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Overnight Health Care: New Jersey Democrat thinks she contracted coronavirus during Capitol siege | Biden publicly receives second dose of coronavirus vaccine | Senate Democrats demand Trump address vaccine distribution

Overnight Health Care: New Jersey Democrat thinks she contracted coronavirus during Capitol siege | Biden publicly receives second dose of coronavirus vaccine | Senate Democrats demand Trump address vaccine distribution
© Greg Nash

Welcome to Monday’s Overnight Health Care.

President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenBudowsky: A Biden-McConnell state of emergency summit DC might win US House vote if it tries Inaugural poet Amanda Gorman inks deal with IMG Models MORE received a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. Blue Cross Blue Shield is suspending donations to lawmakers who opposed the Electoral College count. Meanwhile, a New Jersey Democrat said she got COVID-19 after being locked in a room with maskless lawmakers during last week’s riots at the Capitol. 

Let’s start with fallout from last week's attack: 

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New Jersey Democrat thinks she contracted coronavirus during Capitol siege

A Democratic congresswoman said Monday she has tested positive for COVID-19 after being locked in a room with maskless members of Congress during the riots at the Capitol last week. 

Rep. Bonnie Watson ColemanBonnie Watson ColemanBiden scolds Republicans for not wearing masks during Capitol attack The Hill's Morning Report - Biden asks Congress to expand largest relief response in U.S. history Rep. Adriano Espaillat tests positive for COVID-19 MORE (D-N.J.), a 75-year old cancer survivor, said she believes she was exposed to COVID-19 while being held in protective isolation with other lawmakers, including some who did not wear masks. 

“I received a positive test result for COVID-19, and am home resting at this time. While I am experiencing mild, cold-like symptoms, I remain in good spirits and will continue to work on behalf of my constituents,” she said in a statement

The congresswoman tested positive using a rapid antigen test. She is awaiting the results of a more reliable PCR test. 

Congress’s attending physician warned lawmakers in an email Sunday they might have been exposed to COVID-19 during protective isolation, though it cannot be said for certain that Watson Coleman contracted the coronavirus while sheltering during the Capitol riots.

Read more here.

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Biden publicly receives second dose of coronavirus vaccine

President-elect Joe Biden publicly received his second dose of the vaccine for the novel coronavirus on Monday in a continued bid to bolster public confidence in the inoculation. 

“My number one priority is getting vaccine into people’s arms, like I just did today, as rapidly as we can,” Biden, wearing a black face mask, told reporters immediately after receiving his second dose of the vaccine produced by Pfizer and BioNTech.

The president-elect also said he planned to release more details about his plan to combat the coronavirus on Thursday. He is scheduled to meet virtually with advisers on the coronavirus Monday afternoon, Biden said.

Biden received the second dose of the vaccine at ChristianaCare hospital in Newark, Del., the same location where he received his first dose three weeks ago. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends individuals wait roughly three weeks between doses.

Read more here.

Senate Democrats demand Trump address COVID-19 vaccine distribution

A group of Senate Democrats is demanding that the Trump administration provide states with a plan of action that includes new resources and guidance "to fix the significant failures of the COVID-19 vaccine distribution" rollout.

In a letter sent to Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar, the Democrats said the country's vaccination effort is moving too slowly and blamed the administration’s failure to develop and implement a comprehensive national vaccine plan.

"With our health system and economy in crisis, and millions of lives at stake, we cannot afford for this vaccination campaign to continue to be hindered by the lack of planning, communication, and leadership we have seen so far," the letter said.

The letter was led by Senate Democratic Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerMcConnell: Power-sharing deal can proceed after Manchin, Sinema back filibuster Justice watchdog to probe whether officials sought to interfere with election Capitol insurrection fallout: A PATRIOT Act 2.0? MORE (N.Y.) and Health Committee ranking member Patty MurrayPatricia (Patty) Lynn MurrayHawley pens op-ed to defend decision to object to electoral votes amid pushback Demolition at the Labor Department, too Hawley, Cruz face rising anger, possible censure MORE (D-Wash.) and signed by 43 other Democrats.

Refresher: The administration pledged to vaccinate 20 million people by the end of 2020, but efforts have fallen far short of that goal. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, only about 9 million people have received their first dose, and nearly 25.5 million doses have been distributed.

Reality: There are nine days left in the Trump administration, so it's not likely a massive, comprehensive plan is coming. The Democrats said they hope recently announced efforts to scale up vaccinations in pharmacies will help, but much more resources are needed. 

Read more here.

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Blue Cross Blue Shield Association suspends donations to lawmakers who opposed Electoral College count

The Blue Cross Blue Shield Association (BCBSA) will suspend its donations to lawmakers who opposed the Electoral College count after rioters stormed the Capitol building last week. 

BCBSA President and CEO Kim Keck announced on Friday that the federation of 36 health insurance companies would no longer provide financial contributions to these congressional members through its political action committee that is “supported solely by employee contributions.”

“At the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, we continuously evaluate our political contributions to ensure that those we support share our values and goals,” Keck said in a statement. “In light of this week’s violent, shocking assault on the United States Capitol, and the votes of some members of Congress to subvert the results of November’s election by challenging Electoral College results, BCSBA will suspend contributions to those lawmakers who voted to undermine our democracy.”

Read more here.

Deadly weekend pushes California virus death toll past 30,000

California has surpassed 30,000 coronavirus deaths as of Monday, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

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Deaths have risen sharply ever since a surge began in October, according to a report by KSWB-TV. The news station notes that it took around 6 months for the state to reach 10,000 deaths but only one month for the state’s death count to rise from 20,000 to 30,000.

California, the most populous state in the United States, is one of only three that have surpassed 1 million coronavirus cases. Texas and Florida are the only other states that have reached this grim milestone. 

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) coronavirus data tracker, California has confirmed more than 2.6 million cases so far.

About 600,000 people have received their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine in the state, according to the CDC.

Read more here.

What we’re reading: 

At elite medical centers, even workers who don’t qualify are vaccinated (The New York Times)

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Eli Lilly says drug slowed Alzheimer’s decline in preliminary study (STAT)

Vaccines were a chance to redeem failures in the coronavirus response. What went wrong? (Washington Post)

State by state

Florida vaccine rollout turns into a free-for-all (The New York Times)   

Arizona again ranks No. 1 for weekly COVID-19 case rate as state reports nearly 9K new cases, rising hospitalizations (AZcentral.com)

Darkest days for L.A. doctors, nurses, EMTs: ‘The way most people leave is by dying’ (LA Times)