Shortage of Children’s Tylenol

Childrens Tylenol Shortage

Revelations 18:23:’For the merchants were the great men of the earth; for by thy sorceries were all nations deceived.’

Important Takeaways:

  • Now pharmacists run out of CHILDREN’S TYLENOL after crippling antibiotic shortage – as post-COVID blizzard of viruses sweep through US kids
  • A Children’s Tylenol shortage currently affecting Canada has carried over into the United States, pharmacists in multiple American cities have warned
  • The drug’s short supply stems from a recent spike in pediatric sickness as seasonal bugs come back after being suppressed during the pandemic
  • Worsening matters is a simultaneous shortages of four key antibiotics and respiratory drugs for children, leading to a marked rise in kids hospitalized
  • Now, in addition to reporting shortages of some of the world’s most widely used antibiotics, US pharmacies have reported that Tylenol too has become scarce
  • The pain reliever is one of the most popular drugs in the county, and is often used to reduce youngsters’ fevers

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Breakdown of services due to Omicron explosion

Luke 21:11 There will be great earthquakes, famines and pestilences in various places, and fearful events and great signs from heaven.

Important Takeaways:

  • Omicron explosion spurs nationwide breakdown of services
  • First responders, hospitals, schools and government agencies have employed an all-hands-on-deck approach to keep the public safe, but they are worried how much longer they can keep it up.
  • In Kansas’ Johnson County, paramedics are working 80 hours a week.
  • Pharmacies have been slammed by staffing shortages, either because employees are out sick or have left altogether.
  • In Los Angeles, more than 800 police and fire personnel were sidelined because of the virus
  • In New York City, officials have had to delay or scale back trash and subway services

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France’s COVID-19 cases reach national record while deaths also rise

PARIS (Reuters) -France had its worst-ever day in terms of new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, with more than 91,000 new cases being recorded while the number of deaths also climbed, as the country battles against a fifth wave of the virus.

“Today’s figures are not good,” said Health Minister Olivier Veran.

Veran had earlier told reporters that the case number would stand at around 88,000 for Thursday, but the final official tally from the health ministry showed 91,608 new cases.

Veran had already warned earlier this week that France would soon be at 100,000 new COVID-19 cases per day.

Data from the health ministry also showed that France registered a further 179 COVID-19 deaths in hospitals over the last 24 hours, while the number of COVID-19 patients in intensive care units reached 3,208, up by 61 from the previous day.

President Emmanuel Macron is hoping France’s COVID-19 vaccine booster campaign will help to contain the fifth wave of the coronavirus to hit the country.

He is aiming to avoid imposing tough, new restrictions, although the French government has said all options will be considered to tackle any rapid deterioration in France’s COVID-19 situation.

(Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta and Juliette Jabkhiro, editing by Mark Heinrich, Barbara Lewis and Aurora Ellis)

Some New York hospitals curtail service as vaccine mandate triggers staff crunch

By Maria Caspani and Nathan Layne

NEW YORK (Reuters) -New York hospitals were preparing to fire thousands of healthcare workers for not complying with a COVID-19 vaccine mandate taking effect on Monday, with some in the upstate region curtailing services to cope with staffing shortfalls.

The Erie County Medical Center (ECMC) in Buffalo has suspended elective inpatient surgeries and will not accept intensive-care patients from other hospitals as it prepares to fire about 300 unvaccinated employees, a spokesperson said.

Catholic Health, one of the largest healthcare providers in Western New York, had said it would postpone some elective surgeries on Monday as it works to boost its vaccination rate, which reached 90% of workers as of Sunday afternoon.

Peter Cutler, a spokesman for ECMC, said the decision to curtail some operations would put a big dent in the hospital’s revenue, as elective inpatient surgeries bring in about $1 million per week, in addition to inconveniencing patients.

“Financially, it’s a big deal,” Cutler said.

New York’s state health department issued an order last month mandating that all healthcare workers receive at least their first COVID-19 shot by Sept. 27, triggering a rush by hospitals to inoculate as many employees as possible.

