This is the vaccine locator on the Texas Department of Health Services website. bit.ly/2Jvpru3. It is a useful tool for locating vaccine. Vaccine is available at more locations. University Health, located at Wonderland Mall, is now open to walk-ins Monday through Friday from 8 AM to 7PM. At their clinic at 903 Martin Street they give vaccine to walk-ins on Saturdays only from 8AM to 5PM. Everyone should be able to get one who wants one.
The Johnson and Johnson vaccine is still paused. We expect it to be released later in the week with certain age restrictions. It is the vaccine that is one injection. Pfizer will probablt recommend a booster a year after the first dose as mentioned previously by Dr. Peter Hotez. It’s not yet official and we don’t know if a similar recommendation will be coming from Moderna.
Here is a series of other brief articles on new developments:
All Americans At Least 16 Years Old Are Now Eligible For COVID-19 Vaccines
ABC News (4/19, Schumaker) reports all Americans at least 16 years old in the US are now eligible for COVID-19 vaccines, “meeting the April 19 deadline President Joe Biden had set for opening eligibility.” The last states to expand eligibility to everyone 16 and older were: Hawaii, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and Vermont.
Rapid Coronavirus Tests Will Be Sold Without A Prescription At CVS, Walgreens, And Walmart Starting This Week
USA Today (4/19, Alltucker) reports people “will be able to buy rapid coronavirus tests without a prescription this week at three national chain retailers, an expansion that comes as the nation’s vaccination effort accelerates and states relax distancing requirements and mask mandates.” Abbott Laboratories’ BinaxNOW self-test kits will be sold at CVS, Walgreens, and Walmart stores, as well as online. Meanwhile, Ellume’s rapid test will be sold at CVS stores in Massachusetts and Rhode Island, and will become available in most stores nationwide by the end of next month.
Reuters (4/19) reports that in addition, CVS will offer an OTC COVID-19 test from LabCorp.
WE KNOW THESE RAPID TESTS ARE LESS ACCURATE THAN PCR BUT DON’T HAVE CURRENT NUMBERS ON THEM.
WHO’s Emergency Committee Recommends Against Requiring Proof Of Vaccination For International Travel
Reuters (4/19) reports the WHO’s Emergency Committee recommended “proof of vaccination not be required as a condition of international travel, maintaining its stance on the issue under growing debate.” The committee “cited limited evidence on whether vaccination against COVID-19 reduces people’s ability to transmit the virus and ‘the persistent inequity in global vaccine distribution.’”
IS IT MAROON?
Texas A&M Researchers Discover New COVID-19 Variant
The Houston Chronicle (4/19, Wu) reports researchers at Texas A&M have discovered a new COVID-19 variant in College Station. The researchers detected the variant “in one student in College Station.” The variant has been named BV-1, which stands for Brazos Valley.
US Health Officials, Scientists Working To Understand What Caused The Rare, Severe Blood Clots In Six Women Who Received The Johnson & Johnson Coronavirus Vaccine
The Washington Post (4/19, Johnson) reports US health officials and scientists are trying to understand what caused rare, severe blood clots in six women between the ages of 18 and 48 who “had recently received the Johnson & Johnson” coronavirus vaccine. The combination of low platelets and extensive blood clots in the women is a “seemingly paradoxical combination of symptoms,” and drew alarm in part, because they were similar to symptoms reported in some people who received the AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine in Europe.
Reuters (4/19, O’Donnell) reports CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said the agency is reviewing additional reports of potential severe side effects in people who received the Johnson & Johnson coronavirus vaccine. Dr. Walensky said, “We are encouraged that it hasn’t been an overwhelming number of cases but we’re looking and seeing what’s come in.”