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Reuters Health News Summary

Reuters logo Reuters 10/26/2020

Following is a summary of current health news briefs.

U.S. COVID-19 cases soar as Pence's staff at White House test positive

A new coronavirus outbreak at the White House involving Vice President Mike Pence's staff comes as the United States reported a near-record number of new cases on Saturday. The United States reported 79,852 new infections on Saturday, close to the previous day's record of 84,244 new cases. Hospitalizations are also rising and have hit a two-month high and deaths are also trending upwards, according to a Reuters tally. (Graphic: https://tmsnrt.rs/34pvUyi)

What you need to know about the coronavirus right now

Here's what you need to know about the coronavirus right now: Oxford vaccine produces immune response

Second German district to enter lockdown after spike in coronavirus cases

Residents of a district in the German state of Bavaria will from Tuesday be banned from leaving their homes without a valid reason and schools and kindergartens will shut for two weeks due to spiralling COVID-19 infections, officials said on Monday. The lockdown in Rottal-Inn, home to some 120,000 people, will be the second imposed in Germany on a local basis since April, after Berchtesgaden, 110 km to the south in the Bavarian Alps. Berchtesgaden has been in lockdown since Oct. 20.

FDA delays decision on Spectrum Pharma's drug candidate due to travel curbs

The U.S. health regulator has deferred a decision on Spectrum Pharmaceuticals' drug candidate to treat chemotherapy induced loss of white blood cells in cancer patients due to COVID-19 related travel curbs, the company said on Monday. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration was unable to inspect the company's South Korea-based manufacturing plant, a step required before the approval of the drug, the company said, sending its shares down 2.3% before the bell.

Special Report: U.S. jails are outsourcing medical care — and the death toll is rising

Matthew Loflin was coughing up blood, struggling to breathe and losing consciousness in his cell while awaiting trial on drug-possession charges in this historic Southern city. “I need to go to the hospital,” he told his mother in a jailhouse phone call. “I’m gonna die in here.”

South Korea urges people to get flu shots, trust its steps on health

South Korea sought on Monday to dispel concerns over the safety of its seasonal influenza vaccine, urging it on citizens in a bid to avert stress on a health system that is already grappling with the coronavirus. Public anxiety over the safety of flu vaccine has surged after at least 59 people died this month following vaccinations, while last month about 5 million doses had to be disposed of as they were not stored at recommended temperatures.

Europe prepares for more pain ahead as COVID surges

European leaders warned of difficult months ahead as the resurgent COVID-19 pandemic forced authorities to impose new restrictions to try to curb the spread of the disease. Word that a vaccine being developed by the University of Oxford and AstraZeneca Plc produced immune responses in both elderly and young people offered some positive news.

Vaccine hopes rise as Oxford jab prompts immune response among old as well as young adults

One of the world's leading COVID-19 experimental vaccines produces a immune response in both young and old adults, raising hopes of a path out of the gloom and economic destruction wrought by the novel coronavirus. The vaccine, developed by the University of Oxford, also triggers lower adverse responses among the elderly, British drug maker AstraZeneca Plc, which is helping manufacture the vaccine, said on Monday.

Miss airline food? Finnair selling business class meals in supermarket

Finland's national carrier Finnair has started selling its business class meals in a supermarket to prevent job cuts at its catering unit due to COVID-19. The airplane meals have quickly turned into a hit with 1,600 meals sold within days at the supermarket located near Finnair's main hub the Helsinki-Vantaa airport, Finnair said. It plans to sell in more outlets.

Super spooky: Halloween trick-or-treating amid COVID-19

On a typical Halloween, Sarah Schwimmer would answer her door and put candy in the outstretched hands of costumed trick-or-treaters, but this year she will be shooting their sweets through a 10-foot-long (3-meter-long) pipe rigged up as her COVID-19 socially distanced delivery system. "The kids - everything has changed for them, so anything we can do to keep that joy is important," said Schwimmer, 54, of Lawrenceville, New Jersey.

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