ship to move through port), according to RBC's data.The gap between the most efficient port, Po...
— (Axios) (October 7) (Pocket)
STAT+: Pharmalittle: CDC director overrules panel and recommends Pfizer shot for at-risk workers; DOD watchdog faults military over pharma supply chain issues
And so, another working week will soon draw to a close. Not a moment too soon, yes? This is, you may recall, our treasured signal for weekend daydreams. Our agenda looks to be rather modest. We hope to catch up on some reading, manicure the Pharmalot campus grounds and play a canine version of rugby with our official mascot, who is quite a competitor. If time permits, we may also have a listening party. And what about you? This is a fine time to stroll among apple orchards or take a drive in the country. You could winterize your castle. Or boost the economy by purchasing a few sweaters. Well, whatever you do, have a grand time. But be safe Enjoy, and see you soon…
— (STAT) (September 24) (Pocket)
https://www.cnet.com/news/9-great-reads-from-cnet-this-week-supply-chain-steve-jobs-facebook-and-more/#ftag=CAD590a51e https://www.axios.com/port-pile-up-long-beach-los-angeles-94094ba5-d928-4c1f-93fb-77da477e4e37.html https://www.statnews.com/pharmalot/2021/09/24/covid19-vaccine-cdc-who-pfizer-dod-supply-chain/?utm_campaign=rss
The Bureau of Prisons has piloted a program that can give authorities “huge secret intelligence into the public sender of postal mail.” The post Federal Prisons’ Switch to Scanning Mail Is a Surveillance Nightmare appeared first on The Intercept.
— (The Intercept) (September 26) (Pocket)
In 2018, Oakland enacted an innovative law giving citizens a voice in police use of surveillance technology. The Electronic Frontier Foundation called it “the new gold standard in community control of police surveillance.” Since then, about 20 other cities have adopted similar laws.
— (Wired) (September 24) (Pocket)
Johnson & Johnson asked the Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday to allow extra shots of its COVID-19 vaccine as the U.S. government moves toward expanding its booster campaign to millions more vaccinated Americans.
— (PBS) (October 5) (Pocket)
Johnson & Johnson said Tuesday it asked the Food and Drug Administration to approve a booster shot of its one-dose COVID-19 vaccine for people 18 years and older.Why it matters: The company last month released data from a global study on the efficacy of a booster shot for its vaccine, which showed that the protection offered by its coronavirus vaccine was strengthened by a second dose.What they're saying: “Our clinical program has found that a booster of our COVID-19 vaccine increases levels of protection for those who have received our single-shot vaccine to 94 percent," said Mathai Mammen, head of research for J&J’s Janssen unit.The big picture: The U.S. government last month approved Pfizer booster shots for those 65 and older, workers in high-risk jobs and other vulnerable Americans. Yes, but: Moderna's and J&J's approval may be more complicated than Pfizer's because there is less data from booster shot trials for their vaccines.Go deeper: Data holes could complicate Moderna and J&J booster shot process
— (Axios) (October 5) (Pocket)
STAT+: Pharmalittle: J&J to seek emergency use of Covid-19 vaccine booster; Pfizer loses legal battle over Medicare co-pay programs
Good morning, everyone, and welcome to another working week. We hope the weekend respite was relaxing and invigorating because that oh-so familiar routine of online calls and deadlines has returned. But what can you do? After all, the world — such as it is — continues to spin. So why not give it a nudge with a delicious cup of stimulation? Our choice today is cinnamon hazelnut. Feel free to join us. Meanwhile, here are a few tidbits to help you as your latest journey gets under way. We hope you have a productive and fulfilling day and, of course, do keep in touch. We enjoy the feedback and suggestions…
— (STAT) (October 4) (Pocket)
California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Friday that all schoolchildren in the state will need a coronavirus vaccine for in-person learning, making California the first US state to issue a vaccine mandate for schoolkids. The requirement will go into effect once a vaccine has been given full approval for school-aged children by the US Food and Drug Administration.
