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COVID-19 Update
October 1, 2020
IowaBio wants to provide our members useful information during the COVID-19 pandemic. This newsletter compiles information on state, federal and industry action to combat the virus and its impacts.

If your company is helping respond to COVID-19, IowaBio wants to know about it. Please, send any information about what your biotechnology company or organization is doing to help, to Jessica Hyland at Jessica@iowabio.org.

If IowaBio can assist you in getting information out, connecting with public officials, or support your company in another way, please do not hesitate to reach out.

Past IowaBio COVID-19 Update newsletters are now available at www.iowabio.org/COVID19 and can be found under the Industry News tab on the IowaBio website

Iowa Update

Currently, IDPH has reported on the state’s coronavirus dashboard, 89,425 Iowans have tested positive, up 1,191 from our update yesterday morning, with a total of 802,646 tested. 17 additional deaths were reported since our last update, bringing the total to 1,358 deaths. Now 69,528 Iowans have recovered. The overall positivity rate is 11.1% and the total 14 day rolling average positivity rate is 8.7%. The latest on hospitalizations, including how many patients have been admitted in the last 24 hours can be found here.
 
School district statistics including positivity rates by county can be found here. According to guidance issued by the Iowa Department of Education, schools may petition to go to hybrid or online learning with less than 50 percent in-person instruction when the per county percentage positivity rates are above 15 percent in a county on average over the past 14 days (rolling average) AND 10% absenteeism among students is expected for in-person learning.
 
Currently 13 counties are above 15 percent positivity rate over the past 14 days:
Lyon 31.2%
Sioux 27.1%
Osceola 19.7%
Delaware 19.4%
O’Brien 18.3%
Page 17.2%
Crawford 16.4%
Plymouth 16.2%
Palo Alto 16.2%
Fremont 16.2%
Dubuque 15.9%
Harrison 15.9%
Taylor 15.2%
 
Governor Kim Reynolds announced yesterday that the State of Iowa will end Fiscal Year 2020 with a balance of $305.5 million in its General Fund. 
 
"Fiscal responsibility has put the state of Iowa in a strong position despite some significant challenges ranging from a global pandemic to trade disruption,” said Gov. Reynolds. “In Iowa, we have turned those obstacles into opportunities, making significant investments in education, agriculture, workforce, technology, and health care. The actions we have taken this year will help Iowa emerge from this unprecedented pandemic stronger than ever before. Going forward, we will continue to invest responsibly in Iowans’ priorities and remain mindful of the potential challenges that still lie ahead.”   
 
“Iowa is in a strong financial position due to responsible spending practices and our strong cash reserves of over $770 million,” said Dave Roederer, Director of the Iowa Department of Management. “I commend Governor Reynolds and the Iowa legislature for their efforts to maintain a strong ending balance. We will continue to monitor the impact COVID19 has on our state budget for the coming fiscal year.”  
 
FY 2020 closed on June 30th, but the accrual period officially ends on September 30th. During this time, Iowa closes the books and pays out and receives outstanding obligations. Last year’s budget surplus was $289 million dollars. 
 
Federal Legislation
Supplemental IV
Timeline: Negotiations between Secretary Mnuchin and Speaker Pelosi resumed this week. Yesterday, Secretary Mnuchin and Speaker Pelosi by phone for nearly an hour in a late effort to rekindle talks before House Dems advance their HEROES 2 proposal, which was planned for today. This afternoon, Secretary Mnuchin met in person with Speaker Pelosi while White House Chief of Staff Meadows met with Leader McConnell. The meeting did not lead to a deal. However, House Democrats pulled the vote on HEROES 2 that was originally planned for this evening. Leader Hoyer has indicated that the House will stay in town through Thursday as talks between Pelosi and Mnuchin continue. 
 
Process/Politics: Despite today’s flurry of relative activity, there still seems to be very high hurdle for a deal to come together before members leave town for the election home stretch.  Key factors to watch include whether: (1) Pelosi and Mnuchin are able to reach a compromise, (2) President Trump very clearly and aggressively supports it, and (3) the compromise includes items key to McConnell and Senate Republicans, especially liability protection.  If those three conditions are met quickly, a deal is still possible, although continued cautious skepticism is advised.

