COVID-19 Update | December 18, 2020

COVID-19 News

COVID-19 Update | December 18, 2020

December 18, 2020

The California Biotechnology Foundation is committed to keeping you up to date about COVID-19 testing, treatment and prevention advancements. The following resources track what progress has been made as of December 18, 2020. Notable advancements include:

  • Moderna has received approval from the Food and Drug Administration advisory panel and could receive emergency use authorization as early as Friday.
  • California is expecting to receive nearly 400,000 doses of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccines by the end of the week, in addition to the 327,600 doses the state is currently distributing.
  • According to new data from a clinical trial, AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine is up to 90 percent effective, depending on the initial dosage.

​Recent News:

  • FDA panel endorses second COVID-19 vaccine in U.S. as Moderna wins key vote in a path to emergency use
    CNBC – December 17, 2020
    A Food and Drug Administration advisory panel overwhelmingly backed Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine, a key step paving the way to distribute the second COVID-19 vaccine in the United States next week.
  • FDA Panel Weighs Moderna’s COVID-19 Vaccine
    NPR – December 17, 2020
    The same group of advisers to the Food and Drug Administration voted to recommend the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use a week ago convenes again to consider the Moderna vaccine. The agency frequently seeks advice from these committees of independent experts when considering whether to make available a new drug or vaccine.
  • How the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 Vaccine Works
    New York Times – December 17, 2020
    The University of Oxford partnered with the British-Swedish company AstraZeneca to develop and test a COVID-19 vaccine. A clinical trial revealed the vaccine was up to 90 percent effective, depending on the initial dosage.
  • FDA Issues New Authorization for the BinaxNOW COVID-19 Ag Card Home Test
    gov – December 16, 2020
    The BinaxNOW COVID-19 Ag Card Home Test is authorized for prescription use at home with self-collected nasal swab samples from individuals ages 15 years or older who are suspected of COVID-19 by their healthcare provider within the first seven days of symptom onset.
  • Monoclonal antibodies: A COVID-19 treatment people might not know about
    CNN – December 16, 2020
    There are very few drugs that prevent people with early COVID-19 from progress to severe disease, but monoclonal antibodies may be among them. Early study results show they may reduce the rate of hospitalizations by up to 70% if they are taken in time, which can be life-saving, especially among people at high risk of getting very sick.
  • California to Receive Nearly 400K Additional Vaccines From Pfizer
    NBC Bay Area News – December 15, 2020
    California is expecting to receive nearly 400,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines by the end of the week in addition to the 327,600 doses the state is currently distributing, Gov. Gavin Newsom said.
  • FDA clears path for second COVID-19 vaccine, from Moderna
    Politico- December 15, 2020
    The Food and Drug Administration confirmed that Moderna’s two-dose coronavirus vaccine is effective and safe for adults, setting it up to become the country’s second authorized COVID-19 shot later this week. An independent FDA advisory panel will meet to vote on the Moderna vaccine and send its recommendations to the agency, which is expected to authorize the shot.
  • FDA Authorizes 1st Home COVID-19 Test That Doesn’t Require A Prescription
    NPR – December 15, 2020
    ​The U.S. Food and Drug Administration authorized the first COVID-19 test that people will be able to buy at a local store without a prescription and use for immediate results at home to find out if they’re positive or negative. The test will cost about $30 and be available by January, according to the company that makes it, Ellume.
  • COVID-19 vaccinations begin in California as L.A. healthcare workers among the first to get a dose
    LA Times – December 14, 2020
    Five healthcare workers at the Kaiser Permanente hospital in Hollywood were among the first Californians to get the COVID-19 vaccine, ushering in a new phase of the pandemic. Gov. Gavin Newsom, state Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and L.A. County Supervisor Hilda Solis were on hand as the county’s first workers got their shots, the beginning of what will be a long campaign to vaccinate California, starting with front-line healthcare workers.
  • Hospitals start COVID-19 vaccinations in a sweeping, nationwide effort
    BioPharma Dive – December 14, 2020
    The nation’s hospitals began to receive the first doses of Pfizer and BioNTech’s coronavirus vaccine after the Food and Drug Administration granted emergency authorization to the shot, a landmark moment in the pandemic.
  • Two more vaccine developers could seek FDA’s green light by February
    Politico – December 14, 2020
    The Trump administration anticipates two more vaccine developers could seek FDA authorization for their shots by the end of February. That would mean the U.S. would have four COVID-19 vaccines available — including the first vaccine only to require one shot — to meet its goal of immunizing 100 million people by the end of March.

Rely on California Biotechnology Foundation to monitor breaking news and provide updates on the latest advancements in COVID-19 diagnostics, vaccines and treatments.

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If you have any questions about informational briefings contact California Biotechnology Foundation Executive Director Patty Cooper at (916)764-2434 or [email protected].