Health News Roundup: New Ebola case confirmed in eastern Congo, linked to previous outbreak; U.S. CDC recommends use of Novavax's COVID shot for adolescents and more – Devdiscourse

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Following is a summary of current health news briefs.
U.S. clinics scramble as courts, politicians battle over abortion restrictions
With West Virginia’s 1849 abortion ban tied up in court and its conservative legislature stymied over details of enacting a new one, the state’s only abortion clinic ought to be operating as usual. But the chaotic legal and political environment in the two months since the U.S. Supreme Court ended the right to an abortion has driven unexpected reductions in the services that the clinic can provide, leading its doctors to end most medication abortions and eliminate surgical abortions for women who are more than 16 weeks pregnant.
New Ebola case confirmed in eastern Congo, linked to previous outbreak
A new case of Ebola virus has been confirmed in the city of Beni in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, the country’s National Institute for Biomedical Research (INRB) said on Monday. Testing showed the case was genetically linked to the 2018-2020 outbreak in North Kivu and Ituri provinces, which killed nearly 2,300 people, said a statement from Placide Mbala, chief of the Pathogen Genomics Laboratory at INRB.
Factbox-Latest on the worldwide spread of the coronavirus
Dr. Anthony Fauci said on Monday he would step down from his positions as director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and as chief medical adviser to U.S. President Joe Biden in December. DEATHS AND INFECTIONS
Moderna to supply 12 million doses of Omicron-targeted COVID shot to Canada
Moderna Inc will supply 12 million doses of its COVID-19 shot adapted to target the Omicron variant of the coronavirus to Canada, the company said on Monday. The Canadian government had entered into a supply deal with the company last year for supply of its COVID vaccine for 2022 and 2023, with the contract allowing access to new vaccine adaptations.
U.S. CDC recommends use of Novavax’s COVID shot for adolescents
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Monday signed off on the use of Novavax Inc’s COVID-19 vaccine for adolescents aged 12 through 17. The recommendation follows the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s authorization for the vaccine for the age group last week.
Fauci, face of U.S. COVID response, to step down from government posts
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the top U.S. infectious disease official who became the face of America’s COVID-19 pandemic response under Presidents Donald Trump and Joe Biden, announced on Monday he is stepping down in December after 54 years of public service. Fauci, whose efforts to fight the pandemic were applauded by many public health experts even as he was vilified by Trump and many Republicans, will leave his posts as chief medical adviser to Biden and director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Fauci, 81, has headed NIAID since 1984.
Pfizer seeks U.S. authorization for vaccine booster retooled for Omicron
Pfizer Inc and German partner BioNTech said on Monday they had sought U.S. authorization for a COVID-19 vaccine booster retooled to target the Omicron variant, and would have doses available to ship immediately after regulatory clearance.
The request to the Food and Drug Administration was for a so-called bivalent vaccine containing the dominant BA.4/BA.5 variants of the virus along with the original coronavirus strain. It is intended for ages 12 and above.
Britain to pilot using smaller doses of monkeypox vaccine to boost supply
Britain is following the United States and Europe in making the most of limited supply of the monkeypox vaccine by administering smaller doses of the shot, health officials said on Monday. Three National Health Service sites are set to begin a pilot testing of the so-called fractional dosing approach, which involves using one vial of the vaccine to administer up to five separate doses – instead of a single dose – by injecting a smaller amount in between layers of the skin (intradermal injection).
U.S. judge questions Idaho abortion ban challenged by Biden administration
A U.S. judge on Monday signaled he was open to the U.S. Department of Justice’s effort to block a near-total ban on abortions in Idaho from being enforced in emergencies, saying it could prevent care to pregnant women whose lives are in danger. The case is President Joe Biden’s administration’s first legal challenge to a state abortion ban since the U.S. Supreme Court in June overturned the nationwide constitutional right to the procedure.
Analysis-Meagre medicine cabinet leaves Sanofi unloved
Sanofi’s recent stock rout underscores the pressure on the French drug maker to redouble its efforts in the hunt for new medicines. Chief Executive Paul Hudson is entering his fourth year at the helm next month and has presided over a number of setbacks, most recently the failure of breast cancer pill amcenestrant, which Sanofi had touted as having strong commercial potential.
(With inputs from agencies.)
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