New York Governor Kathy Hochul said on Saturday she was considering bringing in National Guard and out-of-state medical workers to fill likely staffing shortages, with 16% of the state’s 450,000 hospital staff, or roughly 72,000 workers, not fully vaccinated.

The inoculation push comes amid a broader battle between state and federal government leaders seeking to use vaccine mandates to help counter the highly infectious Delta variant of the coronavirus and workers who are against such requirements, many claiming religious grounds for their objections.

The Delta variant drove a surge in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in the United States that peaked in early September and has since fallen, according to a Reuters tally. Deaths, a lagging indicator, continue to rise with about 2,000 lives lost on average a day for the past week.

NYC HOSPITALS ‘FULLY FUNCTIONAL’

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio told a news conference on Monday that hospitals in the city were not seeing major impacts from the mandate, but that he was worried about other areas of the state, where vaccination rates are lower.

Of the 43,000 employees at the city’s 11 public hospitals, about 5,000 were not vaccinated, Dr. Mitchell Katz, head of NYC Health + Hospitals, said at the news conference. Katz said 95% of nurses were vaccinated and all of the group’s facilities were “open and fully functional.”

It was not immediately clear how pending legal cases concerning religious exemptions would apply to the state’s plans and what recourse might be available to fired employees. A federal judge in Albany temporarily ordered New York state officials to allow religious exemptions for the state-imposed vaccine mandate on healthcare workers.

At St. Peter’s Health Partners in the Albany region, about 400 employees are at risk of losing their job for failing to show proof of vaccination or intent to be inoculated, said Dr. Thea Dalfino, chief medical officer for SPHP Acute Care.

She warned that some services including elective surgeries may need to be halted due to staffing issues at their hospitals. The unvaccinated workers will be suspended without pay and given until Oct. 8 to comply or be fired, a spokesperson said.

Others have made greater progress with their vaccination drives.

New York-Presbyterian, the largest private network of hospitals in New York City, gave its employees until Sept. 22 to get a shot. Only 250 out of 48,000 total employees chose not to be vaccinated and were terminated, a spokesperson said.

Rochester Regional Health, which oversees a network of nine hospitals in upstate New York, said on Monday that nearly 99% of its employees had either received one dose or had been granted an exemption.

The mandate has also thrown up new staffing challenges for nursing homes and other long-term care facilities, many of which had struggled to retain workers even prior to the pandemic.

Stephen Hanse, who heads a statewide long-term care association, said he supports the vaccine mandate but worries it could exacerbate such staffing problems, hindering the capacity for nursing homes to accept hospital patients upon discharge.

(Reporting by Nathan Layne in Wilton, Connecticut and Maria Caspani in New York; Editing by Bill Berkrot)

France suspends 3,000 health staff as Europe targets vaccine refusal

By Matthieu Protard and Ingrid Melander

PARIS (Reuters) -Hospitals, care homes and health centers have suspended around 3,000 workers across France for failing to comply with mandatory COVID vaccination, the government said on Thursday, as countries around Europe weigh how far to go to combat the pandemic.

While Italy is set to announce later on Thursday that proof of vaccination or a negative test will be compulsory for all workers, going further than any other country in the region, the Netherlands plans a similar step – but only to go to bars or clubs.

Britain, meanwhile, says it is highly likely to require front-line health and social care workers in England to be vaccinated as part of a plan to contain the virus during winter.

In France, President Emmanuel Macron’s decision in mid-July to require a similar health pass to go anywhere from restaurants to gyms and museums, and make the jab mandatory for health workers, has massively increased vaccination take-up.

With the mandate for workers in hospitals and care homes taking effect on Wednesday, its very concrete impact – unvaccinated staff forbidden to work – started to be felt.

According to local daily Nice Matin, nearly 450 health workers – out of 7,500 – have been suspended in just one hospital in the city of Nice, in southern France.

The government, however, shrugged off the impact.

“It hasn’t been chaos, far from it,” Health Minister Olivier Veran told French RTL radio, adding there were 27 million workers in the sector.

There have been a few cases where it has affected care, he said, like the use of an MRI being briefly complicated, but most suspended staff work in support roles, limiting the impact.

