Rochelle Walensky

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Reworked COVID Boosters Are Ready for Arms: CDC

Agency sets minimum ages and recommends wait periods

(Newser) - The director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Thursday recommended Americans receive updated coronavirus vaccine booster shots designed to combat omicron variants. "This recommendation followed a comprehensive scientific evaluation and robust scientific discussion," Dr. Rochelle Walensky said in a statement. "If you are eligible,...

After Botched 'Big Moment,' CDC Leader to Make Changes

Dr. Rochelle Walensky announces an agency reset

(Newser) - If you thought the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention botched some things during the COVID pandemic, the head of the CDC agrees with you. Dr. Rochelle Walensky on Wednesday announced that big changes are required and would be instituted in order to allow the agency to better respond to...

CDC: Most People Don't Need Masks
CDC: Most People
Don't Need Masks

CDC: Most People Don't Need Masks

Recommendation now applies only to high-risk people in high-spread places

(Newser) - Most people in the US can drop the masks, the Center for Disease Control has decided in a major pandemic shift. A change in metrics means wearing a mask to prevent the spread of the coronavirus now is recommended for less than a third of the population, the agency said...

More Children Are in Hospital With COVID Than Ever

Walensky urges surrounding young children with people who are vaccinated

(Newser) - It's not clear whether more children are being hospitalized with COVID-19 because they aren't vaccinated or because they're dealing with more spread in their communities, the CDC director said Friday. Either way, the Hill reports, the hospitalization rates for child COVID patients is higher than it's...

CDC Change: Give Boosters to All Over 12

New policy provides for a clearer message to parents

(Newser) - With coronavirus infections skyrocketing and schools at risk of shutting down, a panel of advisers on Wednesday urged the CDC to fight back by recommending 10 million young people receive the protection of a vaccine booster shot. CDC Director Rochelle Walensky agreed, the Washington Post reports. The change will allow...

Indicators Agree: Omicron Is Milder, Fauci Says

Infections are rising much faster than hospitalizations in the US

(Newser) - Early data from the US and abroad make two things clear about the omicron variant of the coronavirus. "We know now, incontrovertibly, that this is a highly, highly transmissible virus," Dr. Anthony Fauci said Wednesday. And "all indications point to a lesser severity of omicron versus delta....

CDC Gives Thumbs-Up to 'Test-to-Stay' COVID Policy

Practice allows close contacts of infected students to go to school if they themselves test negative

(Newser) - US health officials are endorsing "test-to-stay" policies that allow close contacts of students infected with the coronavirus to remain in classrooms if they test negative. The CDC decided to more firmly embrace the approach, already used by many school districts, after research of such policies in the Chicago and...

CDC Makes Boosters Simple: Everyone 18 and Over Is Eligible

Walensky approves vaccine recommendation from independent experts

(Newser) - The final approval for administering coronavirus vaccine booster shots to everyone 18 and older was granted Friday evening, when the CDC director signed off on the idea. In doing so, Rochelle Walensky accepted the unanimous recommendations from independent experts, the Washington Post reports. "Based on the compelling evidence, all...

CDC Director: 'Enjoy Your Trick-or-Treating'

'Put on those costumes, stay outside,' Walensky says

(Newser) - What a difference a year—and a vaccine—makes. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Rochelle Walensky says Americans should enjoy Halloween traditions including trick-or-treating this year, the Washington Post reports. Last year, the CDC warned against traditional trick-or-treating and said that while socially distanced outdoor events might be...

CDC Might Rethink 'Fully Vaccinated'

Booster shots could alter meaning of virus protection, Walensky says

(Newser) - With booster shots entering the picture, the meaning of being "fully vaccinated" against the coronavirus might have to be adjusted. Director Rochelle Walensky said Friday that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention "may need to update" its definition, Axios reports. At the moment, anyone two weeks past...

