17 September 2020

• Global coronavirus cases exceed 30 million, with over 945,000 deaths. Source
• Iran’s health minister declares that the country has become a coronavirus “red zone” – where there is an alarming increase in the number of new cases, hospitalizations and deaths – after schools re-opened and large religious ceremonies have been held. Source
• Oxfam reports that 51% of the experimental coronavirus vaccine supply has been purchased by high-income countries that comprise 13% of the world’s population. If all of the five vaccine candidates in late-stage trials were approved, based on existing production capacity and the likelihood that two vaccine doses will be required per person, only 3 billion people could be vaccinated; the rest of the world must wait until at least 2022. Source
• After public pressure, Moderna and Pfizer release their vaccine trial protocols and data analysis plans; Moderna’s analysis may not be ready until spring of 2021, which is aligned with predictions from public health experts. Source
• CanSino announces the launch of a phase I trial of a two-dose vaccine regimen after independent scientists raised concerns about the immunogenicity of its one-dose regimen. Source
• CDC officials reveal that the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the President’s Coronavirus Task Force were responsible for a widely criticized recommendation: that coronavirus testing is unnecessary for asymptomatic close contacts of infected people; it was inserted in CDC guidance despite their strong objections. Source

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