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Baby neck floats could lead to severe injury, death: FDA

Sarah Silbiger/Getty Images, FILE(WASHINGTON) -- The Food and Drug Administration issued a new alert this week, warning parents not to use baby neck floats on their children, particularly those with special needs, as part of a water therapy program because doing so could be fatal or lead to serious injury. "Neck floats are inflatable plastic rings that can be worn around a baby's neck and allow babies to float freely in water," the FDA explained in a safety communication released Tuesday, adding that they are sometimes marketed for premature babies and babies as young as 2 weeks old, and as water-therapy products. The FDA also said the "safety and effectiveness of neck floats to build strength, to promote motor development   ... Read More

Fauci says he’s taking 2nd course of Paxlovid after experiencing rebound with the antiviral treatment

Anna Rose Layden-Pool/Getty Images, FILE(NEW YORK) -- After testing positive for COVID-19 earlier this month, Dr. Anthony Fauci said Tuesday that he has joined a growing group of people experiencing a Paxlovid rebound, following treatment with Pfizer's antiviral. Fauci, 81, said that when he first tested positive two weeks ago, he had very minimal symptoms. However, when he began to feel worse, "given [his] age," he was prescribed Paxlovid. Other than fatigue and a bit of congestion, Fauci reported that he felt "really quite well," and after his five-day course of Paxlovid, he tested negative with a rapid test. However, after testing negative for three consecutive days, Fauci said he decided to take one more test out of precaution and   ... Read More

Health officials plan for updated vaccines with an eye on COVID’s unpredictability

APU GOMES/AFP via Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Updated COVID-19 vaccines that could better match the more recent variants are on the way. On Tuesday, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's committee of independent advisors met and recommended that the vaccines should target the latest omicron variant, kicking off the process for distribution of the new vaccines this fall. That could be good news for the fight against the virus. But the next few months hold a lot of uncertainty. Many vaccine scientists agree that as the virus evolves, vaccines should be updated along with it. But scientists caution that planning ahead in this pandemic is challenging. A new variant could emerge by the fall, rendering even new vaccines old by   ... Read More

Potential recession would harm mental health: Experts

elenaleonova/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Jey Austen, a brand designer at a fintech company, lost their job about two weeks ago. But the layoff didn’t come as a surprise, said Austen, 27, who is trans and uses they/them pronouns. A market downturn in recent months has hammered the tech industry, eliciting a wave of layoffs. Austen, whose lease on an apartment in Austin, Texas ends in August, will receive three weeks of severance pay but otherwise lacks savings, they said. “Worst comes to worst, I’ll sleep in my car,” said Austen, who was making $80,000 a year. “It’s a sucky situation all around.” Compounding the stress, Austen will likely struggle to afford their usual weekly therapy appointments, they said. To save   ... Read More

HHS to send out nearly 300,000 monkeypox vaccine doses across US in coming weeks

Jasmine Merdan/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The Biden administration is planning to send out hundreds of thousands of monkeypox vaccines in response to the outbreak of the rare disease that has been identified in multiple non-endemic countries. The Department of Health and Human Services announced Tuesday on a call with reporters that it will be sending out 296,000 doses of the JYNNEOS vaccine for prevention of the disease for people who have been exposed. Of that number, 56,000 doses will become available immediately and an additional 240,000 doses will become available in a few weeks. Officials said they expect 750,000 more doses to become available over the summer, and an additional 500,000 doses throughout the fall. This allows for a total of   ... Read More

Some pharmacies limiting Plan B pill purchases as demand spikes

Lindsey Nicholson/UCG/Universal Images Group via Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Two of the country’s largest pharmacy chains, CVS and Rite Aid, confirmed to ABC News this week that they had restricted the amount of Plan B or morning-after pills a customer could buy, following a spike in demand for emergency contraceptive drugs in recent days. In the case of CVS, the restrictions have since been dropped, according to company officials. The rise in demand for Plan B pills came after the Supreme Court ruled on Friday to overturn the landmark Roe v. Wade decision, which previously set a 49-year precedent for legal abortion in the U.S., at the federal level. Following the ruling, Justice Clarence Thomas suggested other past court decisions,   ... Read More

Millions remain unboosted, as scientists say 3rd COVID shot provides ‘significant’ protection

Andriy Onufriyenko/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- As advisors to the FDA consider what type of COVID-19 shots should be offered in the fall, new federal data reveals a significant proportion of Americans have yet to receive their first and second boosters. In May, federal officials authorized the use of COVID-19 boosters for children ages 5 to 11 years-old. However, now, nearly six weeks later, fewer than 10% of those eligible — representing just 1.7% of the age group — have been boosted, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Booster uptake among other young populations also continues to lag, with just 28.7% of eligible adolescents ages 12-17 boosted — representing 16% of the age group — and   ... Read More

Biden’s health secretary unveils ‘action plan’ on abortion access

Alex Wong/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra on Tuesday unveiled what was called an "action plan" on abortion access as advocates call on President Joe Biden and his administration to do more in the wake of the Supreme Court stripping the constitutional right to abortion nationwide. Becerra said there's no "magic bullet" that could restore Americans' constitutional right to abortion, but said the administration was working with its top legal advisers to explore every option. "Stay tuned," he told reporters. Becerra's comments are likely to be a steep disappointment for progressives after he promised to take action in the wake of the Supreme Court ruling. In his remarks, Becerra only noted that federal law allows for   ... Read More