“Most of the suspensions are only temporary … many have decided to get vaccinated as they see that the vaccination mandate is a reality,” Veran said.

But unions warn of likely disruptions to care, and just a few absentees in a team is enough to trigger a crisis, Emmanuel Chignon, a care home manager in Bordeaux told Reuters this week, pointing to how hard it was to hire staff in the sector.

“If we can’t replace the carers who leave, the work will fall on the others, and I fear an unvirtuous circle, with tiredness, exhaustion and an increase in absenteeism,” he said.

MANDATORY

In Italy, where vaccination for health workers was made mandatory at the end of March, some have been suspended, but with numbers nowhere near those seen in France.

As of Sept. 16, some 728 doctors in all of Italy had been suspended for failing to be vaccinated, the Italian doctors’ federation said.

Italy is now set to go much further and announce on Thursday that a “Green pass” – showing someone has received at least one vaccine dose, tested negative or recently recovered from the virus – will be mandatory for all public and private sector workers. Failure to have a Green Pass will result in workers being suspended and losing their pay.

In other countries, like the Netherlands, opinion polls show a majority of the public favoring mandatory vaccination for health workers, with the workers themselves mostly opposed to it, and the government has said it will not take such measures.

However a pass showing proof of vaccination or a recent negative coronavirus test is set to be required there as of Sept 25 to go to bars, restaurants, clubs or cultural events.

Although polls have shown that a majority of the Dutch support the measure, the pass is strongly opposed by the around 30% of the population who have so far refused to be vaccinated. Critics say the measure is meant to force people to get the jab.

(Reporting by Blandine Henault, Matthieu Protard and Ingrid Melander in Paris, Crispian Balmer and Francesco Zecchini in Rome, Bart Mejier in Amsterdam; Writing by Ingrid Melander; Editing by Alex Richardson, William Maclean)

Overwhelmed Philippines hospitals hit by staff resignations

By Neil Jerome Morales and Karen Lema

MANILA (Reuters) -Exhausted by the COVID-19 workload, Loui quit her job as an intensive care unit nurse at a private hospital in the Philippines earlier this year.

The 30-year-old, who declined to give her last name for fear of reprisals, is among thousands of medical workers who have resigned during the pandemic, complaining of low pay and poor working conditions. Others have sought better jobs abroad.

“We can’t even take a proper day off because we are often called back to cover for other staff who were in quarantine or resigned,” said Loui, who was earning 20,000 pesos ($394) a month, including overtime, before she quit in March.

Hospitals fear the desertions have reached a critical point just as the Delta variant sends the number of cases soaring, as it has done elsewhere in Southeast Asia and worldwide.

The Private Hospitals Association of the Philippines (PHAPi)estimated that 40% of private hospital nurses resigned last year, but more followed new waves of infections this year. Public hospitals are facing similar challenges.

“If we want to increase bed capacity, that is easy, but the problem is the nursing component,” PHAPi’s president, Jose Rene de Grano, told Reuters.

More than a year and a half into the pandemic, reported coronavirus infections in the Philippines have soared to more than 1.75 million, the second highest in Southeast Asia, while deaths have exceeded 30,000.

‘DEMORALIZED’

Philippine Nurses Association President Melbert Reyes said he feared that hospitals could see even more nurses quit if their demands for better benefits and conditions went unmet.

“A lot of our nurses are demoralized,” Reyes told Reuters.

Union leaders in several hospitals in virus hot spots last week threatened to strike, while a nursing group warned that dozens could resign over unpaid allowance and benefits.

The state auditor last week flagged “deficiencies” involving 67.3 billion pesos, casting doubts on the regularity of related transactions in the health ministry’s pandemic response.

“But to the issue of whether the money has been stolen, that is pure bullshit,” Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte said in a weekly national address late on Monday.

The lure of better paying jobs abroad is also making it harder to fill nursing vacancies, said Donnel John Siason, president of the union at the University of Santo Tomas hospital.

This year nearly 7,000 nurses have moved abroad, including to the United States and Britain, joining hundreds of thousands of other Filipino nurses already working abroad.