Leader McConnell said this afternoon that “We’re very, very far apart” still, reflecting continued reticence among Senate Republicans on any package significantly north of $1 trillion. After Democrats released a new proposal, HEROES 2, earlier this week, Republicans sharply criticized the bill, calling it a liberal wish list. While Senate Republicans clearly seem against raising the price tag on a bill, the president gave the green light to Mnuchin to go higher. Secretary Mnuchin said earlier today that the president had directed him to increase the topline significantly but asserted that they would not come all the way up to $2.2 trillion, which is the topline Speaker Pelosi offered in negotiations in August.

Policy: Secretary Mnuchin indicated that the administration had altered its position since the last time negotiations had occurred – they were willing to agree to something along the lines of the Problem Solvers’ Caucus bipartisan bill (approx. $1.5T). Earlier today it seemed that the offer included “escalator” contingencies that could take the topline as high as $2 trillion under certain (unspecified) circumstances, but reporting later in the day contradicted those reports. Highlights from Mnuchin’s counteroffer below:
  • $250 billion for state, local, and tribal governments ($186 billion less than what is in HEROES 2).
  • $400/week for unemployment insurance (retroactive from Sept. 12 – Jan 1).
  • $175 billion for health, including $50 billion for vaccines and $50 billion for providers.
  • $160 billion for a second round of PPP.
  • $150 billion for education.
  • A second round of direct payments ($1,200 for adults and $500 for dependents).
  • $60 billion for rental and mortgage assistance.
  • $28 billion in student loan relief.
  • $25 billion for childcare.
  • $20 billion for farmers and ranchers.
  • $15 billion for broadband.
  • $13 billion to expand paid leave.
  • Expanding the employee retention tax credit.
  • Aid for restaurants, lodging, and entertainment venues.
HEROES 2: On Monday, Democrats released an updated coronavirus package, HEROES 2.  Text here. One-pager here. Section-by-section summary is here. Additional information on the state and local relief provisions is here. Highlights include:
  • $436 billion for state, local, territorial and tribal governments aid ($238 billion to states, $179 billion for local governments, $9.5 billion to tribal governments, and $9.5 billion to territorial governments).
  • $225 billion for education, including $182 billion for grades K-12 and $39 billion for colleges and universities.
  • $600/week for unemployment insurance through January.
  • A second round of PPP.
  • $249 billion for HHS, including
    • $9.2 billion for HRSA,
    • $13.7 billion for CDC,
    • $4.7 billion for NIH,
    • $8.5 billion for SAMHSA,
    • $21 billion for BARDA,
    • $125 billion for provider relief fund.
  • $2.3 billion for the Indian Health Service.
  • A second round of direct payments ($1,200 for adults and $500 for dependents).
  • $120 billion for a restaurant stabilization fund.
  • $28 billion in airline payroll support.
  • Expanding the employee retention tax credit.
  • $57 billion to support childcare.
  • $4.5 billion for LIHEAP.
  • $1.7 billion for Head Start.
  • $50 billion for rental assistance.
  • $10 billion for SNAP and a 15 percent increase to maximum SNAP benefit.
  • $10 billion for Postal Service.
  • $3.6 billion for election grants to states.
  • $12 billion for broadband, including $200 million for telemedicine and $24 for broadband mapping.
Members of Congress in Quarantine or Treatment (new additions in bold)
Tested Positive (1): Rep. Jahana Hayes (D-CT)
Currently Self-Quarantined (0):
Recovered (15): Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), Rep. Joe Cunningham (D-SC), Rep. Ben McAdams (D-UT), Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL), Rep. Mike Kelly (R-PA), Rep. Nydia Velazquez (D-NY), Rep. Neal Dunn (R-FL), Rep. Tom Rice (R-SC), Rep. Morgan Griffith (R-VA), Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX), Rep. Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ), Rep. Rodney Davis (R-IL), Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-LA), Rep. Jenniffer Gonzalez-Colon (R-Puerto Rico at large), Rep. Dan Meuser (R-PA)
Completed Quarantine (47): Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC)*, Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-SC), Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA), Rep. Sharice Davids (D-KS), Rep. Doug Collins (R-GA), Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ), Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO), Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL), Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL), Rep. Jason Crow (D-CO), Rep. Julia Brownley (D-CA), Rep. Ben Ray Luján (D-NM), Rep. Gwen Moore (D-WI), Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D-FL), Rep. John Yarmuth (D-KY), Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), Rep. Vincente Gonzalez (D-TX), Rep. Drew Ferguson (R-GA), Rep. David Schweikert (R-AZ), Rep. Anthony Brindisi (D-NY), Rep. David Price (D-NC), Rep. Ann Wagner (R-MO), Rep. Kathleen Rice (D-NY), Rep. Matt Cartwright (D-PA), Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK), Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA), Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-FL), Rep. Andy Kim (D-NJ), Rep. Kendra Horn (D-OK), Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT), Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT), Rep. Katie Porter (D-CA), Rep. Seth Moulton (D-MA), Rep. Lizzie Fletcher (D-TX), Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ), Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), Rep. Mikie Sherrill (D-NJ), Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Rep. Randy Weber (R-TX), Rep. Kay Granger (R-TX), Rep. Mike Johnson (R-LA), Rep. Jody Hice (R-GA), Rep. Guy Reschenthaler (R-PA), Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI), Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) 
 
