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CDC Director Issues Interim 3rd COVID-19 Vaccine Guidance

In COVID-19, Latest News by Precision Vaccinations

The 19th Director of the U.S. CDC, Rochelle P. Walensky, M.D., M.P.H., issued a statement today endorsing the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices’ (ACIP) recommendation for a booster shot of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in specific populations.
Dr. Walensky also recommended a booster dose for those in high-risk occupational and institutional settings.

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Newborns Benefit From COVID-19 Vaccinated Mothers

In COVID-19, Latest News by Precision Vaccinations

A limited study conducted by NYU Langone Health found pregnant women who receive an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine during pregnancy passed high levels of antibodies to their babies.
Existing studies analyzed antibodies to the spike protein (anti-S IgG) alone, which may be present after natural infection or vaccination, and do not include antibodies to the nucleocapsid protein (anti-N IgG), which is only present following natural infection. 

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How Long Does Immunity Last in COVID-19 Vaccinated People

In COVID-19, Latest News by Precision Vaccinations

California-based La Jolla Institute for Immunology (LJI) scientists’ new study helps answer the question: how long does immunity against COVID-19 last in vaccinated people?
As reported in the journal Science on September 14, 2021, a low dose of the Moderna, Inc. vaccine known as SpikeVax, immunity lasts for at least six months.
And no indicator vaccinated people will need a booster shot from this mRNA vaccine.

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Updated Recommendations for the Prevention and Control of Influenza in Children

In Influenza Vaccine News by Influenza Vaccine

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) announced recommendations for the routine use of influenza vaccine and antiviral medications to prevent and treat influenza in children during the 2021–2022 influenza season. 
The AAP stated on September 7, 2021, it recommends annual influenza immunization of all children without medical contraindications, starting at six months of age.
Excerpts from the AAP statement are discussed below:

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Flu Vaccine Candidate Demonstrated Multi-Seasonal, Seven-Year Drifted Influenza Strain Protection

In Influenza Vaccine News by Influenza Vaccine

Influenza H3N2 virus continues to be a major cause of morbidity and mortality, especially for the older age groups, stated researchers in a new study published by The Journal of Infectious Diseases.
Although seasonal influenza vaccines are evaluated annually for the need to update the immunization with antigenically contemporary strains, H3N2 vaccine efficacy (VE) with currently licensed vaccines continues to be lower than for H1N1 or B viruses.

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When Should We Get Flu Shots This Year?

In Influenza Vaccine News by Influenza Vaccine

Since flu vaccines are most protective when the influenza season is intense, the timing of getting the annual vaccination is essential.
Unlike most flu seasons, predicting when the 2021-2022 flu season will reach the USA from the Southern Hemisphere is unknown, said the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) vaccine committee on June 24, 2021. The CDC recently reported influenza cases were lower this year than any flu season since 2005.

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Flu Shots and COVID-19 Vaccine Mix Very Well

In Influenza Vaccine News by Influenza Vaccine

A global leader in influenza prevention announced that the company co-authored the first study to demonstrate the safety, immunogenicity, and efficacy profile of a COVID-19 vaccine when co-administered with a seasonal influenza vaccine.
Maryland-based Novavax, Inc. conducted the sub-study as part of a Phase 3 clinical trial of NVX-CoV2373, its recombinant protein COVID-19 vaccine candidate.

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Maternal Influenza Vaccination Delivers Life-Long Benefits

In Influenza Vaccine News by Influenza Vaccine

Every year, influenza viruses cause substantial morbidity and mortality in pregnant women and neonates, stated an editorial published by The Journal of the American Medical Association (AMA).
To reduce influenza incidence in these vulnerable populations, the World Health Organization recommended in 2012 that countries prioritize pregnant women for influenza vaccination annually. 

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Pediatric Influenza Cases Increased Last Week

In Influenza Vaccine News by Influenza Vaccine

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported today, the 2020-2021 influenza season has begun to accelerate in the pediatric population.
The CDC confirmed on May 14, 2021, the percentages of provider visits in Week #18 continued to increase for one age group (0–4 years) and remained stable for the remaining age groups compared with Week #17. 
About 6% of provider visits for children were related to the seasonal flu.

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COVID-19 Burden Greater Compared to Influenza

In Influenza Vaccine News by Influenza Vaccine

The Journal of General Internal Medicine published a study by physician-researchers at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) that assessed the relative impact of COVID-19 on patients hospitalized with the viral infection versus patients hospitalized with influenza.
COVID-19 and influenza are both contagious respiratory viral diseases that can lead to pneumonia and acute respiratory failure in severe cases, says the U.S. CDC.

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Novel Influenza Vaccines Identified for Pandemic Preparedness

In Influenza Vaccine News by Influenza Vaccine

The World Health Organization (WHO) recently published a review of the zoonotic influenza virus activity and virus characterization and describes the current status of the development of vaccine candidates for pandemic preparedness purposes. 
The development of influenza candidate vaccine viruses, coordinated by WHO, remains an essential component of the overall global strategy for influenza pandemic preparedness.

