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Vaccine developer Moderna could slow COVID-19 trials to add at-risk minorities – Yahoo Singapore News

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Vaccine developer Moderna could slow COVID-19 trials to add at-risk minorities
FILE PHOTO: FILE PHOTO: Moderna Therapeutics seen during COVID-19 in Massachusetts

(Reuters) – Moderna Inc <MRNA.O> has been asking sites that are conducting clinical trials of its experimental coronavirus vaccine to focus on enrolling at-risk minorities, even if that slows down the trial speed, the company said on Friday.

Shares of Moderna, one of the few companies in the final stages of developing a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine, closed down about 3.5%.

The company said it has enrolled 21,411 participants in the study so far. It had 17,000 participants as of last week, with 24% from communities of color.

The drug developer aims to recruit 30,000 healthy volunteers and said it expected enrollment in the late-stage study, which began in late-July, to be completed in September.

A growing body of evidence has shown that long-standing health and social inequities have resulted in increased risk of infection and death from COVID-19 among communities of color.

Nearly a fifth of 11,000 people enrolled so far in a 30,000-volunteer U.S. trial testing a COVID-19 vaccine from Pfizer <PFE.N> and German partner BioNTech <22UAy.F> are Black or Latino, groups among the hardest hit by the coronavirus, a top Pfizer executive told Reuters last month.

(Reporting by Ankur Banerjee, Manas Mishra and Manojna Maddipatla in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur and Vinay Dwivedi)

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Active COVID-19 cases up slightly in Red Deer and Central zone – rdnewsnow.com

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By Sheldon Spackman

Tuesday Update

Sep 22, 2020 5:06 PM

Alberta is reporting 150 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday.

The latest numbers released by the province show 16,889 cases of coronavirus identified in the province since the pandemic began, with the number of active cases now at 1,565 – up 106 from Monday.

The number of people in hospital with the virus is 51 with nine in intensive care and two more deaths, bringing the death toll to 258. Recovered cases now stand at 15,066.

In the Central zone, the number of active cases is up four to 24, while 629 have recovered. There are currently no hospitalizations due to COVID-19 in the Central Zone.

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COVID-19 cases confirmed at two more Winnipeg schools – CTV News

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WINNIPEG —
The province is advising of confirmed cases of COVID-19 at two more schools in Winnipeg.

Tuesday evening, the province announced there had been a confirmed case of COVID-19 at St. Maurice School on September 17 and 18, and at Emerson School on September 16 and 17.

The province said that staff at St. Maurice School, which is a private K-12 school in Winnipeg, and Emerson School, an elementary school in Winnipeg, is working with public health officials.

The WRHA said staff at both schools had immediately closed off the areas used by the infected persons. These areas were not used again until after cleaning and disinfection occurred.

“Be assured that public health investigations to identify individuals who may have been exposed begin within 24 hours of a confirmed laboratory test,” the province said. “Anyone identified as a close contact will be contacted and provided instructions for self-isolation (quarantine). Testing may also be recommended.”

The province said the exposures for both schools are assessed as low risk and the infection was not acquired at the schools.

The province did not say if any cohorts within the schools have been affected.

CTV News will update this story when more information is available.

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COVID outbreak swells at North Kildonan school – Winnipeg Free Press

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The Free Press has made this story available free of charge so everyone can access trusted information on the coronavirus.

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The COVID-19 outbreak at a North Kildonan school now numbers 20 cases, public health officials said Tuesday, as half of the John Pritchard School students still expected to attend classes there stayed away.

Last week, seven cases were reported at the kindergarten-to-Grade 8 school where about 250 students in cohorts that may have been exposed were sent home for at least two weeks of remote learning.

Parents and guardians on pickup duty at the school were feeling the weight of the situation as their kids left the building at the end of the day.


“My feeling is not very calm,” said the mother of three students as she waited outside for their dismissal. “All day, before I pick them up, I am thinking about my children.”

The children aren’t scared, she said. But she is.

A man picking up his granddaughter was less ill at ease.

“I feel fine, she feels fine, and I think they’re doing the best they can,” he said, referring to both the school and province. “The reality of the situation is not a matter of if they’re going to get it, but when. There’s going to be more cases in more schools — I think that’s inevitable. But I think everyone’s doing the best job they can.”

Schools with confirmed cases

Click to Expand

• Beaverlodge Elementary School

• College Louis Riel

• Churchill High School

• Daniel McIntyre Collegiate

• Emerson School

• Garden City Collegiate

• Gordon Bell High School

• John Pritchard School

• Meadows School (Brandon)

• New Era School (Brandon)

• St. Aidan’s Christian School

• St. Maurice School

A spokeswoman for the River East Transcona School Division said 308 of the school’s students are learning remotely and 76 are supposed be in the classroom, but 50 per cent of them were absent for in-class learning Tuesday.

The growing case numbers came as no surprise; chief provincial public health officer Dr. Brent Roussin told a media briefing Monday that more cases connected to the infected cohort would likely be confirmed and announced.

Division spokeswoman Amanda Gaudes said public health officials have not advised administrators of any additional measures required at the school.

Meanwhile, the province reported a confirmed case of COVID-19 at College Louis Riel on Sept. 14. The francophone high school is working closely with public health officials; areas used by the infected person were closed off until cleaning and disinfection occurred.

Close contacts have been identified and are self-isolating. The school remains open and no one else is currently required to self-isolate.

The province said the infection was not acquired at school, and based on the investigation, the exposure was assessed as low-risk.

An unidentified mother speaks to media as other parents pick up their children at John Pritchard School which reported it has twenty people who have tested positive for COVID-19.

JOHN WOODS / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

An unidentified mother speaks to media as other parents pick up their children at John Pritchard School which reported it has twenty people who have tested positive for COVID-19.

Meanwhile, parents of students at Emerson School in North Kildonan were informed Tuesday that a person with a confirmed case of COVID-19 was in the elementary school on Sept. 16 and 17. The area used by the infected person was disinfected and close contacts are being notified.

Officials also announced a possible exposure at the elementary school in Gladstone.

An asymptomatic individual visited the K-6 school in the town, 150 kilometres northwest of Winnipeg, during the school day Sept. 8-10 and Sept. 14.

In a letter to parents, Dr. Davinder Singh, medical officer of health at Southern Health, wrote that all close contacts connected to the case have been identified and advised to self-isolate.

“All other students and staff can continue to attend school in person,” he advised.

Students and staff members who have not been contacted by public health are being asked to self-monitor for symptoms, no matter how minor. Singh said it is recommended children are tested for COVID-19 as soon as symptoms appear.

— With files from Ben Waldman and Maggie Macintosh

carol.sanders@freepress.mb.ca

Carol Sanders

Carol Sanders
Legislature reporter

After 20 years of reporting on the growing diversity of people calling Manitoba home, Carol moved to the legislature bureau in early 2020.

Read full biography

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