Evolution is on omicron subvariants’ side

Jens Schlueter/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- A new study finds that as the coronavirus continues to evolve, each new omicron subvariant is increasingly likely to lead to reinfection or breakthrough infection. However, researchers say current vaccines are still doing a good job of protecting people against severe illness. Meanwhile, vaccine makers are working on new and improved boosters that will hopefully be a better match against omicron and its subvariants. Food and Drug Administration advisers are slated to meet on June 28 to discuss the new booster shots. The new study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, echoes prior studies, and the finding is consistent with what we're seeing in the real world. Working in a laboratory, researchers measured   ... Read More

Poor women of color will bear brunt of abortion bans following Roe reversal: Expert

Catherine McQueen/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- After the Supreme Court overturned Roe vs. Wade, women in states that now outlaw abortion have scrambled to cobble together piecemeal solutions, including traveling across state lines, an expert told ABC News. However, for many that won't be an option, according to Deon Haywood, executive director of New Orleans women's health organization Women with a Vision. "If you have a job where you're being paid hourly and being paid minimum wage, how easy would it be for you to be able to leave your job or existing kids to leave to drive somewhere, to be driven somewhere ... to have an abortion and then come back?" Haywood told ABC News. "It wouldn't work for them," she   ... Read More

More than 150,000 births could occur in the US every year following the reversal of Roe v. Wade, report predicts

Amanda Andrade-Rhoades/Bloomberg via Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The reversal of Roe v. Wade could lead to a dramatic increase of babies born in the United States, including thousands of high-risk births, a new report finds. The data, from health care industry consulting firm Sg2, estimates there will be an additional 150,500 to 159,700 live births each year in the U.S. The projections have not yet been peer-reviewed. Birth rates in the country have been declining ever since the Great Recession of 2008-09 and were only worsened by the COVID-19 pandemic. Researchers found limiting access to abortion in several states will boost birth rates beginning in the second half of this year. For the report, Sg2 looked at data from the Centers   ... Read More

Can high-tech air filtration systems lower the risk of COVID in autos?

Cris Cantón/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Still concerned about COVID-19 transmission in automobiles? One carmaker may have a novel approach to keeping passengers safe. British luxury marque Jaguar Land Rover claims the Cabin Air Purification Pro filtration in its new Range Rover SUV can "significantly reduce odors, bacteria, viruses and allergens including SARS-CoV-2 virus" thanks to nanoe X, an electrostatic technology developed by Panasonic. When the SUV's heating, ventilation and air conditioning [HVAC] filtration system is turned on, trillions of ionized water particles are released into the cabin through the front and rear air vents, according to JLR. These particles "denature," or essentially kill the virus on contact, the automaker says. "We want people to know the capability of the vehicle,"   ... Read More

Experts looking for ways to prevent hot car deaths, new radar technology could detect heartbeats

Mykhailo Polenok / EyeEm/ Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Every year, approximately 38 children die from being left in a hot car, according to Kids and Cars Safety, a national nonprofit that tracks hot car deaths and aims to prevent vehicle-related risks to children and pets. As the U.S. heads into more heat waves this summer and temperatures in the Midwest, South and West soar into the triple digits, there is a concern for parents about hot car deaths. One parent, Peter Hansen, opened up about the issue on social media. “I have severe anxiety about leaving our kids in a hot car on accident,” Hansen, a father of three in Chicago, wrote in a LinkedIn post. "It's 100 degrees in   ... Read More

Overturning Roe v. Wade raises stakes for patients who need IVF, experts say

Cara Skowronski and her husband hold their daughter, who was born via a gestational surrogate. - Cara Skowronski(NEW YORK) -- Cara Skowronski and her husband are the parents of a 2-year-old daughter who was born through in-vitro fertilization (IVF) and a gestational surrogate, who carried their daughter. Now, as the Skowronskis look to expand their family, they say they are afraid of the obstacles they will face, a fear they say has been magnified by the Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade. Skowronski and her husband recently moved from Nebraska to Texas, where abortion will be banned under a trigger law that goes into effect 30 days after the Supreme Court's decision. The couple's remaining frozen embryos are   ... Read More

With Roe v. Wade overturned, medication abortions take center stage

Getty Images/Anna Moneymaker (WASHINGTON) -- As reactions to the Dobbs decision roll in, Congressional Democrats are outraged. But don't expect that outrage to translate to passable legislation anytime soon. Any effort to codify a woman's right to choose would need to clear the Senate filibuster. That means 60 votes. And those votes are nowhere to be seen in the Senate. Undoubtedly, today's Supreme Court decision will reignite discussion among some progressives about overturning the filibuster to try to codify the rights previously enshrined in Roe v. Wade. They'll have to wait to see if those discussions gain any traction, but 50 votes are needed to change the Senate rules. That will need the support of Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin of   ... Read More

FDA investigating Lucky Charms after reports of illness

FDA investigating Lucky Charms after reports of illnessBy DEE-ANN DURBIN AP Business Writer The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is investigating Lucky Charms cereal after dozens of customers complained of illness after eating it. The FDA said Saturday it has received more than 100 complaints related to Lucky Charms so far this year. “The FDA takes seriously any reports of possible adulteration of a food that may also cause illnesses or injury,” the agency said in a statement. Several hundred people have also posted on a food safety website, iwaspoisoned.com, complaining of nausea, diarrhea and vomiting after eating Lucky Charms. General Mills Inc., the Minneapolis-based company that makes Lucky Charms, Cheerios and other cereals, said it’s aware of those reports and takes them seriously. But the company   ... Read More

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