8 April 2021

• Nepal suspended its coronavirus vaccination campaign three weeks ago, due to shortages created by urgent need for the vaccines in India. Now, China has donated 800,000 doses of Sinopharm’s coronavirus vaccine, under the condition that priority be given to students traveling to China and to people involved in cross-border trade. But the country was due to receive two million doses from India’s Serum Institute; although it has already paid for 80 percent of them, it has only received half of the doses it ordered. Source

• Britain begins to administer the first doses of Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine. Source

• The Philippines suspends use of AstraZeneca’s coronavirus vaccine. In people under age 60. Source

• The African Union announces that it will not procure the AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine, saying that it did not want to replicate COVAX’s efforts, and will focus on  obtaining 400 million doses of the J & J vaccine. Source

• Eli Lilly and Company and Incyte issue a press release with results from COV-BARRIER, a 1,525-person phase III trial of the oral JAK inhibitor baricitinib 4 mg once daily plus standard of care versus placebo plus SoC in people hospitalized with COVID-19. Results  did not meet statistical significance on the primary endpoint – a difference in the proportion of people who  progressed to non-invasive ventilation including high flow oxygen or invasive mechanical ventilation including extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) or death by Day 28. Source

• France issues a recommendation for a second dose of either the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna coronavirus vaccine for people under age 55 who received a first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine. Although studies of vaccine mixing are ongoing, there are no data on whether vaccines are interchangeable. Source

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