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At This Rate, Child Marriage Will Continue for Centuries: UN

Progress is being made, but not fast enough, according to new report

(Newser) - The world isn't moving fast enough to combat child marriage as, at current rates, it will be another 300 years before the practice is eliminated. That's according to a UN report , which finds 12 million girls are married as minors each year. The report does highlight progress made...

WHO Delivers 12 Long-Awaited Words on COVID

Agency says the virus is no longer a global health emergency

(Newser) - The leader of the World Health Organization delivered 12 words Friday that were three years in the making: “With great hope, I declare COVID-19 over as a global health emergency,” said WHO director general Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, per the New York Times . The declaration is more symbolic...

Report: China Frees COVID Whistleblower After 3 Years

Sources say Fang Bin is back home in Wuhan in good health

(Newser) - A whistleblower who disappeared three years ago after publicizing videos of overcrowded hospitals and bodies during the early days of the COVID-19 outbreak in China has been released from jail and returned to his Wuhan home, sources tell the BBC . The report has not been independently verified. Fang Bin and...

FDA Clears COVID Booster for Seniors This Spring

Also for people with compromised immune systems

(Newser) - US regulators on Tuesday cleared another COVID-19 booster dose for older adults and people with weak immune systems so they can shore up protection this spring—while taking steps to make coronavirus vaccinations simpler for everyone else, per the AP . The FDA said anyone 65 or older can opt to...

National COVID Emergency Now Over
National COVID
Emergency Now Over

National COVID Emergency Now Over

Biden signed congressional resolution to bring it to a close

(Newser) - The US national emergency to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic ended Monday as President Joe Biden signed a bipartisan congressional resolution to bring it to a close after three years—weeks before it was set to expire alongside a separate public health emergency, the AP reports. The national emergency allowed...

Report: Florida's Top Doc Nixed Key Data From Vaccine Study

Analysis shows State Surgeon General Joseph Ladapo cut data on COVID being riskier than shot

(Newser) - An analysis that was the basis of a highly criticized recommendation from Florida's surgeon general cautioning young men against getting the COVID-19 vaccine omitted information that showed catching the virus could increase the risk of a cardiac-related death much more than getting the mRNA shot, according to drafts of...

Injection Restores COVID Patient's Loss of Smell
Coffee Aroma
Made Her Cry,
for Good

Coffee Aroma Made Her Cry, for Good Reason

Ohio woman who had COVID has sense of smell restored at Cleveland Clinic

(Newser) - Lots of people love the smell of coffee. Few have been as overjoyed with it as Ohio's Jennifer Henderson, and for good reason. A video released by the Cleveland Clinic shows the 54-year-old bursting into tears as she is handed a cup and is able to detect the aroma,...

Chinese Scientists Throw Cold Water on COVID Origin Theory

They say there's still a chance the virus was carried to Wuhan market by humans or products

(Newser) - An analysis of samples from the market in Wuhan by an international group of scientists, offering evidence that COVID-19 jumped from animals to humans there, has sped up the release of another analysis from Chinese government scientists, based on the same data. The early, unedited version of the study, published...

Boris Johnson, Lawmakers Spar Over COVID Parties
Boris Johnson: 'I Did Not Lie'

Boris Johnson: 'I Did Not Lie'

Lawmakers question former prime minister about parties he hosted during lockdown

(Newser) - UK lawmakers questioned Boris Johnson for more than three tense hours on Wednesday, pressing him about whether events he hosted while prime minister broke COVID lockdown rules and drawing defiant denials that he misled them. A House of Commons committee is investigating assurances Johnson made to Parliament after parties at...

Biden Signs Bill to Release Intelligence on COVID Origins

Bipartisan legislation gives agency 90 days

(Newser) - President Biden on Monday signed a bill directing the government to declassify intelligence about how COVID-19 originated. The law allows redactions to protect sensitive sources and methods, Axios reports. It requires the Office of the Director of National Intelligence to act within 90 days. "My administration will declassify and...

Unvaccinated World No. 1 Pulls Out of US Tourneys

Djokovic is denied travel exception, but US Open has hope he'll play in August

(Newser) - The top-ranked tennis player in the world has given up hope on being allowed to enter the US soon, withdrawing from two tournaments. Novak Djokovic, 35, has not received a COVID-19 vaccination. So under US policy, he cannot compete in a tournament going on now in Indian Wells, California, or...

Data Points Finger at New COVID Culprit

Virus samples from Wuhan market contained genetic material of raccoon dogs: experts

(Newser) - A team of virus experts has linked the coronavirus to raccoon dogs illegally sold at a market in Wuhan, China, for "the strongest evidence yet that an animal started the pandemic," according to the Atlantic . The virus was found in samples taken from the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market...

FDA Advisers Support Full Approval of Paxlovid

Experts have cautions about drug interactions, rebound COVID-19 cases

(Newser) - Paxlovid is nearing full FDA approval for use against COVID-19 after the drug was endorsed by the agency's panel of advisers on Thursday. The drug has been employed under a Food and Drug Administration emergency use authorization for patients over 50 whose COVID case is considered at high risk...

FBI Director: Yes, COVID 'Most Likely' Originated in Lab

Christopher Wray comments on the matter for the first time

(Newser) - In an interview with Fox News Tuesday, FBI Director Christopher Wray acknowledged that, yes, the Federal Bureau of Investigation has concluded the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19 probably leaked from a Chinese lab. "The FBI has for quite some time now assessed that the origins of the pandemic are...

Hong Kong Lifts Mask Mandate After 959 Days

Chief executive says city is 'resuming normalcy'

(Newser) - Hong Kongers traveling to work Wednesday morning might see something unusual—each other's unmasked faces. Chief Executive John Lee said Tuesday that as of the next day, the city would no longer require masks to be worn on public transport or in outdoor and indoor public areas, the New ...

China: Now US Is Playing Politics With COVID

Beijing rejects Energy Department assessment that virus likely originated in a lab

(Newser) - China is pushing back against the US Energy Department's conclusion that the COVID pandemic likely started in a Chinese lab . "The origin of the novel coronavirus is a scientific issue and should not be politicized," said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning on Monday. Over the weekend,...

Agency Sides With Theory That Lab Leak Sparked Pandemic

Energy Department agrees with FBI's conclusion, for a different reason

(Newser) - The COVID-19 pandemic probably began with a laboratory leak, the Energy Department has decided. The agency, which had not expressed a view on the origin of the coronavirus, added its finding to a previous classified intelligence report sent to the White House and certain members of Congress, the Wall Street ...

Idaho Bill Would Make mRNA COVID Vaccines Illegal

A legislator behind the bill expressed concern vaccines were 'fast-tracked'

(Newser) - When it comes to COVID vaccination rates, Idaho is near the bottom of the barrel, with US News & World Report citing CDC data that shows 56.2% of residents are fully vaccinated. That's the sixth-lowest rate in the country, and if two Republican Idaho state legislators have their...

House GOP Puts Fauci on Notice for COVID Probe

Panels send Biden officials letter about testimony, documents

(Newser) - House Republicans kicked off an investigation Monday into the origins of COVID-19 by issuing a series of letters to current and former Biden administration officials for documents and testimony. The Republican chairmen of the House Oversight Committee and the subcommittee on the coronavirus pandemic requested information from several people, including...

DeSantis Wants to Permanently Ban Mask, Vaccine Mandates

He describes Florida as a 'refuge of sanity'

(Newser) - If the COVID pandemic rebounds to the point where authorities seek to bring back mask and vaccine mandates, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis wants to make sure his state isn't affected by what he calls the "biomedical security state." The Republican is seeking to make Florida's ban...

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