*Mark Meadows quarantined March 9 - 12 after coming in contact with a CPAC attendee who tested positive. On March 20, he resigned from his position in the House to become the White House Chief of Staff.
 
Other Federal Actions
  • HHS announced five cooperative agreements to health information exchange organizations (HIEs) to help support state and local public health agencies in their efforts to respond to public health emergencies, including disasters and pandemics such as COVID-19. Each of the five recipients will work to improve HIE services so that public health agencies can better access, share, and use health information during public health emergencies. These efforts will also support communities that are disproportionately impacted by COVID-19. You can find the HIEs here
  • NIH has awarded nearly $234 million to improve COVID-19 testing for underserved and vulnerable populations. A part of the Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics (RADx) initiative, the RADx Underserved Populations (RADx-UP) program will support 32 institutions across the U.S. and will focus on populations disproportionately affected by the pandemic. These groups include African Americans, American Indians/Alaskan Natives, Latinos/Latinas, Native Hawaiians, older adults, pregnant women and those who are homeless or incarcerated. Read more here
  • An NIH-funded Phase 1 trial of an investigational mRNA vaccine to prevent SARS-CoV-2 infection has shown that the vaccine is well-tolerated and generates a strong immune response in older adults. The study will continue to follow the older volunteers for approximately a year after second vaccination to monitor the long-term effects of the vaccine. According to the researchers, these Phase 1 trial results further support testing of the investigational vaccine in older adults in an ongoing large Phase 3 trial.
  • CMS released its first monthly Medicaid and CHIP Enrollment Trends Snapshot today. This new summary report captures impacts of the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency by tracking total Medicaid and CHIP program enrollment trends for adults and children over a 12-month period. This first monthly snapshot shows over 4 million new Medicaid and CHIP enrollments between February and June 2020 – a nearly 5.7 percent increase since the PHE began in March 2020. Medicaid enrollment increased 6.2 percent to nearly 4 million new recipients. New CHIP enrollment increased by 23,495 – about one-half of one percent.
  • CMS announced an update to the methodology the agency employs to determine the rate of COVID-19 positivity in counties across the country. Counties with 20 or fewer tests over 14 days will now move to “green” in the color-coded system of assessing COVID-19 community prevalence. Counties with both fewer than 500 tests and fewer than 2,000 tests per 100,000 residents, and greater than 10 percent positivity over 14 days – which would have been “red” under the previous methodology – will move to “yellow.” This information is notable for nursing homes, which are required to test their staff for COVID-19 at a frequency based on the positivity rate of their respective counties.
  • The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) is partnering with the University of New Mexico’s ECHO Institute in Albuquerque and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) in Boston to establish a National Nursing Home COVID Action Network. The network will provide free training and mentorship to nursing homes across the country to increase the implementation of evidence-based infection prevention and safety practices to protect residents and staff.
  • The FDA updated the SARS CoV-2 reference panel comparative data on FDA’s website to reflect the latest information. The FDA SARS-CoV-2 reference panel is a standardized performance validation step for authorized SARS-CoV-2 molecular diagnostic tests. The reference panel allows for a more precise comparison of the analytical performance of different molecular in vitro diagnostic (IVD) assays intended to detect SARS-CoV-2. The FDA intends to continue to update the tables on the website.
  • In a new FDA Voices entitled, A Closer Look at the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health’s Unprecedented Efforts in the COVID-19 Response, FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn highlights how, in just a few short months, the agency’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health’s response to the pandemic has been unprecedented in terms of volume, speed and agility – spanning multiple areas, including: regulatory flexibility, EUAs for devices, shortage mitigation activities, Public Health Service Corps deployment and extensive engagement with stakeholders.
  • As of yesterday, 263 tests are authorized by FDA under EUAs; these include 208 molecular tests, 51 antibody tests, and 4 antigen tests.
  • The National Alzheimer's and Dementia Resource Center (NADRC) is hosting a free webinar series on COVID-19 and dementia. Each webinar will focus on organizations that have pivoted their service delivery system to continue serving and supporting people living with dementia and their caregivers during the pandemic. Free webinars will happen on Oct. 19, Nov.2, and Nov. 19. Register here
