What We’re Reading: Expanding Student Health Care; Depression Soars; RSV Vaccine for Infants

The Biden administration said it will expand health care access, including mental health care, to students; depression reaches an all-time high in the United States; the FDA’s independent vaccine advisers are meeting to discuss the safety and effectiveness of a respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) vaccine.

White House to Expand Health Care Access for Students

The White House is taking resolute action to make it easier for schools to provide vital health care services, especially mental health services, for millions of students across the country, announced Thursday by CMS. A total of 3 actions through the U.S. Departments of Education and HHS will continue on the path of the whole-of-government approach to meet families where they are and secure health care access, including mental health care, for children.

Almost 18% of US Adults Are Depressed, Survey Says

Depression is more rife than ever in the United States, says a new report from Gallup, according to CNN Health. Almost 18% of adults—more than 1 in 6— say they are depressed or receiving depression treatment, a spike of more than 7 percentage points since 2015 when Gallup initially started polling on the topic. Almost 3 in 10 adults have been clinically diagnosed with depression at some point in their lives, another record high, according to the survey. Possible causes are the COVID-19 pandemic, or increased awareness about mental health conditions.

FDA Advisers Will Consider RSV Vaccine to Protect Newborns

The FDA’s independent vaccine advisers are meeting Thursday to discuss whether a new vaccine to protect infants from respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is safe and effective, reported CNN Health. If the vaccine gets agency approval, it will be the first to protect babies against RSV, which scientists have been working toward for decades. The maternal vaccine is a 1-dose shot that would be given to pregnant people late in pregnancy and would trigger the development of antibodies that are passed to the fetus and provide protection for about the first 6 months of the baby’s life. Trials show that the vaccine cuts hospital admittance risk of babies with moderate to severe infection.

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