Health

FDA warns omicron variant can evade certain COVID-19 tests

FDA warns omicron variant can evade certain COVID-19 tests

We're two years into the COVID-19 pandemic and the original virus strain is old news. Delta remains the most common variant fueling infections around the world, but another variety of SARS-CoV-2 called omicron is raising alarm bells. Amid the potential for another wave of cases fueled by this new variant, the FDA has published an extensive analysis of COVID-19 tests and how the viral mutations may impact them.

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NYC private COVID-19 vaccine mandate sets precedent for rest of US

NYC private COVID-19 vaccine mandate sets precedent for rest of US

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has announced a major new COVID-19 vaccine mandate that will cover the city's entire private sector. Under this mandate, anyone who works in the megacity will be required to show proof of vaccination, something de Blasio says will ensure "every employer is on a level playing field."

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Pet supplements recalled over risky bacteria that can infect humans

Pet supplements recalled over risky bacteria that can infect humans

The FDA has published a new recall involving products sold for cats and dogs, though this one doesn't involve food. The advisory comes from the company Livia Global, Inc., which says the recall covers two brand names: BioLifePet and LiviaOne. The decision to voluntarily remove these items from sale was made after routine third-party lab testing revealed potential Pseudomonas aeruginosa contamination.

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Free at-home COVID test availability expands in Biden action plan

Free at-home COVID test availability expands in Biden action plan

President Biden today announced a multi-faceted approach to dealing with the spread of the Omicron and Delta COVID-19 variants this winter, and it includes a massive expansion to at-home testing. Throughout the pandemic, much of our testing has taken place at testing sites dotted around the nation. With Biden's new list of actions to combat the spread of COVID-19, many more Americans will be able to obtain rapid at-home tests for free.

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FDA warns to check broccoli tots for rocks after dental damage reports

FDA warns to check broccoli tots for rocks after dental damage reports

If you've made the switch from tater tots to the arguably healthier broccoli tots alternative (they're basically tater tots, but made from, you know, broccoli), pay attention to a new recall notice published on the FDA's website. According to the advisory, some frozen broccoli tots products have been recalled because they may contain small pieces of metal or rocks.

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CDC: COVID-19 Omicron is in the US

CDC: COVID-19 Omicron is in the US

The first case of the COVID-19 Omicron variant has been identified in America, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirmed today. A coronavirus infection in California was diagnosed as the Omicron variant (B.1.1.529) using genomic sequencing at the University of California, San Francisco.

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FDA advisory panel endorses Merck’s COVID-19 pill, but it was a close vote

FDA advisory panel endorses Merck’s COVID-19 pill, but it was a close vote

The FDA's Antimicrobial Drug Advisory Committee met today, as anticipated, to decide whether it would recommend molnupiravir, an oral antiviral medication, as a new treatment option for COVID-19. The votes are now in, and though there were many opposed, the advisory panel ultimately recommended that molnupiravir receive an emergency use authorization (EUA).

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Merck’s COVID-19 pill isn’t quite as effective as initially reported

Merck’s COVID-19 pill isn’t quite as effective as initially reported

Pharmaceutical companies Merck and Ridgeback Biotherapeutics have published an update on molnupiravir, a pill formulated to help treat COVID-19 by reducing one's risk of being hospitalized with or dying from the disease. According to the latest details from the company, molnupiravir isn't quite as effective as the interim analysis had previously found.

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Arizona Tea, Kool-Aid, and other popular drinks recalled over glass risk

Arizona Tea, Kool-Aid, and other popular drinks recalled over glass risk

A couple of recalls were announced this week covering food and drink items potentially contaminated with small pieces of metal and glass. One of the recalls comes from Kraft Heinz; it covers many of the company's powdered beverages, including some flavors of Kool-Aid, Tang, and Country Time. The other recall is from H-E-B, a grocery retailer in Texas that is pulling certain soup products from shelves over potential glass contamination.

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Old Spice and Secret sprays are the latest products recalled over benzene

Old Spice and Secret sprays are the latest products recalled over benzene

Procter & Gamble (P&G) has announced a major recall involving some of its aerosol spray deodorants sold under the Old Spice and Secret brands, including some Old Spice Below Deck products. This is a voluntary recall initiated due to the presence of benzene, a carcinogen that may cause certain cancers in people who are exposed to high levels of the chemical.

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Vaping may increase risk of bone fractures even in young adults

Vaping may increase risk of bone fractures even in young adults

A new observational study has found a link between electronic cigarette use (vaping) and the potentially increased risk of fragility fractures, raising concerns over bone health. The link was found even in young users, according to the researchers behind the study, which also found that smoking and vaping combined may substantially increase the fracture risk.

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Odor-Eaters spray products recalled over cancer-causing chemical

Odor-Eaters spray products recalled over cancer-causing chemical

Odor-Eaters has recalled dozens of lots of its aerosol spray products over contamination with low levels of benzene, a known human carcinogen linked to blood cancers. The products are designed to spray on feet in order to reduce odor and treat athlete's foot, a fungal condition that can occur in athletes who frequently work up a sweat while wearing shoes.

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