Overnight Health Care: Fauci says he does not see US mandating COVID-19 vaccine | WHO warns against 'nationalism' in coronavirus fight

Overnight Health Care: Fauci says he does not see US mandating COVID-19 vaccine | WHO warns against 'nationalism' in coronavirus fight
© Bloomberg/Pool

Welcome to Tuesday's Overnight Health Care.

President TrumpDonald TrumpOhio Republican who voted to impeach Trump says he won't seek reelection Youngkin breaks with Trump on whether Democrats will cheat in the Virginia governor's race Trump endorses challenger in Michigan AG race MORE’s response to COVID-19 was front and center in the kickoff to the Democratic National Convention this week; Anthony FauciAnthony FauciIntercept reporters discuss gain-of-function research The Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Facebook - DC prepares for Saturday of festivals & Jan. 6 demonstration United Airlines CEO says employees exempt from vaccine 'won't be in front of customers' MORE said it’s unlikely the U.S. will mandate coronavirus vaccinations; and West Virginia will sue CVS and Walmart for allegedly aiding the opioid epidemic.

Let’s start with Fauci:

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Fauci says he does not see US mandating COVID-19 vaccine for general public

Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious diseases expert, said Tuesday he doesn’t see the U.S. mandating a COVID-19 vaccine.

“I don't think you'll ever see a mandating of vaccine particularly for the general public,” Fauci said during a livestreamed interview with Healthline.

Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, noted that some workplaces, particularly those in health care fields, might prevent employees from coming to work or interacting with patients if they haven’t been vaccinated for the flu. 

Schools generally require students be vaccinated for measles and other infectious diseases before they are allowed to attend classes. 

But Fauci said he'd "be pretty surprised if you mandated it for any element of the general public."

Why it matters: Few serious health experts have floated the idea of mandating COVID-19 vaccines. It would be a first in American history and would very likely backfire. Instead, experts have tried to think of other ways to address vaccine hesitancy through culturally sensitive outreach and messaging and combating misleading claims on social media. 

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Read more here

 

Speaking of vaccines… WHO warns against 'nationalism' in coronavirus fight

The World Health Organization (WHO) is warning countries that hoarding supplies and an eventual coronavirus vaccine will prolong the global epidemic at a steep cost to poor and developing nations.

Speaking to reporters Tuesday, Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said his agency is developing plans to distribute the vaccine equitably across the globe, once the science shows that a potential vaccine candidate is both effective at generating an immune response and is safe in humans.

“We need to prevent vaccine nationalism,” Tedros said. “Sharing finite supplies strategically and globally is actually in each country’s national interest. No one is safe until everyone is safe.”

Since the beginning of the pandemic, countries hoarding supplies of protective and medical equipment has contributed to snags in the global supply chain. Now public health experts are warning that the same supply chain failures could hinder the manufacture and distribution of the drugs needed to bring the pandemic to an end.

Read more here.

 

West Virginia sues CVS, Walmart for aiding opioid epidemic

West Virginia's attorney general filed lawsuits Tuesday against Walmart and CVS, alleging the companies helped create the state's devastating opioid epidemic.

Attorney General Patrick Morrisey (R) said in separate lawsuits that the companies should remediate what has become a public health and financial crisis.

The companies "reaped billions of dollars in revenues while causing immense harm to the State of West Virginia and its residents," the lawsuit states.

The lawsuits allege Walmart and CVS filled suspicious orders of opioids that were of unusual size and frequency, and then distributed those drugs to retail pharmacies.

Not the first: West Virginia filed similar lawsuits in June against Rite-Aid and Walgreens. More than 3,000 states, local governments and Native American tribes have sued manufacturers, distributors and pharmacies, blaming them for contributing to the opioid epidemic.

Read more here.

 

COVID-19 in spotlight at Democratic convention

The Democratic National Convention kicked off last night, with no shortage of criticisms lobbed at President Trump’s COVID-19 response.