  • CDC Director Robert Redfield was reportedly overruled when he wanted to extend a "no-sail order" on passenger cruises into next year. The order was set to expire this evening and, for now, will only be extended until Oct. 31. 
  • The House Committee on Energy and Commerce held a hearing today titled, "Pathway to a Vaccine: Ensuring a Safe and Effective Vaccine People Will Trust.” You can view the witness panel here. A memo is available upon request. 
  • Friday, the Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis will hold a hybrid hearing with HHS Sec. Alex Azar on the Department’s response to the coronavirus pandemic. A memo will also be available upon request for this hearing. 
  • Seven former FDA Commissioners wrote an op-ed expressing concern that political interference from the Trump Administration could have a catastrophic effect on the agency’s credibility as it prepares to roll out a coronavirus vaccine.
  • A coalition of travel, hotel, franchise, and state and local government groups called for Congress to not go on recess without providing relief for sectors devastated by the coronavirus pandemic. More than 175 organizations representing the public and private sector, including the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA), International Franchise Association (IFA), National Association of Counties, National League of Cities, Airlines for America and the U.S. Travel Association, wrote a letter to congressional leadership on Wednesday. 
Updates from the States
  • Out of the cases under investigation detected by U.S. surveillance, there are 7,168,077 total cases and 205,372 deaths The CDC data closes out the day before reporting. 
  • Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves (R) said the statewide mask mandate expired on Wednesday given that the numbers for average new COVID-19 cases have declined.
  • Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) signed an executive order on Wednesday extending the state’s current COVID-19 restrictions and the public health state of emergency.
  • All people traveling through the Tampa International Airport will be able to get a coronavirus test on the premises starting Oct. 1, TPA and BayCare Health System representatives announced Tuesday.
  • Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker (D) announced that COVID-19 resurgence mitigations will be implemented in Region 1, the northwestern-most counties in Illinois, beginning Oct. 3.
  • Connecticut’s State Department of Education, with the assistance of the Connecticut Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security and the Connecticut National Guard, began distributing 600,000 face masks to school districts across the state.
  • New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) appointed the members of the state's independent Clinical Advisory Task Force that will review every COVID-19 vaccine authorized by the federal government and will advise New York State on the vaccines' safety and effectiveness in fighting the virus.
  • Gov. Cuomo also announced that New York will deploy 200 rapid testing machines to the sites of several upticks in specific counties and zip codes throughout the state.
  • Facing pressure from Florida officials, the school board in Miami-Dade County voted on Tuesday to begin opening classrooms nine days earlier than planned. The district’s youngest students can now return to schools on Monday, with nearly all students who have opted for in-person instruction returning by the end of next week.
  • Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) and Lt. Gov. Gilchrist highlighted new data from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services showing significant progress has been made toward reducing the disparate impact COVID-19 has had on communities of color. The state created the Rapid Response Grant program to help local organizations continue the administration’s efforts to tackle racial disparities.
  • Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak (D) announced that he will be issuing an emergency directive adjusting the COVID-19 Statewide Baseline Mitigation Standards, including increasing limits on gathering sizes. The new directive and accompanying guidance address gatherings of all types and iterations. This new directive increases the limit on gatherings from 50 to 250 people or 50 percent of capacity, whichever is less, so long as social distancing can be maintained and all other requirements can be met.
  • Colorado announced revisions to school outbreak guidelines, providing more tools to school districts that adopt best practices for COVID mitigation like seating charts and mask-wearing, to safely quarantine close contacts, instead of automatically quarantining entire cohorts or classrooms of students.
