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Both vaccines require two doses, spaced several weeks apart. Then researchers will have to wait to see whether people get infected or sick with COVID-19.

Final Coronavirus Vaccine Trials Get Underway

TUESDAY, July 28, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- As the U.S. coronavirus case count passed 4.3 million on Monday, companies launched the final phase of testing for two potential COVID-19 vaccines.

In one trial begun on Monday, the first of 30,000 volunteers were either given a vaccine developed by Moderna Inc. and the U.S. National Institutes of Health or a placebo shot, the Washington Post reported.

Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer also announced Monday that it was starting a 30,000-person final phase vaccine trial, to be conducted at 120 sites globally.

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According to the CDC, just 7% of U.S. COVID-19 cases, and less than 0.1% of related deaths, have occurred in people under the age of 18.

CDC Issues Call to Reopen America's Schools This Fall

FRIDAY, July 24, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Facing opposition from President Donald Trump and others, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued a document supporting a reopening of the nation's schools this fall.

"As families and policymakers make decisions about their children returning to school, it is important to consider the full spectrum of benefits and risks of both in-person and virtual learning options," the agency said in a document posted on its website Thursday night.

The COVID-19-related health risks to kids are minimal compared to those faced by adults, the CDC said.

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That translates to tens of thousands of lives saved, but just because fewer very ill COVID-19 patients are dying doesn't mean societies can become complacent about the threat.

More COVID-19 Patients in ICUs Are Surviving Now: Study

WEDNESDAY, July 15, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Even as new coronavirus infections soar in the United States, a new study offers one piece of good news: Severely ill COVID-19 patients are significantly more likely to survive now compared to a few months ago.

In fact, deaths for COVID-19 patients in intensive care units have fallen by nearly a third in North America, Asia and Europe since the start of the pandemic, researchers report.

Overall, ICU deaths fell from nearly 60% at the end of March to 42% by the end of May.

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There are signs of new trouble in regions outside current hotspots, too: Twenty states and Puerto Rico reported a record-high average of new infections over the past week.

New Coronavirus Cases and Deaths Spike Across America

MONDAY, July 13, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- New U.S. coronavirus cases surged across 37 states on Sunday, with worsening hotspots in the South and West also fueling new daily records for COVID-19 deaths.

Florida recorded more than 15,000 new infections on Sunday, breaking the daily record for new cases once held by New York back at the beginning of the pandemic, The New York Times reported. The state also saw single-day records in the counties that include its largest cities -- Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Fort Myers, West Palm Beach, Pensacola and Sarasota.

Five states -- Arizona, California, Florida, Mississippi and Texas -- also broke records for average daily COVID-19 fatalities in the past week, the Washington Post reported. That marks a departure from the past weeks, when death rates had remained steady even as case numbers rose.

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In many cities, a combination of factors are fueling the problem: a shortage of key supplies, backlogs at laboratories that perform the tests, and surging infection counts as cases climb in almost 40 states.

U.S. Coronavirus Cases Near 3 Million as Hospitals in Sun Belt Fill Up With Patients

TUESDAY, July 7, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- With the number of coronavirus cases in the United States approaching 3 million on Monday, hospitals across the Sun Belt continued to be flooded with COVID-19 patients.

Arizona reached 89 percent capacity for ICU beds, as Alabama, California, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Texas also reported unprecedented numbers of hospitalizations, the Washington Post reported.

For the 28th day in a row, the country's rolling seven-day average of daily new cases obliterated previous records, though the number of deaths nationwide has remained relatively stable, the newspaper reported.

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Thirty-six states continue to struggle with alarming spikes in COVID-19 infections, especially Florida, which reported 9,585 new cases on Saturday and 8,530 on Sunday.

Global Coronavirus Cases Pass 10 Million as U.S. Struggles With Surge in Infections

MONDAY, June 29, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- As the worldwide coronavirus case count passed 10 million and the death toll topped 500,000 on Sunday, 36 U.S. states continued to struggle with alarming spikes in COVID-19 infections.

Experts cautioned that Florida could become the next epicenter for infections while Texas has seen record-breaking case counts and hospitalizations, CNN reported. Officials across the country are also warning of an increase in cases among younger people.

Over the weekend, Florida shattered its previous records and reported 9,585 new cases on Saturday and 8,530 on Sunday, The New York Times reported. Six-hour lines formed in Jacksonville as thousands showed up to get drive-through tests. Orange County, home to Orlando, has seen an explosion of coronavirus: nearly 60 percent of all cases there have come in the past two weeks.

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A new study looks at the link between severe COVID-19 and heart trouble.

Severe COVID-19 Raises Odds for Dangerous Heart Conditions 10-Fold

TUESDAY, June 23, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- Doctors have long noted links between severe COVID-19 and heart trouble, but a new study helps quantify the magnitude of the problem.

The study of hundreds of hospitalized patients found that cardiac arrest and heart rhythm disorders are 10 times more common among COVID-19 patients requiring intensive care than among other hospitalized COVID-19 patients.

Just why the risk soars so high in the ICU isn't clear, but it's likely tied to the stresses of advanced illness, not a direct activity of the new coronavirus upon the heart, said study senior author Dr. Rajat Deo. He's a cardiac electrophysiologist and associate professor of cardiovascular medicine at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.

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Dr. Anthony Fauci is one of the experts who will appear before the House Energy and Commerce Committee on Tuesday to testify before Congress on the handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

Amid Jumps in COVID-19 Infections, U.S. Health Officials to Testify in Congress

TUESDAY, June 23, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- As 29 U.S. states and territories posted spikes in new COVID-19 cases on Monday, the country's top health officials prepared to testify before Congress on their handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious disease expert, and Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, will appear before the House Energy and Commerce Committee on Tuesday, The New York Times reported. Adm. Brett Giroir, once the administration's testing "czar," and Dr. Stephen Hahn, the commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, also plan to testify.

In a statement sent to the committee before the hearing, the CDC said that "COVID-19 activity will likely continue for some time," potentially exacerbating the flu season and straining beleaguered hospitals, the Times reported.

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