Week in Review: November 5

The Week in Review provides an overview of the past week’s top health care content, including industry news and trends, Mayo Clinic and Mayo Clinic Laboratories news, and upcoming events.

Industry News

CDC recommends children as young as 5 get vaccinated against COVID-19

The CDC issued formal recommendations Tuesday for children as young as 5 years old to get vaccinated against COVID-19, clearing the final regulatory hurdle for younger kids to start receiving Pfizer's vaccine this week. "Together, with science leading the charge, we have taken another important step forward in our nation's fight against the virus that causes COVID-19," CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said in a statement.  "We know millions of parents are eager to get their children vaccinated and with this decision, we now have recommended that about 28 million children receive a COVID-19 vaccine." Via CBS News

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Drug companies win in California opioid crisis lawsuit

A California judge has ruled for top drug manufacturers as local governments seek billions of dollars to cover their costs from the nation’s opioid epidemic. Orange County Superior Court Judge Peter Wilson issued a tentative ruling on Monday that said the governments hadn’t proven the pharmaceutical companies used deceptive marketing to increase unnecessary opioid prescriptions and create a public nuisance. “There is simply no evidence to show that the rise in prescriptions was not the result of the medically appropriate provision of pain medications to patients in need,” Wilson wrote in a ruling of more than 40 pages. Via Associated Press

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Pfizer antiviral pill reduced risk of covid hospitalization and death by 89 percent in high-risk people, company study shows

An experimental coronavirus pill reduced the risk of hospitalization and death by 89 percent in high-risk people infected with the virus, pharmaceutical giant Pfizer announced Friday. The effect of the drug, a five-day regimen designed to block the virus from making copies of itself, was found to be so strong midway through the study that an independent committee monitoring the clinical trial recommended it be stopped early. The data has not yet been published or peer-reviewed. Pfizer chief executive Albert Bourla told CNBC that the company would submit data to U.S. regulators before Thanksgiving. Via Washington Post

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Mayo Clinic News

Preparing for your child to get vaccinated? Here are tips from a top Mayo Clinic pediatrician

With children ages 5-11 now eligible to begin the Covid-19 vaccination process, Dr. Robert Jacobson of the Mayo Clinic says now is the time for parents to starting talking with their kids about inoculation. “Parents shouldn’t surprise their child with the vaccination,” said Jacobson, a pediatrician and vaccine researcher with the Mayo Clinic Children's Center. “The child should not first be hearing about the vaccine when they show up at a provider’s office or at a pharmacy.” Jacobson addressed the topic on Wednesday on the heels of the CDC’s long-anticipated endorsement of the Pfizer-BioNTech pediatric vaccine. Via Med City Beat

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Are your symptoms signs of a cold, allergies, Valley fever, West Nile Virus or COVID-19?

People can get diagnosed with Valley fever throughout the year, said Thomas Grys, a Valley fever expert who is director of microbiology at the Mayo Clinic in Arizona. The fungal infection frequently is misdiagnosed and diagnoses can be delayed, he said. "I would say the shared symptoms (with COVID-19) would be shortness of breath, fever, night sweats, rash, fatigue," Grys said. "Those are pretty non-specific, not just these two diseases but more. ... It often gets confused with community-acquired pneumonia, or influenza. But those viral infections tend to have an acute onset of upper respiratory symptoms." Via Arizona Republic

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GOING VIRAL: Rochester woman shares positive experience during Mayo visit, thousands respond

A Rochester woman is going viral for sharing her experience at Mayo Clinic. "It was such a meaningful thing for me," Mayo Clinic patient Melissa Stone said. "After having so many procedures over the past 10 years where I have felt really exposed." Stone is a Muslim woman -- and while she is used to hospital visits, she experienced something new Friday. "I think that was one of the things that was so nice about it," she said. "I didn't ask for anything at all. It was so completely normal. The nurse just brought it along with the hospital gown and everything else." Via KTTC

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Chantell Canfield

Chantell Canfield is a web content coordinator for Mayo Clinic Laboratories. She began working for Mayo Clinic in 2021.