  • Connecticut’s Department of Public Health Acting Commissioner signed an order rescinding previously issued orders limiting visitation at long-term care facilities, including nursing homes, that were issued to protect the health of nursing home residents in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Connecticut, New Jersey, and New York’s regional travel advisory was updated: Colorado has been added to the list of impacted locations that meet the metrics to qualify, and Arizona and Virginia have been removed from the list.
  • Wisconsin reported its highest number of deaths in a single day since late May. The Wisconsin Department of Health Services reported 17 deaths due to the novel coronavirus, which brought the total number of deaths in the state to 1,300 people.
  • In Los Angeles, local health officials haven’t considered reopening schools, but county administrators this week have been pushing the LA health agency to allow younger students to attend classes in-person and put schools with large groups of students from low-income families at the top of the list. Los Angeles Unified is the nation's second-largest school district, and in a typical year, about 40,000 students ride one of the district’s more than 1,300 school buses to and from school. About 80 percent of the district’s students qualify for free or reduced-price meals.
  • Useful state data:
    • Use Johns Hopkins University’s COVID-19 U.S. map as a resource for media, policymakers, and communities to view a collection of critical public health data in one online destination and better understand and track the COVID-19 pandemic in populations both large and small across the country.
    • NASHP has developed a COVID-19 State Action Center which serves as a state-level policy dashboard. Governing is also keeping a running tally of coronavirus news and impacts at the intersection of the health and economic crises in the states and localities.
    • This site from the Kaiser Family Foundation provides state-level information on cases/deaths, social distancing measures, health policy actions, and more.
    • This series of maps shows how states are responding to COVID-19, and this tracker, created and maintained by MultiState Associates, has an up-to-date list of executive orders and various travel restrictions.
International Affairs
  • South Africa will begin allowing some international tourists to enter the country on Thursday for the first time since its national lockdown took effect in March.
  • A health official in Russia said that early clinical trials have been completed on a second vaccine, moving it closer to registration under the Russian approach of approving vaccines for emergency use before beginning late-stage trials to determine whether they are effective. Russia registered its first COVID-19 vaccine — one based on common cold viruses — in August and is now offering a small number of doses outside of trials to people at elevated risk of infection, like health care workers.
  • A former president and opposition politician in Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko, announced on Wednesday that he had tested positive for the coronavirus amid a flurry of virus-related disruptions to Ukrainian politics.
  • South Korea said yesterday that it will impose a fine of up to $85 on anyone caught without a mask in high-risk areas like outdoor gatherings and on public transportation, starting on Oct. 13.
  • Peru will restart international flights to some regional countries as it aims to lift coronavirus restrictions and reopen its economy. Flights to 11 destinations in Colombia, Ecuador, Chile, Bolivia, Paraguay, Uruguay and Panama will resume on Oct. 5. Health protocols including coronavirus tests for passengers arriving to Peru will be mandatory.
  • Chilean health authorities have approved the start of clinical trials for coronavirus vaccines under development by China’s Sinovac and Johnson & Johnson pharmaceutical unit Janssen.
  • Madrid’s regional authorities do not agree with the central government’s plans to lock down the capital city in the coming days, regional health chief Enrique Ruiz Escudero said during a news conference, saying the decision was not valid legally.
  • Turkey’s health minister appeared to acknowledge that the government does not publish the full number of daily positive COVID-19 cases but only those who are symptomatic, while refuting a claim that the case number had been 19 times the official figure.
  • Yesterday, India’s federal government allowed states to reopen schools and other educational institutions, as well as movie theatres, even as coronavirus cases continue to rise in the country.
  • The Italian Senate has been suspended after two members fell ill with COVID-19. Parliamentary activity was suspended after Marco Croatti and Francesco Mollame, from the ruling Five Star Movement, tested positive.
  • The Czech Republic is to enter a state of emergency to control a surge in cases. The measure will be in place from Monday and will last for 30 days.
  • Colombia’s land and water borders will remain closed until Nov. 1, the country’s migration agency said on Wednesday, in an effort to stem coronavirus infections.