Dave Santos, a 39-year old nurse at the Quezon City General Hospital, said he hoped to leave the Philippines too.

“We are giving our best,” said Santos, a father of three. “But we are just people who get tired and we have needs.”

($1 = 50.7150 Philippine pesos)

(Reporting by Karen Lema; Editing by Matthew Tostevin, Gareth Jones and Jonathan Oatis)

Over 71% of Lebanon’s population risks losing access to safe water – UNICEF

BEIRUT (Reuters) – The United Nations warned on Friday that more than four million people in Lebanon, including one million refugees risked losing access to safe water as shortages of funding, fuel and supplies affect water pumping.

“UNICEF estimates that most water pumping will gradually cease across the country in the next four to six weeks,” a statement by the U.N. body said.

Lebanon is battling an economic meltdown that has propelled more than half of its population into poverty and seen its currency lose over 90% of its value in less than two years.

The financial crisis has translated into severe shortages of basic goods such as fuel and medicine as dollars run dry.

UNICEF said that should the public water supply system collapse, water costs could jump by 200% a month as water would be secured from private water suppliers.

The U.N. agency said it needed $40 million a year to secure the minimum levels of fuel, chlorine, spare parts and maintenance required to keep critical systems operational.

“Unless urgent action is taken, hospitals, schools and essential public facilities will be unable to function,” UNICEF Representative in Lebanon, Yukie Mokuo, was quoted as saying in the statement.

(Reporting By Maha El Dahan; editing by Grant McCool)

Fully vaccinated people can shed masks in most places and travel -U.S. CDC

By David Shepardson

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Thursday advised that fully vaccinated people do not need to wear masks outdoors and can avoid wearing them indoors in most places, updated guidance the agency said will allow life to begin to return to normal.

The CDC also said fully vaccinated people will not need to physically distance in most places. The agency also hopes the guidance will prod more Americans to get vaccinated.

President Joe Biden emerged at the White House for remarks without a mask. “I think it’s a great milestone, a great day,” he said.

“If you’re fully vaccinated and can take your mask off, you’ve earned the right to do something that Americans are known for all around the world: greeting others with a smile,” he said, flashing a brief smile himself.

CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said the new guidance just two weeks after its most recent update, was based on a sharp reduction in cases, expansion of vaccines to younger people and vaccine efficacy against coronavirus variants.

“We followed the science here,” Walensky said adding, “a coalescence of more science that has emerged just in the last week.”

Biden earlier shed his mask during a meeting with lawmakers, Republican Senator Shelly Moore Capito told reporters. “We heard all about it. The president took his off too,” she said.

Some journalists at the White House also shed their masks.

The CDC had faced criticism, even from public health officials, that it has been too cautious in its guidance. Critics have said people need to see more benefit of getting vaccinated in terms of returning to normal activities.

“In the past couple of weeks, we have seen additional data to show these vaccines work in the real world, they stand up to the variants, and vaccinated people are less likely to transmit the virus,” the agency said in a news release.

It added, “We needed to take the time to review the full body of evidence to get this right, and that’s how we came to this decision.”

‘NEED A REWARD’

Dr. William Schaffner, an infectious disease doctor at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, said he supports the new guidance that many had been calling for.

“People in state health departments and infectious disease doctors have been saying this for some time because they’re so impressed with the effectiveness of the vaccine, and also, they have the feeling that people who are vaccinated need a reward,” he said.

Republican Senator Susan Collins had been critical of the CDC’s delay in revising the guidance.

“Today’s announcement on masks, while overdue, is certainly a step in the right direction,” she said in a statement. “If people find they cannot do anything differently after a vaccine, they will not see the benefit in getting vaccinated.”

The revised guidance is a major step toward returning to pre-pandemic life, but the agency still recommends vaccinated people wear masks on planes and trains, and at airports, transit hubs, mass transit and in places like hospitals and doctor’s offices.

The U.S. government last month extended mask requirements across transportation networks through Sept. 13. Walensky said the CDC plans to soon issued updated guidance for transit.

