In a North Korean hospital, 10 patients with COVID-19 symptoms were sent to an unheated ward typically used to treat tuberculosis, Radio Free Asia reports; they later died amid freezing temperatures.   The hospital, in Chongjin, then falsified the cause of their deaths—…

Some people prone to acute immune system reactions or other health issues have been reluctant to get COVID-19 vaccines, fearing rare but potentially serious side effects.   They may soon have a new option: vaccines made from purified proteins.   How they’re…

The US shortage of at-home rapid tests is totally foreign to its peers across the Atlantic, “where at-home tests are ubiquitous and as cheap as a decent cappuccino.”   The problem is rooted in the same testing woes that have dogged the country throughout the pandemic:…

African scientists are working hard to test new drugs against COVID-19 that would also be affordable, but they are running into significant challenges, Nature reports.   Why new drugs are needed:

A new Lancet study offers proof that England’s 13-year-old HPV vaccination program prevented thousands of women from developing cervical cancer—not just precancers, The Guardian reports. 

Kids ages 5–11 will begin rolling up their sleeves in the US this week after a CDC expert panel endorsed use of Pfizer’s COVID-19 pediatric vaccine yesterday.   The panel voted 14–0 to recommend the vaccine’s use, and CDC Director Rochelle Walensky approved the…

Vaccinated people can pass the Delta variant to their vaccinated housemates, though at lower rates than to unvaccinated people, according to a new Lancet study from Imperial College London, Reuters reports. 

By year’s end, just 5 African countries will meet the World Health Assembly goal of fully vaccinating 40% of their populations against COVID-19, WHO Africa said yesterday.   Takeaways: 

Puerto Rico leads the US in COVID-19 immunizations with more than 73% of the population fully vaccinated. The US territory also has one of the country’s lowest community transmission rates.   All while still recovering from Hurricane Maria, and with a poverty rate of 43.5%…

In Ukraine, Russia, and other parts of Eastern Europe, COVID-19 vaccines are plentiful—but confidence is not, the AP reports.   Even medical workers are hesitant to get vaccinated in parts of Ukraine; 30% of the employees at a hospital in Biliaivka, near Odesa, have shunned…