  • Norway will allow most amateur team sports to resume and larger crowds at matches in mid-October, as the government eases nationwide restrictions to control the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Slovakia’s government has approved a state emergency to help combat a spike in new coronavirus cases.
  • India's Vice President Venkaiah Naidu has tested positive for COVID-19, according to a tweet posted on his official Twitter account.
  • The incidence rates of the novel coronavirus in Paris, Lyon and Lille have exceeded the threshold of 250 new cases per 100,000 inhabitants set by the government.
  • Canada's daily COVID-19 case count has reached a level not seen since the peak of daily cases in April, Canada's chief public-health official Dr. Theresa Tam said on Wednesday.
  • The U.N. and its partners yesterday received an influx of donations as governments, private sector, civil society, and international organizations committed support to the Access to COVID-19 Tools- (ACT) Accelerator initiative launched by the WHO alongside international partners. Nearly $1 billion in new financing has been committed to the initiative, which the WHO refers to as, "the world’s most comprehensive multilateral end-to-end solution to the devastating COVID-19 pandemic."
  • Global Cases: 34,018,143     Total Deaths: 1,014,995
Lifestyle, Science, and Economy
  • The American Academy of Pediatrics is now reporting that children of all ages make up 10 percent of all COVID-19 cases in the U.S., up from 2 percent back in April. As of Monday, CDC counted over 4,35,000 cases in children and 93 deaths, with less than two percent of the infected requiring hospitalization.
  • On Friday, Oct. 2, the National Academies will release the final Framework for Equitable Allocation of COVID-19 Vaccine report during a free webinar hosted by study committee co-chairs William Foege and Helene Gayle. Sponsored by NIH and CDC, the report will help guide equitable allocation of a limited initial supply of COVID-19 vaccine.
  • European regulators are reportedly set to start an accelerated review of AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine front-runner, meaning the vaccine candidate could be the first to seek approval in the region.
  • A cluster of COVID-19 cases has emerged at Brigham and Women's, a major teaching and research hospital in Boston. The growing number of cases has prompted employees to speak out about what they said was a lack of regular and convenient testing for staff members without symptoms. As of this afternoon, 33 staff members, and 12 patients who were there for other reasons, have tested positive for the virus.
  • One study suggests the many modern office buildings have ventilation systems that could increase risk of COVID-19 exposure. Apparently, widely-used 'mixing ventilation' systems, which are designed to keep conditions uniform in all parts of the room, disperse airborne contaminants evenly throughout the space. These contaminants may include droplets and aerosols, potentially containing viruses. This is particularly concerning as evidence increasingly indicates that the virus is spread primarily through larger droplets and smaller aerosols, which could travel through vents.
  • The Serum Institute of India (SII) pledged to make an additional 100 million doses of effective COVID-19 vaccines for low- and middle-income nations in 2021 as part of an expanded distribution effort with Gavi, the Vaccines Alliance, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the partners said Wednesday. As part of their ramped-up manufacturing pact, the Gates Foundation will plug an additional $150 million into boosting SII and Gavi's production capacity to provide shots at a maximum of $3 per dose, bringing its total commitment to $300 million. 
  • American Airlines will begin furloughing 19,000 employees today, making them the first carrier to make such an announcement.
  • Sri Lanka’s cricket Premier League tournament, due to feature some of the world’s best-known players, has been put off a second time due to strict quarantine rules for foreign players, the game’s national governing body said Wednesday.
  • There are now 8 clinical trials in Phase 3 of testing. The WHO keeps a running list of COVID-19 vaccine candidates, which you can view here. STAT News also has a resource tracking COVID-19 drugs and vaccines. The New York Times has a very helpful vaccine tracker as well, which you can view here
  • BIO’s COVID-19 Pipeline tracker is here.
  • The Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security has an extensive list of commercial and lab-developed tests. 
  • The NIH Office of Portfolio Analysis’s (OPA) expert-curated portfolio of COVID-19 publications and preprints portfolio includes peer-reviewed articles from PubMed and preprints from medRxiv, bioRxiv, ChemRxiv, and arXiv. It is updated daily with the latest available data and enables users to explore and analyze the rapidly growing set of advances in COVID-19 research.
Helpful Articles/Media
Sincerely,
Jessica

Jessica Hyland, J.D.
Executive Director
Iowa Biotechnology Association
Cell: (515) 822-1315
Office: (515) 327-9156
Fax: (515) 327-1407
jessica@iowabio.org
www.iowabio.org
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