What We’re Reading: US to Share 60M Vaccine Doses Worldwide; COVID-19 Workplace Safety Rules; No Action on Drug Pricing

April 27, 2021
AJMC Staff

The United States will distribute 60 million doses of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine to other countries over the next several months; workplace safety rules on COVID-19 submitted by Labor Department for review; White House reportedly will not include measures targeting drug prices in antipoverty package.

US to Share 60M AstraZeneca COVID-19 Vaccine Doses With Other Countries

As reported by NPR, the White House announced yesterday during a press briefing that the United States will distribute 60 million doses of the AstraZeneca (AZ) COVID-19 vaccine to other countries over the next several months. Yet to be authorized in the United States while awaiting safety reviews by the FDA, the US government has previously sent excess AZ vaccines from its stockpile to Canada and Mexico. The White House did not specify which countries would receive the added shipments of the AZ vaccine, which has been shown to be 76% effective at preventing symptomatic COVID-19.

Biden Admin Advances Emergency COVID-19 Workplace Safety Rules

After setting a March 15 deadline to the Labor Department to decide whether mandatory workplace safety rules to protect workers against COVID-19 were warranted, the department sent the safety standards to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review yesterday after weeks of delay and growing pressure from Democrats and safety advocates. POLITICO reports that the OMB’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs is expected to take 2 weeks before it publishes the requirements, which are expected to require employers to supply their workers with masks, have a written plan to prevent exposure, and take other precautions.

Measures Targeting Drug Prices Off the Table

The White House is not planning to include any prescription drug pricing proposals sought by Democrats in Biden’s legislative package to address poverty, according to The Wall Street Journal. The paper reported that the antipoverty package will include funds for supporting the Affordable Care Act.