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And so, another working week will soon draw to a close. Not a moment too soon, yes? This is, you may recall, our treasured signal to daydream about weekend plans. Our agenda will be extended, however, to get an early start on a holiday break on this side of the pond. A colleague will magically appear in our stead for a few days. And so, we look forward to hanging with assorted short people, hosting a listening party, catching up on our reading, napping here and there, and indulging in a time-honored tradition or two that are appropriate for the occasion. And what about you? This is a fine time to catch up with long-lost relatives. You could enjoy the great outdoors, especially all those colorful leaves. Perhaps you might convince someone to get vaccinated — at your own risk, of course. Or simply take stock of the rest of your life. Well, whatever you do, have a grand time. But be safe. Enjoy, and see you soon. …

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration expanded the emergency use authorization for the Pfizer (PFE) and Moderna (MRNA) Covid-19 vaccine boosters, signaling that the shots can be given to anyone aged 18 or older at least six months after completion of the primary vaccine series, STAT tells us. The new policy still requires signoff from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to go into effect. The CDC vaccine advisory panel will meet Friday on the issue. But if the CDC agrees with the FDA, this will be in effect the completion of a Biden administration promise, announced in mid-August, to provide all American adults Covid booster doses this fall.


Although the pharmaceutical industry is making modest progress in countering resistance to superbugs, drug companies are not doing enough to ensure greater access to lifesaving antibiotics in low- and middle-income countries, STAT writes, citing a new analysis. Just one-third of 166 treatments assessed have any kind of access strategy in place, such as price adjustments to make antibiotics more affordable or licensing agreements to boost supplies for these countries. The findings underscore concerns that providing access to antibiotics increasingly resembles the inequities in making vaccines available to combat the Covid-19 pandemic.

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