'Highly Unusual' Twist in CDC's Booster Shot Decision

CDC director overruled panel on key recommendation

(Newser) - The path has been cleared for COVID vaccine booster shots for millions of Americans. A CDC panel endorsed Pfizer booster shots for older people Thursday but split with the FDA's approval on a key issue: It didn't recommend booster shots for workers, including teachers and healthcare workers, whose...

CDC Chief 'Deeply Concerned' on Teen COVID Cases

Rochelle Walensky cites rising hospitalization rates in plea to parents to get their kids vaccinated

(Newser) - The head of the CDC made a plea to parents of teens this week, imploring them to get their kids vaccinated against COVID and citing a study showing increased hospitalization rates of adolescents. "I am deeply concerned," Dr. Rochelle Walensky said Friday, the same day new research showed...

CDC Guidance 'Not Based On Science,' Nurses Say

The largest nurses union in the US says mask guidelines were relaxed too soon

(Newser) - Eager to ditch your mask? Not so fast, the nation’s largest nurses union says. National Nurses United has vocally disagreed with the CDC’s new guidance on masks. The CDC said Thursday that fully vaccinated people can go about their business without masks or social distancing, with a few...

Walensky: Politics Didn't Affect Mask Decision

CDC boss: Unvaccinated people still are not safe

(Newser) - Asked Sunday whether political pressure played a role in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's about-face on masks, the agency's chief said the deciding factor was science. "It certainly would have been easier if the science had evolved a week earlier," Rochelle Walensky said on...

Youth Sports Is a Suspect as Infections Increase

Michigan's governor asks for a timeout, though some teams are declining

(Newser) - With the rates of young people hospitalized for COVID-19 climbing, especially in Upper Midwest states, officials again are looking for ways to reverse the trend. Sports is one focus. Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer would like organized youth sports, games and practices, to take a two-week break. It's not so...

CDC Move Marks New Strategy on Racism

Director deems it a 'serious public health threat,' takes steps to combat it

(Newser) - The coronavirus pandemic has been at the top of everyone's mind for more than a year, and the focus of infectious disease experts around the world. But the CDC says there's another major issue plaguing the US, and its director is now calling attention to it. "Racism...

US COVID Deaths Plummet to Year-Low, but With an Asterisk

Encouraging figures might be incomplete due to Easter holiday

(Newser) - This weekend the US saw COVID-19 deaths drop to their lowest point in more than a year, according to Johns Hopkins University data . The number reported for Sunday, 222 deaths, is the lowest since March 23, 2020, when 192 confirmed deaths were recorded in the pandemic's early days. At...

Those Vaccinated Can't Spread COVID? Not So Fast

The CDC has walked back comments made by its director

(Newser) - For a brief moment last week, it seemed as if the CDC was giving us the news we've been waiting for: In reference to the real-world study of nearly 4,000 vaccinated individuals , the agency's director, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, said Monday that "our data ... suggests ... that vaccinated...

Fauci Takes CDC's Point but Wouldn't Say 'Doom'
Fauci Isn't
Sure He'd
Say 'Doom'

Fauci Isn't Sure He'd Say 'Doom'

CDC director has felt more hopeful since her warning

(Newser) - Dr. Anthony Fauci said Thursday that he agrees with the emotional warning Dr. Rochelle Walensky issued this week about coronavirus cases increasing. But he might have phrased it differently, the Hill reports. "You know, I don't know if I would use the word 'impending doom,'"...

CDC Chief on New COVID Cases: 'I'm Scared'
CDC Chief
Feels 'Impending
Doom' Over
COVID Cases
the rundown

CDC Chief Feels 'Impending Doom' Over COVID Cases

Daily infections, hospitalizations, and deaths continue to increase

(Newser) - The head of the CDC gave an update on COVID Monday that took a personal turn. Rochelle Walensky appeared to fight back tears as she warned Americans in stark terms that the rising number of coronavirus cases threatens to upend progress from vaccines, reports Axios . "Just please hold on...

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