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Flu Vaccine Changes Confirmed for 2021-2022

In Influenza Vaccine News by Influenza Vaccine

The World Health Organization (WHO) announced that the influenza vaccine selection committee finalized its recommendations for the Northern Hemisphere's 2021-22 flu season.
These recommendations were made within the context of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Overall, record-low levels of influenza detections were reported, and fewer viruses were available for characterization during September 2020 to January 2021 time period than in previous years, said the WHO.

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Should Vaccination Certificates Be Required For International Travel?

In Travel Vaccine News by Travel Vaccine

Vaccination certificates are nothing new. For many years, various countries required visitors to show proof they had been vaccinated against yellow fever.
Traditionally, yellow fever paper certificates included details such as the date, product, and batch number of the Stamaril or YF-VAX vaccine administered.
However, these paper vaccination certificates were generally fake.  

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Guinea Ebola Outbreak Declared Over

In Travel Vaccine News by Travel Vaccine

The Ebola outbreak that emerged in Guinea in February 2021 has been declared over by the World Health Organization (WHO) in Africa.
A total of 16 confirmed and seven probable cases were reported in Guinea’s latest outbreak. Eleven patients survived, and 12 lives were lost.
Guinean health authorities declared this Ebola outbreak in February 2021 after three cases were detected in the southern N’zerekore prefecture. This is the same region where the 2014–2016 Ebola outbreak emerged before spreading into neighboring Liberia and Sierra Leone.

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Polio Continues Spreading in Various Countries

In Travel Vaccine News by Travel Vaccine

The 28th meeting of the Emergency Committee under the International Health Regulations on the international spread of poliovirus reviewed updated data on wild poliovirus (WPV1) and circulating vaccine-derived polioviruses (cVDPV) on May 4, 2021.
On May 21, 2021, this World Health Organization (WHO) Committee announced it unanimously agrees that the risk of international spread of poliovirus remains a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) and recommended the extension of Temporary Recommendations for an additional three months.  

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Japan’s Olympic Games May Flame-Out Again

In Travel Vaccine News by Travel Vaccine

The Japan Times reported today a government spokesman discussed the possibility of extending the current State of Emergency in Tokyo, Osaka, and other prefectures beyond the May 31, 2021, expiration date.
As an example, Japan has placed the Okinawa Prefecture under the State of Emergency through June 20th. Okinawa confirmed a record high number of 231 COVID-19 cases on May 22nd.

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Dengue Defense Gets a Boost

In Travel Vaccine News by Travel Vaccine

If you are planning visits to certain countries in the Americas, Asia, and the Pacific Islands, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently issued Travel Alerts regarding Dengue virus outbreaks.
Dengue viruses are spread to people through the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito. And Dengue has become common in about 100 countries around the world, says the CDC.

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Cruise Ship Industry Launches ‘Dry-Run’ Voyages

In Travel Vaccine News by Travel Vaccine

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released updated guidance for the international cruise industry to return to US waters.
On May 7, 2021, the CDC suggests cruise ships undertake simulated voyages with volunteer passengers as part of its COVID-19 Conditional Sailing Certificate (CSO) application. 

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Alaska Cruise Season Sets Sail From Juneau

In Travel Vaccine News by Travel Vaccine

UnCruise Adventures announced it intends to make a significant comeback relaunching in Alaska earlier than expected due to high consumer demand.
UnCruise Adventures confirmed on May 3, 2021, three Pacific Northwest sailings will take place after Washington State COVID-19 protocols affected the scheduled departure dates. 
In place of a cancellation, the company saved the long-awaited adventure cruises of dozens of guests offering them an alternative itinerary out of Juneau, Alaska, covering guest airfares and hotels to ensure an unforgettable experience. 

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Resuming International Travel Faces Starts & Stops

In Travel Vaccine News by Travel Vaccine

With summer 2021 quickly approaching in the Northern Hemisphere and COVID-19 vaccination rates increasing, many people are eager to resume international travel. 
Additionally, many countries are loosening restrictions to welcome visitors once again.
However, international travel poses health risks, and even fully vaccinated travelers are at increased risk for getting and possibly spreading COVID-19 variants. Since the COVID-19 pandemic differs from country to country, prospective travelers should pay close attention to the situation at their destination.

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Japan Issues Third State of Emergency: Closes Down Travel

In Travel Vaccine News by Travel Vaccine

The US Embassy in Japan confirmed a ‘Third State of Emergency’ notice was issued. This declaration became effective on April 25, 2021.
This new declaration is scheduled to terminate on May 11, 2021, but could be extended further, similar to previous states of emergency.
The Government of Japan has reimposed a state of emergency for Tokyo, Osaka, Hyogo, and Kyoto prefectures and urge residents to take all possible precautions against the spread of COVID-19.

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