The new guidance says vaccinated Americans can resume all travel, do not need to quarantine after international trips and do not need to be tested for COVID-19 if exposed to someone who is COVID-19 positive but asymptomatic.

However, Americans still face some international travel restrictions, including non-essential trips to Canada.

Masks became a political issues in the United States with then-President Donald Trump resisting mandating masks while President Joe Biden embraced masks and mandated them for transit hubs. Some U.S. states issued aggressive mask mandates while others declined or dropped them months ago.

The CDC said fully vaccinated people should still wear masks where required by federal, state, local, tribal or territorial laws, and abide by such rules and regulations, including from local businesses and workplace guidance.

In late April, the CDC said fully vaccinated people can safely engage in outdoor activities like walking and hiking without wearing masks, but recommended continuing to use face-coverings in public spaces where they are required.

Walensky said on Thursday immune-compromised individuals should consult doctors before shedding masks and emphasized people who have not been vaccinated should continue to wear them. She added vaccinated people who have COVID-19 symptoms should put masks back on.

(Reporting by David Shepardson; Additional reporting by Steve Holland in Washington and Julie Steenhuysen in Chicago; Editing by Franklin Paul and Bill Berkrot)

Polish hospitals under strain as coronavirus cases hit 2021 record

WARSAW (Reuters) – Poland reported a record number of new coronavirus cases on Wednesday just shy of 30,000, as the pandemic cripples hospitals in some parts of the country and the government mulls sending patients to different regions to help cope.

Poland has been hit very hard by a third wave of cases and a highly contagious variant of the virus first discovered in Britain. The regions of Silesia in the south and Mazowiecki, where the capital Warsaw is located, in particular have struggled.

The government has faced criticism for failing to support the healthcare system as cases rise, while it has called on the public to observe current restrictions more closely.

“Poland’s eyes are focused on Silesia,” Health Minister Adam Niedzielski said on Wednesday, adding that the government was considering moving patients from the south to the east, where more beds are available.

In Silesia, Tuesday data showed that of 305 available respirators, 257 were occupied, while 2,894 of 3,723 hospital beds were occupied.

Doctors said the whole country’s healthcare system was struggling, however.

“We are lacking beds everywhere, let’s not fool ourselves. This is an all-Poland situation,” immunologist Pawel Grzesiowski told Reuters.

On Wednesday the number of occupied beds rose to 26,511 from 26,075, while occupied ventilators rose edged up to 2,537. The ministry said it has 35,444 hospital beds available for COVID-19 patients and 3,366 ventilators.

Poland reported 29,978 new infections on Wednesday and 575 daily coronavirus-related deaths, a record in 2021.

The country has reported 2.12 million confirmed cases overall and 50,340 deaths.

The government ordered theatres, shopping malls, hotels and cinemas to close last week as cases rose.

More restrictions loom ahead of the Easter holidays, typically marked by packed church services and family gatherings in the deeply Catholic country.

“We have to suffocate the third wave. That’s why we will announce new restrictions…that will be enforced during the week before and the week after the (Easter) holidays,” Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki told a news conference on Wednesday.

Those restrictions are expected to be announced on Thursday.

(Reporting by Agnieszka Barteczko, Joanna Plucinska, Alicja Ptak and Pawel Florkiewicz; Editing by Andrew Heavens and Hugh Lawson)

France reports 4,246 COVID-19 patients in intensive care, new 2021 high

PARIS (Reuters) – The number of people in intensive care units in French hospitals with COVID-19 rose by 27 to 4,246, the highest so far this year, the health ministry reported on Thursday.

The number of new positive cases also remained on a steadily increasing trend, up by 34,998 to 4.18 million in the second-biggest increase in absolute numbers this year, following an increase of 38,501 on Wednesday.

Compared with last Thursday, the case count was up by 4.8%, the 10th consecutive increase week-on-week, but remained well below week-on-week increases in the range of 20 to 30% ahead of a second lockdown in November.

The virus’s cumulative death toll rose by another 268 to 91,679, ministry data showed.

The government will detail further confinement measures at a news conference at 1800 GMT.

(Reporting by GV De Clercq; Editing by Benoit Van Overstraeten and Alex Richardson)