Hundreds of thousands of workers — many of them Long Island residents — will return Monday to their jobs in construction, manufacturing, retail and other sectors as New York City takes the first steps toward reopening an economy battered by the coronavirus pandemic.In Nassau and Suffolk meanwhile, stores, hair salons, real estate companies, professional services and other businesses are preparing to open their doors Wednesday when Long Island graduates to Phase 2 of guidelines set by the state.
The key to safely reopening the city, which has been the center of the pandemic, killing nearly 22,000, and also home to police brutality protests that public health experts fear could bring a surge in coronavirus cases, will be aggressive testing, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said.“We’re going to do 35,000 tests per day just in New York City,” the governor said Sunday during his daily briefing on the pandemic. “So we’ll watch it on a daily basis to find out exactly what is happening.”The MTA, which expects ridership to only be at about 20% Monday, will make hand sanitizer available at stations and ask commuters to wear masks. Masks will be provided to commuters without them, officials said.
2 Billion Doses of Oxford’s Unproven Coronavirus Vaccine Will Soon Be Ready to Produce
The vaccine is being produced by AstraZeneca British drug maker, drawing on work by researchers from Oxford University.It announced Thursday that it had signed agreements with the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and Gavi the Vaccine Alliance to boost its supplies.The company has committed to mass-producing the vaccine before it has been proved effective, an unusual step designed to compress the long timeline of vaccine production.
CEPI and Gavi are both charities supported the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the World Health Organisation. The US$750 million agreement with CEPI and Gavi will support manufacturing, procurement, and distribution for 300 million of the 2 billion doses.
Warp Speed Clinical Trial Finalists
All eyes are on a handful of drug companies after news that the U.S. is prioritizing five COVID-19 vaccine programs. But since the selections went public, experts have been raising questions about the process and the drugmakers that were left off.Earlier this week, The New York Times reported that AstraZeneca, Pfizer, Merck, Johnson & Johnson and Moderna had scored “finalist” status at Operation Warp Speed, an aggressive program to deliver COVID-19 vaccines to Americans this year. Four of the companies have already received federal funding for their programs, and the finalists will have access to additional resources, NYT reports.
Among those resources is priority access to clinical trial facilities, former FDA chief Scott Gottlieb said on CNBC. With limited testing capacity nationwide and many vaccines in development, that’s set to hinder companies that weren’t picked.The former FDA chief pointed out two absences that struck him—Sanofi and Novavax. Of the five vaccines selected, only one platform—from Merck—has ever been used in an approved shot.