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The Biden administration — retaining a marketing campaign promise — introduced it could again a brief waiver of patent protections for the covid-19 vaccines, arousing the ire of the drug business.
The administration can also be selecting a battle with tobacco firms, because the Meals and Drug Administration prepares to ban menthol flavorings in cigarettes and small cigars. Tobacco makers have lengthy promoted menthol merchandise to the African American neighborhood, and the motion is controversial.
This week’s panelists are Julie Rovner of KHN, Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico, Tami Luhby of CNN and Kimberly Leonard of Enterprise Insider.
Among the many takeaways from this week’s podcast:
- It’s unclear whether or not the Biden administration’s choice to assist a patent waiver for covid vaccines foreshadows Democrats’ willingness to tackle the highly effective pharmaceutical business. There’s a college of thought that the patent subject is extra about commerce and mental property than it’s about well being care.
- President Joe Biden has issued a brand new objective for vaccinations — getting at the very least one dose into the arms of 70% of adults by July 4. And the FDA is predicted to grant emergency authorization to vaccinate teenagers age 12 and up within the coming days. However the vaccination effort is slowing down as most of those that desire a shot have been vaccinated. Now the problem is to succeed in people who find themselves hesitant and people with entry issues, both due to the place they stay or as a result of it’s tough for them to seek out the time.
- Even and not using a plan from the administration, Democrats on Capitol Hill say they plan to press forward with laws to cut back prescription drug costs. However the prospects stay cloudy. Democrats have solely a slim majority within the Home and no votes to spare within the Senate, so discovering a compromise is not going to be simple, regardless of the recognition of the difficulty.
- The FDA’s transfer to ban menthol flavoring for cigarettes has straight raised the difficulty of racial disparities in well being care. On one hand, African Individuals are way more prone to smoke menthol merchandise than white or Hispanic populations, partially as a result of the tobacco business has strongly promoted menthol inside Black communities. If individuals stopped smoking in consequence, that will promote higher well being. However some individuals are nervous about creating one other authorized hurdle that will give regulation enforcement a motive to harass individuals of coloration.
Plus, for additional credit score, the panelists advocate their favourite well being coverage tales of the week they suppose it’s best to learn too:
Julie Rovner: KHN’s “The Vulnerable Homebound Are Left Behind on Vaccination,” by Jenny Gold
Tami Luhby: Stat’s “Biden’s Medicaid Pressure Tactics Could Put His Team at Odds With Hospitals,” by Rachel Cohrs
Alice Miranda Ollstein: The Washington Submit’s “Many Police Officers Spurn Coronavirus Vaccines as Departments Hold Off on Mandates,” by Isaac Stanley-Becker
Kimberly Leonard: Enterprise Insider’s “Big Insurers Like UnitedHealth, Humana, Cigna, and Anthem Are Moving Beyond Paying for Care. A New Report Reveals Just How Much Their DNA Has Changed,” by Shelby Livingston
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