The daughter of one of Trump's 2016 supporters who later died from the disease blistered the president during a speech.

Kristin Urquiza, who previously penned an obituary criticizing Arizona Gov. Doug DuceyDoug DuceyOSHA faces big challenge with Biden vaccine mandate DeSantis: Local governments will face K fines for imposing vaccine mandates We can't tax-and-spend our way to 'recovery' MORE (R) following her father's death, said Monday that her father told her before his death that he felt "betrayed" by the president due to his handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

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"His only preexisting condition was trusting Donald Trump," Urquiza said.

"Donald Trump may not have caused the coronavirus, but his dishonesty and his his irresponsible actions made it so much worse," she added.

Read more on that here.

 

The Hill hosts:

COVID-19: THE WAY FORWARD

As election day approaches, the COVID-19 pandemic remains an ever-present threat. On the sidelines of the 2020 Conventions, The Hill will host a discussion with policymakers and hospital and medical school leaders about lessons learned from the coronavirus pandemic, the importance of research and innovation in battling health care crises, and the value of a resilient and responsive health care ecosystem.

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RSVP now to hold your spot!

 

Whitmer faults Trump for fighting other Americans more than virus

Michigan Gov. Gretchen WhitmerGretchen WhitmerGovernors brace for 2022 after year in pandemic spotlight Protesters crash former Detroit police chief's gubernatorial announcement event Former Detroit police chief launching gubernatorial campaign vs. Whitmer next week MORE (D) faulted President Trump for fighting “his fellow Americans” more than the coronavirus during her speech at the Democratic National Convention.

“We’ve learned who is essential … not just the wealthiest among us. Not the president who fights his fellow Americans rather than fight the virus that’s killing us and our economy,” she said in her speech at the convention, which is being held virtually because of COVID-19.

“It’s the people who put their own health at risk to care for the rest of us. They are the MVPs,” she added, naming nurses, doctors, utility workers, grocery clerks, auto workers and mail carriers among others. 

Read more here.

 

What we’re watching for tonight: 

We’re likely to hear more virus talk tonight at the convention, with speeches from Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerBiden discusses agenda with Schumer, Pelosi ahead of pivotal week CEOs urge Congress to raise debt limit or risk 'avoidable crisis' If .5 trillion 'infrastructure' bill fails, it's bye-bye for an increasingly unpopular Biden MORE (D-N.Y.) and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio Cortez (D-N.Y.).

But keep an eye on Ady Barkan. 

Barkan is a progressive activist who has become a champion of Medicare for All after his terminal diagnosis of ALS in 2016. Biden doesn't support Medicare for All, but Barkan endorsed him anyway.

In past interviews, Barkan has said that if Biden wins, progressives should push him on their priorities. Barkan has said he wants progressives to understand that even though they may disagree with Biden, they shouldn't let that stand in the way of voting President Trump out of office. His speech tonight could be memorable. 

 

What we’re reading

Flu season will be a test run for the U.S.’s biggest-ever vaccine campaign (Bloomberg

The myth of Andrew CuomoAndrew CuomoLetitia James holding private talks on running for New York governor: report Governors brace for 2022 after year in pandemic spotlight Tucker Carlson says he lies when 'I'm really cornered or something' MORE (The Atlantic

Isolation, disruption and confusion: coping with dementia during a pandemic (Kaiser Health News

Cellphone apps designed to track covid-19 spread struggle worldwide amid privacy concerns (Washington Post)

 

State by state

Cellphone data shows how Las Vegas is ‘gambling with lives’ across the country (ProPublica)

Tulsa health department director describes 'rough year' of long days, death threats (Tulsa Public Radio)

Georgia Gov. reopened state while health care workers needed millions of masks and gowns (Kaiser Health News

 

Op-eds in The Hill

The great gamble of COVID-19 vaccine development

Mayors, it's time to step up

For a COVID-19 vaccine to succeed, look to behavioral research