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Health officials plan autumn vaccination campaign as COVID-19 cases rise

June 30, World (LNW): Amid a resurgence of COVID-19 cases in various regions, health authorities are organising an autumn vaccination drive, Associated Press reported.

On Thursday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommended new vaccinations for all Americans this autumn.

While the urgency for vaccinations has decreased compared to previous years due to widespread immunity from prior infections and vaccinations, the need persists due to diminishing immunity, emerging variants, and ongoing COVID-19-related deaths and hospitalisations.

Recent data shows an increase in COVID-19-related emergency visits and hospitalisations, particularly in the southwestern United States, raising concerns about a potential summer surge.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has instructed vaccine manufacturers to target the JN.1 strain of the virus, although there is also consideration for a KP.2 offshoot.

The updated vaccines, recommended for everyone aged six months and older, are expected to be available in August and September.

Despite these efforts, vaccination uptake remains low, with surveys indicating that a significant portion of the population is not planning to get the updated shots.

Furthermore, the CDC’s Bridge Access Program, which has funded vaccines for uninsured adults, will end in August due to a lack of funding.

Since the pandemic began, approximately 1.2 million COVID-related deaths have been reported in the US, with a significant impact on those aged 75 and older.

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