Caitlin Owens
Caitlin Owens
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Vaccine hesitancy has a clear relation to politics

Vaccine hesitancy has a clear relation to politics

The counties with the most vaccine-hesitant residents generally also voted for Donald Trump in 2020 by large margins, whereas the counties with the lowest levels of hesitancy generally also had fewer Trump voters. Why it matters: Your politics don't have anything to do with whether you're vulnerable to the coronavirus if you remain unvaccinated. Driving the news: More than half of U.S. adults at least one dose of the vaccine, a remarkable milestone.The big picture: The groups most likely to say they definitely won't get a vaccine are Republicans and rural residents.Between the lines: Plenty...

April 19, 2021
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Nursing home COVID cases have drastically declined

Nursing home COVID cases have drastically declined

The number of coronavirus cases in nursing homes and assisted living facilities has drastically declined over the last two months, almost certainly an effect of vaccinations.Why it matters: Nursing homes have been devastated by the virus, which is why residents were among the first Americans to be vaccinated. The big picture: Nursing home vaccinations began in the second half of December, and around have received at least one dose of the vaccine so far, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.Between the lines: Researchers in Scotland reported yesterday that the first...

February 23, 2021
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Where the pandemic has been deadliest

Where the pandemic has been deadliest

In the seven states hit hardest by the pandemic, more than 1 in every 500 residents have died from the coronavirus.Why it matters: The staggering death toll speaks to America's failure to control the virus.Details: In New Jersey, which has the highest death rate in the nation, 1 out of every 406 residents has died from the virus. In neighboring New York, 1 out of every 437 people has died.States in the middle of the pack have seen a death rate of around 1 in 800 dead.The bottom line: Americans will keep dying as vaccinations ramp up, and more transmissible variants of the coronavirus could...

February 9, 2021
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Trump administration lobbied against states on COVID-19 vaccine funding

Trump administration lobbied against states on COVID-19 vaccine funding

Photo: Pete Marovich/Getty ImagesTop Trump health officials urged Congress last fall not to give states any additional money for the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, as state officials warned they didn't have the funding they needed, .Why it matters: The vaccine rollout was ultimately sluggish, and the number of vaccines administered in the first few weeks fell way short of federal projections — partially because states faced a lack of resources.What they're saying: Paul Mango, the former deputy chief of staff for policy at the Department of Health and Human Services, argued that states hadn't...

February 1, 2021
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The coronavirus is now a severe rural threat

The coronavirus is now a severe rural threat

This wave of coronavirus infections is hitting rural areas especially hard. While big cities have more total cases, rural areas are seeing more cases per capita — and they're at greater risk of running out of hospital capacity as cases pile up.Why it matters: What started as an urban problem in the spring is now everyone's problem.Between the lines: Rural communities in the U.S. have more vulnerable health care systems and more vulnerable populations. Many are on the verge of becoming overwhelmed by coronavirus patients as caseloads continue to grow. Zoom in: Childress County, Texas, has...

November 16, 2020
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America's failed coronavirus response hurts people of color most

America's failed coronavirus response hurts people of color most

Two new studies yet again reiterate the fact that people of color have borne the brunt of America's coronavirus outbreak.Why it matters: The longer we go without improving testing, protecting essential workers, updating ventilation systems, securing nursing homes or ensuring that sick people can safely isolate at home, the more already vulnerable people will continue to suffer.The big picture: Black and Latino or Hispanic Americans are more likely than white Americans to catch the virus, require hospitalization or die from it. Driving the news: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention...

August 18, 2020
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Florida's coronavirus outbreak is getting worse

Florida's coronavirus outbreak is getting worse

Florida is the new domestic epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic, and it's on track to keep getting worse.By the numbers: Of the 20 U.S. metro areas with the highest daily case growth, nine are in Florida, according to Nephron Research.Driving the news: The 132 new deaths yesterday, the most the state has seen since the pandemic began.Between the lines: Deaths lag several weeks behind new cases, and cases are skyrocketing. Zoom in: "Miami is now the epicenter of the pandemic. What we were seeing in Wuhan five or six months ago, now we are there,” said Lilian Abbo, an infectious disease...

July 15, 2020
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The coronavirus could expose the worst parts of the U.S. health system

The coronavirus could expose the worst parts of the U.S. health system

Illustration: Aïda Amer/AxiosThe coronavirus may soon become a high-stakes reminder of the flaws in the U.S. health care system.Why it matters: Our expensive, inaccessible health care system could easily make it harder to control the virus' spread, failing individual patients and putting more people at risk in the process."You could see uninsured or underinsured patients, just like they do for other conditions, skipping necessary treatment because they believe they can't afford it," Avalere's Chris Sloan said.Between the lines: A public health issue like the coronavirus isn't just another...

March 10, 2020
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Coronavirus threatens shortages of about 150 prescription drugs

Coronavirus threatens shortages of about 150 prescription drugs

A medical worker in Beijing. Photo: Greg Baker/AFP via Getty ImagesAbout 150 prescription drugs — including antibiotics, generics and some branded drugs without alternatives — are at risk of shortage if the coronavirus outbreak in China worsens, according to two sources familiar with a list of at-risk drugs compiled by the Food and Drug Administration.Why it matters: China is a huge supplier of the ingredients used to make drugs that are sold in the U.S. If the virus decreases China's production capability, Americans who rely on the drugs made from these ingredients could be in trouble....

February 23, 2020
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