— (CNET) (October 1) (Pocket)
https://pitchfork.com/news/los-angeles-to-require-covid-19-vaccination-for-indoor-concerts/ https://www.pbs.org/newshour/health/jj-seeks-u-s-clearance-for-covid-19-vaccine-booster-doses https://www.axios.com/johnson-johnson-fda-covid-booster-shots-f0fd05fa-8e3e-40f5-bdd9-fb36c359c5bb.html https://www.statnews.com/pharmalot/2021/10/04/covid19-vaccine-pandemic-jnj-pfizer-medicare-who-wto-covax/?utm_campaign=rss https://www.cnet.com/health/california-will-require-covid-vaccine-for-schoolkids-in-first-for-us/#ftag=CAD590a51e
On the surface, there’s little about Whitfield Regional Hospital that would make it a safety net for Alabama’s sickest Covid-19 patients. It has a small ICU with eight beds, and no critical care doctors on staff. The rural hospital has spent decades focused on caring for the community surrounding Demopolis, population 7,000, in the heart of the state’s Black Belt.
— (STAT) (October 5) (Pocket)
Merck said Friday that an experimental pill it is developing with Ridgeback Biotherapeutics reduced the risk of hospitalization or death from COVID-19 by around 50% in a clinical trial.Why it matters: An oral antiviral drug designed to prevent or treat COVID-19 could be a key tool to combat the pandemic, since not all people will get vaccinated and because it will take potentially years to vaccinate people in certain countries around the world.Merck said it will apply for an emergency use authorization from the Food and Drug Administration "as soon as possible" to begin distributing molnupiravir because of the results.It will also submit applications to international regulatory agencies.What they're saying: “More tools and treatments are urgently needed to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, which has become a leading cause of death and continues to profoundly affect patients, families, and societies and strain health care systems all around the world," Robert Davis, Merck CEO and president, said."With these compelling results, we are optimistic that molnupiravir can become an important medicine as part of the global effort to fight the pandemic and will add to Merck’s unique legacy of br...
— (Axios) (October 1) (Pocket)
While the latest ruling in a US court of appeals has reinstated the near-total ban on abortions in Texas - two days after the restrictive law was challenged by the Biden administration - an analysis found that more than 19 states have also passed 106 new restrictions on abortions. Shefali Luthra, a healthcare reporter for The 19th, an independent newsroom covering gender, politics and policy, joins.
— (PBS) (October 9) (Pocket)
A federal court has temporarily blocked enforcement of Texas' new "heartbeat law," the controversial statute that bans abortion once fetal cardiac activity can be detected and allows people to sue those whom they think have performed or abetted an abortion. Senate Bill (S.B.) 8—which took effect September 1—has already spawned several lawsuits and an appeal to the Supreme Court to intervene. But SCOTUS held that because of the way the law was written (with enforcement through private lawsuits, not state action), it couldn't do that yet. After that, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) filed suit against the law.
— (Reason) (October 7) (Pocket)
Amanda Bennett was in the Texas legislature this past May, on the day that Senate Bill 8, a near-total ban on abortions, was passed by the state’s House of Representatives. Bennett, a twenty-nine-year-old pro-choice activist, had gone to the capitol to protest the legislation. She recalled the eerie calm that day—there wasn’t much debate over the law, which prohibits abortions upon detection of fetal cardiac activity (starting as early as six weeks into a pregnancy) and does not make exceptions for survivors of rape or incest. Many observers assumed that the law would soon be struck down in court. “It wasn’t anything like Wendy Davis’s filibuster,” Bennett said, referring to the Texas state senator’s thirteen-hour attempt to block S.B. 5, an earlier antiabortion bill, in 2013. “It just passed quietly. I honestly think even some of the Republicans thought it was purely symbolic.” But, nearly four months later, the Supreme Court refused to strike down the ban, and getting an abortion in Texas, which was already extremely difficult, became almost impossible.
— (The New Yorker) (October 6) (Pocket)